The 11 (Affordable!) Decorating Secrets All Interior Designers Know

Decorating your homewhether you're about to move in or are undergoing a renovation—can seem like a daunting (and expensive) task. As you work your way through the mental checklist of necessary items, your budget can blow out in a matter of minutes. We're here to let you in on a little secret—decorating doesn't have to cost the earth, and it's entirely possible to achieve a stylish home at an affordable price. Don't believe us? Take a look at these decorating secrets that'll save you $$ when it comes time for an update at home.

1. Repurpose items
It's time to roll up your sleeves and get creative because you've probably already got some diamonds in the rough that can be given a new lease on life. Maybe you've inherited a sofa set from a relative but it's covered in an awfully lairy fabric? If the shape is simple and it's in good condition, you're already saving money. Your local upholsterer will be able to modernise it in a neutral fabric to suit your new place.

2. Decorate slowly
We're looking at all you impatient decorators out there. It's so exciting to begin to put together pieces for your place and it can be tempting to rush through the process in order to get to the finished product. In reality, as long as you've got the essentials covered (like our buttery soft bed linen), you can slowly curate your home by carefully selecting things you love as you come across them.

3. Create a mood board
The best way to keep yourself on track when it comes time to shop for furniture and décor is by creating yourself an inspiration or mood board that contains all your favourite ideas that you'd like to be guided by. Whether it's a digital version or consists of tear-outs from your favourite mags, refer back to it whenever you're stuck on a decision or direction.

4. Small doses of luxe
Just because your favourite marble coffee table is out of your budget, it doesn't mean that you have to completely forego achieving a similar style at home. A good budget-friendly tip is to incorporate luxurious elements in smaller doses, for example, a brass plant pot or a concrete set of vases. You'll get the look without the hefty price tag.

5. Invest in a showstopper
Every home needs one—that eye-catching piece that stops everyone in their tracks the second they step through the door. It should be something substantial (in other words, don't splurge on one cushion) and an item that you plan on keeping for many years to come.

6. Consider vintage 
There are some incredible vintage stores (we've compiled some here) that offer rare and uncommon finds that you won't find anywhere else. Not only is it fun to explore their aisles of pre-loved goods, but you'll also often find a bargain buy at a fraction of its original value. 

7. Décor en masse
Styled vignettes can help a room feel lived-in and curated at the same time. Objects and decorations generally are more effective when grouped together rather than used alone, for example, three vases in different heights on a mantlepiece. Even the most inexpensive items can be elevated when they're clustered for effect.

8. Use your imagination
Calling all the creative thinkers out there—it's time to get crafty. Could a wicker bowl from a flea market become a piece of wall art? What about a DIY pegboard shelf to store your books? To cut down on costs, consider crafting your own décor to give your place a personalised touch.

9. Try an auction house
Have you ever wondered what the inside of some of Australia's most exclusive estates look like? Well, if you keep an eye on your local auction house's calendar, you can have the opportunity to browse and bid on some of the finest art and collectables around.

10. Affordable accessories
While we're advocates for the sofa splurge, pulling the budget back when it comes to smaller accessories is a cost-friendly way to avoid going into the red. By mixing high and low items, your home will feel considered and established. It also means that you can easily experiment with design trends each year without feeling the financial pinch.

11. Garden greenery
Luscious foliage can become expensive if you're looking to keep your home looking fresh year-round. The secret? It's in your own backyard. Take a look around to see if you've got any trees or plants that could handle a snip for the sake of styling. Pop them in a simple vase and you'll have a free arrangement that you can replenish without spending a cent.

Considering decorating? Here's How to Nail the White on White Look at Home.

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