Get a New Look on the Cheap with Accents

April 14, 2014 by  

If you’re feeling bored with your living room’s look, but new furniture isn’t in your budget, you can give it a brand new feel without breaking the bank. The best way to change the overall style of any room without spending a ton of money is to focus on accents. You can switch it up by playing with colors and patterns, breathing new life into your tired old furniture.

1. Pillows – You can find great pillows at every price point imaginable, so this is one category where there’s something for everyone. For anywhere from ten bucks to hundreds of dollars each, you can indulge your love of color, patterns, and texture in ways that will make you forget that you thought your couch was boring. Don’t make the mistake of wedding yourself to a cluster of pillows that are all exactly the same. You’ll achieve a better look with a hodgepodge of colors and fabrics. Mix it up by pairing suede with silk, or embroidered cotton with rugged saddle leather. Create a lovely chaos with stripes, florals, and solids.

Accents2. Throws – Whether artfully draped over the back of a chair or folded into a neat, squared stack on a trunk or side table, throws add functional beauty to your living room. They look great as decor, but even more importantly, everyone loves to get cozy with them. What could be better than curling up with a good book and a great blanket, or snuggling together in a cocoon of comfort to watch a movie. Woolen southwestern prints, bohemian afghans, and super soft cashmere are at the top of the list for this year’s most popular styles, but let’s face it, a good blanket never goes out of style.

3. Area rugs – Replacing an area rug can be much more expensive than getting new pillows or throws, but it’s still far less expensive than getting new furniture. You probably won’t get new rugs as often as other accent pieces, so you’ll probably spend more time and consideration on selecting something you’re going to love for awhile. While solids are always safe, nautical stripes or bold new floral prints offer a middle ground, looking timelessly classic and trendy at the same time. If you’re not loving the way your living room currently looks, be sure to assess whether or not your current area rug is a part of the problem.

4. Lamp shades – Lampshades are one of the most underutilized options in budget-conscious room makeovers. This needs to change, because the difference a new lampshade can make in a room’s look is huge, and many of them are quite affordable. It’s much cheaper than replacing the entire lamp, but the effect can be just as dramatic. If you’re not sure about whether or not certain shades will pair well with your current lamps, ask the store if you can take them home and return them if they don’t look right. Most of the time this isn’t a problem as long as you leave the tag on and return it undamaged.

5. Twinkle lights – If you favor an offbeat, bohemian look, you’re in luck. Gypsy-chic home accessories are everywhere, and twinkle lights are making appearances both indoors and out. No living space is off limits if you want to add some sparkle and whimsy to your decor. They’re incredibly inexpensive, and you can rearrange them, wrapping, twisting and draping them into endless configurations without much effort. In the evenings your living room will be transformed into something romantic and magical.

6. Picture frames – Changing the frames on your favorite pictures is a quick and fun way to perk up your walls. If you want to save even more money and your current frames are in good shape, pick up some spray paint and give old frames some new color. You’ll be amazed at the difference it makes.

Don’t be afraid to play with color palettes or patterns you wouldn’t ordinarily try. If you’re feeling stuck in a decorating rut, accessories allow you to try a variety of looks without the commitment that comes with more drastic overhauls. It’s a fun and relatively inexpensive way to give your living room a brand new personality.

photo credit: IDA Interior LifeStyle via photopin cc

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