Give Yourself a “New” Bathroom for Under $100

August 11, 2009 · Filed Under Being Frugal, Cheap Home Decorating · Comments Off on Give Yourself a “New” Bathroom for Under $100 

Giving your entire home a new look can run into some big bucks, but choosing one room at a time, especially a small room, is doable on most any budget. A good place to begin is with your bathroom, since 1) it’s typically the smallest room in the house, and 2) there are so many frugal options to choose from that you don’t have to spend much money at all to achieve a great new look! Here are some ways to quickly–and inexpensively–update your bathroom decor for under $100.

• Paint. You can find a gallon of paint on sale for $10 and update the entire look of your room in a few hours. Even if you don’t do anything else, you’ve got a bright “new” room with this change alone.

• A wallpaper border from the dollar store will transform your plain bathroom walls into a romantic hideaway, a jungle adventure, a deep sea odyssey, or a relaxing mountain lodge.

• Change the shower curtain to match your new paint and border. You can make your own from a flat sheet for less than the cost of a store-bought one and have fabric leftover for other projects.

• Buy new towels and use some of that leftover sheet to add a border around the bottom. Or crochet an edging in a coordinating color.

• Hang new towel rods and hooks, or paint the ones you have. They’ll show-off those newly decorated towels to their best advantage.

• Pick up a new toothbrush holder, soap dish and cup set at the dollar store. A solid color will work best since you’ll have it if you decide to change patterns later. And the full set can be found for $5 or less.

• Paint a shelf to complement your new paint then hang it about a foot from the ceiling on a wall in the bathroom. Fill it with guest towels, baskets, or other decorative items to match your new style.

• Set baskets around and fill them with the things you use every day such as lotions, make-up, colognes, hair care products, etc. Spray paint the baskets to match the decor, or leave them natural. They look nice either way.

• Frame some magazine prints that fit your new room. You can often pick up old magazines at yard sales for 10¢ each. Add a 25¢ frame and you’ve got new, “original” artwork for pennies.

• Reframe your vanity mirror. Some simple strips of wood can turn that old, dated mirror into something modern and uplifting.

• If your mirror frame is wood, paint it. You can add some decals or leave it plain. Or choose a patterned, self-adhesive paper that matches the room.

• Mobile homes often have flat mirrors that are simply glued to the wall. If that’s your case, it could create a major project to repair peeling mirror paint. Instead, look for decals that can be adhered directly over the worst spots. You may not cover every bad spot, but it will certainly make the mirror look better and the spots less noticeable.

• Add new carpet. Since many bathrooms are small, you may be able to carpet (or tile) the bathroom for just a few dollars and some labor. Give it a try. Carpet remnants come pretty cheap, and the whole room will feel more plush when you’re finished.

Small Frugal Changes for Your Home

August 5, 2009 · Filed Under Being Frugal, Cheap Home Decorating · Comments Off on Small Frugal Changes for Your Home 

Frugal moms often feel the need for change at times. Change is healthy, and it keeps our lives fresh and well-balanced. But when you aspire to live a frugal life, it’s easy to believe that it’s not possible to make changes, especially around the house, because change costs money. You could be mistaken…

While most of us think that to change anything, requires a big change, you can actually make small changes that have just as good an effect. In fact, it’s actually the smaller touches that make the biggest difference in our lives. Here are a few little things you can do that can make a really big difference.

Buy a few simple photo frames. You can pick them up from any number of places. Dollar stores are havens for such things and you know you’re going to get a great price. Instead of filling your frames with potentially expensive artwork, however, take a look at what you already have around the house. A family post card, a child’s artwork, even a CD cover. Practically anything flat that will fit into a frame is ideal. You might even get creative and design your own artwork. The guarantee with that is you know for sure no one else will ever have the same artwork you do!

Flowers add a lovely touch to any room, but finding nice vases can be expensive, especially when the ones you’ve had for over twenty years are starting to look a little musty and yellow. Glass drink bottles (if you can find them) make wonderful, unique vases that are cheap and come with a free drink, so who could argue with that? They also have a nice quirky, eclectic feel to them.

