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Cheap Ways to Decorate Your Home: Accent Walls & More

Updated on June 4, 2012

As winter sets in, many of us are getting antsy in our homes. It's time to redecorate! Here are some inexpensive ways to keep your home feeling new.

An expertly applied slipcover
An expertly applied slipcover | Source

1. Recover Your Sofa

Recovering a sofa helps a room feel clean and updated. If you can't afford a professional recovering, then get a removable couch cover or slipcover. Slipcovers look great if you put them on properly. (One tip is to actually shove a yardstick into the couch; you can leave it there to help hold the shape.)

The best-looking slipcovers tend to cost $70-$80 or more. These are made in nice-feeling fabrics like microsuede. I bought a microsuede slipcover at Target and there are tons of stylish slipcovers on Amazon. Just be sure to know the length of your sofa, loveseat or chair when ordering.

To save money, you can buy a very plain-Jane cotton slipcover instead. Then dress it up by adding a few yards of ruffle where it hits the bottom of your couch.

Hardware by Bosetti-Marella. You can find this sort of thing at nicer hardware stores.
Hardware by Bosetti-Marella. You can find this sort of thing at nicer hardware stores.
Daisy knob from Anthropologie. $12.
Daisy knob from Anthropologie. $12.

2. Re-Do Your Cabinets

There are two cheap ways to refresh kitchen or bathroom cabinets: You can repaint the cabinets or update the hardware. You can do both of these yourself for cheap!

It doesn't cost much to upgrade your kitchen cabinets with new pulls. Good-looking options cost just a few dollars each at standard hardware stores. To add style, mix in a few cabinet pulls that cost more. You might be surprised by the artistic options made of brushed nickel, ceramic, glass, bronze and other fine materials.

My favorite stores for stylish drawer pulls and cabinet handles are Urban Outfitters. Anthropologie and Restoration Hardware. You can also find thousands of choices on Amazon.

An accent wall painted two shades darker than the adjacent wall
An accent wall painted two shades darker than the adjacent wall

3. Paint an Accent Wall

Painting one wall can quickly spruce up a room. It's usually best to accent a wall that includes a fireplace, dramatic art or interesting architectural features. Accent walls also look good behind beds and other large pieces of furniture.

What color should you paint an accent wall? Accent walls are usually darker than their adjacent wall friends. You probably can't go wrong by choosing a paint that's two shades darker. You could also choose an accent color from elsewhere in the room's decor.

Fifteen framed black & white prints
Fifteen framed black & white prints

4. Decorate with Dollar Store Picture Frames

You can redecorate a wall by adding a square of nine or 16 framed pictures. Buy the frames from a dollar store. Choose wooden frames that will be easy to paint or decorate with mosaic tiles.

Here are some cheap ways to fill the frames:

  • Your kid's art
  • Photos you take
  • Pictures from old calendars
  • Vintage postcards from a thrift shop
  • Playing cards with cool art from an old deck
  • Wine labels that you steam off of bottles
  • Black & white photos of your family
  • Old car ads
  • Items from a collection (baseball cards, stamps, etc.)
  • Postcard-sized band posters

A clever clock made of inexpensive picture frames
A clever clock made of inexpensive picture frames

Check out this photo for a great "picture frame clock" idea from This clever decorating idea can be adapted for any room. For example,for a swinging bachelor pad you'd choose sleek black frames instead of these cutesy pastels.


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    • SantaCruz profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Santa Cruz, CA

      Cheers, Diva! The photo frames clock has so many possibilities. For seven a.m. you could show a pic of coffee or the sunrise. Or each hour could show your cat in a different pose...

      The clock pictures could also be used to help little kids understand their schedules.

      Happy moving & decorating!

    • add-diva profile image


      6 years ago from Georgia

      That picture frame clock is totally cool! Thanks for the great ideas ... I'm about to move soon, so these ideas will come in handy.


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