Nov 302010

This week Laurie from Little Blue Chairs is starting out the Tuesday Frugal Spotlight Series by introducing us to decorating on a budget, a frugal living topic she is very familiar with, in fact I personally consider Laurie quite an expert, when it comes to decorating on a budget.

Decorating On A Budget
I thought it would be a perfect time to talk about something I have not put much time into, but which is very critical and essential to my blog Little Blue Chairs. Namely, decorating on a budget. In my core I believe everyone should have a beautiful space to live in. I think people are happier and work better, when they like what they are looking at. But this does not mean that you must spend a fortune on your space. No, you just need to take your frugal skills and put them to use in your house.
I will show you some of the tricks I used in the Master Bedroom in our house, which I was able to transform for around $100. Here is what I started with.

I first started by picking the paint color. Since I am not a morning person, I think having happy color on the wall gives me a smile to start off the day. I used Glidden paint, which runs about $20 (on sale of course). It is very reasonably priced, and it goes on the walls like a dream. If Glidden does not have the color you like, go ahead and have them custom mix to a different paint chip.

In any room, furniture can be a big expense. You can save a lot of money, by reusing and repurposing items you already have. If you don’t already have something in you house, start scouring Craigslist. There are many options that are cheap, or if you are lucky free. You just may need to slap on a little paint.

Our headboard is made of the two ends of our kids’ crib. It was on its way out to the curb before I thought to re-purpose it. The dresser is a hand-me-down from my Mother in law. It makes a great nightstand. The lamp is from Ikea ($25). I also have a nice little desk I received from my grandmother. A few coats of paint (sample size from Sherwin Williams $5) and it is fresh and new.

Another area that can run up prices in the bedroom is your bedding. When looking for your comforter, cover or quilt, make sure you look at the discounters. You can find some great deals at Homegoods, TJ Maxx, and even Target, just make sure you are buying on sale. I picked up our comforter cover at Ikea for $40. I am very surprised at the quality for the price.

Making your own art is a cheap and easy way to create some interest for your walls. I am not good at painting or drawing, but I was able to create some stunning art work for my wall for $.04. I will admit I got a great deal on the canvases due to a pricing error at the store, but you can easily recreate the art for around $20-30, which is a great price for art work.

In creating the art above the bed, I simply purchased some inexpensive canvases from my local hobby store. I painted them with them trim color (which I had on hand) as a base. By using some painters tape and wall color I created borders. I then used some free clip art images that I colored and then mod-podged them to the canvases. Easy customizable art.
Other cost saving items in the room include, using an old coverlet as a bed skirt (free), and making my own curtains ($15).

If you can sew a straight line, you can make rod pocket curtains.

I have not spent any money on accessories, I have just used what I had. In total I was able to make up our Master for around $100.

My biggest trips on decorating while being frugal include…

  • Using what you have- Can you recycle it? Re-purpose it? Use it in another capacity? Can you alter it?
  • Paint is your best friend- If you have mis-matching pieces, paint them the same color, they will then look more cohesive.
  • Shop the discounters, and only on sale.
  • Use your creative juices to fill in the space. Make the finishing touches.
Remember, no one needs to live in an ugly space. Happy Decorating.

Little Blue Chairs is like a treasure box that you open up, and then you really do not want to leave. Laurie at Little Blue Chairs is a fabulous writer, an amazing decorator, and to top it off, she is a frugalista too. Not too long ago she did a fabulous kitchen renovation for a whopping $350! Her kitchen cabinets look like they could come be featured in the Martha Stewart Magazine, and she did it all by herself.

The story behind Little Blue Chairs is amazing, and I strongly encourage all of you to stop by Laurie’s little spot to read about the Little Blue Chairs.

Laurie has been kind enough to answer a few question about herself and her blog Little Blue Chairs. 
1. How long have you been blogging? I started blogging in January of this year (2010)
2. What made you start blogging? I started to blog to document the changes I have been making in the house. I have always been encouraged to share what I do, but just hadn’t done it until now.
3. What are your blogging goals? Have you reached any of your goals yet? When I started blogging I had very few goals. I wanted to get at least 50 followers, and I have done that. I am now hoping to reach 100 by my 1 year anniversary.
4. How do you balance family life and blogging? Blogging is how I keep my sanity as a Stay at Home Mom. I tend to write many of my blogs at one sitting, usually on a Friday night when the kids are in bed.
5. Do you have a blogging tip that you would like to share with new bloggers? Just get started. Try not to worry too much about your numbers and such. Just keep to your vision, stay true to yourself, and put yourself out there.
 6. What is your best frugal tip? Don’t buy what you don’t need or absolutely love. It is not a bargain, if you don’t use it.

Thank you Laurie for passing on some of your priceless knowledge about decorating on a budget, your master bedroom is beautiful, and I love the style and the personal touches you have put on everything. You can find more fabulous tips on decorating on a budget at Little Blue Chairs.

If you would like to be a guestblogger in the Frugal Tuesday Spotlight Series, you can read more at Become a Frugal Tuesday Spotlight Guestblogger.

*All images in this post are copyright Little Blue Chairs.

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