Budget-friendly home makeover ideas on any schedule
Liven up your living space with these easy decor updates that will take anywhere from a day to a week.
When it comes to remodelling a home, we often can’t help but dream big – because who doesn’t want a walk-in glass shower, marble backsplash and ample storage space? But before you let your design vision overwhelm you, allow it to inspire you to make tiny tweaks that still have a big impact.
Whether you’re tight on time or worried about stretching your budget too thin, we’ve compiled a list of affordable home makeover ideas that can be done on any schedule – from a day, to a weekend, to one week. It’s time to set your decor hesitations to the curb along with that outdated side table, and read on.
For an instant refresh, switch up a space’s furniture placement. Think seasonally: Make your fireplace the focal point in winter and reposition pieces in summer depending on how the light streams in. Don’t be afraid to think beyond a room itself either – that armchair in your living room might look even better in your home office.
Lend a bright new look to your home by displaying eye-catching accessories. Uplift your sofa with playfully patterned toss cushions or scope out a stylish area rug to add comfort and texture to your space.
Think of bookshelves as fanciful art displays that should be carefully curated. Spend a quiet Sunday afternoon arranging your paperbacks by colour or wrapping unsightly book covers in pretty paper. Showcase decorative objets and prints for extra visual appeal. See here for more shelf-styling tips and tricks.
Don’t have time to paint an entire room? Create an accent wall instead to achieve the same decorative punch. Paint the wall a vivid hue or select a graphic wallpaper pattern that demands to be seen. Learn how to design a show-stopping feature wall here.
Wake up tired furniture with a fresh coat of paint. Whether you want to refresh dated cabinets or revamp a dull dresser, new-and-improved furniture pieces will cheer up a room without breaking the bank. Find out how to make this DIY dresser makeover here.
While creating an accent wall can be completed in a day, devoting a weekend to the task affords you the opportunity to be more creative, and you’ll have time to update a few walls. Try your hand at colour blocking or brighten a bedroom with intricate stencils and wall decals like these ones. Urban Walls, $71.66, etsy.com.
You don’t have to rely on marble or glass mosaic backsplash tiles to achieve a timeless look in your kitchen (cue the sighs of relief). Instead, try self-adhesive wall tiles like Smart Tiles. The budget-friendly alternative is simple to install and will still give your space an effortlessly elegant feel. Mosaic Decorative Wall Tile Peel and Stick in Subway White, The Home Depot, $8.97.
Sometimes purging your pad can have just as dramatic an impact as redecorating it. Release yourself from constant clutter by editing every area in your home. Toss tattered items, corral products in stylish baskets and bins and opt for multi-functional furniture. Find 99 more easy organizing tips here.
First impressions are lasting, so spend a few days improving your home’s porch area. Start by painting the front door an energizing hue that suits the exterior (here’s how to choose a front door colour). To enhance the look further, dress up your porch with planters and replace your mailbox, doormat and number signs with more modern styles.
Bedeck your living room with a DIY gallery wall comprised of well-loved prints. Hang art pieces that range in size and shape for added dimension, and choose stylish frames (whether vintage or modern) that complement each other. Once all is said and done, you’ll earn some serious bragging rights. Follow our steps for creating a DIY gallery wall here.
Making a few slight changes to your kitchen and bath will have big payoff. Begin by trading in timeworn hardware for sleek knobs and pulls, and paint your kitchen cabinets if they’re looking a little worse for wear (here’s how). Give yourself time to update other fixtures too, such as the faucets and vanity mirror.
Enhance the look of your dining or family room by adding decorative moulding. It’s an architectural accent that will instantly uplift your space and lend it more character. Now is also the time to consider reupholstering old furniture (get inspired here) and revamping your floors, whether that means refinishing your hardwood (read: sand and stain) or installing new tiles.
Take your bedroom from boring to beautiful with a few creative upgrades. Get crafty by upholstering your own headboard, which creates an eye-catching focal point. For an even easier hack, use a bedsheet as the fabric like we did here. Boost your room’s comfort factor further by adding an area rug, buying new bedding and installing drapery.
Once the weather warms up, our attention quickly shifts to the outdoors. Make your yard more inviting this year with a gorgeous garden path or walkway (materials like natural stone, brick and concrete all work well). Don’t stop there. Take the time to paint your home’s exterior – or at least the trim! – as well as the fence. Other easy tasks include washing the windows, staining the deck and painting outdoor furniture.
DIY project: Vanity tray
Turn your book collection into decorative eye candy while staying organized with these stylish bookcases and shelves.
As hard as we try to keep them organized, books can often get unwieldy. Piles pop up atop coffee tables, stacked haphazardly next to beds and left errantly here and there. Not only that, it can be tough to keep them contained in way that doesn’t detract from a room’s overall look and feel, especially since storage solutions can sometimes err on the side of utilitarian.
The key is to find a way to blend style and function when it comes to keeping things tidy. Breathe new life into your book collection with our picks for 10 bookcases and shelving solutions that flawlessly combine function and style.
Add a rustic element to a home office or family room with a bookcase inspired by a vintage carpenter’s bench. Crafted out of pine with hardware finished in antique bronze, this bookcase is neutral enough to be incorporated into most decor schemes, but still makes a stylish statement. Hendrix Bookcase, Pottery Barn, $899.
