Affordable Decorating Hacks For Your Home

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SEATING CAN BE FUN

Every home needs places to sit. But Raleigh, NC, designer Jamie Meares stirs up the usual mix with furry stools. “Adults love them because they make a room less serious; kids love how soft they are,” says the Furbish Studio owner. Whether sheepskin or faux, “they add nice texture.” To clean, give them a shake to loosen dust and crumbs, and fluff fibers with a clean brush.

PAINT PULLS EVERYTHING TOGETHER

A frame — for a mirror, a picture, a memento — is a crucial part of the display, but it may need your touch to be perfect. “I found this incredible brand-new mirror, but it was red and didn’t match the decor,” recalls designer and creative director Leanne Ford. “So I got out the paint and transformed it.” Here’s how to revamp a frame:

1. Carefully remove the glass from the frame or completely cover the surface with paper and tape in place.

2. Apply spray paint evenly in light coats. (Be sure to choose the proper formula for the material; ask a hardware-store pro what works best on wood, metal, or plastic.)

3. Top with a coat of clear polyurethane spray to seal the paint. Allow to dry thoroughly before reassembling.

LITTLE TABLES MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE

Three-tiered side tables are space-saving marvels that New York designer Nicole Gibbons turns to again and again. Open shelves feel airier than a chunky piece with drawers, and allow for display and storage. “They work just as well next to a sofa as they do as a nightstand,” says Gibbons. She particularly loves round ones that can tuck neatly into corners.

CHOOSE THE RIGHT SIZE RUG

According to HGTV host and designer Emily Henderson, we tend to buy too-small rugs — partially because they’re so expensive. Before you go shopping, measure your seating area, then choose the next size up. It’ll make the whole room look bigger.

CREATE A GALLERY WALL

When done right, they look great, but starting out with a ton of unstructured space can be overwhelming. There’s no fail-safe how-to for putting a gallery wall together, but an array of black, white, and mirrored frames help achieve a cohesive look.

HIDE CORDS IN PLAIN SIGHT

Don’t let a mess of wires ruin a carefully decorated area. A cute box, like this polka-dot one, can be an adorable hiding spot for those not-so-adorable cords.

USE YOUR WINDOW AS A HEADBOARD

This trick can soften a room and add height. And even if you already have a headboard you love, placing your bed in front of a window will open up the entire bedroom.

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