Fresh Start on a Budget

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Change Colours

If you’ve had the same colour for years, a lick of paint will bring back life to that room. If you’re not sure which colour palette to go with, Janet Crowther, an entrepreneur and designer, advised in her book A Well-Crafted Home: Inspiration and 60 Projects for Personalizing Your Space that using something you love, for example a vintage rug or patterned fabric, can help you determine a colour palette. “Pull your favorite colors from these objects as the starting point for the hues and complimentary colors in your palette… If you are color-shy, a good rule of thumb is to keep it neutral (white, cream, beige, greige) and then layer on colorful accents with curtains, pillows, rugs, and playful fabrics. This allows you to take it slow and build the room up to the point of color that you like. Small details like brightly colored vases, stacks of blue books…will accent the room.”

Introduce Art

Art is a great way to add personality to your home. It can also add interest to otherwise bland walls. Use it to create a feature wall or to add interest in the hallway. Bear in mind that when we say art, we don’t just mean expensive collections found in galleries. Family photographs, for example, qualify. “Think outside the box, and don’t assume the only place to buy art is at a gallery. Art is such a personal thing. Buy what stirs an emotion,” writes Ted Kennedy Watson in Style & Simplicity: An A to Z Guide to Living a More Beautiful Life.

Add Knick-Knacks

They say the devil is in the details. Use that to your advantage. Knick-knacks, just like art, add visual interest to surfaces, and like design expert Susanna Salk says, every surface counts. “Every surface in every area of your home is waiting for you to create a visual landscape that delights yet doesn’t feel overly staged. When done correctly, these moments keep you not only inspired on a daily basis but, through their thoughtful order, centered. Use only things you love and love to look at… Consider every surface’s possibility, and know that deciding to keep it bare is as important a decorating decision as anything you could ever purchase,” she wrote in her book, It’s the Little Things: Creating Big Moments in Your Home Through the Stylish Small Stuff.

Colour With Flower And Plants

Flowers add pops of colour on surfaces like coffee and dining tables, and plants make a room lively. Remember, though, size matters. A big plant in a small space will make it feel cramped. In the book Living with Plants: A Guide to Indoor Gardening, Sophie Lee wrote that if you’re new to keeping plants, start with small-sized pots of hardy plants that require low maintenance, and also, small plants are a good idea if your space is already full of personality or crowded.

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