11 Ways to Beat the High Cost of Decorating

11 Ways to Beat the High Cost of DecoratingBeautiful homes don’t have to cost a fortune. With a little creativity, you can have a beautiful home while keeping on budget. There are countless ways to do this, and really the only limitation is your imagination. With these ideas, no one will know you did it on the cheap…unless you blog about it! Here are 11 ways to beat the high cost of decorating.

1. Fake architectural details.  It shouldn’t be a surprise that #1 involves paint. There is no better way to transform what you have on a budget than paint. Use it to add some architectural details!

Here they not only painted the headboard on the wall, they painted faux trim work too. Beautifully done!

painted headboard on wallinteriors by kenz

This next one is really ingenious! Want to beef up the baseboards without having to buy & install new ones? Buy a thin piece of molding, attach it a few inches above your existing baseboards & then paint it all white.

beefed up baseboardsHouse of Smiths

Painted on picture frame molding works too.

Faux panelling and molding with paintPrairie Perch


2. Stretch your flower budget.   After paint, greenery is my second choice for freshening up a room on a budget. Bud vases stretch a bouquet of flowers. No bud vase? Reuse small empty glass bottles. I keep the glass spice jars, they are perfect for this.


mason jar flowers

Top This Top That


bud vase trioAbout Flowers Blog

glass jar vasegoop

3. Use free things from nature.   I love natural elements in the home and would use them even if I didn’t have any budget limitations. Branches, seashells, acorns and pine cones are all great choices & can be switched out with the seasons.

imageVia Home Modish


Decorating with shellsThe Decorated House


DIY Acorn WreathAll You


4. Curbside/Craigslist finds.

Curbside finds are the best, but not so readily available. My next choice is Craigslist. I love this chair makeover from Celebrating Everyday Life. The fabric, the color, it’s perfect.

budget decorating recovering thrifted vintage chairsCelebrating Everyday Life


Vintage fans like the one shown in the next photo can sell on Etsy for around $80. I found this one curbside. My husband re-wired it & I painted it.




Here are a couple more Craigslist finds transformed with paint.

curbside dresser makeoverThe Everyday Home


dresser transformationJust A Girl and Her Blog


5. Line bookshelves.

Change the look of boring bookshelves by lining the backs. Some ideas: use paint, wallpaper, fabric, or even wrapping paper.

Lined bookshelves Meyer Interiors

Polka dot lines shelvesOh My Dear


6. Paint… the front door to liven up the entry. Or the kitchen cabinets to totally transform the room.

Charcoal-Painted-Front-Door-The-Inspired-RoomThe Inspired Room


kitchen makeover with paintEveryday Enchanting


interior-painted-yellow-highlighter-doors-Pretty Handy Girl

7. DIY wall art… frame pictures from books,  magazines, or calendars. You can also frame fabric, scrapbook paper, or maps. I did a post on framing fabric awhile back, you can see that here.

Allison at 235 Designs needed a large-scale piece for her entry so she made one herself…using posterboard and paint.

DIY Wall ArtTwo Thirty Five Designs

For my own DIY wall map that hangs in my family room, I used map prints I bought on eBay for around $20 with Wal-Mart frames. The sideboard shown was also a total score for only $50 at an antique store. You can see how I transformed that here.

antique sideboard, budget decorating ideas you have to see


8. Budget fabric options.

Fabric can get pricey. These creative bloggers found other options.

Make an area rug from a tablecloth!

Rug from tablecloth Dream Book Design

Curtains from sheets!

cutains from sheetsTake the Side Street


Throw pillows from napkins!pillows from napkins!Centsational Girl


9. Rearrange your wall art… rearranging furniture is good, but how about rearranging your artwork? Take everything off the walls and switch it up. This works for accessories too.

mix and match wall artFinding Home Online

Wall vignettePottery Barn


Wall artBallard Designs


10. Decluttering.  Sometimes you just need to remove things rather than adding more things! Keep it simple.


clutter free kitchenvia Stylish Livable Spaces


clutter free liv roomvia mom toob


11. Switch out the small things…cabinet knobs, light switch covers. Sometimes the little details can make the largest impact.

knobsIkea Hackers

I really hope some of these budget decorating ideas inspired you! If you put in a little time and creativity you can have a home you love without breaking the bank!

Update: Check out my new eBook, The Ultimate Guide to Beating the High Cost of Decorating for more practical ideas and inspiration!

ultimate guide to beating the high cost of decorating eBook - a must read!

You may also like 20 cheap decorating ideas it’s filled with even more budget-friendly home inspiration!!

Cheap Decorating Ideas that look chic


  1. I love the idea of greenery. Your photos of the flower and vases were so pretty. Great ideas. 😉

  2. These are great ideas. I have done many of them myself, and people assume all the time I have spent a lot of money on my home. I happily tell them how cheap things actually cost. I am going to do the one to beef up the floorboard trim, I never thought of that. Awesome!

  3. These are amazing suggestions! I think of most of these when I try to redo a room. Actually, since I’m in a rental house I try to switch out small things- like the hardware- before I do anything else. I also try to imagine how a room would look with inexpensive artwork and rugs. Thanks for sharing these tips.


  4. Thanks for the tips! I’ll be keeping this for when I own my first home.

  5. Love these ideas. Sadly I have just spent much longer than I should have done following the links and checking out the ideas! I LOVE that yellow door and the flower arranging tips are great. Thanks for putting this together.

    1. Julie, so glad you liked it. I love that yellow door too!

  6. I love decorating with sticks. I actually used some, painted white with spray paint, as my wedding centerpieces.

    Great collection of ideas here!

    Found you through the Thursday Favorite Things Link-up!

    Beth at LWC Wonderland

  7. Such a great post.I enjoyed going through each idea.I believe so much in DIYing things rather than buying the same for high cost.Thank you for linking up at Home matters link up party. We would love to see you again next wednesday.

  8. These are some GREAT tips! I’ll be featuring your post on tomorrow night’s Merry Monday party at 8 CST. Thank you so much for sharing with us!

  9. I love wrapping the back of the bookshelves with something fancy. It makes such a big difference on cheaper shelves. Thanks for sharing with the Merry Monday Linky Party. I hope you’ll be able to share with us again this week.

  10. I am loving all these ideas! Thanks for sharing at On Display Thursday. I am pinning this and I shared it on my Facebook page. 🙂

  11. These are great tips! I love decorating but it can get pricey. I have also found that if you have a nice piece you can get away with a few less expensive ones surrounding it – especially for the holidays. Love these tips. Thanks!

  12. What a wonderful collection of ideas! I am always looking for inexpensive ways to spruce up and finish off the Little Shack. Found you on SoMe2!

  13. Can you comment on how to refinish a piece of furniture, like the “dresser to TV stand” you did? I have a piece of furniture I’d like to refinish but I’m not sure how to do it. (Do I sand it down first? What type of paint t use? Special tips?)

    1. Ashley, it really depends on what type of paint you use. I love the Annie Sloan chalk paint because no sanding is necessary. It’s really easy to use. You can get more details on how to use it in here: https://thehoneycombhome.com/mason-jar-canisters/. Hope that helps!

  14. Where did you get the slipcovered sofas, love the throw pillows/fabrics!

  15. Great ideas! Thanks for sharing.

  16. The sphere orb chandelier in the living room – how big is it and where did you get it?

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