Consider letting the kids paint their own bedrooms to make it more their own. With proper supervision, and lots of drop cloths, they could do hand or finger painting, or even design and create their own mural. If you feel confident enough, you might even let them paint a mural in a more prominent room, like the living room. Or buy some stencils they could use to paint designs on the wall. Stencils are fairly cheap.

Bare walls can be incredibly dull, so try hanging something such a group of your favorite plates, or wallpaper leftovers–even if it’s just one or two lengths–to add a bit of color and variety to your rooms. Create a traditional arrangement, or something more original and creative, whatever works best for you. It doesn’t just have to be wallpaper, either. Use felt, suede, faux leather, or the fabric you made your last dress from.

Cover your old fading sofa and chairs with slipcover sheets. The great thing about using sheets is that they can be washed easily and you can change them whenever you feel the need to create or change the mood or ambience in a room. Just buy a large flat sheet to fit, drape it over the furniture and tuck it in around the cushion.

Want a fancy new calendar to hang on the wall? Don’t buy an over-priced printed one. Make your own instead! There are plenty of places online where you can buy a plain, basic calendar. Then just fill each page with family photos for a calendar like none other.

If you have a fancy for some new decor for the end tables or fireplace mantle, but can’t afford to spend much, head out into the wild blue yonder and see what nature has to offer. Stones make attractive paper weights or book ends. Feathers or pressed flowers are great glued to cardstock for bookmarks. Cover them in clear self-adhesive paper if you like. Pine cones look terrific spray painted, especially at Christmas. Pebbles scattered across a table add interest and texture, while shells can be stuck to the side of a mirror to make it that little bit more interesting.

Changing your decor a bit may not seem like much, but even these little changes can give your room a fresh feel and lift your spirits immensely. Give them a try!

Creative Ways to Recycle CDs

July 29, 2009 · Filed Under Being Frugal, Frugal Parenting · Comments Off on Creative Ways to Recycle CDs 

Creative Ways to Recycle Unused CDs

If you’re like me, you probably have a truck load of old CDs that you no longer want or listen to but have simply not gotten around to tossing in the trash or taking to Goodwill. Well, don’t throw those babies out just yet! Instead, gather the kids and recycle them to create funky and usable objets d’art!

• Use them as a base for miniatures. Create your own village by gluing glass or plastic figurines, trees, buildings, etc. to the shiny side of the CD.

• Glue flat-bottomed marbles around the outside edge of the shiny side of a CD and glue a magnet strip on the back. Attach stickers or photos in the center to create a large magnet for your refrigerator or your child’s school locker.

• Craft a set of matching coasters using stickers, paint pens, self-adhesive paper and other decorative items. Glue felt “buttons” on the bottom to protect wood surfaces.

• Make a hippie-style doorway by painting both sides of several CDs then tying them together in strands of 10-15 CDs and hanging the individual strands in an open doorway.

• Craft a CD wall hanging by decorating several CDs in complementing colors or designs then gluing them to a large piece of poster board or cardboard.

• In the same way, use CDs to make a flag by painting them in the desired colors and gluing to a cardboard or poster board backing.

• Make a unique letter or napkin holder by covering two CDs with self-adhesive paper on both sides and inserting about one inch of each CD into a Styrofoam square painted to match. Decorate with a sprig of silk flowers on the front for added attraction.

• Use chalkboard paint to cover a CD and create a miniature chalkboard to hold notes and messages. Attach a magnet to the back so you can hang it on the fridge.

• Attach cork to the front of nine CDs. Glue them onto wood or heavy cardboard in three rows of three CDs each to create a bulletin board ready to hold ticket stubs, photos and other memorabilia.

• CDs make excellent candle holders. Place a large pillar in the center of one and create a warm, reflective centerpiece for your dining room table or living room.

• Glue two CDs together, shiny sides out. Use a heated needle or hole punch (don’t forget the goggles!) to make a hole in the top for hanging. Hang in the window to catch the sun!

• Welcome your guests with a CD wreath by covering a Styrofoam or cardboard wreath shape with plain or decorated CDs. Add a large ribbon bow for color and interest.

• Cover a CD with spray adhesive and sprinkle on glitter or faux snowflakes to create a winter holiday scene. Add a couple snow people figures and you’re good to go!

• Paint a CD or cover with self-adhesive paper, then add numbers and clock works to create a one-of-a-kind clock for a teen’s room or den.

