I was recently challenged by Better Homes and Gardens to give my living room a makeover within a $250 budget, and of course I jumped right on that! Makeover challenge? Yes! Staying within a budget? Yes! Frugal decor that makes a huge difference in our main living room? ABSOLUTELY!!!
The challenge was a huge win-win for me because this room was in serious need of some love, and it motivated me to make some changes! Plus, I got to make a trip to Walmart and shop around for awesome Better Homes and Gardens decor items!
For a bit of reference, here is what the room looked like before…
The room felt very dark and cluttered to me, and the overall color seemed pretty reddish. But with a few changes and some Better Homes and Gardens products from Walmart, I was able to make the room so much brighter and more open!
The biggest change I made was putting a slipcover on the red couch. At just under $80 it was the most expensive thing I bought on that trip, but it made such a HUGE difference that it was totally worth it! I also picked out a few pillows for about $14 each (notice, they’re not red!) to accent the brown slipcover.
Here is what that half of the room looked like before:
And this is even after we had cleaned up! Having the bookshelf right next to the hutch basically made that space unusable, so we just started using it as storage. The spool is for an upcoming project (stay tuned, it’s going to be AWESOME!), JM’s guitar and amp are hiding behind the spool, there’s a little cat cubby in front of the bookshelf and a blanket wrapped around the base of the spool so the cats can nap there (can you spot the black cat taking a nap? It’s like “I Spy”!) It was just a cluttered mess!
But here is what it looks like now…so much better!
We moved the bookshelf, the cat cubby, and the guitar/amp to different places in the room, and I threw a tablecloth on the spool until I can find time to give it a makeover. We also pulled the rug out from under the coffee table, which really helps to open up that half of the room. And to keep the wooden floors from looking too bare, we added a small area rug right under the front door. The red and brown in the rug ($12) are perfect to tie the cherry wood in the hutch to the brown slipcover on the couch!
We also added a gorgeous floor lamp ($40) to give us some more light options. That bottom light is movable so we can point it wherever we need light; perfect for reading or for game nights on the coffee table!
On the other half of the room, we got rid of the small TV stand. Then, since we were getting rid of the bookcase next to the couch anyway, I decided to rip it in half and use the bottom as a TV stand. It puts the TV up a bit higher, gives us more storage on that side of the room, and as a bonus, it makes the furniture on that side of the room look less “cobbled together” because the two bookcases are identical. It’s almost like we have a purposeful “wall unit” over there now! 🙂
Even just organizing the bookshelves has helped the room to look a little less cluttered! Sometimes it’s the small things that make a huge difference. 🙂
Over in my desk area I took down the fall wreath chandelier (finally, geez!) and replaced it with a fun candle chandelier. It’s actually supposed to be a table centerpiece ($13), but I got a little creative and hung it from some chain I had laying around. So much cooler up in the air, right?!
See the wall-mounted tea lights in the back there? I really love candlelight, the more the better!
(Man, it really is like “I Spy” in here; how many projects can you find in these photos that you recognize from tutorials on the blog?! I count at least 8 that I’ve already published, plus two or three projects that are in the works!)
I also switched out the lampshade of my desk lamp to a prettier one in a lighter color ($10).
Overall, the room is so much better now! It’s open and airy and no longer dark and red. Even with the dark brown slipcover, the rest of the changes lightened up the room enough that the brown fits in perfectly without bringing the room down! And for those of you counting along, I only spent about $210 on the whole refresh!
The Better Homes and Gardens products make a huge difference, and getting a few pieces of furniture rearranged helped a lot too! The end result is a gorgeous room that we love to live in!
Do you have a room in your home that could use a little TLC? Better Homes and Gardens is sponsoring a Pin It To Win It sweepstakes right now, and you could win $1000 to work on your own room refresh! If I can make a huge difference to our living room with just $210, imagine what you can do with $1000!!!!! Head over there now and enter to win!
Disclosure: I received compensation from Better Homes and Gardens in exchange for my participation in this room refresh challenge. But the BHG products I found at Walmart are totally awesome and all opinions in this post are 100% my own. I would never write a post about something I didn’t think was useful or interesting for you guys, and Practically Functional will only publish sponsored posts for companies or products I believe in! 🙂
these awesome parties!