01 May 2017

How to Craft an Elegant Home on a Tight Budget

Having a home that looks like a million bucks can be tough, especially if you don’t have much of a budget to throw around. Despite what a lot of magazines and blogs would have you believe, there are many ways you can create a home that’s absolutely stunning, without putting too much of a dent in your bank account. Whether it’s just one room that’s looking a little drab or you want to give the entire place a makeover, you can get that much closer to the house of your dreams through cheap and even free solutions. The following is a list of some of the simplest and least expensive ways to decorate a home…
It's All in the Details--
When you’re trying to make your home look beautiful and high-end on a budget, it’s better to focus on the little details rather than any big, sweeping changes. Possibly the most economical example of this is some fresh crown molding. Crown molding has this amazing ability to make pretty much any room look more complete and finished, bringing the walls and ceiling together, giving them both a much more elegant appearance. When many rooms (particularly the most public ones like the living room) are lacking crown molding, it can make the whole space look kind of cheap and incomplete. Fortunately, good crowd molding is relatively inexpensive, particularly when it comes to the plastic, paint-able kind. They can also be installed fairly easily if you or your partner are up to a little DIY. Go to your nearest home improvement store, and you’ll find a range of different widths that are within your budget. However, if you want the best possible impact, choose the widest trim that you can afford.
Don’t Underestimate a Good Color Scheme--

The paint schemes you use in your home will have a huge impact on how the whole place looks and feels, so naturally, this can be a pretty tough decision to make. However, if you’re going for elegance and prestige with your home makeover, there are certain colors and schemes that work better than others. When picking a color scheme for any area of your home, you should be going for either bold, dramatic hues, or softer, more understated ones. Either of these will add an instant dose of impressive elegance to your interior. The option you ultimately go with, of course, always comes down to taste. If you really want to make an impact on your guests, consider painting your interior doors black, navy blue, or a similar dark shade. This instantly creates a much more expensive feeling, without doing nearly as much damage to your bank account. If you’re doing this, be sure to source a few matching accessories to tie the spaces together.
Pick out the Right Pillows--
Pillows serve a couple of purposes in a home. First of all, if they’re chosen correctly, they can inject a lot of prestige into any interior. Secondly, they provide your household and any guests with an extra bit of comfort, offering a cozier, more layered feeling to your rooms. Go looking for some large, well-stuffed pillows, as these will make for a much more plush, comfortable, and elegant appearance. When it comes to how practical and comfortable they actually are, make sure you’re not penny-pinching when it comes to the inserts. Try out a Plumeria Bay down pillow or something of equal standards just once, and you’ll be convinced that down-filled pillows are the only way to go. When it comes to throw pillows for the living room, stay away from the standard size of 12 to 18 inches. As long as you don’t have a particularly small couch, 22-inch pillows are going to be much more comfortable and inviting.
Window Treatments Are a Must--
Similar to crown molding, a home with a glaring absence of decent window treatments will tend to look thrown-together and cheap. Fortunately, good window treatments are highly cost-effective ways to add a potent dose of class and taste to your décor, not to mention assuring some privacy! When you’re selecting window treatments for your home, try to take your time with the decision. It’s pretty easy to make some big mistakes here. For instance, choosing materials that are unlined and flimsy will make the whole room look horribly tacky, even if they’re the cheapest option you come across. It’s also recommended that you stay away from materials that let too much light through, both in terms of aesthetic value and practicality. This doesn’t mean that you’re banned from buying any curtains straight off the rack. A lot of stores stock lined draperies that look classy and expensive, even though they come with a very manageable price tag. When you’re choosing treatments, and trying to go for an air of elegance and prestige, stick with materials such as silk, cotton and linen. Polyester and similar man-made fabrics tend to look a little weak and tacky, even though there are a few rare exceptions to the rule. If you’re not all that crazy about draperies, then go for woven bamboo shades and wooden blinds. Just make sure you dress your windows to tie them in gracefully with these more rigid treatments.
Think Outside the Box When It Comes to Hardware--

When you walk around any home improvement store for long enough, it doesn’t take too long before you’re faced with a whole wall of different draw pulls, knobs, and so on. Some of these might catch your eye, but try to stay away from this area of the store! True, these kinds of hardware pieces tend to be very cheap, but that’s because they’re cheaply made, and of a poor quality standard . For a few more bucks, still keeping within a reasonable price range, you can more expensive-looking and classy pieces elsewhere. Smaller hardware outlets, flea markets, and even antique shops can be great places to find cheap and beautiful hardware. Do enough digging, and you’ll be able to find heavy-duty, expensive-looking knobs and pulls at a fraction of the price you’d have to pay for them elsewhere.
Branch out with Your Lighting--
Lighting makes a huge difference in any interior décor project, and you need to give it due consideration when you’re looking to refresh your home. Most contractors will tend towards standard, cookie-cutter light fixtures, in many cases the same models that they’ve been using over and over again in all the other houses the company has built. It goes without saying that more interesting light fixtures will do more for the mien of your home than the models that you were given when you took possession! Again, there are a lot of tricks you can employ to get a great high-end look, without having to pay a high-end price. Start your search in flea markets, second-hand stores, sites like Gumtree and so on. It can take a lot of searching, but these sources can give you some absolutely beautiful pieces on a pre-owned budget. Some pieces you come across may look like they’re a little too used, but you’ll be amazed at what some buffing or a fresh lick of paint can do. One easy way of making a space feel more elegant and expensive is using several different light sources, including table and floor lamps to balance it all out.
Choose Hardwood over Carpet--

Sure, wall-to-wall carpeting in any home can feel warm, inviting and soft, but if you’re trying to get the most powerful effect possible on a tight budget, hardwood floors are the way to go. A solid, gleaming hardwood floor can be surprisingly affordable, and will give the interior of a home a classic, elegant appearance. Okay, this isn’t exactly the kind of home improvement you can make with the petty cash you carry around with you whenever you leave the house. However, hardwood flooring is one investment that’s certainly worth making. It lasts a very long time, provides a nice return for the money you put in, and looks effortlessly stunning. A darker color of wood can look more luxurious, but will be more expensive than lighter ones like oak and birch. The difference in what you get as a return will be negligible. If you’re looking for a way to make your home more beautiful and more valuable in one change, hardwood floors are the way to go.
Accessorize!--
Finally, go looking for the kind of home accessories that scream luxury and elegance. Many people think that accessorizing in their home makeover will stretch their budget too thin, but in fact it can be made very affordable. There are a range of cheaper accessories you can use to throw a dash of elegance into your interior, especially if you tend towards anything metallic. Gold and silver creates an instant association with wealth, and while these can be a little garish if you overload a space with them, being tactful can have a remarkably potent and appealing effect. Get out there and start looking for some picture frames, mirrors and ornaments!

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