• Label CDs with the items you plant in your garden and attach them to stakes at the end of each row so you’ll know what you planted.

• No need to buy reflectors for the end of your driveway. Simply attach a CD to a small stake and post in place with one facing each side of the road.

• Create a glittering mosaic wall hanging by gluing a variety of colored beads to the shiny side of a CD leaving random spaces for the “mirror” to show through and reflect the beads.

• Who needs wallpaper? Use CDs to create a unique border around the ceiling in your teen’s room or cover a whole wall with them. An added bonus is that they’re easy to clean.

Think twice the next time you start to toss that unused CD! These are just a few of the myriad of ways to reuse and recycle them into something truly original for yourself and your home.

Decorating Your Home with Candles

July 14, 2009 · Filed Under Being Frugal, Cheap Home Decorating · Comments Off on Decorating Your Home with Candles 

Love candles? Who doesn’t! That’s why our homes are filled with candles of all shapes, sizes and scents. Sometimes, it’s hard to know what to do with all those candles we acquire through home parties, gifts, crafting and yard sales. Here are some tips and ideas for using candles throughout your home to help create a warm, comfortable environment while showing off all your waxen treasures.

• Always light a candle at least once so that the tip of the wick is burnt rather than white. This creates a much warmer atmosphere.

• Be safe when burning candles. Keep them away from children, pets, curtains and drafts. Never leave them burning when you go to bed or leave the house. And watch them closely when they burn down close to the candleholder so they don’t break and spill hot wax.

• Consider the effect you get with varying colors, sizes and shapes of candles. For instance, all-white candles make a striking centerpiece for wedding showers and parties. Bright striped candles add excitement and liven up a sunroom. And soothing pastels create calm and serenity in a bath.

• Display your candles in a variety of ways around your home. Place a few together on a bathroom vanity. Set one or two on the kitchen counter. Place one atop a bookshelf in your office. Even if you don’t burn them all, candles make an excellent addition to any room.

• Floating candles make an attractive “candlescape” for your dinner table. Fill a shallow glass dish with water. Add 2-3 small floating candle and some large flowers such as magnolia blossoms.

• Jar candles or container candles can be decorated with ribbons, trims, self-adhesive appliques and more to match your decor or the mood of your room.

• Keep candles from developing a hole in the middle around the wick, burn them one hour for every inch in diameter – at least the first time you light them. For instance, burn a 1″ round taper one hour, and a 3″ round pillar three hours when you first bring them home for the best results.

• Make a lovely centerpiece by grouping several candles of varying sizes and complementary colors on a mirrored tray. Use smooth, small river rocks to fashion a border around the outside of the tray, if desired.

• Napkin rings make the perfect size holder for tealight candles. Just be sure to protect the surface underneath from wax spills.

• Placing candles in the refrigerator before burning will make them last longer.

• Scented candles smell strongest at the bottom, so if you want a strong scent, sniff there before you buy.

• Reduce the amount of smoke candles emit when they burn by keeping the wicks trimmed to 1/4″.

• Use your imagination when selecting candle holders. Think outside the box and opt for items such as vintage saucers or bowls, flower pots, wire baskets and more.

There are many more ways to use candles around the house. Dig out all your candles and potential candleholders and create some new, stunning decorations for your home.

Frugal Home Decorating with Recycled Jeans

June 30, 2009 · Filed Under Being Frugal, Cheap Home Decorating · Comments Off on Frugal Home Decorating with Recycled Jeans 

With our world going green in so many areas, it seems only natural to search for ways to reuse and recycle everything in our homes. One of the things many of us have an abundance of is denim. From denim shirts and jackets, to denim skirts, capris, and jeans, most frugal moms have access to a lot of denim. And there’s no need to trash those old jeans when they become worn or no longer fit. Use them to create budget home decor that will revamp every room in your house at little or no cost, other than time and effort. You’ll not only freshen up your home, you’ll enjoy the satisfaction of going a little greener when you do.

• Cut strips from the legs, hem them all around, and use for curtain tie backs. These look really neat around lace or gingham curtains, in particular, though they’ll go with just about anything.

