Home furnishing needs? Find out how to furnish your home for free or on a budget!
Money can be scarce around the holidays, especially at Christmas time! Between buying presents, Christmas lunch and your other monthly expenses, decorating the house can take a back seat. However, whether you’re decorating your home for Christmas or setting up a new home, all you need are some helpful and resourceful tips!
Home furnishing need not be expensive or difficult. Repurposing what you already have, strategically planning the layout of your home and emphasising specific aspects can make a huge difference. We’ve come up with some affordable home furnishing tips to help you beautify your home this Christmas!
Home furnishing furniture tips
A fresh new coat
You’ll be surprised at how bright a fresh coat of paint can look. Not only can it brighten up the walls of your home, it can bring old objects back to life. Renew a chest of drawers, an old chair or a table with a fresh coat of paint. You can use spray on paint or paint cans, just remember to paint the piece of furniture in a well-ventilated area and make sure that it is completely dry before you use it.
When a door closes, repurpose it
If you’re bored of the typical plain white hooks around your home, take a look at your door. Old or mismatched door knobs are excellent repurposed hooks. They don’t cost very much but can add that extra pop to a room or home! It will look adoorable!
Anything can be framed
Frames don’t have to be bulky or necessarily contain artwork. They can display almost anything, including cloth tapestries, quilts or artefacts. If you have children at home, you could even frame a particularly sweet wall painting that your child has created.
Stick and repeat
If you’ve got limited space at home, look for patterns that can give the impression of a larger space. Wall stickers or wallpaper are the most affordable means of achieving this look. However, as wallpaper can get expensive, if you have to choose one wall, decorate the wall behind the headboard of your bed. This creates the most impact on the atmosphere of the room as that is the focal point. If you can’t find a wallpaper that’s within your budget or one that you like, grab your favourite colour of paint and a stencil and craft your own!
Let the good times roll
When you’ve got limited space, being able to create space is an important factor. Putting your shelves or drawers on a set of wheels can help you get that extra space when you need it. Casters are the best ‘quick-change’ helpers. For those with little ones at home, you can get casters with locks on them so that accidents don’t happen.
How to get the designer home furnishing look
Decide on a theme for your home or the room that you are intending to decorate. Focus your ideas and look at designer styles that you like. Visit a couple of furniture stores to find out what’s on the market, what’s trending and what you like.
Create a mood board
A mood board or vision board is a collage of images, colour swatches and text that will help with your home furnishing project. This will help you visualise your room and match colours and themes.
Do it yourself
YouTube tutorials are a godsend to anyone looking to make their own furniture or repurpose an object. It might take some time to find the item or piece that you want but always look for ways you can ‘do-it-yourself’. It could be as simple as spray painting or powder coating the metal parts of your furniture to give it a more expensive look.
Look for a similar, low-cost option
For every expensive designer item or material, there is a low-cost option that looks similar, if not just as good. Certain materials, like stones, have cheaper, less-commonly used varieties. Gold detailing can be achieved with paint or gold foil, which can also give you a very delicate look.
Invest in a few specific items
If there’s a piece of furniture that you really like or think is critical to tying your room together, you can invest in it. These specific pieces of furniture can lift the atmosphere of the room and make the entire room look better. These home furnishings don’t have to be large statement pieces, it can be as simple as a nice tap or cupboard door handles.
Vintage is not a popular topic because of the wide variety of vintage-style furniture. While your bedroom furniture might not be vintage, you can find a good selection of home furniture at thrift stores, such as Vinny’s. When you’re shopping around, always remember to bear in mind that anything can be repurposed.
Group your home furniture
This is an old designer’s trick, but using a few of the same type of furniture or object in the same area can elevate your room. For example, a row of old bottles can add a pop of colour to the room, serve as flower vases or hold your accessories!
Think about the scale of things
If you’re decorating a small room, it makes sense that you don’t have large pieces of furniture. The mismatch between scale can make a room look cluttered and unnatural. If you’ve got a big room, invest in a statement piece of home furniture, like a nice sofa. Scrimping on these aspects and getting a small sofa for a large room can downgrade the atmosphere of the room. Not to mention that it would be a real waste of space! It is important to maximise what you do have!
