4 Ways To Improve The Look Of Your Home

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It’s hard to notice what’s wrong with your home when you’re the one living in it. Step back for a moment and you might see that it’s in need of some changes. There’s no reason to panic, but you should start to think about what updates you feel are necessary in the near future.

There are many different angles you could go with your home improvement projects. Consider your budget, time and who will be the one doing the work. The first order of business is getting ideas for what you want to transform and making a few decisions on where to start. See these four ways to improve the look of your home.

Build a Sunroom

Constructing a sunroom will add value to your home and make you fall in love with it all over again. Be picky about the features of the room. Energy efficient windows will help you use less energy and keep costs down. These kind of windows protect items inside your home and silence noise. Decide on a stylish flooring option and add a mix of plants and décor to bring it all together. Once your sunroom is finished, you’ll be addicted and won’t want to leave. They’re great rooms for enjoying the view outside and reading a book.

Paint

Look around and make note of the inside rooms and outdoor areas that could use a fresh coat of paint. Do it yourself or hire a professional who’s sure to do an excellent job for you. You’ll be shocked at how great your rooms look after a new coat of paint. It may make you realize that there isn’t much else that needs to be done in some of the spaces. Select colors that are uplifting and attractive. Also, use paint to boost the energy in your home.

Organize & Clean

The best part about organizing and cleaning is that it won’t cost you a lot of money to do. Spend a weekend combing through your belongings and getting rid of what you no longer need. Deep clean so you can see the sparkle on your appliances, countertops and mirrors. Attack closets and basements so you don’t leave any area unturned. You’ll be surprised to see how nice your space looks after decluttering and making it look spotless.

Spruce up Your Entry

Focus on your entry both inside and out. The outdoors is where you’re able to enhance your curb appeal and draw people in to admire your home. Paint your front door, add flowers and keep the landscaping trimmed. On the inside, add shelves or cabinets for belongings, a nice rug and appealing décor. Keep the front entryway clear of any junk and clean it regularly. This is your chance to make people feel welcome when they enter your home.

Conclusion

Enhancing the look of your home isn’t always easy. You need ideas and inspiration to get you motivated and inspired to make changes. These are four ways to improve the look of your home.

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Bringing Far Away Lands Straight Into Your Home’s Interior Design

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The home is the space that you don’t see really occupying, but rather exist in. Occupying would mean the living space is purely temporary and without and connection to you and your way of life. To exist in your home is to live in among surroundings completely of your choice and thus reflective of your personality and possible outlook on life. To make big changes to your home, you have to be willing to express yourself without any holding back. Bringing far away lands back home to your interior design is one of the bravest yet fascinating decisions you can make. Whether you’ve been on holiday to these distant lands and want to remember them forever, or you simply want to make a few changes in your home, that would shrug off the boredom. Bringing about such changes isn’t out of the ordinary, and actually, you have a plethora of choices for your interior style regarding this.

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Chinese living room

Bringing the Asian country of China, into your home is a splendid boast of being cultured and in tune with such wonderful history, regarding interior design. You could hang up calligraphy paintings, by artists who do wonderful drawings of the local wildlife and vegetation where they live. The excellent, smooth, thick black lines come from artists who have been practicing this amazing pastime for years and years, sometimes decades. You may also find that small, Chinese wooden chairs, with a deeper-set structure, made from a dark hardwood, would be excellent to accompany your living room. The cushions are often stuffed with wool, and the sharp and very-detailed floral prints are a masterful display of the love of nature the Chinese culture expresses. The unique, spiral and rhomboid wooden carvings along the back of the chair, are finely on show.

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Tropical bedroom

Of all places in the home, your bedroom should be giving vegetation a home. You can have a large leafed areca palm plan with wonderful sprouting long and wide leaves or a wide and flat-leafed prayer plant from tropical regions of the world. These accompanying plants should be met with an assortment of beach furniture tailored for bedrooms. With drawers and lounging chairs, with a design influence taken from the southern hemisphere, the delicate colors of bronze and brown could greatly impact your mood. Choose from the Bali Hai, Island Fusion, Ivory Key and many, many more styles and variations to bring in a harmonizing effect into your bedroom. The sense of being in a far away, mugging, moist and hot climate, is almost palpable when you have this kind of interior design for your sleeping quarters.