• Make your own comforter or bedspread. Cut squares or patchwork shapes from the denim and zigzag stitch them together to create a unique spread. Serge the edges, or hem them. Lined or unlined is up to you – this looks great either way.

• Cut squares about 10″ x 10″, hem around all four sides, and hang them on your curtain rod diagonally to create a simple valance.

• Or sew pieces together, any size you have on hand, and create a piece of fabric wide enough to cover your window and long enough to hang down about 10″-12″ for a valance. Hem three sides and stitch a simple casing at the top. Voíla! A new window treatment that’s especially good in a teen’s room.

• Sew (or fabric glue) the pockets onto a large scrap of coordinating fabric to create a pocket organizer for the bathroom or the back of a closet door.

• Cover an old potholder with denim to make a new one. Cut two pieces slightly larger than your existing potholder and sew them, right sides together around three sides. Turn right sides out, insert the old potholder in the pocket (for heat protection), tuck in the unhemmed edge, pin, and topstitch around all sides.

• Make your own placemats from the backside of the jeans and pockets. Find 4-6 similar sized pair of jeans, and cut apart at the legs leaving the pockets and waistband intact on the “seat.” Hem or zigzag stitch the edges for a great summer table decoration.

• Craft some coasters or bottle cozies. There are patterns online for the cozies, coasters don’t even need one. Cut a variety of shapes such as squares, circles, hearts, diamonds, etc. from old jeans. Either sew them as you did for the potholder with a fabric backing, or zigzag stitch the edges and use one-layer thick.

• You can also make pillows from jeans by creating the same type pocket (sewing around three edges with right sides together), turning right sides out, and stuffing with fiberfill or an old pillow form.

• Make a simple magnetic pocket to hold pens and a small notepad. Cut out a flat pocket leaving 1/2″ or more on every side for sewing. Cut another piece of denim the same size. Sew together around three sides (with right sides facing) and turn right side out. Hem the top of the “back” – the piece without the pocket. Attach two long magnet strips to the top and bottom of the pocket and hang on the fridge.

• Use your denim scraps to make a durable, attractive rug that will last for ages. You can either cut shapes and sew them together, then hem around all sides. Or make long strips of fabric and braid them into a rug. Either way, be sure to add non-skid tape to the back so you don’t slide.

• Cover your dining room chairs in denim. This looks wonderful in a country kitchen. You can either use the legs from large jeans by ripping out the innerseam and laying the fabric flat, or you can make squares and sew the pieces together to create a larger piece of fabric.

These are just a few of the many ways you can reuse your old jeans. Get creating and get crafting… everything you make will be truly original!

Simple Ideas to Update Your Kitchen Decor

June 25, 2009 · Filed Under Being Frugal, Cheap Home Decorating · 1 Comment 

Since we spend so much time in the kitchen cooking, cleaning and simply visiting with friends, we can grow tired of our kitchen decor quicker than almost any room in the house. But redecorating a kitchen is expensive! Here are some ways to add new life to your kitchen without redoing the whole room or without spending a lot of money.

• Create a three dimensional border around your kitchen with plates or saucers hung on inexpensive plate hangers, baskets hung on hooks, or a shelf hung on brackets about 10″-12″ from the ceiling and filled with vintage tins or a variety of other items you have on hand.

• Change the entire look of your kitchen floor without retiling the whole kitchen by focusing on one section only. If you have a table in the kitchen, you can place an area rug underneath it, or place a long runner between the cabinets and stove. Check yard sales and estate sales for rugs, or pick up a remnant of vinyl tile at a surplus store, paint it to match your decor and seal it with a clear coating. Canvas can also be cut and painted and used as a floor cloth. Be sure to attach your mats to the floor with double-sided tape to avoid falls.

• Create a light, airy valance using ladies vintage hankies. Simply hang them diagonally over your curtain rod and let them flutter in the breeze for a romantic, Victorian window treatment.

• Use the space over your cabinets to display your collections. They don’t all have to be kitchen related although tins, antique glassware, mugs and teapots work very well.

• There are many ways to give your cabinets a new look without replacing them. Paint the doors with a bright new enamel, glue on a fabric placemat, cover with self-adhesive paper or decals. All of these options are easy to do and inexpensive, and will give your whole kitchen a new, updated look.