Customize your shelving based on space and how much storage you need with a clever stacked shelving system. Clip together units of various sizes in a configuration that works for your space to create a unique look in any room. Choose from white, dark grey, light grey and dark ash. Muuto Stacked Shelf System, The Modern Shop, pieces starting at $179.
The contrasting white frame and walnut shelving make this piece a particularly eye-catching way to display your favourite books. Choose from either white and walnut or black and white. Coppar 71" Bookcase by Hokku Designs, All Modern, $224.99.
Show off books of all shapes and sizes with ease on the open shelves of this ladder bookcase. The vertical dividers provide an opportunity to create a unique display that can easily also incorporate plants, frames and knickknacks. Ladder Bookshelf, West Elm, $399.
If you’re looking for a splurge-worthy bookcase that will make a stylish and elegant statement, look no further than this beautiful Jonathan Adler étagère made of Lucite and polished brass. This bookcase would instantly elevate any entryway or family room, no matter what it displayed! Jacques Lucite & Brass Etagere, Horchow, $2,699.
Brighten up your workspace or den with the help of a lacquered, high-gloss bookcase with open shelving. The modern yet minimalist design can suit nearly any space. Plus, combining more than one can create a stylish and sleek room divider. 3.14 white bookcase, CB2, $594.
Eschew conventional shelves in favour of a quirky zig zag design. We love the idea of using this bookcase to display a combination of paperbacks, hardcovers, photos and other decorative items that will really warm up a room. Donnia Open Zig Zag 70.75" Bookcase, All Modern, $270.
Sometimes the simplest pieces can create the most interesting design elements and this industrial-inspired rolling bookshelf does just that. It can easily be moved should you feel the need to change things up and the combination of steel and oak makes for a versatile piece perfect for displaying tomes of all sizes. Design Workshop Rolling Carts, West Elm, $1,900 - $2,980.
Create a display that suits your space with stylish wall hung shelving inspired by industrial crates. These can be configured in multiple ways making it easy to personalize the way you show off your books. The four-way keyhole hanger enables each shelf to be hung in any orientation you’re partial to. Bias Wall Hung Shelving Set of 4 by Hem, The Modern Shop, $463.
Perfect for a child’s bedroom or anywhere you want to add a playful piece of furniture, this whimsical bookshelf offers a truly unique way to display books. We’re partial to the black and white, but if you want a pop of bold colour choose from lime green, red or orange. Bolla 8 by David Winston, YLiving, $1,814.
Luxe hardcore bundle, Brooklinen.
With the cooler weather coming it's time to prepare your home with these eight fall accessories that can warm up any night in.
If you tend to spend a bit more time keeping warm in bed on chilly fall nights, you might want to invest in quality bedding. Brooklinen’s buttery smooth sheet sets come in an assortment of stylish stripes and solid colours and have a bit of a sheen, which adds a luxurious feeling every time you slip between them. Made with long staple Egyptian cotton, you’ll appreciate the quality every night. Luxe hardcore bundle, Brooklinen, prices vary depending on size.
Crisp fall evenings mean turning up the heat in the house. But install a Nest thermostat and you’ll enjoy having your home at your ideal temperatures all day long while also making your home more energy efficient. You’ll be able to remotely control your home’s temperature from your smartphone, even if you’re traveling. All of this control means you’ll save money on your heating bills, too. Nest learning thermostat, Nest, $249.
This Indigo exclusive pillow cover unites the rich colours of autumn beautifully. Boasting gorgeous florals in earthy hues, this seasonal throw pillow is a simple way to bring a touch of fall into your home. Toss on a couch or bed for an instant facelift! Midnight floral pillow cover, Indigo, $30.
Classic. Iconic. Canadian. This signature HBC Collection striped point blanket’s popularity dates all the way back to the 1800s when it was first commissioned. Since then, this high quality, 100% woven wool blanket has never been out of production, a sure sign of its enduring style. Fall has never been cozier! Hudson’s Bay Company multi stripe point blanket, Hudson’s Bay, starting at $295.
Warm up the chilliest of days with a treat that the whole family will love. This premium cocoa powder is flavoured with natural vanilla to deliver a perfectly sweet cup of hot chocolate each and every time. Sweet ground chocolate, Williams-Sonoma, $15.95.
Blanket? Check. Hot drink? Check. Now you just need a good book to make your evening complete. Mindy Kaling to the rescue! If you watch The Mindy Project, have read her first book Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me, or secretly wish that Mindy was your real-life BFF, then you can’t miss out on her recently released second book Why Not Me? This collection of essays, though thoughtful and personal, is also just as hilarious as you’d expect from the queen of comedy. Why Not Me, Indigo, $20.
When it’s cold outside and all you want to do is stay snuggled up inside where it’s warm, you’ll be thankful you’ve got your AppleTV to keep you company. Bringing all the apps you love to use on your computer to life on your television screen means you can get really comfortable as you settle in to watch your favourite shows on iTunes, Netflix, Crackle, CraveTV, Shomi and other streaming services. Apple TV, Apple Store, from $199.
Keep those tootsies warm with these adorable, comfy reading socks. They’re made with just 12% wool so they’re cozy but not itchy. When regular socks just won’t do, these cable socks will be your perfect indoor companions. They make a great gift, too! Cabled cozy reading socks, Indigo, $29.50.