Budget Wise Home — Decorating on a Budget

Sunroom Peeks

My sister’s sun room is really coming along.  I wanted to give you a few peeks at the actual items going in the space.  Here is a look at the half painted console buffet.

And here is the chair and ottoman that are currently being reupholstered.

I chose this yellow and white suzani fabric.  The button tufting and trim will be a contrasting aqua blue which will give it a great outline.

And here are a few shots of me hard at work hanging rods and curtains.

I hope you all get to enjoy a fun weekend.  I’ll be back on Tuesday with some pictures of our Disneyland trip.

Easy DIY Cork Board

My sister’s kitchen has undergone some big changes.  The reveal will shock you when you see the before and after pics.  One project we tackled was a diy cork board.  She had a cabinet on the wall that was so awkward.  It was directly to the left of the door to the garage and every time you entered into the kitchen, you felt like you were going to hit your head on the cabinet.  So I suggested we take it down and turn that space into a functional cork board/message center.  Here is a look at the cabinet before we took it down.


And after we removed it.


We got a roll of cork and simply cut out a piece with a blade to fit the dimensions of the wall.


I sprayed the back with some spray adhesive and then pressed it on to the wall.  This stuff sticks SO well.

My sister picked up some trim molding from Home Depot to make a frame around the cork.  She painted it blue to tie in with her cabinets.

We cut the pieces at a 45 degree angle and used a liquid nails type of adhesive to press the molding in place.

And here it is!

I love the way this turned out.  We were able to turn an awkward spot into something functional for about $10 worth of materials.

And I’m Off!

Can you guess from this picture where I’m headed today?

 Still not sure–how about this one?

Well, I’m off to Disneyland for some much needed vacation time with my family.  We are all so excited to get away and just have fun together.   I’m taking most of the week off, but I’ll still be posting a couple more times on Wednesday and Friday–so don’t be a stranger.  I’ve got some sun room updates and an easy DIY project to show you.

Framed Ikat Fabric

I have a bit of a fabric obsession, as you know.  I’m especially drawn to the beauty of ikat fabrics.  I love the idea of framing a large piece of it to create a beautiful and inexpensive piece of artwork.

I don’t even mind the loose wrinkles in the fabric above.  It sort of gives the space a more casual feel.

You can get a quality ikat fabric anywhere from $15-$40 a yard.  Most of them run 54 inches wide, so just one yard of fabric would give you a large 36 x 54 inch piece of artwork.  That’s a great price for something that big.  Look for a large frame at a flea market or thrift store and cut your fabric to fit whatever size frame you find.



It’s just lovely, I think!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend.  See you back here on Monday.

Gift Card Giveaway Winner

Congrats to Christina Whitley (comment #55).  You are the winner of the $50 American Express gift card!

Please email me to claim your prize.  Thanks so much to all who entered.

Introducing Staree

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

I'm excited to introduce you to a new photo and video sharing service called Staree. Staree allows you to monetize the content you post online.  It provides advertising income from the photos and videos you share to your social network through the Staree website or mobile apps. The more views your photos get the more money you earn.   Pretty great right?!  If you're already posting pictures and videos on Facebook or another social network, you might as well make some money doing it.  Staree also has special offers where you can get paid to take pictures with the products you love.

So here's how it works:

Users can go to Staree.com to apply to be part of the program. You apply by connecting your Twitter or Facebook account.

Use Staree as your photo and video app. You can post though Staree.com or through mobile apps on iPhone and Android

Share your photo to Twitter and Facebook. You can post to both or just choose one.

The more traffic your content generates the more money you will earn. Your earnings are displayed inside of Staree.com. If you take great pics Staree team members will reach out to you with special offers from advertisers to take pictures with their products.


Here is a look at an example user inerface on Staree.  This is where you'll upload your photos and videos. The box on the top right hand side will automatically keep track of all your earnings.



Here is another interface shot of the same person's account.



Head over to Staree and check it out.  It' super fast to sign up because you just log in with your Facebook or Twitter account.  I'm anxious to try it out for myself.  


Visit Sponsor's Site

How to Train Your Drapes

Hanging drapes isn’t too hard, but getting them to sit just right whether they’re open or closed can be a little challenging.  The answer: training your drapes.  Yes, you need to “train” them in a sense so they sit just right all the time.  It super easy to do.


Here is a look at the process in my sister’s sun room.

After you hang them, carefully make pleats in the drapes exactly where you want them to fold.

Hold it securely with your hand and then simply tie it in place with a ribbon or piece of string.  You don’t need to make it tight–just tight enough to keep the pleats in place.

All we had on hand were some hair scarves and they worked great.

Tie one near the top and one near the bottom so the pleats stay in place throughout the length of the drape.

And that’s it!  Keep them tied for about 2 days.  When you take the tie’s off, your drapes should hang beautifully.

