11 Ways to Refresh a Room for Under $30


Do you greet your place with a crabby grunt when you return from a day of work? You know what I’m talking about: the pillows are tired, the walls aren’t working, and everything is just wrong, wrong, wrong. It’s time for a makeover. But you’re trying to save cash, too (maybe you just got home from a day of job-hunting). Fortunately, there are plenty of inexpensive ways to give your home an energizing visual boost. Try these tips.


PhotobucketRearrange your furniture to alter the entire landscape of a room. Add some unusual objects. Play with height. Doesn’t cost you a cent, just some elbow grease.


PhotobucketPaint just one cabinet or side table in a surprising pop of color – think lime, orchid, turquoise. Or go for a muted, but elegant shade like slate blue.


PhotobucketColor an accent wall with non-toxic milk paint. (You can even make your own!) Contrasting hues are bold enough to reinvent any space.


PhotobucketWhile you’re at it, repaint old, wooden picture frames. This subtle touch will revitalize dull tabletops and shelves. Try steel and canary, chocolate and sky, or shimmering pearl and metallic tones.


PhotobucketSpring for a set of simple vases and fill them with an assortment of brilliant buds. Or gather an assortment of old crockery for a charming mismatched look. You can even use old plastic dish bottles, as shown here.


PhotobucketBuy some trendy fabric and reupholster an old sofa or armchair. Don’t be intimidated by this; it’s actually a simple project even the most hopeless amateurs can undertake.


PhotobucketEnhance your space with a couple new throw pillows: just use fabric from a treasured old item of clothing you no longer can wear or a tablecloth you won’t miss to upcycle and sew them yourself.


PhotobucketRevamp your lamps with “new” shades – try painting them with a brilliant or soothing low VOC shade like melon or lavender.


PhotobucketMake decorative soy candles to embellish bare surfaces. Add aromatherapeutic essential oils for a multisensory experience.


PhotobucketSpice up humdrum end tables with chic runners – organic ones are surprisingly inexpensive, but you could also cut up an old tablecloth or pillowcase (sew a hem for the cleanest look).

PhotobucketFinally, don’t forget flowers. They’re temporary, true, but nothing freshens a space like a cheerful bouquet.

Images: tanakawho, karen.tkr, Tammy Manet, schnaars, Editor B, Nicolas, gomattolson, paysimaginaireVivaTerra