Decorating on a budget. Our blank bargain canvas.

Old Mother Hubbard Tea Pot Bedroom
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We’ve decorated our bedroom and we spent all our money on the bed and the decorator, (I’d have done it myself but the plaster is so bad we needed professional help!) we had very little to furnish and dress it with. So as always, I got elbow deep in the charity shops and I salvaged things from around the house. The bill not including the bed and decorator was £47! Here’s how it turned out and I’ve included a How Too Guide so if you’re strapped for cash you can change your room too.

Our Bedroom

This was our bedroom before. In usual Brooke fashion I’ve forgotten to take any pictures before it all started. This is the only one I had.

This was our bedroom before. In usual Brooke fashion I’ve forgotten to take any pictures before it all started. This is the only one I had.

I really wanted our bedroom to be a space that was both calm and bright. Calm because well I want to go to sleep and bright because getting out of bed In a morning is somewhat of a task. Especially in winter when it’s still dark. Once I’m up I’m raring to go but the actual waking up is quite the feat. (The farmer laughs because he’s noticed a direct correlation between my inability to wake up and the days I go to work.) I might be a farmers girlfriend but I definitely don’t think I’ll ever have the farmers work ethic. Anyway i’m getting sidetracked. A bright room is the best morning alarm clock for me. So there you go, that was my brief. “Calm and bright”

I chose white because it’s both calm and bright and as I said, I get bored easily. I also think headboards are overrated, and for a decent one they’re not cheap, a comfy pillow is money better well spent. However if you do like a headboard then there are some great DIY Pinterest ideas!

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Patience and time are hopefully going to be invaluable for this room. Changing it quickly and on a budget is easy but I think the real character and style will come from the second hand quirky pieces that I just haven’t found or made yet. The bulldog clips, music sheets and DIY drawings are just for now but for the pence they’ve cost I’m happy with them. Plus I like to pick stuff up on our travels, I want our bedroom to reflect our taste but our memories too.

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Decorating on a budget

Contrary to what most people believe a space can be completely transformed without blowing the bank. Which in my case is a good thing, because there is very little in the bank to be blown. 

I could go into a lengthy over complicated explanation on how to do things on a budget but really there’s no need, it’s very simple. There are 7 rules I like to stick to (Sorry for the random number, I started with 5 and then thought of a couple more!)

1. Re-use what you can. 

Look around your current room. Is there anything in it you like? Or have the potential to like with a lick of paint? Is there anything elsewhere in the house that wouldn’t be missed but would look good in the bedroom or whatever room it is your doing? I’m talking anything from a plant pot or vase to a desk or chest of drawers.  Have you got any pretty notebooks or books that could look aesthetically pleasing instead of buying an ornament? 

2. Be happy to get your hands dirty

I’m sorry but laziness costs. Pennies are saved through DIY so where you can, do it yourself. If you are struggling for time though maybe the pennies you save using the other four tips could pay for a decorator. That’s what we had to do because the plaster on these walls is so bad.

3. Minimalism is your friend

I don’t mean you have to have a sparce interior, you could go quite maximalist with the decor. It’s the stuff behind the decorations I’m talking about. A de-clutter of unused stuff in itself can feel like a complete transformation, and It goes without saying, the more clothes and stuff you have the more stuff and storage you need to buy to hide it. I’ve cleared out loads of our things so I could achieve a room that felt calmer and less cluttered. In the words of Marie Kondo if it doesn’t spark joy, get rid. 

4. Second-hand is better

Charity shops and second hand stores are filled with everything you could possibly need. They’re cheaper to buy from and of course they are perfect to put you on if your holding out to buy something extra special that will break the bank. Any cabinet can look fresh and new with a lick of paint and after a few scrolls through some DIY blogs you’ll be well away. My tips for second hand furniture buying is being mindful of the shape. If it’s an ugly shape before the paint, it will still be ugly after. Remember if you do buy second hand with the attitude of it’ll work for now, you must donate it back or sell them, I don’t want this blog post to be the reason for more landfill. And last but not least buying second hand more often than not can set your room apart from everyone else’s. Have all your friends got the same picture or clock from next? Second hand shopping is the perfect way to avoid joining in with that.

5. White paint

White paint is an ‘easily bored with their surroundings’ persons (like me) best friend. All you need to do is change a few accessories or the room layout and you’ve got a brand new room. It’s also available in bulk, cheap to buy and if you opt for a white ceiling two there’s no pesky laborious cutting in.

6. Avoid trends

This is a great excuse to ignore what everyone else is doing and just pick what you like. Trend following will quickly up the spend!

7. Be a little bit inventive

Resourcefulness is key, before you buy something think long and hard if you can come up with a solution yourself from what you already have. I,e. flowers from the garden brighten up a space so easily and I love dried grass, it adds so much texture, an old canvas can easily be painted over and abstract art really isn’t that hard to recreate!

So now you have no excuse, find your inner minimalist, clear out all the junk, get yourself some white paint and send me the before and after photos!

Written with love

Old Mother Hubbard

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Brooke CollettComment