On a budget

On a budget

Vathsala V P lists out the ways in which you can give a stylish makeover to your living room, that too on a budget!

If at all we have to buy something, then it's best to head to the used furniture market where we can strike a good bargain.

Good interiors are a homeowner's pride. For, they are a reflection of our personality, an extension of our self. But we have to admit that however tasteful a home decor is, we tend to get bored of it after a while. And, we long for a change of decor every once in a while.

But, it is easier said than done. It can be a time-consuming exercise. Also, the redecorating costs could be prohibitive, considering the kind of change we are looking for. But, fret not. If you want to give your home a new look, always remember that home decor on a budget is possible. All that we need to do is some careful planning. 

Highlight the space

We could begin with the living room, which is the highlight of the house, by rearranging the furniture. Let me assure you, even a slight rearrangement of furniture can go a long way in giving the living room a new look. It costs nothing, too.

The next step could be displaying wall art and decor items. Personalising it can lend our homes a cosy feel. Here come the intimate pictures - family photos in a fun atmosphere, ancestral portraits, photo collages, the list could be endless. You can also bring in souvenirs you have picked during your various travels and decor items that you have tucked away in the attic for a dearth of space.

If stuck for ideas for an innovative display, we can always consult magazines on home interiors that are easily available in secondhand bookstores. They could be a good source of inspiration for design-challenged folks like us. We could mix and match ideas from the books and create a look that speaks volumes about our aesthetic sense.

Do it yourself 

When we are redecorating, our impulse is to go on a shopping spree and buy everything new. We should avoid this as much as possible as it'll only add to the clutter. And for all we know, a few months down the line, we may crave for another session of refurbishing, and not know what to do with all the things we’ve just bought. The best option is to make the best use of all that we already have - be it cushions, furniture, or showpieces.

If at all we have to buy something, then it's best to head to the used furniture market where we can strike a good bargain. Shopping for used furniture can be a fun exercise, too. For all we know, we may chance upon an antique piece of furniture that can add to the aesthetic value of our homes. Also, most often, all that a used piece of furniture needs is a good rub with a sandpaper, and a nice coat of varnish. Yet again, we do not have to depend on carpenters or painters for the same. We could do it ourselves.

Nowadays, varnishes come in plenty of colours, as in teak, rosewood, silverwood, etc, as also the finish, matte and gloss. They are easily available in hardware shops. It's quite easy to apply it too. We could just dip either a ball of cotton or a piece of cloth in the varnish and dab it on the furniture that needs a facelift. The dramatic difference it makes can leave us speechless. 

Go bold with colours

Next in line could be painting just one wall, the most visible one. Going in for a striking shade could give the entire room a lift and lend it the style punch we desire. How about bold red or cheerful yellow or warm orange for that ‘wow’ effect. We could then choose to adorn the wall in decorative items of our choice. Alternatively, one large canvas with geometric patterns could also do the trick. They can create an inviting feel in the living room.

To complement this chic look, we could either refurbish the sofas or cover them with cushions in colours that complement the newly painted wall. Bright, floral patterns are a safe bet. Another option would be buying plain fabric and embellishing it with mirrors, sequins, beads, paints or threads that add to the beauty of the fabric and, of course, cost us almost nothing.

While redecorating our living rooms, how can we leave the curtains behind? Curtains in cotton do not cost much. Teaming new curtains with an ornate carpet or rug can lend a fabulous visual effect. There are many carpet dealers who offer attractive exchange options, making it easy for us to get a new carpet in place of our old one.

Another great route to take while giving our living room a makeover on a shoestring budget is to go in for simple decor items. Attractive vases, candle holders, aromatic candles, potpourri and knick-knacks that can brighten up our living room.

Last but not the least, let’s remember that redecorating our living room is an exciting exercise and a small dose of creativity and clever shopping can give us the desired effect without costing much.