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Photo by shche_ team on Unsplash

7 Ways to Give Your Room a Much Needed Makeover on a Budget

You don’t need a contractor or thousands of dollars to create a brand new living space you’ll love.

Janice Bae
Jun 17 · 7 min read

We’ve all been spending a lot of time in our rooms lately and it’s probably starting to feel old, but giving your room a “refresh” can turn what feels mundane into a special treat. In fact, I’m of the opinion that changing up your room a couple times a year helps you appreciate your living quarters and cut down on clutter that may be wearing on you without you even knowing it.

  1. Rearrange your furniture:

You don’t need to be a master of feng shui to know what arrangement of furniture feels good to you — so don’t be concerned with following rules that purport to bring the best vibes to your room. Feng shui decorating is merely creating a space that is best suited for the activities you intend to perform in that space. So if you like to work out in your room, rearrange things to give yourself a wider space to lay down your yoga mat. If you’re partial to sleeping in, place your bed away from the window that has sunlight streaming through it in the mornings.

Be realistic, not idealistic. It may be “trendy” to keep electronics out of your room, but is it realistic for you? If you’re like me and love to veg out on Netflix in bed at the end of the day, don’t feel guilty about keeping the TV in your room even though your lifestyle coach told you not to.

Rearranging your furniture also gives you a great opportunity to dust and vacuum long neglected corners of your room and get rid of clutter you’ve forgotten about. Really think about the purpose of your room and what absolutely needs to be in it. What can be relegated to other parts of your home or to a donation bin? The more empty space you make, the more creative freedom you’ll have with your furniture arrangements.

2. Find creative organization solutions:

Bernie Sanders has one, you have one — let’s face it, everyone has the “clothes chair.” You know, the one that you throw the not yet dirty clothes you plan to rewear.

No matter how gorgeous your room, little eyesores like this can pile up and ruin the aesthetic. Here’s where you can flex your creative juices and find pleasing solutions. A great one I’ve found to combat the dreaded “clothes chair” are these ladder style racks.

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Image via Amazon Search Results

The best way to go about thinking about this is to find a home for every item in your room — and if there is no home for a particular item, go about creating one. If you find a really great solution, it can even serve as decor.

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Jewelry storage or gorgeous wall hanging? (Image via Etsy)

3. Rotate your covers and sheets:

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Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

A thrifty way to refresh the look of your whole room is to rotate your bedsheets. Because your comforter is usually what you see most often, having comforter covers to rotate through when you want a simple change is easy.

Look for covers and sheets made with cotton, linen, or other natural fibers that will look clean, sophisticated, and help your skin “breathe” throughout the night. Some comforter covers even come with a pattern on one side and another pattern on the other side so you can flip it over when you want a quick change.

As for the patterns themselves, simple or minimal patterns with neutral or muted colors will most likely serve you well. Bold and busy patterns are more likely to become an eye sore, attracting too much attention to your bed or going out of fashion after a few years.

4. Collect and display art prints:

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Photo by Jonny Caspari on Unsplash

Of all the gorgeous rooms I’ve seen on Pinterest, the one tenet they all seem to have in common are the art prints displayed in harmonious arrangements on the walls. There’s just something so lovely about it. And while it’s easy to drive down to Ross or Marshall’s to pick up some generic canvases with art on them, it’s more pleasing to actually collect prints that are unique or mean something to you, framing them yourself, and displaying them.

Collecting unique and meaningful prints and getting them ready for display may be the most time-consuming suggestion on this list because it can be a life long journey of collecting. The cost of frames and high quality prints will also feel like a big investment at first, but art that means something to you will always have a place in your home as opposed to generic canvas art that you might be inclined to throw away or donate in a few years’ time. Some of the sources of my art prints are gifts from friends and prints I’ve bought while traveling.

Arranging your frames on a wall in a harmonious way is really subject to what kind of art you have and how many you have to arrange. A quick Google search of “how to arrange frames on a wall” will give you endless combinations and ideas.

5. Hang new curtains:

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Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

Like changing your comforter cover, changing your curtains is a cost-effective way to give your room a face lift and dramatically change the mood in your room. When picking the color of your curtains, some rules of thumb to follow are:

· Light colored curtains can make smaller rooms feel larger

· Light colored curtains in white and neutral shades are a safe, classic, and timeless look

· Light colored curtains may show dust and grime easier so you may have to stay on top of cleaning them

· Dark colored curtains can make larger rooms feel cozier

· Dark colored curtains may hide dust and grime so you don’t have to clean them as often

Beyond being beautiful, curtains can be extremely functional if you opt to get black out or thermal curtains which block out sunlight and help regulate temperatures in your room by keeping out the cold or the heat.

6. Hang up wall tapestries:

Tapestries aren’t just antiques that people used to hang on the walls of castles. Wall tapestries have been modernized and are easily available for purchase without breaking the bank. They come in more designs and styles than you could imagine.

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Image via Amazon Search Results

They’re great for jazzing up an empty wall and adding a unique touch of your personality in a quick and non-permanent way. If you don’t have a headboard on your bed, a tapestry can serve as a stylish one as well. Once you have a few, you can rotate them as the seasons change to change the mood.

7. Invest in some plants:

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Photo by Prudence Earl on Unsplash

There are no two ways about it, plants are just really good for you. Whether you’re actively conscious of it or not, humans are wired to find nature and greenery pleasing. They reduce stress, anger, and fear. They also emit oxygen and humidity which can improve the air quality in your room. Some even say they can help boost productivity. Here is a good resource by The Spruce that goes over plants to keep in your bedroom.

Some plants require more care than others, so choose your plants based off how green your thumb is and how much time you have to devote to their care. While the popular and trendy monstera deliciosas might give your room cool Insta-worthy vibes, really question whether you’re prepared to keep them in good shape. A dying, brown, wilted plant is worse than no plant at all.

Creating a sanctuary you’re eager to spend time in will always a worthwhile endeavor. Remember that change is good and necessary — it keeps you fresh and alive. And when you purchase things for your sanctuary, remember to purchase them for life. A well crafted item that will last you forever is always worth the extra bucks over something that will fall into disrepair in a year or two.

Happy decorating.

The Startup

Medium's largest active publication, followed by +730K people. Follow to join our community.

Janice Bae

Written by

I enjoy writing about society and culture, especially of the internet variety. janicebaecopy@gmail.com

The Startup

Medium's largest active publication, followed by +730K people. Follow to join our community.

Janice Bae

Written by

I enjoy writing about society and culture, especially of the internet variety. janicebaecopy@gmail.com

The Startup

Medium's largest active publication, followed by +730K people. Follow to join our community.

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