How to Refresh Your Home in the New Year on a Budget
Rearrange Your Accessories
The easiest way to update your home on a budget is by rearranging what you already have. Start by putting all your moveable accessories—like tchotchkes, frames, bookends, and throw pillows—into a pile on the floor, suggests interior designer Andrea Schumacher. “Sort accessories by color, and then rearrange them in the room in a more uniform or colorful way,” she says.
Add New Fixtures and Hardware
Buying a bold new light fixture or hardware for your cabinets is popular advice for updating your home—but for good reason. It’s inexpensive and can have a big impact on your space’s look and feel. Plus, it works in every room: Try a new bed lamp in a fun color or install metallic pulls on your bathroom drawers. In the kitchen or living room, try updating your light fixtures with modern pendants, recommends lifestyle expert Leah Ingram.
Create a Fitness Space
Why not refresh your home and pursue your New Year’s resolutions? Schumacher recommends finding a beautiful basket to store weights and fitness equipment, then committing to a short workout before your morning shower. Make sure the surrounding space is serene and calm. “By creating an environment that complements and supports the resolution, you’re more likely to enjoy the space,” says interior designer Anthony Michael.
Updating furniture you already have is one of the cheapest and most effective ways to give your home a New Year’s makeover—even if it’s not the easiest solution. But what better time to learn than now? “Take an old dresser and let your imagination run wild,” says Ingram. “Lightly sand the piece, paint it a fresh color, and add pretty pulls to bring it back to life.” Plus, your new hobby will save you cash down the line: “Fixing and mending what you already have is a great way to save a lot of money,” says green living expert Sara Tetreault.
Carve Out Room for Quiet
Dedicate 2016 to self-reflection by turning a quiet corner into a dream-like space for personal time—without spending much money on the transformation. “Find a small table and a beautiful fabric to drape over it and add a candle and a comfortable floor pillow to make time for yourself each day,” says Schumacher.
Keep One Shade
If your style tends towards the bold, consider paring down for spring. “Try only using one shade of accent colors for the season,” says Schumacher. For example, use only shades of blue for your pillows and accessories to refresh your space in the wintertime. Once your new color is in place, add in a few carefully chosen accessories opposite the color wheel—think mustard yellows with blues.
Paint a Door
Don’t suffer with boring whitewashed interior doors. Instead, “add a splash of color by painting an interior door a bold hue,” says Ingram. Try covering the whole door in something bright and happy, or just paint the trim—and if you catch the color bug, consider painting your exterior door, too.
Move the Art Around
If you’ve had the same gallery wall up for ages, we understand if you’re ready for a change. Michael recommends moving around the art in your home “for a change of view.” Consider letting your large artwork stand alone on a wall—or, if that’s already the case in your space, try integrating it into a grouping.
Enough of this dreary, sad winter—“Open those windows!” Michael says. Yes, it might be a bit chilly, but opening the windows doesn’t necessarily mean letting in the outside air. Remove distracting elements like heavy window treatments, blinds, and drapes to make the room feel fresh and bring in more of that pretty, end-of-winter light. Or if you don’t feel like taking them off the windows completely, open them up more than you usually do to avoid a case of the wintry blues.