Welcome to my new living room tour! I have long waited to show you how to revamp your living room on a budget. I made it a space that both reflects my personality and matches the rest of the house. What actually got me started on this project was that Missy Moo started walking and with two toddlers the little corner behind our living room armchair was no longer big enough for them to play together with their toys. They needed their own space in the house which is something up until now we haven’t really done for them.
On top of that my old living room which you can peak at here, was decorated two weeks before I gave birth to Buba. We had just moved house and the buyers of our old house only wanted the our house if they could buy all the furniture in it too. So we moved with our bed and about to give birth. I know crazy. So our living room was quickly thrown together with a black and red theme only because that’s what our old house had. I have hated it ever since. Huge advice don’t move house when you are about to give birth and hormonal! Not only did I let others talk me into decor I would never have chosen myself because I didn’t care at that point, I was sick of sitting on the floor 9 months pregnant and also the decor didn’t reflect my personality and the house at all.
*apologies with a north facing room, photos are very grainy and hard to capture clearly. If it’s sunny they are too washed out, if its cloudy it’s a dark pit, and if I turn our lights on it makes things yellow, so this was the best I can do in such a room*
The first thing I did was strip off the gold wallpaper to brighten the room as a whole. Stripping is hard work but anyone can do it with a steamer – don’t pay someone! My steamer was only £20 at homebase and I have used it several times so worth having around. Its not a very big room and the dark colors I had before just closed it off completely. I then painted the one wall a light grey and used this same paint throughout the room.
I repainted all the black pictures frames, and candle holders with this same grey paint called Alfie from Crown, I believe. This way I didn’t have to buy any new frames and I had lots of paint left over. I have been told this is upcycling. Saves money and why buy new things when you can fall in love with your old things in a new way!
Next I added these Ikea shelves which I think are about £8 each to hold all my lovely little knickknacks.
I got these gorgeous cotton & cable lights that you see all over at the moment. (No mine weren’t free I bought them). I was drawn to them because you can pick your own colors and I wanted to stay with the pastel rainbow colors of my cushions. I was a little disappointed the grey ones were lighter grey they look brown and I wanted more of a baby blue to match the rug better. But other than that I love them.
When the kids go to bed we turn them on and string them across the shelves. It makes everything glow. By day, I like to hang them down the side as you can see below and the kids play with the light shadows on the opposite wall and it makes their kitchen area glow.
Here are a few of my little favorites out of my new living room revamp. This white unit from Ikea is great because it has glass doors so the kids can’t touch my books and magazines that I want to display. Before they were constantly trying to rip and throw them around. I always feel a cluttered room full of the things I love is a home. My old living room was too much of a empty space and boring. Everywhere I look in my living room revamp there is something bright and breezy and it makes me smile daily.
It doesn’t have to cost much to revamp your living room. If you are a tight budget like I was, here are some tips.
Top Tips to Revamp Your Living Room:
1. Draw out what you want the room to look like.
It’s easier to visiualize if you have a plan written down.
2. Think about how can you reuse the things already in your room to achieve that look?
Maybe you can repaint old decor like I did. Re-sanding or recovering old furniture for a fresh look. Get new sofa covers or new cushion. It can change a whole look to a room.
3. Can you sell old furniture and use the money to buy the new furniture?
I sold our old brown units and actually had money leftover after buying my new white units. Ebay is great for selling things. I used the extra money for the blue rug that I was going to save up for.
4. Immediately take out what you hate the most about the room.
Even if you have to wait awhile to replace it. The empty space gives you more ideas. I rolled up our black carpet, and moved the armchair into our bedroom. My creativity really started to flow then.
5. Bargain shop and be patient!
I got everything on sale at Ikea, Dunelm Mill, and Target in the states, etc. I just kept scanning online sales. My chandeliers should have been £95 and was down to clearance £35 and I sold the old one for £40 so I actually made £5 and got a far better chandelier. I absolutely love the yellow candle holder above to bring that vibrant color to the room and it was only £1 at Ikea. You don’t have to break the bank to have nice things.I love the glow the chandelier gives the room. Not great for photos but it’s so pretty to watch it shine back in the big mirror we have over the fireplace and on the walls. You can see it gives off a beautiful pattern on the ceiling too. I think the best part of the whole room is that it now provides the tots with their very own space. A corner to call their very own. A space they spend most of their time in now together. Whether they are whipping us up some fake dinner or just rooting through their toy boxes there is always something creative going on in this space. They love their new kitchen area too!
The yellow toy box was just an old trunk with ugly green leaves painted all over it so I painted it yellow to match the room. It needs one more coat to match the tote next to it but the box and paint only cost me £15 all together and my time.
My curtains have made a great difference in my living room too. I had gold blackout curtains before and they really didn’t let any light come in. I traded them in for these white ones from Ikea and the blue ones on the outer edge from Next to help pull more light into a small, north facing, dark room. As you can see when the sun is shining so it blares into this room now. Not good for photography but oh so amazing to bask in that sunshine now.
Want to know a little curtain trick too?
When using two toned curtains always put your dark colored curtains on the outside and the lighter ones on the inside of the window. Make sure your curtain pole goes far beyond just the edge of the window. My blue curtains actually are on the wall on the outside of the window. They don’t cover the window at all, obviously unless I close them. This allows maximum light in but it also makes the window appear bigger in the room and the room more open!
Curtains were definitely the right choice here, but some rooms are better with blinds or shutters. You can even use a mixture of curtains and blinds or shutters (read more here). Another point you might want to consider is whether you would benefit from sheers or privacy film. Both add privacy while still allowing light into your room.
Sheers can look great, but they’re not always practical, especially if you have young kids (or pets). They’re probably best for bedrooms.
Privacy film is available in all kinds of colors and patterns, from plain white to stained-glass style. It’s fairly affordable and pretty easy to put on. Privacy film stays in place so you can’t easily change how much of it is used at any given time. That doesn’t have to be a deal-breaker, but it is something to think about when you’re deciding how much of your window to cover.
I hope you like my new living room revamp and thought my tips and tricks were helpful. Again apologies for the grainy photos I couldn’t win either way on a gloomy or sunny day. I have waited for all weathers it just doesn’t work.
Why not have a virtual tour of it instead below. Just click on the play button! What do you think? Is my living room more me?