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Category:  Decorating

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10 Ways to Inexpensively Update a Room

By  Julie Lohmeier

Home décor and furnishing fashions can change quickly. Popular styles and trendy designs can look dated in just a few years. While most people can't afford to redecorate every three to five years, some simple changes can update and enhance a room while still protecting your savings.

Here are just a few simple ways to update a room without breaking the bank all generally for less than $50.

1) Paint. A can or two of a new color of paint will update your room in striking fashion. Check out the paint chips and color brochures at your local paint store for ideas of the new "in" colors.

2) Throws. A gracefully draped throw blanket will add color, hide a dated sofa, and camouflage worn cushions.  And cost less than taking the family out for dinner at McDonalds.

3) Swag drapes. Need new drapes but can't afford fancy custom    made window treatments?  With two pole holders, a rod, and a swag drape, you can quickly and easily change the window    treatments in a room. Get a length of fabric, hem the ends    (and possibly the sides depending how finished they are),    and hang.

4) Pillows. This simple decorating accent can instantly add interest, drama, and mood to a sofa or bed.  Easy to buy. Easy to make. Use extra fabric from the swags mentioned    above. Toss different yet coordinating colors, fabrics, and sizes for maximize effect.

5) Candle arrangement. Not only do these add interest to mantles, tables, and counters, they also add aroma, further enhancing    the sense appeal to your room. Buy holders of multiple heights. Get bronze, wood, crystal, glass. Bronze candlesticks are out, but a variety of styles are popular these days.

6) Flowers and plants. Green plants can enhance a room in a    variety of ways. Add color. Fill an empty corner or nook. Freshen the air. Bring the outdoors in. Flowers - silk or cut - is one of the easiest ways to liven up any room. A few sprigs can do wonders for a bathroom counter, a centerpiece, an entry table, an island.

7) Picture collections. Today photos are not hung singly. They    are hung in groups. A set of three. Or even more popular, a group of varying sizes and shapes, often with the same type of frame, but not necessarily. Group them together in a unique and cohesive arrangement to accent a wall.

8) Rugs. Much like throws, rugs can instantly add color and appeal as well as hide scratched or stained floors. Pick a bold color for immediate impact. Choose a unique pattern for    maximum effect. (Ok, this one may cost more than $50, but if you shop well, you'll be surprised what you can find at a good price.)

9) Focal piece. Find a unique piece and feature it. Your imagination is your only limit here. Set a giant ceramic    rooster to proudly accent an island counter.  Fill a corner with an interesting sculpture or souvenir from an overseas    trip. Add light with a vintage lamp or chandelier. Create a conversation piece from an eclectic table you found at a    garage, estate, or flea market sale.

10) Finally, the cheapest way to update any room is to get rid  of any junk and clutter. Paper piles and excess stuff is never a decorating plus. Clean it up and purge your inner pack rat.

Often we fall into the mistake of thinking that the only way to decorate a room is through elaborate changes and expensive furnishings. Wrong. A few inexpensive and simple solutions will bring new life to any room.

Julie Lohmeier is the veteran of numerous home remodeling and building projects.  From working hands on and doing much of the work herself to hiring contractors and construction managers, she has seen the entire spectrum of home improvement.  She shares her remodeling tips, home decorating ideas, and other various rants at  Sign up for her free email newsletter at:


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