Cheap and Creative Home Decor
By Steve Gillman
You might think it has to cost a lot of money for decent home
decor, but there are cheaper options. You just have to get creative.
For example, a colorful area rug bought at a flea market for
$35 can be used as a wall hanging instead of spending $400 for
a painting of similar size. Here are a few more ideas to get
Make Your Own Decorative Items
If you live near a beach you can collect sea shells and glue
them to driftwood to make beautiful pieces of art. The total
cost will be your time and a dollar's worth of glue. If you live
where you can collect wild plants you can dry them and make arrangements
that would cost $50 or more to buy. If you are handy working
with wood you can make a beautiful coat rack from local trees,
and it might cost you no more than ten dollars for hooks and
Shop the Right Stores
There are good paintings and bad ones, but price alone does
not determine which is which. For as little as $60 you can buy
large oil paintings in some discount stores. Similar ones will
sell for five or ten times as much in art galleries, so unless
you are investing, just buy what appeals to you at the cheaper
places. Another option is thrift stores, where paintings and
other wall hangings start at just $5 in some cases.
A decorative end table might be too expensive, while in the
same store there are tables for outdoor patios that will look
just fine inside. Bar stools that are made of good-looking wood
can be used as end tables as well. An old "octopus"
floor lamp with several lights can be made into a fanciful coat
rack. Think out of the box and you'll have many more options
for home decor.
Wait for the Sales
One of the surest ways to save a bit of money when decorating
your home is to be patient. Wait until the right item is on sale
for the right price. The desire to have it all right now is an
expensive one if indulged.
Dress Up Cheap Items
You can often hide the lower-quality furniture you have under
something that looks better. For example, you can drape a cheap
table with a nice piece of cloth, either as a permanent or temporary
solution. You can cover an old couch with a beautiful blanket.
An old painting can be put into a nicer frame. Look for ways
to keep it inexpensive without the appearance of cheapness.
Talk to Your Friends
People get rid of perfectly good furnishings and home decor
items all the time. Sometimes they throw them out, while other
times they sell them at rummage sales or donate them to thrift
stores. Your mission, if you want to save money, is to intercept
those items before they get that far. Talk to your friends and
ask if they are planning to get rid of anything soon. You might
be surprised by what you'll get for free (or at least really
cheap) if you just ask.
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