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post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
I know I posted about this in the FYT thread so I thought it deserved it's own thread here.

what kinds of things have you done to decorate on a budget?
post #2 of 19
I made all the curtain in my home. When we first moved we were REALLY on a budget so I bought used fabric at a thrift store then made the curtain out it it. Now I make them myself just for fun though

I made our shower curtain out of scrap fabric back when we first moved too. I just cut squares and made a patchwork shower curtain. I was really impressed

I buy ALL my picture frames at the thrift stores too
post #3 of 19
curtains and window dressings are really easy to make. If you have big windows, you can use a sheet without much alteration.
Baskets are often cheap and plentiful at second hand shops
second hand furniture often just needs a coat of paint and new handles
Paint on the walls is really the cheapest way to transform a room
If you sew, and can find fabric cheap, you can sew up everything from throw pillows and slipcovers to quilts and curtains
post #4 of 19
around the time we got married, several years back, and elderly friend of ours was moving to a nursing home. she asked us if we wanted her old bedroom furniture. we took it, even though it was old, and the paint was an icky color, because we were too poor to buy anything new. anyway, this past year, i decided to paint it. i love bright colors, so i painted the dresser/headboard/nightstand neon green, and all the drawers neon blue. it's loud, but i love it, and it gives a sort of retro effect, which goes well with the 1970's lines of the furniture. the total cost was probably 25 dollars. my teenage nieces have begged me for the furniture, if i should ever get rid of it.

i made matching neon blue curtains, with a few bucks worth of fabric from walmart.

most of the furniture in our house are hand me down freebies. sometimes they aren't really our style, but the price is right. we try to either alter them (like the bedroom furniture,) or hang on to them until something else comes along. our living room set is a very nice set, probably expensive at one time, that consists of a chair, an ottoman, a sofa, and a loveseat. they were free to us, and almost new. the only catch is they are ugly, lol. the colors are dated pastel colors that remind me of the early nineties. one of these days, i'll get around to getting slipcovers, or some new furniture, but in the meantime, it beats sitting on the floor, lol.
post #5 of 19
We don't really decorate much because I don't believe in having things around that dd has to be told to stay away from. That being said, I am very crafty and if I ever get the urge to decorate I feel confident that I could make or do most anything I wanted. Most of the stuff we own I had way before we got married, the few things we have gotten together we have gotten on sale. For now I just accept that my house iss going to decorated in "21st Century Toddler Toys" I do keep a notebook for ideas for 'someday' tho...I want to do my kitchen in herbs and teas, livingroom in Americana/Mickey Mouse, dd's bedroom in Disney Princesses, bathroom like The Hundred Acre Woods, My bedroom in tropical Hawaiian with Disney couples as the accents...can you tell what my love is? LOL :
post #6 of 19
i do a lot of recycling!

moving furniture, pictures, baskets etc from one room to another every couple of months satisfies my desire to decorate and nest w/out costing us anything.

post #7 of 19
I paint. I buy the oops paint so it is a lot cheaper. Then I move stuff around for a fresh look.
post #8 of 19
hmmmm....decorating...what's that? :

i guess we've been living the student lifestyle for too long. we don't really decorate and neither does anyone we know here. i would like to hang up some pretty cloths though. i saw this house once where the people had big batiks and play silks all over the ceiling, walls and windows. it was pretty neat.
post #9 of 19
I do upholstery and can make a 2$ chair look like a million bucks!
post #10 of 19

I get most of my...

stuff for decorating at yard sales. Baskets, a cute fruit basket sits on our porch as a table (cost 1.00), a beautiful italian looking pot held a 3 wick candle and i paid a buck for it. My ds then came bounding down the steps and broke it. I was sad but hey I only pd a buck for it.
I searched for 6 months for a comforter I liked that was in my price range. I pd 50 on sale at target and a friend of mine just spent 200 on hers. Sheesh. My best frugal decorating is done by knowing what I want and waiting for the right item right price to buy it.
post #11 of 19
Probably the most frugal thing I do is not buying anything I don't absolutely love. I had some pictures that I had dumpster dived in the living room, but I didn't really like them there. (I will dumpster dive things I don't love- LOL). I moved the pictures to the bathroom and liked them SOOO much better there. I drug out some old stuff I bought in the 1980s that I still love, so I put it out in the living room.

Our furniture is all hand me down. I just got a new slip cover for the couch as a Christmas present. The living room is a work in progress.

A can of spray paint is really cheap and can give consistant color to varied objects. I sprayed various color small baskets gold for our bedroom. It looks nice.

I'm personally not a big fan of prints for large objects like couches and bed coverings. I feel lke I have so much more flexibiity with a solid to work off of.
post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 
thanks for all the tips I am so obsessed with decorating latley. with little $$ to spend it makes it difficult. I have been searching the web for creative ideas.

I am definitly going to check out some thrift/yard/estate sales soon.. though you're right though I don't buy things I don't love anymore (used to do this in my 20's & my house was a cluttered mess full of things I hated)

I have finally figured out I have 2 embroidered pillow cases from Greece my MIL brought back on a trip and I would like to frame them. any ideas for making 15x15 frames or where I can find some cheap? (preferably matching?) or is there a way I can hang them without framing? stumped here...
post #13 of 19
You could sew tabs to the top and hang them from dowels. Michaels usuallu had a 50% off custom framing order cupon on their flyers- although I have no idea what the cost actually is.
post #14 of 19
Thread Starter 
oh yes thanks! the tabs might work! I was thinking of using ribbon somehow to hang them maybe?

will have to brainstorm here a bit and see what we have on hand :LOL.
post #15 of 19
well you could make tabs out of the ribbon, or ties too- two pices that would be tied at the top rather than a loop
post #16 of 19
I am in a flurry of decorating right now, for next to no money!
Here are some things i have done

