5 Tips for Decorating on a Budget

Lauren Edith Andersen
Lauren Edith Andersen

Every autumn the urge strikes me to get every room in the house shipshape before the holiday landslide hits. The conundrum, of course, is that the holidays can be pricey and I probably shouldn’t be spending a ton of money on myself – I should be socking it away to put towards lovely things for other people! I’m a single woman on a budget, so I try and stick to these five rules throughout the year when it comes to decorating my space which helps more than I can say when I decide I want to change a few things up.

1/ Stick to neutrals
The more a piece costs, the more likely I am to choose it in a neutral to give it a longer life. When your tastes change it’s much easier to make an off white or light grey sofa fit with your new aesthetic than that red one you were considering. (I still thank my mom for talking me out of that decision in my first apartment!) This line of thought also extends to other pieces – large indoor planters, floor rugs, throw pillows – that I think I might like to switch between rooms at some point.


2/ Paint is your friend
One gallon of paint will easily accommodate two coats in most rooms and is some of the best decorating money you can spend. Nothing will change up the vibe of a space faster! Keep in mind that lighter colors will make a room feel larger, make wall art pop, and serve as a general canvas for whatever else you plan on putting in it. Darker walls (I’ve been so tempted to paint my dining room black!) are moody, and while they might make a room feel smaller they can also make them oh so cozy. You can even change up an entire piece of furniture or create your own art – so many possibilities.


3/ Be a scavenger
Some of my best finds have been found at online sales sites (Everything But the House, Chairish, etc), garage sales, or simply sitting out with someone else’s trash. A chair with great bones can be recovered, a credenza with some nicks can be rehabbed. If you’re willing to put in a little time or elbow grease you can save oh so much money and own some very unique pieces for your home.


4/ Plan the splurges
Maybe you’ve long dreamed of owning a leather couch or four posted bed, something that you’re certain you’ll be hanging on to for some time. All that’s required is a little strategic planning, AKA saving up. This always helps me stay away from impulse purchases – usually accessories – that I really don’t need. Eyes on the big picture!

Royal Roulotte

5/ See things differently
That trunk you found on the sidewalk would be a great coffee table with built-in storage space. The old dining chair from that estate sale perfectly fits next to your bed as a table. Get my drift? Start thinking outside the box more when it comes to your decor and all of a sudden the things that make up your home no longer need to be relegated to one lonely purpose. One last example: floor rugs make for great wall art.


For more inspiration from Kelly, follow along with her at Design Crush!

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Setting The Foundation with Rugs

Much like your home has a foundation, your room does as well. Set a solid foundation with a rug. It sets the tone and defines your space. They come in every color, pattern and many different shapes and sizes. So if rugs are so diverse, why begin here? Let’s dig in with these helpful tips.

Via Sarah Sherman Samuel

COLOR. Whether you like muted tones or bodacious bold colors, let your rug do the talking for that pop of color. You might think necessary pieces like sofas and tables may come first, but ask yourself this, “What crazy sofa color am I going to design around?” Chances are beige, cream, navy, gray, or black. Am I right? Ok, maybe throw in red or turquoise if you’re really shaking things up.

Via The Design Files

Go ahead, get crazy with the rug color. It’s easy to swap out when you’re ready for a change, and much more practical on your wallet.

PATTERN. Not only do rugs come in every color, but also every pattern. Serious floor flair will kick your space up a notch. Personally, this is where I tend to get tripped up if I don’t start with the rug as my foundation.

Via The Design Files

From a beautiful hand knot to funky graphics to Moroccan casual, a rug will set the tone of your space. If you lean on the traditional side, look at our oriental rugs or a muted damask. Want a boho feel with a pop of color? Try an over dyed rug in turquoise or fuschia. Feeling casual beachy? Our nautical rugs are exactly what you need to make you feel ocean side even if you live in Nebraska.

SIZE. When it comes to rugs, size matters. Measure your seating area first and take into account any weird corners, stairs, or fireplace.

If you’re asking yourself, “Should I go bigger”?, the answer is almost always yes. Yes a smaller rug costs less, but trust me, go big or go home. You don’t need your guests whispering, “Honey, You Shrunk The Rug” during your next cocktail party. If you have a rug that you must have, but you know full well that it’s too small, go for the layered look.

Via Amber Interiors

If possible, you want all four legs of your furniture on the rug, but if your room is in the #smallspacesquad just float it. Whichever you choose, be consistent. Try your best to have either all legs on or all legs off.

Via Convoy

Are you ready to start shopping? Go ahead! Define your space, set the foundation to your room, and let your personality shine. By following these helpful tips, you’ll find the best rug to fit your style.

For more inspiration from Kyla, follow along with her at House Of Hipsters!

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Rug + Room | Choosing a Rug


Gravity + Surya Jewel Tone 

Sometimes even the most styled room can feel unfinished without a little something on the floor. Rugs not only add another layer of your particular aesthetic to a space, they also add a layer of warmth during cooler months. Taking it a step further, place a floor rug in a room that’s minimal and it can double as a piece of art.

The room above has an amazing herringbone floor going on, which we definitely don’t want to overshadow. My solution is a tribal-inspired rug with lines that mimic the diagonals already in place. The deep coral adds more to warmth to the cool white room.

Bolig Liv + Artistic Weavers Central Park

This dining nook has so much going for it — a lovely eating area, greenery, and some killer art. The addition of a warm gold rug with a geometric pattern serves to make the space feel more inviting and pulls your eye from ceiling to floor.


Woon Blog + Loloi Rugs Journey

There’s no awakening quite as unpleasant as stepping foot on a cold floor first thing in the morning. The solution couldn’t be more simple. Lay a throw rug half under the bed and half out directly where you set your feet when you stand up out of bed. Functional and beautiful.

Remodelista-1Remodelista + Jaipur Rugs Lago

This black tiled floor is stunning. Beautiful and geometric, the white grout really sets it all off. But visions of stepping out of the tub and falling on my caboose are all I can see! Adding a contrasting graphic pattern in the same hues makes the room much more comfortable and adds a second layer of interest.

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