5 Living Room Accents To Upgrade Your Space On A Budget

When redoing your living room's design, it's easy to get frustrated at the price of simple pieces. We get it — decorations typically cost way more than you might assume, and they've gotten even more expensive in recent years. If you're trying to create a luxurious space without breaking the bank, you may quickly begin to feel defeated.

To save money while decorating, you'll need to follow a few key pieces of advice. According to Home Made Lovely, it's important to have a plan before you begin. This includes ensuring you keep the design simple, narrowing down your tastes, researching the prices of similar items at various stores, and sticking to your budget. If you need some practical ideas, there are several ways to elevate your home without spending lots of money, and we've listed a few below. Some of these projects require a bit of creativity, while others are easier to execute.

1. DIY abstract artwork

Wall art is essential to creating a well-put-together space, but it can be costly, per CraftSide. Therefore, to save money, you could paint your own personalized artwork to improve the look of a gallery wall or cover a blank surface. If you're not artistic by nature, this probably sounds like it's out of your wheelhouse. However, Julie Blanner says you don't have to be an artist to create your own art. They recommend framing a pencil sketch or painting over a photograph. Or, maybe you want to work on a blank canvas. If so, The Zoe Report recommends using acrylic paints, as they're inexpensive and easy to work with. They also suggest beginning with abstract shapes since they don't require perfection.

Additionally, the most important thing to consider when creating art is the feeling in your room and the vibe of the piece. Does the artwork feel like it belongs in your space? You can make it appear more cohesive by following a color palette. And, if you're creating multiple pieces, you could connect them by using similar shapes or shades.

2. Thrift a lamp

Another way to update your living room is by adding a new lamp, and the best place to get one for cheap is at the thrift store. Even if you're not into thrifting, shopping for lamps could be a great way to dip your toe in the water. This is because, as Dina's Days points out, most thrift stores have many lamps to choose from in various styles. When searching for a lamp, make sure you have some goals regarding size and overall look. However, don't pay close attention to the color or the lampshade, as these things can be easily changed. 

Before you head to the thrift store, ensure you have a light bulb and a tape measure to test out the lamps. Additionally, Decor Hint says not to buy anything just because it's cheap; instead, make sure you like it, and it fits in your space. If you find a lamp you love but want it in a different color, you could always paint it. Pine & Prospect Home makes a less than $5 lamp appear vintage by dabbing on paint and distressing it. They also cover an old yellow lampshade with white chalk paint, which freshens the whole look. 

3. Cover your furniture in slipcovers

If you have worn or outdated furniture, you could cover it in slipcovers instead of replacing it, saving you thousands of dollars. According to HayNeedle, a slipcover would give your couch or chair a new look while protecting it from damage. And, if you've been wanting to make a statement with your furniture but couldn't justify the purchase, this could be a great way to test out a bright color or bold pattern.

There are many different styles of slipcovers, and they don't look like the frilly ones your grandmother used to use. There are modern versions in solid colors, traditional pieces with patterns, glamorous covers made of velvet or silk, and skirted designs fit for farmhouse homes. If you can't decide on just one color, Overstock recommends a reversible one. You could also get one with antimicrobial properties if people often crash on your couch. Or, for those with messy kids or pets, a stain-resistant cover would be helpful, and non-skid types will stay in place the best.

4. Sprinkle in metallic pieces

If you want to create a luxurious-looking space for less, you would be wise to sprinkle some metallic pieces. Metal elements will bounce the light around your room and could make it feel larger, per Interiors Revitalized. To create a dynamic design, you could mix various metals. According to LuxDeco, while cool tones like silver and steel bring in a modern feel, warmer tones like gold and bronze are welcoming and glam. Mixing these two elements will create a unique look that balances warmth with a fresh design. If mixing metals is your objective, start small and don't use too many pieces, per Interiors Revitalized.

Additionally, metal accents pair beautifully with the color black or with glass on a coffee table or entertainment center. You could also add items with metallic finishes, such as throw pillows or artwork. If you're adding metal elements on a stringent budget, you could try spray painting pieces you already have, like candlesticks or furniture hardware. 

5. Layer rugs

Finally, to upgrade your living room flooring, you could layer rugs. According to Tidbits & Twine, this could save you money, as you could buy a smaller, expensive rug and pair it with a cheaper, larger one. Additionally, if you already have a large area rug, you could add another smaller one on top instead of replacing it completely. Or, if your rug doesn't look big enough for your space, you could buy an inexpensive large one to place underneath it. Further, if you have carpet in your home, adding an area rug to your living room will ground your furniture and add a bold and fun color.

The Zoe Report says that layering multiple rugs will bring an eclectic and boho look while creating a cozy feel. They recommend using a natural fiber rug, such as jute, for the base, as it will be inexpensive. Then, you can add smaller rugs on top. They also say to make sure that the most visible rug matches the color scheme and style of the rest of the room. Furthermore, mixing in organic shapes like cowhides will add extra interest.