Renovating and interior design can get pretty expensive and into the tens – or hundreds – of thousands of Ringgits, but don’t fret! The perfect home isn’t limited to the rich and famous. While you won’t likely be able to build a hot tub in the living room or have full-marble floors and gold-gilded fixtures, you can spruce up your dreary interior on a small budget.
You’ll need to be thrifty, smart, and crafty, so get a start with these 7 easy tips!
1. Make A Statement… Wall!
A statement or feature wall is basically an area of your home that stands out and gives your interior more personality. You can easily make one on a budget by simply painting the statement wall a fresh, attractive colour. Try out wallpaper as well, or paint easy patterns to give your wall character.
A statement wall can make a whole lot of difference in your boring old living room, bedroom, or even dining area, and won’t cost more than a few hundred Ringgits if you DIY. You could achieve bolder and more striking effects with the help of professional painters, who’d usually charge no more than a few hundred to thousands of Ringgits depending on the size, quality, and complexity of the paint job.
2. Frame It Up
Besides – or on top of – a fresh coat of paint or wallpaper, you can decorate by hanging up framed photos. Frames come in various colours, shapes, and designs, which can enhance the look and feel of the wall. Your photo choice will also add some spark to your rooms – pictures of family and friends make your home more personal, while scenery, wildlife, or abstract photos give off a modern, sophisticated vibe. You could even put up some framed art, quotes, or statement prints that showcases your personality.
Besides the pictures and frames, you could also arrange them in creative, attractive ways. The project can take some time and effort – and an eye for design – but won’t cost a bomb. Sure, there are some frames and prints that could set you back a few thousand Ringgits, but sticking to more affordable options and doing things yourself can help you cut back on the budget.
3. Get New Curtains
Swap out your decade old granny curtains and blinds for more modern designs. You can choose from many styles, cuts, materials, and patterns, as well as colours and functionality. Opt for practical blackout curtains for your bedrooms for better sleep, and sheer, cheerful ones in rooms where you chill, have fun, or receive guests. You’d be surprised at how much new curtains can change the look and feel of your home!
Curtains are available ready-to-use – costing about RM 50 to a few hundred per piece depending on quality, material, and size – but you could also commission curtain makers to make one custom to your design and specification. These tend to be a little costlier, from a few hundred to a few thousands depending on the complexity and fabric, but gives you more personalisation options.
4. Refurbish Furniture & Fixtures
Even with regular cleaning, your home’s fixtures and built-in furniture can get old, chuffed, and dreary. Spruce them up and modernise by refurbishing these fixtures and furniture. Repair broken components and squeaky hinges, or replace things like knobs to make them feel new. A new coat of lacquer, paint, or varnish can add new life to old fixtures. Various decals are also available for you to change the look and feel of these components.
You won’t likely spend above RM 1,000 or so with a simple refurbish, but it does take time and effort if you’re doing it on your own. Professionals would cost you a little extra for the peace of mind in expert service and quality outcomes.
5. Get A New Couch
If you’re not too keen on reworking old furniture, you could consider getting new sets for a fresher look. If your 90’s post-modern settees look too dowdy and out-of-date, swap them out for new, minimalist and contemporary designs.
The price will depend on the design, material, and size as well – flatpack furniture from IKEA, while smart, contemporary, and aesthetically pleasing, will usually only cost you a few hundred Ringgits. Fancier, no-assembly-required ones will likely cost more, up to a few thousand. Of course, there are also many customisable, made-to-order options, which tend to cost more!
6. Craft Your Decorations
Crystal vases and ceramic swans can give your home a luxurious feel, but could set your budget back much more than you’re comfortable with. Even on sale, lifestyle and fancy decorations – decorative plates and bowls, vases, sculptures, and so on – can cost about a few thousand Ringgits at least. The fancier ones also seem to be more fragile and finicky – an even riskier investment! Instead of waiting on receiving them as housewarming gifts – buying a new house will definitely cost much more than redecorating – you could scale back and consider crafting your own decorations.
There are many how-to guides and inspiration boards on making your personalised decorations for your home, available online. You could also take one-day hobby courses for crafts – like pottery, paint-by-numbers, or even terrarium assembly – that result in a cute decorative item you can take home with you. You often won’t spend more than a few hundred Ringgit on these. Plus, you’ll be learning something fun and new to boot!
7. Change Your Sheets
Other than furniture, paint jobs, and doo dads, you could spruce up your home by replacing old throw pillows, bedsheets and carpets with more contemporary ones. As with furniture and curtains, the change in colour, design, texture, and feel can do wonders to your home’s vibe.
These do not cost more than a few hundred Ringgits, although fancier, higher quality ones – think Persian rugs and silk fixings – could cost more.