• Add molding around the ceiling in place of a border, or place a large ceramic medallion above the kitchen light fixture to create an elegant, finished look.

• Another easy and relatively inexpensive detail that offers big results is to change your kitchen light fixtures. If you only have one or two lights, you might find what something you like at a yard sale. If not, shop around to find just what you’re looking for before making a decision. You’ll be amazed at how this simple change affects the mood of your kitchen.

• Add a new tablecloth or placemats to match your updated decor. You may want to make one from a flat sheet (it’s much less expensive than buying fabric). You can then use the leftovers for a simple window swag – just cut your fabric to the required length, hem it all around using iron-on tape if you don’t sew, and drape it over a curtain rod.

• Layer your good china or mismatched vintage dishes on the table. Place a dinner plate first, add a salad plate on top, and a bowl on top of that. Set out stemware, saucers and cups, and silverware on cloth napkins to create a full table setting at each chair. They’re easy to move if you don’t want to use the dishes every day and will make your kitchen look “decorated” with very little effort and potentially no cost.

• Attach a backsplash behind the sink or the stove. You can use a variety of materials including mirrors or ceramic tiles. This will protect your walls from splatters and splashes while adding color and interest at the same time.

There are many ways for frugal moms to decorate the kitchen. Let these ideas kickstart your own or come up with something truly original and truly your own.

Frugal Decor to Enhance Your Wallspace

June 9, 2009 · Filed Under Being Frugal, Cheap Home Decorating · Comments Off on Frugal Decor to Enhance Your Wallspace 

While you may not be able to give your home, or even one room, an entire makeover, you can easily add interest by making some simple changes to a wall or two. Depending on your style of decor, there are a variety of ways to beautify every room in your house with these frugal ideas.

• Paint one wall a different color from the rest of the room. Opt for a coordinating color or one that’s completely different. If every wall is white, choose something bold like red or sunny yellow. Add pillows and inexpensive accessories to give the entire room a more vibrant look.

TIP: Check your city’s hazardous waste recycling center for free or low-cost paint.

• Add texture to a wall by hanging a quilt, coverlet, afghan, tapestry, etc. This is a great way to display a family heirloom or treasure that you don’t want to damage by using as a throw.

• Hang a collection. A friend of mine who collected vintage hats hung them on her bedroom wall to create one of the most feminine, romantic rooms imaginable. Other possibilities include musical instruments and sheet music, costumes and accessories, pages copied from your favorite books, posters, newspaper articles, toys, framed or unframed photos, or anything else you have several of.

• Create a kitchen border with baskets. Hang baskets in varying sizes, shapes and colors around the top of a kitchen wall. They add warmth and texture and you can easily take one down, line with a cloth napkin and use to hold bread or rolls when entertaining.

• Design a shelf bolder with simple boards, and wood or metal brackets. Hang them 6-8 inches from the ceiling and fill with an accumulation of various things. This is great for showcasing unrelated items that you have no other place to display.

• Hang a plant. Macrame and rope plant hangers are making a comeback. You can pick them up at thrift stores or make your own to display a beloved houseplant and quickly add life and oxygen to any room. For best results, choose an area with appropriate lighting and temperature for the plant.

• Make a faux wainscoting from wallpaper, paint or self-adhesive paper. Choose a textured or smooth design in a complementary color for your room to add elegance and appeal to one wall or all of them.

• Put it in words! Use letters cut from wood, wallpaper, cardstock or self-adhesive paper to say what’s on your mind. Write out your favorite quote, Bible verse or inspiration and attach it to the wall for a contemporary design that sure’s to attract attention.

• Use found elements such as branches, driftwood, pinecones, pebbles, seashells, etc. to create a natural border, pattern or design on one or more walls. This works especially well in a sun room or outdoor-themed room.

• Frame it. Find inexpensive frames at yard sales or the dollar store and fill them with all sorts of interesting items. Consider vintage gloves, lace and pearls, buttons, denim scraps, gadgets from the hardware store and anything else you can think of. Then hang them in an arrangement on one wall for a truly original collage.

• Add a layer of paint on top of your existing paint or wallpaper. Use a sponge, rag, crumpled paper bag or ball of plastic wrap to add color and dimension to a room. Using a textured “paintbrush” makes it easy to create a truly original design with little effort or cost.