Don’t forget to enter the $50 gift card giveaway!  You still have until Thursday night to enter.

Favorite Things

Nature Art Photography

I recently came across an Etsy shop that I’m totally smitten with.  It’s called Raceytay and it’s filled the most beautiful photography you’ve ever seen.  The best part: pretty much everything is buy one get one free.  You can buy one print and get a different one free!  How great is that!  She has lots of different prints in her shop, but I am taken with the nature art prints.  Take a look.


Are you drooling yet?  Everything is very reasonably priced, and the BOGO offer makes it very affordable to get some quality art.  You can also request custom sizes for most photos.  This is just a tiny sampling of her work so head over to Raceytay and check out more.

Rental Tips & A Gift Card Giveaway

I have another exciting giveaway to announce today.  The lovely people at Rentals.com are giving away a $50 American Express gift card to one of you lucky readers.  Who wouldn’t want to win that?!

But first, let me give you a few decorating ideas for all those who are currently renting.  Now is a great time to make some fresh Spring updates to your place.  Most likely you can’t paint the walls, but that doesn’t mean your space has to be boring.  Here are my top 5 rental decorating tips that won’t break the bank.


Bring in the Color

You don’t need paint to add color to your space.  Pillows, blankets, linens, and rugs are all you need to create a space you love.  Add some colorful pillows to your sofa, get a fun patterned rug, and add color with curtains.  And the bonus: you get to take it with you when you move!


Swap the Hardware

A great way to make a quick update in a rental space is by switching out the hardware all over the house.  This can be anything from kitchen knobs and pulls, to bathroom hooks and towel bars.  Most rental places have old or very standard hardware that isn’t super attractive.  This is an easy way to infuse a little of your style into the space without doing anything major.  Just make sure you keep the old stuff and re-install it before you leave.  The bonus: you get to take the nice hardware with you when you move!


Add Some Artwork

A great way to bring in your personality and style to a rental space is with artwork.  Nothing is more personal and it’s also a great way to add some color.  Even if you’re not allowed to put holes in the walls, grab some strong Command removable hanging strips and you’re set.  There’s always a way to get around the rules.


Cover it Up

If you live in a rental that is already furnished, a slip cover could be your best friend.  There are tons of options these days to cover up something that may be an eye sore or just not your taste.


Offer to Pitch In

If your place is in need of a serious update, talk with the owner about a possible renovation.  Be prepared and approach them with a plan that makes sense.  Show them the benefits of the updates, like being able to charge more rent in the future.  Many owners are willing to make updates if you are willing to do some of the work and want to stay there for a long time.


Now it’s back to the giveaway!  Up for grabs is a $50 American Express gift cardTo enter, leave a comment on this post telling me what you’d spend the money on.  For extra entries you can “Like” me on Facebook, or sign up for my newsletter on the sidebar.  Just leave me a separate comment for each.  Good luck!  I will announce the winner next Friday.


Here are some more great resources and articles that are worth checking out whether you rent or own.

Looking for ways to get your home ready for warmer weather? Rentals.com has great ideas to help you prepare your home transition from spring to summer.
When you’re ready for a new place to call home, Rentals.com has the information you’ll need to find the perfect property for your family – choose from rental houses, apartments, condos or townhouses.
“Like” Rentals.com on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/Rentals.comor follow them on Twitter @Rentals.com to get their latest tips on making the most of your home.  

Prioritize Your Home Maintenance Routine With The Rentals.com Checklist
Simple Steps For Getting Your House Ready For Warm Weather Months
Circuit Breaker 101: Learn What To Do When The Lights Go Out
Repair it Yourself or Call For The Handyman? How to Know Who to Call 


Rentals.com and owner Consumer Source, Inc. partnered with bloggers such as me to participate in their monthly blogger programs.  As part of that program, I received compensation.  They did not tell me what to purchase or what to say about the products used, and believe that consumers and bloggers are free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. Consumer Source’s policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, FTC guidelines and social media engagement recommendations. The winner of this giveaway will be randomly chosen and gift card fulfillment will be handled by a third party.

Adriana’s Living Room

A few months ago I got the chance to work with one of my lovely readers, Adriana, on her large living room.  It was such a fun e-design project for me because she had such a fabulous, open space to work with.  Here is the design board I came up with.

The challenge was the size of the room.  She has a fireplace on one end of the room and a wall mounted TV on the opposite end.  Neither of these things were changeable and the room was way too long to enjoy both ends from one central seating area.  So I divided the space into two zones–one for watching TV and lounging, and the other for enjoying the fireplace.  The plan was to anchor and differentiate the zones with area rugs, while still maintaining the open concept feel of the space.

Of course, I mixed in a bunch of different textures and balanced it out with some color.  The greens and blues in the pillows brought the whole scheme together and we were both really happy with how it turned out.

If you want help creating a home you love, contact me about my design services.