Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Making Your House a Home ( on a budget )

Decor is muy importante when trying to make your house feel like it's "yours". After years of living in apartments with chipped paint and ugly carpeting, I've learned that even little accents can do a lot to make a place more your own. But you don't have to break the bank to style your home!

Nathan bought his home brand-new about 6 years ago...since then, only one wall has been painted. One. There were no pictures on the walls; no real decorations. He and his ex lived in that house for almost 4 years and it barely looks like it. 

I moved into his place a year ago in September...and much really hasn't been done since then. But over the weekend, I decided I was finally going to purchase some curtains/rods. We haven't painted yet ( ........I picked out the colors months ago, though ) but I used the paint samples that I saved on my phone to pick out curtains ( you have to start somewhere, amiright? ) Also, even though "my room" [ which is one of the spare rooms that I made my craft/exercise room ] is not painted, either, I ended up hanging pictures in there month's ago just to give it some life

While shopping, I remembered having to try to decorate around the fact that I couldn't paint or remodel my apartments due to landlords and rules...and I forgot about some really great finds you can get while doing so. 

Living room set up with the new large rod and 4-panels!

First off, try stores like Ross and Ollie's ( if you live on the East Coast, of course ) So far, I've found a set of 2 panels for $8.49 on clearance, a decorative curtain rod for $9.99, a 4-panel set for the living room window for $24.99, and a 120" decorative rod for $16.99. I just got curtains and rods for 3 windows for about $60! Sometimes, just one set of curtains would cost you that much! 

Clearance curtains in my craft room

Also, try second-hand! You can find a lot of nice stuff that someone else used to own and just doesn't need anymore. I used OfferUp to find a new entertainment stand for my living room and have gotten NUMEROUS compliments on it ( I mentioned this buy in a previous blog with picture =D ) 

I've decorated with dollar store stuff, even. I used to have my kitchen in an apple theme which included a large canvas picture that I got for $9.99 at Gabriel Brothers years ago, a $5 apple-shaped clock from Walmart, a painting I did myself, and some red and green washcloths/dishtowels and apple-themed oven pads from the local Dollar Tree to accent.

Picture frames can be purchased at places like TJMaxx and Ross for *awesome* prices. All my pictures frames are from those stores, really.

You do not need to shop at places like Pottery Barn and Bed, Bath & Beyond to make your home stylish and comfortable. Even try consignment shops! I found a set of 3 square shelves that didn't even look used for $3.99! Even at Ross, they were $11.99! I saved $8 by just shopping smart. 

My suggestions about shopping for the home on a budget:

1. Make a list of all the things that you need, be it curtains, cookware, bedding, etc.

2. Take that list and prioritize. If you're low on cash, maybe put the bigger-ticket items more towards the bottom--that way you can save for those purchases.

3. Never judge a store before checking it out. You may think "Psh, the dollar store?!" but take a look may easily find half of the things on that list for a LOT less than what you may have planned to pay elsewhere.

4. Try websites like OfferUp, Craigslist or LetGo. You can come across some awesome finds on sites like this...and even sell some of your own things for extra cash!

You want your home to be your haven; somewhere you can express yourself and be proud of. Decorating brings life to wherever you live and you don't have to drain your bank account to do so.