Beauty and the Budget

Decorating Tips from a Military Wife: Part II

                                                                  –written by Megan, a military wife soon to be a graduate wife

Welcome back! You can find Part 1 of Megan’s post here.

6. Clean the hardware of your doors, windows, and cabinets, or if that’s too labor intensive just replace them!  The easiest thing would be to replace handles with handles and knobs with knobs because the boring holes would be the same.  If you are in a rental, just make sure to save the old ones to re-replace before you move out.


7.  Take down any boring old lighting fixture and replace it with a funky, beautiful one of your own!  This is a little more complicated than some projects but is a lot easier than you’d imagine.  If it makes you too nervous you can always call a professional (or your dad.)

8. Definitely shop places like Goodwill, Salvation Army, and thrifts shops.  Be sure not to take furniture and accessories that you see at face value.  A $20 side table that’s pretty fugly now could be gorgeous with a can of Chinese red spray paint.  And if it doesn’t fit into the next place you move into or your tastes change, you won’t be heartbroken to get rid of it because you didn’t spend an arm and a leg on it!  Besides its fun to hear people’s reactions when you told them “Oh yeah I spent $17 dollars on that fabulous chair!” Whaaaattt??

9. Want instant coziness in your space?  Add a rug!  Seriously, you’ll be amazed at how much it can change a space.  Personally I’d ignore all those silly rules about how many sofa legs need to be on the rug, if it makes you happy go for it!  Also, if you have wall-to-wall carpet, don’t be afraid to put a rug on top of that!  Layering rugs is super popular right now and is an easy way to bring texture and color into a space.   One more thing, don’t shy away from using a real rug in the bathroom or kitchen.  In these two rooms, which typically have a lot of “hardscaping” (cabinets, counters, appliances) a rug will make the space feel much more warm and inviting.  I promise you, unless you have a few truly rambunctious rugrats (God bless you), a real rug will hold up to the normal wear and tear that bathrooms and kitchen have to endure.

10. This last one is more of a mental tip but its something that I constantly find myself having to do.  Step away from the blogs, Pinterest, and HGTV.  These are great resources and really allow you to focus in on what you really like but they can also intensely stress you out.  I worry about the state of my home plenty of the time, but I can assure you that your friends don’t care that your dishtowels don’t match or that your curtains aren’t silk.  And as my friend told me, if they do care about these things then they aren’t your friends in the first place.   They say, “Love the one you’re with!”  And its true, one day you’ll move and have totally new design dilemmas to solve.  In the meantime embrace the perfect imperfection of your home now.  It’s where all the good stuff in life happens, whether or not it is perfectly decorated!


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