Look out for showroom sales
If you’re planning to decorate a small area, such as the wall above your stove, look for showroom sales. Purchasing excess fabric or unused bits of wallpaper can save you a lot of money. In addition, these sales usually offer items at a significantly discounted price.
Google for inspiration
Sites like Pinterest can help you source ideas and tips on how to go about your home furnishing project. However, inspiration doesn’t always need to come from online sources. You can also visit local furniture stores and scout around showrooms for ideas.
Home furnishings for free
It’s not easy to find furniture for free, but it’s not impossible. Sites like Craigslist or Gumtree are often viewed with an air of suspicion but you can find some real home furnishing steals! Many a times, sellers don’t know the value of the piece of furniture they are selling, or are looking to make a quick sale. Stores also release unsold furniture at massive discounts. While it can be time-consuming and confusing to search through every single Craigslist or Gumtree advert, you can sign up to get notifications based on specific search terms. This narrows down the scope of ads that you’ll have to review.
One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Another useful site for the discerning shopper to find free stuff is Ziilch.com. From sofas to encyclopedias, the site is a haven for those looking to get rid of their second-hand furniture and possessions. Similarly, although auctions and estate sales don’t give away free furniture, you can get a pretty good deal on some nice pieces if you keep an eye out.
Ozrecycle.com is another site that’s dedicated to reducing Australia’s trash. You can also typically find quite a few trustworthy sellers on Facebook Marketplace or different furniture swap Facebook groups. Another great way to find free furniture is to drive through the streets during curb side collection and rummage through the piles of unwanted treasures people put out on the side of the road.
Holiday home furnishing on a budget
Some people love to go big with home furnishings during the holidays, especially at Christmas. But for those of us on a budget, there are numerous ways to cut back on spending and yet create a festive vibe in the house.
Decorate your door
As it is the first thing you see when you come home to after a long day and the first thing guests see, your front door is a focal point. Decorate it with a lovely wreath or some festive ribbons: it doesn’t need to be over the top or expensive, simply welcoming. We all know that wreaths can be marked up, especially around this time of the year, so why not make your own? With a couple of dried flowers, branches, ornaments and a YouTube video, you can make your own personalised wreath! If you’re allergic to wreaths made from plants, look into ornamental or button wreaths! They can be as big or as small as you want.
Wind tinsel around your staircase
If you counted the number of times you go up and down the staircase at home, you’d realise just how central it is to your day. It’s an excellent means of adding cheer to your home. Decorate the bannisters with some inexpensive fairy lights or tinsel. You can even DIY a ribbon garland with scraps of leftover ribbon from your gift wrapping. Simple, yet effective.
Make the windows pop
Australia might not get snow for Christmas, but that doesn’t mean that your windows can’t have a snowflake or two. With cheap ornaments, you can get those white Christmas feels right in your own home. If you don’t want to spend money on something you’ll only use once a year (even though they’re reusable every year), grab a pair of scissors and a sheet of white paper. You can make your own snowflakes! It’s an excellent activity to do with the whole family because even the little ones can participate.
Make your own custom candle holders
Christmas without candles could be a little dull! They’re bright decorative pieces that most households should definitely invest in, especially around the festive season. However, candle holders are not something you need to splurge on. Make your own with a clear glass container, some pine leaves or tinsel and white glue. The best part about this tip is that you can always repurpose the glass container or change the décor to match different festivities!
Christmas scents from the pot
A large part of Christmas is the scents that fill the home. Pine, cinnamon and fig are all essential parts of getting into the Christmas spirit. Create your own simmer pots that’ll keep your home smelling festive for days! Simply choose your scents and add water. You can also make your own potpourri with the help of YouTube tutorials.
Light it up
Placing Christmas lights around the house can be quite an undertaking, especially if you’ve got people running around the house often. If you’re worried about overhanging lights or children tripping over cords, light up a jug. Convert your empty jugs into illuminating centrepieces. They’re pretty and functional!
Make your own table runner
You don’t need excellent sewing skills for this, but combining a couple of rag rugs or old fabrics can be pretty and sentimental. Match the colours however you want and at the end of the year, if you want to pick it apart, you can! This could also be a lovely family piece that gets handed down through the years!
The trick to home furnishing is to choose where to skimp or cut back, and where to save or splurge. With these helpful tips, you can now decorate your house without breaking the bank!