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7 Straightforward Ways to Decorate on a Budget

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I’m a big proponent for making a daunting task feel easy. Contrary to what most believe, sometimes the best way to decorate is actually the most effortless! Keep reading to learn 7 straightforward ways to decorate on a budget when you have very little time and money.

7 Straightforward Ways to Decorate on a Budget

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How to Decorate on a Budget

One of the most common misconceptions of home decorating, which is often fueled by media, is that you must spend a lot of money to create a beautiful home. While it’s true that adding a few new home decor finds seasonally is fun and can make a big impact, it isn’t 100% necessary!

There is a certain satisfaction in creating something beautiful for free or very affordably. So, in a time when budgets may be tight (or even if they’re not), I wanted to share 7 techniques I stick to when decorating on a budget.

1. Decorate Affordably by using lifestyle pieces as decor

One of my favorite ways to decorate unexpectedly is with lifestyle pieces. A hat, scarf, bag or pretty sweater can all fill wall space by displaying them on simple hooks or racks.

entryway styled for spring

Often, people tend to use this technique in the bedroom only. However, it works beautifully in an entryway as well! Or, even in the kitchen.

The key to this method is to invest in practical items that are also pretty. Hanging an apron out in the open that is well made and in your favorite colors serves as decor much better than a worn out and tattered apron that is no longer your style.

So, as you rebuy worn out lifestyle pieces, consider investing in higher quality fabrics and focusing on favorite colors that will blend with your home’s color scheme.

2. Create Your Own _________

This spring, I wanted to add a swag to my entryway mirror for a little pop of color. After searching the stores and finding that none of the already-made swags were in my budget, I decided to make my own!

Swag of florals on a round mirror.

I’ve actually had all of these faux flowers in my storage for years and never displayed them. Individually, I never really liked how they looked. So I decided to cut the faux bushes and stems apart to create something I would actually display.

This way, I was able to mix and match colors and textures, which helps to create a more realistic looking arrangement.

You can see how I made this swag using hot glue and cardboard for free on my IGTV episode!

I’ve made my own decor many times before, but using florals is my favorite. You can see how I made my own Christmas wreaths here!

Flower wall art.

I also easily created this large wall art with florals in my dining room this spring. It didn’t cost me a penny but is a great focal point for the dining room.

Dining Room Source Book

3. Swap Area Rugs

If you have a small budget, but want to make a big impact, swapping area rugs is the way to go! You can actually do this for free by simply swapping the location of two rugs you already own to create a new look.

Decorate on a budget with new rugs.
Vintage area rug in an entryway.

I did this in my entryway. By swapping the playroom rug into the entryway, and vice versa, both rooms got a new look!

If you don’t have the ability to do this with rugs you already own, you can find my favorite family friendly and affordable rug sources in this post.

4. Decorate on a Budget by shopping your home

The easiest, and most often overlooked, method of decorating on a budget is to shop your own home.

Decorating on a budget by shopping your home.

You know that vase of flowers you love in your dining room? I bet it would also look beautiful in your entryway! But don’t stop with the small stuff.

Swapping larger furniture items into different rooms and giving them new purpose makes a big impact for the look and feel of a room.

5. Change Your Color Scheme With Simple Accents

I recently talked about why I love a neutral home and how to create a neutral color palette that isn’t cold or boring. Another reason I love to have a neutral base in my home is so I can easily and affordably change my color scheme with a few accents.

Decorating on a budget with pops of color.

For spring this year, I went with green and pink as my accent colors. I spent $34 on a new pink blanket and set of 2 green pillow covers. That’s it!

Entryway Source Book

I supplemented this color scheme throughout the house by adding pink florals I already owned and relying on my live plants to pull all the greens together.

That leads me to tip #6!

6. Rely on Live Plants to Serve As Decor

A couple of years ago I came up with my method for creating my haven. I shared all 10 steps with you in my book, Designing a Life: From House to Haven if you’re interested!