• Stencil on a border. All you need is some paint, a template and your imagination to create a stenciled border. If you’re a beginning stenciler, choose a simple design and colors that blend well with existing decor for the best results.

• Show your stripes. Paint your room the color you want the stripes to be. Then adhere masking tape in a random or uniform pattern on the wall. Paint the wall a coordinating color and remove the tape. Voila… instant stripes!

These are just a few of the many frugal, fun and creative ways you can brighten your home – one wall at a time.

Be Creative With Halloween Decorations!

October 22, 2008 · Filed Under Being Frugal, Cheap Holiday Ideas · Comments Off on Be Creative With Halloween Decorations! 

by Jill Cooper

I just stepped outside and took a deep breath and then another one and another one. No I don’t have a breathing problem or anything. It’s just that for the first time in months, I don’t feel like I’m breathing in an aquarium. The air is crisp and cool and that means fall is here and the humidity is gone!

At one point in our lives, that would have been the signal for us to haul out boxes and sacks full of Halloween decorations and go to work. It would usually take us at least a month to put everything out. We were one of those families who would put out a “monstrous” (Ha!Ha! No pun intended) display. We literally had hundreds of people drive by our home just to see our decorations. It really was a lot of work, especially because back then you couldn’t really buy much to use for outside Halloween decorations. We had to use our imagination and make our own.

We like to have fun at Halloween and not scare the wits out of everyone, so we try to keep our decorations cute and funny looking. To us, Halloween is a time for children to dress up and for one night a year be what they always dreamed of being, whether it’s a fairy princess, a ballerina, Superman or even a robot. They get to be on the “stage” for one night to show everyone how beautiful, strong or funny they look. And to end a perfect night they get tons of candy, bags of candy and did I mention, a whole bunch of candy??

Here are some ideas of things we did to have a whole lot of fun for very little money. You can use these same basic principles for any holiday decorating.

1. You don’t have to have a lot of decorations for your display to look nice. I drive by one home every year and each season the owners put out one simple something. For example, in the summer they have one beautiful pot of flowers sitting on their porch. In the fall a pot of mums, for Halloween, one pumpkin with a smiley face and at Christmas one pretty lit up wreath on the door. It’s never a lot, but I always get pleasure when I drive by the place and see their one simple decoration.

2. We work all year buying things at garage sales or thrift stores for our decorations. We started out with about 25 plastic pumpkins to set out for a pumpkin patch. The next year we added another 50 and drilled holes in the bottoms so we could put lights in them. After a few years we had 200-300 of them that we had collected. We never paid more then 5-10 cents for them. If you want to have a big display, start small and just add a little bit more to your decorations each year.

3. Cute homemade decorations make Halloween fun! If you see something in a magazine or somewhere that you think is cute but too expensive, try to copy it and make it yourself:

* I saw a cute rake in a magazine that I loved. It was an old rake that had a few silk flowers tied on it and a sign that said “Free leaves, rake all you want.” I just happened to have a dead 50 year old rake in my shed I was going to throw away, so I pulled it out, found an old board and some paint (I could have used a marker too), painted on the words and tied on a couple of stray silk flowers that I had and voila! I had a cute rake and saved about $25.

* It takes nothing to stuff some old clothes with plastic bags and make a scarecrow family.

* If you are a little handy, put your talent to good use. My husband took and old metal trash can and motorized it so that the lid moved up and down and when it opened it popped out a Sylvester the cat.

4. We found decorations in unusual places. Once we went to the grocery store where they had a gigantic pumpkin. The thing was about 8-10 feet across. We asked the manager it they threw it out at the end of the season and he said no. We told him what we needed it for and discovered that he had seen our display and liked it. He said “Come by on Halloween morning and you can take it to use and then bring it back.” It doesn’t ever hurt to ask about anything. Most people aren’t mean and hateful, but are usually kind and helpful.

5. Get more bang for your buck. Buy things that have a big impact but cost little. A couple of bags of spider webs and plastic spiders can cover a lot of area and look “cool” but cost very little. I use spider webs for everything. They’re great to use to cover throw pillows for a party, put in your hair, hang on the lights or wrap around the handles of silverware. You just can’t have too much.

