With the recent events of 2020, it has brought upon a new way of life. In result, it has become the norm to spend most of our time at home, especially for the individuals who are lucky enough to work from home. In light of spending more time at home than ever, it has motivated many to renovate their homes and to redecorate.
Recently I have taken on the project of refurnishing my entire living room with adding new touches to each space within the home. While in the process of selling my furniture to gather some extra cash to cover the costs, I was constantly researching for affordable ways I could really elevate my space without breaking the bank. Being in grad school made it especially important for me to do this all while sticking to a more affordable budget.
With this being said, here are 10 ways you can elevate your space while sticking to an affordable and realistic budget.
If you are currently apartment living and want to really elevate your space, the first thing to look at are your walls. If you feel the paint was poorly done or you are just not loving the color, change it. The beauty of this task is that you can do this all on your own. If you are looking to brighten up your space and to make it more inviting, try going for a lighter, more neutral color. If you are leaning towards a more edgy modern look, go for dark and subtle colors. You can even toy around with doing a color scheme of two between opposite walls.
Peal & stick vinyl plank flooring
Not the simplest task and this will take time, however; this is the cheapest alternative for modern “expensive-like” flooring. Measure the size of the room, search stick on planks which suit your desire (I favor the rustic light wood planks) and make it a day project. Here is a set I’m loving from Home Depot which ranges to about $3.19 per square foot.
Something as simple as switching out the older looking blinds to newer, sleeker ones. Sticking to lighter colors will brighten your space and create the illusion of a larger room. Now, if you really want to elevate the area, add window curtains for a more dramatic effect. You can go for a more transparent look to let in more light or solid for more privacy.
Such a great way to add character to your space. A useful tip for purchasing area carpets is to choose a size which will cover a large space if it is not in your budget to re-do flooring that you may not like. Currently my apartment has light wood flooring, however, the flooring is old, and you can tell. There are many stains and marks which were left from the previous tenants. Because I know I will not be living here for more than three years, I chose to purchase a 9x12 area carpet for the living room which covers a decent amount of space. I also chose a rug which is light in color in order to brighten the space as well as to make it warmer and cozy. Here is the one I just purchased. I also purchased an 8x10 for my bedroom in order to cover a large portion underneath and out the bottom of our bed. Here is the one I chose for that.
This might sound silly, but this is actually a great way to create a more “cozier” effect. It is also sometimes a cheaper solution to purchasing the larger version of the rug you truly want. A great way to layer rugs is to purchase a large jute rug for the bottom and a cozier, softer option for the top. Here is the jute rug I went with.
By layering textures in your space, it will create a more appealing appearance and will not look flat. In addition to this, it makes your space look and feel more expensive. If your room has carpet and not wood/cement flooring, layer an area rug anyways. Visual textures suggest certain feelings, for example rough textures indicate being more grounded but inviting while smooth textures indicate a more formal yet untouchable appearance. You can achieve this look by either layering two opposite carpets or adding in different types of pillows and throw blankets to your couch and accent chairs.
Faux plants & trees
A very great way to liven up your space as well as to add color. Artificial plants are an easier alternative to real plants because they do not require any maintenance and you will not need to replace them very often. In addition, there was a study conducted which proved that artificial plants help to improve mental health in several individuals. Here is an affordable option that i'm loving.
My most recent home décor obsession. I have been purchasing books for décor nonstop because they are such an affordable yet timeless addition to any space. I have chosen to stick to a more modern living room feel and overall aesthetic. This includes neutral colors and soft textures (fuzzy blankets and pillows).
Here is a list of the décor books I have purchased thus far and am loving:
An absolute must have at all times. Personally, I always have a candle burning in my apartment when I am home. Not only are they an easy way to make your space smell amazing but they are also great décor items. I have purchased many candles which I have chosen to not light because they are just for show. Here is my most favorite affordable one which I have in all four colors.
Throw pillows and blankets
One of the most affordable solutions for a space. A great way to add life to a neutral couch. My absolute favorite place for anything home décor, especially throw blankets and pillows, is Target. The choices are all very affordable and there is a great variety. If you are having trouble starting, here is a personal favorite throw blanket.