Budget Design With Household Items

I’m sure most, if not all of you have heard the phrase, “shop your home.” This is the concept of moving things around in your home to give them fresh life and make spaces feel new, even though the items are not. Let’s do one better and turn non-decor items into unique budget design choices.

Wine For All

Never in my life have I stocked so much wine as I have since marrying Chris. Part of his family culture is nice wine and hospitality, and so, it is now also a part of mine. The hospitality part may be down in numbers since the pandemic, but that also means that the wine count is up. Lack of guests, coupled with the case specials that wineries have been offering has definitely continued to grow our collection.

A few months ago, we were getting to the point where we had no place to store our abundance of wine in such a small apartment.  Since we don’t have the luxury to dedicate a separate cabinet just for wine, we found a way to incorporate it into our decor and show it off.  We bought an inexpensive stackable wine rack that we could place on our existing shelves and voila! Storage, check. Decor, check.  If you can make it pretty, why not make it part of your room design instead of buying more “stuff” to fill those shelves.

No Pantry, No Problem

If you caught my blog post on Small Space Solutions – Kitchen Edition, you know that we have a teeny tiny kitchen with very little storage space.  This forced us to get creative with our open shelving, just like we did with the wine rack in the living room.  With no pantry and a household’s worth of food items, where could we put it all? 

The ceramic canisters are filled with flour, sugar, and popcorn.

We were able to tuck some things away in our DIY frosted cabinets, but those are mostly filled with appliances and other visually unappealing necessities.  Again, we took advantage of some budget design choices and transferred our grains, seeds, and sweeteners into glass and ceramic canisters. This created a way to make our open shelving practical and pretty, all at once.  We ditched the manufacturer’s packaging and suddenly, they became design items instead of storage problems. Grab a label maker and some glass canisters and you are set to go.

Another quick and easy way we have utilized our open shelving is to store our onions, potatoes, etc. in large baskets (with plastic liners) and our produce like tomatoes, garlic, and oranges, in beautiful bowls.  We cycle through these items quickly and enjoy having them on display. Groceries and decor all in one.

Check out your local thrift store for these items. This basket, rolling pin and some glass canisters were found there.

Don’t Hide Your Instruments

Our latest item to become a budget design choice is Chris’ new hobby, a guitar!  I gave it to him for Christmas and have loved hearing him learn to play.  We placed a floor stand for his guitar just inside the living room entryway, and while it looked ok there, it felt cluttered and was just asking to get knocked or kicked.  But we don’t have the closet space to tuck the guitar safely away and it is also way too beautiful to hide!

Last week, we did a small redesign of the living room (gallery wall post coming soon!), and decided that it would look perfect hanging on the wall. Bonus is that it would also be much safer from damage. We certainly didn’t buy a guitar as a decor item, but why not take advantage of it?

What spaces are you struggling with in your home? Is it that you have too much clutter and you don’t know how to turn it into a budget design choice, or is it that you have empty spaces and you feel like you need to go shopping to fill them? For you minimalists out there, transforming your necessities into decor is also a great way to feel like your home is thoughtfully decorated without collecting clutter.

Show me the spaces you transform with budget design choices! I love seeing how you put these tips into action in your own home. Until next week – xoxo, Caroline

I felt like this photo was important to include for “real life” reference. It’s easy to look at someone’s home and feel like, “Whatever, they have tons of space.” But I literally had to move the table out of the room to get the photo of our built in shelving. We have squeezed in a dinner for 4 back here, but it’s super tight!

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