Home design is often approached with an indescribable form of enthusiastic reluctance. As they approach the task of re-designing their homes and gardens, home owners often have so many inspiring ideas jumbling around in mind but those ideas are often attached to some overwhelming price tags.
Whilst there is no shortage of great home design ideas out there, for the family looking to spruce up their living space on a tight budget, the options can appear limited.
This isn’t because there are no cheap yet stylish design solutions - in fact there are hundreds of them - it’s simply because no one has explained to these well-intentioned folks that it is not ‘what’ you think, but rather ‘how’.
Vision, resourcefulness, creativity and ingenuity – these are the quintessential ingredients to developing décor solutions that are at once practical, affordable and chic.
Now, if you are not the creative and inventive type, fear not. Here, just for you, are 3 essential décor life hacks that will help you upgrade your home and garden from plain to pretty damn stylish without forcing you to raid the kids’ piggy banks.
Hack essential #1 – The Command Hook
Command hooks are to home decorators what a Swiss Army Knife is to MacGyver. From hanging up curtain rods (without the need to drill holes in the wall), serving as mounts for hanging plants, keeping appliance chords pinned out of sight, to creating awesome pot lid organizers on the inside of your kitchen cupboards, creating wall-mounted toothbrush clips and even locking onto walls to create a display frame for tablets – the uses of these innocuous little tools are endless.
Hack essential#2 – Porch and floor paint
Vinyl and Linoleum flooring are often the bane of a home decorator’s existence – after time they just look so used, dirty and old. They suck the life out of a room which is why the easiest way to make a huge impact on the look and feel of a room with vinyl or linoleum flooring is simply to paint over it.
Bathrooms and laundry rooms are the targets of choice here. The key is to get all the appliances out, clean the existing floor with soap and water and then scrub them down with some trisodium phosphate.
Next scuff up the surface by giving it a good going over with an electrical sander (180-220 grit should be fine) before setting to work on any worn and damaged areas with some all-purpose caulk.
Once your floor is prepped and ready it’s important to remember to prime them for painting first. Any old standard wall latex primer will do and be sure to lay a solid coat down.
Finally, grab some builders tape, map out shapes and divisions or sections on the floor and then get to painting your new floor for your new look. Just make sure that you stick to using porch and floor paint.
Keep it simple by adopting either striped or spotted floor patterns. But if you are handy with a stencil, then go wild and create a series of patterns and designs that most appeal to you.
Hack Essential #3 – Funky Fabrics
From bedspreads to curtains and drapes, fooling around with fabric is one of the easiest yet most impactful ways to bring a whole new design dimension to practically any room in the home.
From dull and ugly rubber mats to bland and boring window blinds, a creative, fun and funky piece of fabric, cut to fit and some hot glue is all you need.
A great idea for curtains is to stencil them. Your drapes will go from boring to bold for a fraction of the cost of investing in a set of store bought designer options. Classic cotton sailcloth drapes are ideal for this kind of project. They are cheap, durable and make for awesome stencil material.
For the artistically inclined you can always make your own stencils but for the uninitiated its best to scour around online for a great quality stencil design that catches your eye. Make sure you get a compact roller and choose a paint colour that blends in or enhances the overall colour palette of the room.
Home design needn’t be a costly affair. All it takes is a smarter way of approaching how you come up with ways to freshen up your living space. The web is crammed with thousands of awesome home design ideas which blend ingenuity with art and won’t break the bank so get browsing and get designing. Welcome to the world of the décor hacker.