If your living room is looking lacklustre, consider these ideas to transform it on a budget
Houzz UK Editorial Staff. I’m a freelance journalist with more than 13 years’ experience… More
Sometimes it really is the little things that count most when you want to rev up a room – a new artwork, a statement floor lamp, you get the picture. Want in on the action? Here are some more tips to give your living space a purse-friendly new look.
Sort some soft furnishings
You can completely update a room just by adding a few carefully chosen cushions, throws and pouffes – or even a budget-friendly rug. The living room here is very simple and minimal with a grey sofa and white walls, but the textiles transform it into an inviting, contemporary space.
Pop up a picture ledge
If you want to be able to update your artwork frequently, a picture ledge is a great living room addition. These simple, narrow shelves are relatively cheap to purchase and can be put up easily. Once your shelf is in place, you can swap pictures and photos as often as you like to completely change the look of the room. The artwork here, for example, emphasises the monochrome scheme of the room, but for a quick update the owners could add brighter designs to give the room an eclectic feel.
Curate a collection
Don’t underestimate the power of a vignette when it comes to transforming your living room. Collect objects and artwork from charity shops and flea markets, then arrange them together in an area of the room. This beautifully styled alcove, with its interesting ornaments and paintings, gives the room character.
Paper a wall
Fancy a dramatic transformation? You don’t need to decorate the whole room – focus on one wall instead. Choose a bold wallpaper design and you’ll see how a little goes a long way. The wallpaper here, for example, has provided a striking feature in this period living room and given it a whole different look than if the wall had been left plain.
Find out the dos and don’ts of hanging art against wallpaper
Install your own alcove shelving
Bespoke shelving is lovely, but doesn’t work with everyone’s budget. It’s easy to put up your own shelves, but rather than make them look like custom-made joinery, highlight the difference instead. These shelves have metal hinges and brackets on them for an unexpected twist on the classic alcove shelving. The vintage table below adds an interesting contrast between old and new, as does the ornate armchair.
Fill an empty fireplace
While you save up for that pricey wood-burning stove, think about how you can pep up an unused fireplace. This one has been filled with wood to add interest to the space, but there are plenty of other ideas you could go for as well. Try arranging a display of battery-operated candles to recreate the shimmer of a fire or even pile up some books.
Paint some furniture
In this living space, the painted armchair steals the show. It’s easy to add colour to an old piece of furniture, and the result can be quite dramatic. Find a chest of drawers, a chair or a sidetable and choose a colour that stands out, but also ties in with the rest of the scheme. The bright yellow here contrasts beautifully with the grey, but complements the gold tones of the painting above it.
Discover more ways to revive old furniture
Spruce up the cupboards
Remember to consider the look of any fitted cupboards when you’re updating your living space. Choose the right shade, and they can work as a feature in the room. This home has its living space next to the under-stairs cupboards, so the designer has incorporated them into the decorating scheme with a lick of paint and turned them into an important design element of the room.
Add an extra chair (or two)
If your living room is feeling a little sparse, one way to give it more style (and comfort) is with seating. You can do this expensively with sofas and armchairs, of course, but if your budget is tight consider popping some occasional chairs around the room instead. You can pick up chairs full of personality at car-boot sales or flea markets, and if you combine them with floor cushions you’ll be able to create a relaxed, welcoming space without splashing out.
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What do you think of these purse-friendly decorating ideas? Have you transformed your space on a budget? Share your thoughts/pictures in the Comments below.