The birds were chirping and light filtered in through the window. I rolled out of bed and put my feet on the floor — only to be greeted by shag. That’s right. I still had a shag rug in my bedroom. It was a bright teal, peacock green shag, to be exact.
Your bedroom should be a sanctuary — a place you actually like to go to sleep and wake up in. But I wasn’t feeling it. While bedrooms may be easy to forget about because their doors remain shut to visitors, it’s still a portion of home I spend a significant amount of time. And I needed a change.
My budget was tight, but I decided to tackle the bedroom and keep the costs low — here’s how I did it.
I broke up the space and set a budget.
The floor was an obvious first move. No more shag rug for me. But it wasn’t the only thing that needed an upgrade, and I knew it would be easy to transform the space if I focused on a few major sections. I broke the space into the following categories:
- Bed set
- Surfaces and accessories
I set my budget to $50 for each category, so a total of $200 to redecorate the space. I decided that if I went over or under in any category, that would be okay. But the total had to be $200 or less.
Here are the easy steps I took to change the bedroom:
I gave the room a facelift by switching out some items and adding in some new ones. It ended up being pretty easy, and I came in under budget.
1. A new-to-me rug
I have hardwood floors, so a rug is essential for a cozy bedroom space. Even if you have carpet, adding a pop of tasteful color or a kind texture can immediately change your space. But rugs can be surprisingly expensive if you buy them brand new. I found one I loved for $210 online, but that would have been my entire budget, plus some. Instead, I started looking at discount furniture stores and on the Facebook Marketplace. I also asked around with my friends.
A few weeks later, my friend Sara and I got together to talk about what she needed to get rid of during her move, and by the end of it, I had a rug for $100. She had no kids or pets, and it was practically new.
2. Paint or prints
I decided there were two things I could do to the walls: paint them, or add some prints. My entire home is already white, and I prefer to keep it this way. Paint was a budget-friendly option of only $20 for a can, but adding some prints to the wall was also an easy to way to elevate the space.
I have a closet full of drawings from college and pieces my friends had given me. I decided to finally use them to add some interest to the walls. I used my silver thumbtacks for a modern gallery vibe instead of splurging on a bunch of frames, which meant I spent a total of $0 in this category.
3. A new cover, not a new comforter
I had already invested in a new mattress a few months back, and I loved my bedframe. So all of this was to stay the same. My comforter was also in really good shape. A duvet cover would be an easy upgrade, but I don’t really love these.
Instead, I decided to buy a thin quilt to go on top of the comforter for some texture and color. I made sure it was in line with my color palette. This cost me $39.99 on sale at Target.
4. Bringing in some light with a new mirror
The nightstands were already in line with my bedframe, and I had eliminated the need for a dresser when I pared down my clothes. I browsed Pinterest as I re-decorated the bedroom and found I was falling in love with standing mirrors. This is what I wanted to add to the bedroom: a large standing mirror in the corner. It would reflect light and open up with room even more. IKEA, home to affordable build-it-yourself furniture, had the exact one that I wanted for $59.99.
My total cost for re-decorating the bedroom was $199.98. Two pennies leftover!
I didn’t waste time with any accessories.
It can be easy to get sucked into the world of accessories when re-decorating bedrooms. Pinterest almost had me grabbing extra throw pillows or a fancy necklace holder. I managed to resist the temptation because I reminded myself of the goal.
I was aiming for maximum impact with the money I had set aside for this. I was aiming to re-create the space so it would be a retreat. Small items and accessories can clutter a space and generally don’t give the whole room a new feel.
The best part of all this? Now when I get out of bed, my feet are greeted by a subtle gray rug that’s just the right amount of plush.
Bethany McCamish is a freelancer and founder of the His and Her FI blog. She believes that transparency and conversations about money are essential in gaining control of finances. When she is not working, she can be found hiking with her massive dog or traveling the world and taking photographs.
Image via Unsplash