6. Use what you already have around the house.

* We were having a Halloween party and to add to the effect, we dug out some black sheets and covered all the furniture. It changed the whole look of the room.

* Another year, my husband found some 10 foot long, thin metal rods. We stuck them in the ground, added styrofoam wig heads to each one and hung some large pieces of sheer fabric I had gotten for free from a friend over the tops of the heads. Everyone loved them. The sheer material had a much more realistic see through look then just a sheet. At night, you couldn’t see the rod so it looked like these ghosts were floating 10 feet up in the air.

7. Start the day after Halloween to prepare for next year. If your kids get a bunch of plastic spiders when they go trick or treating, save them and add them to the decoration box. If your child dressed as a pumpkin this year, save the costume, stuff it next year and set it out with the decorations. Try to think of ways to incorporate any old costumes into your decorations.

Frugal Decorating Ideas

October 13, 2008 · Filed Under Cheap Home Decorating · Comments Off on Frugal Decorating Ideas 

Cheap and Easy Ways To Give Every Room In Your Home A Mini-Makeover

You may be looking around your home thinking “Oh, I wish I had money to decorate!”

Anyone who has watched Trading Spaces knows that giving your house a quick makeover doesn’t have to break the bank!

Simple Ways To Spruce Up Your Space
A gallon of paint will give any room a complete facelift! Always check out the ‘oops’ gallons at places like Home Depot. People request colors and never pick them up, or the person mixing the paint doesn’t get the shade quite right. Oftentimes these colors are just putrid, but sometimes you’ll find a gorgeous color that’s a steal! I’ve decorated plenty of rooms from other people’s leftover paints — and loved the results!

Fresh flowers in a vase make a wonderful addition to any room in your home. Pick the flowers from your own yard to save even more money.

Framed pictures of family and friends are a must. If you have them printed in black and white, they’ll never go out of style!

Add mirrors to open up a small room. Mirrors are a great way to decorate, especially in rooms with low light.

Richly scented candles make every room feel welcoming. Between the soft lighting, and the scent, you can’t go wrong with candles.

New throw rugs and runners at the entrance to your home make a great first impression.

The Bathroom

This is the least expensive room in your home to completely redecorate. A new shower curtain, a rug or two, soap dispenser, cup, some decorative hand towels – and your bathroom has a whole new look.

Try a bathroom theme! How about one of these ideas from the standard to the very original?

* Ocean or Sea theme
* Medieval Times
* The Orient
* Western theme
* Rubber Duckies
* Floral – victorian
* Floral – funky

Or work from one of your favorite paintings and take a color scheme from it. Let Dali or even Andy Warhol inspire your color palette.

Your Kitchen

If new cabinets or the island you always dreamed of are not in your budget, give your kitchen a fresh look by shopping for new decorative kitchen towels and potholders and new matching tablecloth and placemat sets. I love changing my kitchen for the seasons and holidays! A wine rack or framed placemat from a fun restaurant can be the inspiration!

Your Living/Family Room

A few new lamps, a large area rug or an art piece on a bare wall can add life to a dull and tired living room. While these items can be costly, they are certainly more affordable than an entertainment center or sofa.

How about some funky toss pillows and throws for chairs and couches? A little imagination and makes up for not having a big wallet!

The Bedroom

A new bedding set is enough to give your bedroom a major boost! Treat yourself and your spouse to a set of silk or satin sheets to match your new comforter! Search for quality, inexpensive silk sheets & save up to 80% at!

Super Savings Only From!

Budgeting for the Big Change

Treat yourself to a home decorating magazine. Dream big and set your goals high for what you want your house to eventually look like, but start on a smaller scale.

Plan! Mistakes cost money, so really plan your look thoroughly.

Start a Home Improvement Fund by saving change in a jar. When the jar is full, deposit it into a savings account specifically for redecorating your home.

Pick up things here and there slowly. Eventually, you’ll have enough to re-do a room. Buy one new item for the room you plan to spruce as you can afford to.

Don’t forget to shop in places like estate sales, charity sales, and moving sales. You’ll never know when you can find an amazing piece of furniture for a great price!

Sometimes the smallest changes equal the biggest difference in decorating. Don’t start out too big. Good things come to those who wait…and those who are bargain hunters!

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