I hav egiven each room a theme! It helps me to have a framework in hwich to function. So, when I am thrifting, I dont just pick up every little thing!
So, m front room is Southwestern. We have a photo dh took of a church steeple in NM, we are going to have it blown up, in black and white and in color. Kinkos does it for cheap. it will be $18 each to have them enlarged to 20 X 30 (or something like that) matted and stretched on an internal frame(which means there is a wooden frame, but it is on the inside). Dh is a woodworker, so he will make on outer frame for them, if we feel they need it. They will go side by side as the focal point of the room. I bought a large basket with handles and a small wicker hamper with a lid at Goodwill for $6 each the other day. They now hold all the boys toys that are in the front room. I have a desk that I am going to refinish by mosaic-ing some old plates we have, and then adding a wrougth iron lip and painting the rest of it santa fe pink. I have garge sale found pics of New Mexico and Alaska, all matted in the same white mats and framed in unfinished wooden frames that were scrounged off of other pics.
For the curtains, I am going to buy mule shoes(like horseshoes, but for mules) for $1 a piece, tie some dried chile peppers to the side of them with raffia, like this: http://www.nmcatalog.com/cgi-bin/cat...i?product=7356 and thse will be the curtain holders. I am going to get muslin and run it through them. I may dye the muslin, depending.
I got a beautiful rug from Ikea(originally) in just the right colors, with a big happy blue sun on it, for $10 for a 4 X 6 ft rug.
I hate my couch, but I am going to buy Falsa blankets for $6 each and wrap he whole thing in them, piece by piece. It will take 5 blankets, so I will have recovered my sofa for $30, and if I ever come across a sofa I actually LIKE I will be able to use them as blankets! DH is going to make me a kiva ladder to stand inthe corner of the room, they are very easy to make and FREE!! For a lot of southwestern style! I picked up a MExican handbag at a garage sale this weekend for a quarter, so I will hang that on the ladder.
We bought a table top at a garage sale last year for five dollars and dh is going to make legs out of 2 X 4s for it. OH! And also, I found a sofa sized futon frame for $2 this weekend and am now biding my time till I find a futon for it, then it will be my other sofa in the front room.

My br is going southeast asian, I found a tassle at Pier One on clearance for $3.75!! And then another one at ROss for $1. So, today, I went to Joann and bought 8 yards of tulle at Joanne for $5.50 total, and one set of ceiling hooks($1.99 ace hardware) and put the hooks in the ceiling at each side of my bed. I put the tulle through shower curtain rings and drpaed it across my ceiling,and it runs down the side of my bed and puddles at the floor. I hung the tassles on each side from the hook as well. If they get it before the week is up, I will buy another 8 yards in burgundy, this first layer is gold. I found valances at a thrift shop for $5 total, and I cut bamboo from my back yard(any branch would work though) and tied twine to it, put little nails in the window frame and hung the bamboo by its twine. Curtain rods for nothing!!
So, I guess my message is to bargain bargain bargain shop! I find all my candles and baskets at dollar stores, thrift shops and garage sales. Inf act, I find everything there! And dont forget to check Marshalls, TJMaxx, and Ross for their clearance sections. Also, Linens and things has a good one. I got a cute lampshade on clearance there for $3.45 last month
post #17 of 19
1. Secondhand

2. Homemade works of art (I posted on another thread)

3. Living without what I do not really need
post #18 of 19
I am redecorating my kids rooms for their birthdays, the thriftiest thing that I have done for that is to ask my mom, the sewer and bargain hunter, to make thigns for their bedrooms as birthday gifts. My mom had made my son a shirt that was a black background with flames and blue chinese dragons on it. This was the basis for his room- lots of blue denim, with black accents. My mom was able to get more of that fabric, and is making him curtains and quilts for his bunk bed, as well as a bulletin board. We found a paper lantern at Cost Plus that has blue chinese dragons on it for $6. I found a denim slipcover for a chair at Ross for $6, I will use this on an unused kitchen chair to go with the desk that I got at the thrift shop for $18 (which will be painted black, and new silver handles put on). I am buying a tapestry from ebay to cover the slider in his room- it's blue with (you guessed it) chinese dragons on it. We are painting the ceiling a darker blue, and the walls a lighter blue- buying the paint with BIL's discount because he owns a painting company. I found solid color twin sheet sets for under $10 at Target, and someone had 5 shelf bookcases for $25 this week. The whole room will probably end up costing me $150. Not too bad.
post #19 of 19
Thread Starter 
wow so many ideas! I am loving hearing about everyone's frugal ideas!

right now I am pretty much just trying to use what we have on hand..moving the furniture around helps alot!

we don't use our fireplace very much at all (We've even had to remove the poker set from the room as ds plays with it) anyway I found a bunch of red prayer candles and stuck them in there evenly among the grate...it looks SO cool! and we can even a fake fire when ds goes to bed :LOL

btw I found ribbon and 2 dowels so I will figure out something for those pillowcases today I also found smallish magazine rack to move to the living room..I may paint it or not. we'll see.. oh and a tray I am going to stamp with a funky sun stamp too. I will hang that in the kitchen somewhere.

can't you tell you all are inspiring me!?!?

otherwise another project I would like to start on soon is redoing our kitchen table/chairs. they are are pretty trashed (it's a naked pine log pole set w/ a matching shelf) I'm thinking of painting the set brick red (our walls are red and coccoa brown) then stenciling on a big sun motif on the top of the table w/ smallish swirly accents around the sun and on the shelf and back of the chairs.(eventually this set will be moved outside to the back porch when we buy new stuff some year)

anyway do you mamas think I should use stain or paint for this project?
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