In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. ~ Proverbs 3:6

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Seven Tips for Decorating on a Budget

I've finally made it to the last blog post about Charlotte's nursery!  This evening I'm sharing seven tips on how I put a room together in my home, particularly how I put Charlotte's room together.

Here's the thing with making a house a home.  For me, there is always a budget.  That budget varies depending on where I'm at in life.  When I was 22 and making my first apartment a home, I only had a couple hundred bucks to work with.

When I was married and working outside of the home before we had kids, we had a little more money to work with.  When we were expecting the boys, I think our budget for the nursery was a little over $1,000.  That was for EVERYTHING.  Cribs, furniture, supplies, bedding...EVERYTING.  And if I recall, we still went a little over the budget.

For Charlotte's room, we planned on spending a few hundred dollars, knowing that we didn't have any new furniture to buy.  I'm happy to say we stayed within the budget for this room. 

Here are seven ways I put a room together while maintain a budget.

The first thing that I do when I begin decorating or furnishing a room is to look around my house for things that I can rehome!

For example, Charlotte's crib and glider came from the boys nursery.  All of the lamps and the tall dresser also came from different rooms in my house. 

Now, would I have rather had an expensive white girly iron crib and a pretty white armchair for her room.  Sure, I would have!  But budget is my first priority!  My goal is to make every room in our home look good, while keeping cost at a minimal.  We already had a glider and a crib, that I specifically bought gender-neutral when I planned the boys nursery, just incase we were blessed with more babies. 

Sometimes ordinary things just need a different purpose.  Like the dresser that is now multi-functional as a diaper station, the bow holder that was once a picture frame, or the candle holder that is now the base of a headband holder. 

I try not to waste materials when I'm doing a project.  I also try to think of ways I can recyle scraps. 

In Charlottes room, the fabric banner was just scrap fabric from other projects in her room.  The sign above the dresser was made from scrap plywood from the feature wall.  The ruffled lampshade was scrap fabric from the curtains.  The paper banner, bow holder and mobile were all made from the same pieces of scrapbook paper and ribbons.  An oatmeal container was even recycled for the headband holder!

One of my favorite things to do is to buy used furniture pieces and refinish them.  Both dressers, a lamp and a shelf on the wall were all pieces that got a makeover.


I'm not so sure that remember is that accurate word, but I was looking for an "R" word!  I try to incorporate a few memories and sentiments in my kids rooms. 

For Charlotte, I used my childhood tea set, a piggy bank and a few stuffed animals to decorate her room.  All were mine as a child.  My mother-in-law also made her a quilt and a blanket for her room.  Gifts from other people are also nice to display.

And of course I have some special pictures on display in her room, along with a shadow box of her special hospital items.

I always try to buy used whenever I can.  I'm pretty serious about buying used!  All of Charlotte's clothes were from consignment sales or FB garage sale sites, with the exception of a couple of pieces! 

In Charlott'es room, the table and chairs, book shelf, child's chair, books and toys were all bought used at garage sale prices.  In fact, all of the child's furniture that I just mentioned were bought years ago from the family I nannied from.  I knew I wanted to have kids someday, so when the girls outgrew certain things, I bought items from them and kept them in my basement until I had kids of my own!

I don't buy everything used or make it myself.  Somethings I do actually by brand new.  For those things, I'm always looking/waiting for a sale or a coupon, or I'm comparing prices. 

Of course, I have my go-to places like Hobby Lobby and Home Goods where I always seem to find the best deals on things.  All of the storage bins and baskets for Charlottes room were Home Goods and Hobby Lobby finds.  The picture frames were from Hobby Lobby.  The wall art and the bathroom rugs were from Home Goods.  Amazon is also my go-to online store.  The rug, diaper changing pad cover, crib sheet, vinyl decals and shower curtain were all from Amazon.

For the crafts and DIY projects that I make myself, researching online tutorials and Pinterest boards is a must!  And then shopping for supplies is usually done at Hobby Lobby.

For things that I buy used, I'm always scouring the online F/B garage sale sites, Craigslist or eBay, and scouting out Goodwill's while I'm out and about.

Bottom Line.  I research to find the best deals and cost-effective way to get a look I want.


Ok, so I know the word "create" doesn't start with an "R", but it kind of has the "r" sound in it.  Does that count?
Sometimes the cheapest way to get something I want is to make it myself.  I don't know about you, but I would love for my house to look like it belonged in a magazine, only I don't want to pay what it would cost to have my home look like it belonged in a magazine!

My solution is to custom make things myself.  I can't afford that fancy crib bedding or curtains?  The answer is to try to make them myself, or be content with cheaper things from the big box store. 
I think I paid around $60 for all of the fabric in Charlotte's room.  With that cost, I made a crib skirt, crib bumpers, 2 window panels, 2 sheer curtains, a ruffled lamp shade and a fabric banner. 

As for my husband's creations, all of the work he did on the walls cost us around $100 for paint and supplies.  With that money, we got more than a pink room by adding the chair railing and planked walls
Whether it's my child's room or any other room in our home, I always follow these tips when I want to achieve a certain look in my home but don't want to spend a lot of money.


  1. You are so creative. I love seeing your creations and look forward to the next.

  2. I am a regular user of your post, this one also was very interesting and well written. keep sharing the great work
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