In today’s economy, it may seem more difficult to give your home that boutique chic look while still staying on a budget. People tend to associate chic with expensive. Yes, designer lamps and vases can get pricey, but who says you can’t make your own chic on your own monetary terms? With just a few dollars – and trust in your creative eye– you can come up with a pretty great savvy look for any space.
Start With the Basics
The first place to start, and one of the easiest accessories to find, is paint. A good grade of paint will typically cost around $25-35 per gallon. Spending $50 bucks for a clean and rich look is totally worth it, especially since this is one accessory that can last for many years.
Often times, you can get away with painting one wall a different color than the rest (and save time and money doing it). This tends to create an accent color, and can literally change the look of the entire room. Get the family in on the action. Make a painting party out of it with friends. Accessories that result out of a fun experience hold even greater value in the end. And once the paint is dry – you can begin to think about other complimentary accessorizing.
If a coat of paint isn’t enough, think about investing or making your own inexpensive art work. Whether it be black and white photos of your favorite city or moments, small photos of friends and family, or framing your child’s artwork- the form of art is most important in its personal meaning. Toss some throw pillows on the couch, or get larger ones and use them for additional seating. Pillows can also add another nice touch of chic – especially if they highlight the accent wall and surrounding artwork you just Incorporated!
In the bedroom, think sheets of a high thread count, a luxurious throw, clean and calming lines. This is supposed to be your space of serenity, and choosing the right accessories can greatly help to accomplish that. This is your most personal space, so go wild with style.
You don’t have to stop the chic look at the living and bedroom areas – think about smaller spaces like the bathroom. Small details like adding tassels around the towels or lighting pleasant-scented candles might seem cheesy or commonplace, but you can’t knock it until you try it. Though simple tricks, these inexpensive details are exactly what makes an ordinary space ‘chic’.
Other Nice Details
In any home, lighting is important – giving it a larger, more open feel and allowing for comfortable reading or conversation. Even with a small space, stylish mirrors as well as lamps or feature lights can add beautiful, and needed, brightness. Don’t forget about natural light as well. Exchange those broken blinds for wooden shutters, or invest in some beautiful french doors. The sun is our friend- don’t exclude it from your home!
In addition, everyone has that extra “stuff” we don’t know what to do with. Most display homes don’t always account for that, but in the real world, we all need a place for belongings such as off-season clothes or other items that aren’t used on a regular basis.
If storage is an issue, remember that you can always add inexpensive but stylish corner units in just about any room. These can give character to bedrooms, living rooms, and even dining rooms and kitchens – without compromising necessary space. Decorative dividers and screens are a popular way of defining this type of space. Asian, modern, eclectic- styles of every shape and size are available. And in most cases, moderately inexpensive.
Where to Look
If you have a creative eye, you can find chic items just about anywhere. Don’t rule out yard sales, thrift stores, or flea markets – in fact these are some of the best places to find your next creative project. You may not find the perfect accessories, but with a bit of paint or other touch ups, you can accessorize your home with your own personal touch – without handing over your wallet in order to do so. Creating a chic space is more about using what you find around you, incorporating pieces that you love, and showcasing your personal taste. After all, you are the one that has to live there.
Josh Thompson works with luxury furniture group discount site LuxeYard. He is also a passionate writer for a handful of interior design blogs.