Step 6 of my book was the game changer for me. Until that point, I’d relentlessly Pinned and saved images of other people’s homes not really understanding what it was I enjoyed about them.

That is, until I followed my own advice and truly studied the images to see what was making my heart sing! Come to find out, I really loved how live plants look in a home.

7 Straightforward Ways to Decorate on a Budget

They create such a beautiful life giving atmosphere. Up until that point, I had the blackest thumb of them all and had never successfully kept a houseplant alive.

Source Book

But after discovering that live plants were actually life-giving to me, I decided to learn all I could about keeping houseplants alive. Turns out, it really isn’t that hard.

If you’re interested, I share some of my best tips on houseplant care in these posts:

The reason I always recommend using plants as affordable decor is because they are also so easy to propagate! I turned one pothos plant into 7 within a month. Not only can I use this as more pops of green around my home, but I have 6 extra plants I can gift to friends and family for free!

Spring mantel decor on a barn beam mantel.

You can learn more about propagating pothos and philodendron in this post.

7. Edit, Edit, Edit

I saved the best tip on decorating on a budget for last.

While you may have already been doing some of the above ideas for affordable decorating, have you also been editing your home?

It’s so easy to automatically add to our homes when we want a change. But do we ever take away as our first instinct?

Spring entryway decorated on a budget.

When we first moved into our home, I decorated this entryway with a gallery wall of my favorites. I enjoyed it for a time, but eventually it felt cluttered and less cohesive than I wanted.

I fussed with it each season trying to move things around and add here and there. But it wasn’t until I started from scratch and removed it all that I realized that I really just needed to pare down my wall decor to this simple mirror.

Only by taking away and editing this space was I satisfied with it. Since then, my favorite practice has been editing my home.

When I’m stuck on a space or something just isn’t coming together like I hoped it would, I edit. And more often than not, it fixes the problem.

Bonus 8. Take Your Time

Since we are taking about straightforward and basic concepts for decorating your home on a budget, I have to state the obvious.

Take. Your. Time.

They say Rome wasn’t built in a day, and homes are not either. The reason I’m able to shop my own home, swap rugs, use lifestyle as decor, create my own flower arrangements and change color schemes with a purchase of only two items is because I’ve had time to accumulate!

Whether you are a new home owner or seasoned home owner whose style has changed, we must give ourselves time!

Consciously make small investments in pieces that will stand the test of time and trends and you will be able to slowly accumulate pieces you love and will continue to love long term.

See beyond trends and seasonal decor to pieces that can be multi-use or timeless and that will go a long way in loving the haven you create!

Stay Connected

Thank you so much for stopping by the blog today! I hope that these tips for how to decorate your home on a budget were helpful! Make sure to pin this post to save it for later when you’re feeling stuck on how to create that beautiful haven of yours.

Sarah Signature

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7 Straightforward Ways to Decorate on a Budget


  1. love your ideas Sarah! Braking the bank is not an option for me. Soooooo shopping my house has always been what i do. My husband use to say when I was bored and wanted to shop, “put your lipstick on and go shopping in the basement. ” He was so right. always would find things and change everything around. Thank Sarah I enjoy your blogs very much!

  2. Thank you! This woke me up and now I am looking at my areas and seeing what needs shook up!

    On another note: i have a huge wall in our living area It is so big and when I out a frouping on it looks great but still such a big wall seems It looks too busy if I add more. Wall is 30’ wide. Just don’t know how to make this look balanced and not piled on if that makes sense? Our sofa is in middle of room so just a big blank wall.

  3. Do you have a link to the bench you made and how you did it? I love the entry. It is very inviting and beautiful. Blessings.

  4. Really enjoyed this post. It’s rather nice that people, because they can’t go out and shop, are being required to be more creative and you’ve given us all some great ideas!

  5. I love your neutral colors, I have been doing that for several years. As you said, just changing out a few things can make such a difference. I am fairly new to your blog and I am enjoying it. I am pleased to find a Christian blogger. Blessings to you and your family.

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