There is nothing wrong with being frugal these days. In fact a ‘thrifty’ makeover is very on trend and positively encouraged – especially when it comes to sprucing up your home. The quickest fastest way to refresh any room is a fresh coat of paint. Give drab, washed-out walls a burst of brilliant boost simply by picking up a tin of paint and a brush. Just tackling one wall and creating a feature wall is even cheaper and easier than a whole room. Don’t let a tight budget hold back home improvements – there’s a quick and creative ‘frugal fix’ for every room.
You can easily refresh your bathroom in a weekend or less with these affordable makeover ideas:
Grubby tile grout makes bathrooms look grotty. White grout easily becomes marked by shampoo, shower gel and the like, but there is a quick and easily solution – steam-clean it. Use a steam cleaner and your grout should soon look like new. If the power of steam doesn’t work, or work sufficiently, you can apply grout paint to re-whiten the grout. In the worse cases, consider raking out the stained grout and applying more.
You can make a tired bathroom look like new in just a few hours by installing a new toilet seat, adding a fresh bead of silicon sealant around the bath and replacing your taps with new ones. You’ll also see your bathroom in a whole new light if you change out a dated light fixture for something that’s new and dramatic.
Ditch the sink side clutter and update your bathroom cabinet. Either replace with one big enough to can keep your essentials in order or add pull out shelves to your existing cabinet interior to help you avoid digging around in the dark.
Image: Cooke & Lewis Bathroom Cabinets, B&Q www.diy.com/cooke-and-lewis/
Easily add some affordable new features to your bathroom, such as a statement mirror, glass shelves, shiny chrome towel rails and a few matching bathroom accessories.
A freshly tiled floor or wall will make a blase bathroom feel brand new. The lowest cost tiles are simple white tiles making a clean, chic and affordable choice. Spice up the look of the room with a band of accent tiles, such as these sleek black liner tiles that visually link the shower and vanity area. If new tiles and the associated labour costs are beyond the budget tile paint is a quick and affordable alternative.
If a lick of paint is in order in the bathroom make sure you use a washable paint so it stays looking good – special bathroom emulsions are designed to withstand things like mould and steam and are available in the whole rainbow of colours.
Compared with kitchen and bathroom renovations, overhauling a bedroom might seem easy peasy. But it still involves dozens of decisions making it a relatively daunting task. With our increasingly hectic lives, the bedroom is where we seek sanctuary, calm and romance at the end of a long day. Given the bedroom is a space where we spend one-third of our lives — who wouldn’t want to pay attention to the details?
Luxury duvets and pillows, The Fine Bedding Company www.finebedding.co.uk
Changing the layout of your furniture is an easy way to update a bedroom at no cost. Start by repositioning the bed in a different location, perhaps you have side tables elsewhere in the house that could work as bedside tables. Sometimes simply updating your bed with a fresh set of bedding can make the greatest change. Add brand-new sheets and bed linens with a new throw at the end of the bed and some throw pillows for the five star hotel look.
Luxury bed linens and throws, The Fine Cotton Company www.thefinecottoncompany.com
Spice up plain walls with pattern, wallpaper can be done easily if you know where to shop. Websites like eBay often offer out-of-production wallpapers at a heavy discount and why not wallpaper just one wall? There is no reason why you cannot wallpaper an accent wall and nothing more. Don’t forget the fifth wall, the ceiling is the most often forgotten canvas in the bedroom. Nothing can change a bedroom as easily as paint; however, don’t just stop at the walls, given we spend more time looking at the ceiling in the bedroom than any other room be sure to give the ceiling a fresh coat too.
Make a statement above the headboard – this can be a feature wall in your all-time favourite colour or a large piece of artwork. An alternative to buying oversized artwork is to use black-and-white photos of your favourite people and places to create a gallery wall, or hang a blank canvas on which you can write your favourite quotes. Artwork can change the mood of a room dramatically. It’s important not to forget about lighting. Lighting in any space needs to come from more than one source to create different moods and atmospheres. If you have an overhead light source, like a central fixture or recessed lights, be sure to pull in an additional source such as bedside or floor lamps.
Top off your new boudoir with the addition of mirrors, they are always a useful way to update a space; they add instant depth, sparkle and light to a room. Buy a new full-length mirror to put in the corner of the room where light reflects the most — it will add unexpected sparkle and light.
A full living room update — with new flooring, furniture and wall colour — is the ideal home makeover. However, limited time and budget can make a full revamp out of the question. If you’re sick of your space, make a few small changes and make a big difference.
Although rugs serve a practical purpose, the wide variety of options available makes it a piece that can really tie a room together. Even layered over carpet, rugs can define or refine a space. A thoughtfully chosen area rug is a clever way to adjust how your room feels. If you want to lighten a room with dark flooring use a light coloured rug or warm up flooring that is too light, opt for a darker rug.
Louis de Poortere Mad Men Empire Red, priced £145 for 80cm x 150cm, louisdepoortere.com
After new flooring, new furniture is one of the priciest ways to update a room, but sometimes a simple piece can go a long way. Pre-loved items are a thrifty choice, try scouting out a vintage find — a classic chair, a coffee table, a contrasting side chair or two. You can breathe life into it with a new paint finish or learn a new skill and set to and reupholster it yourself.
Living room sofas are an investment piece but you can easily and cheaply update your existing with an array of new decorative cushions and throws to change up the look.
The right window treatment takes a room from bland to beautiful. Soften your living space with ready-made curtain panels or if a standard-size window panel doesn’t work in your room, simply buy the next size up and have them hemmed at your local dry cleaner. As a rule hang curtains the full height of the room rather than from the top of the window to create an illusion of more space. Window blinds and shutters are also stylish and versatile additions with insulating, sun-blocking and added security benefits.
Visit www.247blinds.co.uk for inspiration and easy to follow advice on choosing curtains, shutters and blinds, guidance on measuring up and fitting yourself to help your budget go further.
If your kitchen is looking a bit tired, you don’t have to spend a fortune to give it a fresh new look. All it takes is a little time, effort and creativity to pep up the heart of your home.
If your cupboards are a bit dated, in terms of style and or colour, why not consider just replacing the doors if the framework is still in good shape? There are a host of companies that specialise in providing replacement doors.
Dramatically change the look of your kitchen by replacing your existing worktops. Laminate is the most cost-effective to purchase. If you have spare cash, consider extras, such as heat rods that can be fitted into the surface for a permanent pan stand or a built-in draining board.
If your current kitchen floor is letting the scheme down, you don’t need to go to the hassle of taking it all up as you can lay new flooring on top. Most kitchen designers will advise that you can simply run it underneath the plinths, instead of wall-to-wall, which cuts your costs further.
Quick-Step Impressive Concrete Wood laminate, quick-step.co.uk
It’s amazing how much we accumulate over the years. Try setting aside an afternoon to sort out your kitchen cupboards, then organise them so you have access to the things you use every day. Clearing your worktops can also instantly improve your kitchen and it won’t cost you anything at all. Alternatively, try rethinking your storage solutions. Pull-out drawers in a cupboard instantly make every spare inch of space usable.
New appliances can refresh your kitchen without changing any of the furniture. You’ll need to ensure that they will fit into the existing space, though, Freestanding appliances can be replaced more easily. Also, consider upgrading to energy-efficient models to also help save on electricity.