Jamaican lounge

Jamaica is a land of funky music and a vivid love of the exuberant and boisterous nature of the human condition. For your lounging area or room, you could incorporate a bright red, sofa made out of fabric or leather. The walls could have tribal inspired reggae music and artists performing with passion and excitement. You can also paint the walls in brighter colors too, such as sky blue, impactful oranges as well as the yellow and green of the country’s flag. Spruce it up a bit with a sense of liveliness and joy.

Bringing home far away lands so that they may be infused within your own home is a great alternative to the modern interior design route. You can play with the furnishings and decor a lot more since the styles are open to being completely customized without veering off track so easily.

 

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How to Be a Warm Eco-Warrior This Fall

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As the second half of 2017 gets underway, we find ourselves once again wondering where the year has gone, and beginning to plan how we’re going to spend our autumn and Christmas. The last several years in Britain have seen an increase in the number of extreme weather events and the consensus is strengthening that these are a result of global warming, something that is likely to continue and will become more severe as the effects of climate change grow in scale. The term global warming is beginning to give way to the term climate change.

Many climate scientists prefer this term because the effects of human induced climate change are not limited to heat waves or increased temperatures. Many of the adverse weather events predicted by our current models of climate change involve much colder winters. For places that aren’t used to these extreme temperatures, the infrastructure required to respond to them will be lacking. Fortunately, by following some simple tips and tricks, you can keep your home warm this winter without the big environmental footprint.

Eco-Friendly Insulation

Insulation is the key to effectively heating your home and minimising wasted energy, and consequently money. The function of insulation is to trap heat within the home; think of your house as holding billions and billions of atoms, which comprise the air that we breathe and that which surrounds us. When the temperature increases, the atoms in the air begin whizzing around faster, this is essentially what the temperature of an object is; the speed with which the atoms that comprise it are moving.

If we keep the windows and doors in our home closed then the atoms will collide with them and remain in the house. If we open a window, some of those fast-moving atoms will zoom out the windows, representing a loss of heat. Even with doors and windows closed, there will always be small gaps, some microscopic, and it is these losses that insulation aims to minimise.

There are several green insulation options. The most popular type of insulation is sheep’s wool, which is an effective and affordable option.

Use Radiators Efficiently

The better your insulation, the longer any heat generated will remain in the home. Consequently, with better insulation, you need not have your radiator on for as long. If your radiator is old and ineffective then consider buying a new one from Warm Rooms.

Solar Power

Solar panels, which allow homeowners to generate some of their own energy, are becoming increasingly affordable and efficient. Investing in solar power technology is, therefore, a smart move for those looking to minimise their carbon footprint and future proof their homes.

Keeping our homes heated during the winter months without spending a fortune on energy and growing our carbon footprint is one of the many practical challenges that highlight the importance of meeting our energy requirements while limiting our environmental impact. As climate change marches on, it is now more important than ever that we all pay close attention to how much energy we use and where it comes from.

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Turning Up The Heat In Your Home (Without Using More Energy)

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It’s always worth fixing up your heating before the cold nights set in. But this shouldn’t just mean making adjustments to your central heating. There are ways in which you can keep your home warmer for longer without having to fiddle with a thermostat. Here are just a few ways to make your home warmer for the winter.

Invest in insulation

Insulation is the main way of preventing heat loss in your home. There are many different types including loft insulation, cavity wall insulation, underfloor insulation, pipe insulation and double glazing. All of these will trap heat in your home longer. Insulation can be expensive to install but there are now grants available as provided by sites like https://energy.gov/energy-economy/funding-financing, making it more accessible to those living on a low income.

Seal up cracks

Any cracks in your walls could be letting out excess heat and potentially letting in drafts. Small cracks can easily be patched up with caulk, but for bigger cracks it could be worth calling in a professional. You’ll find companies online such as https://www.fortworthfoundation.net/repair-cracks-in-walls that can sort out these big cracks. It’s also worth considering gap between doors and doorframes and windows and window frames – you can buy draft protectors to put on these.

Buy thick curtains

Your summer sash curtains won’t help you in the winter. Thick curtains are worth buying for these cold months – when drawn they will trap heat in your home and stop cold air seeping through your window. Be aware of closing curtains over radiators as this will stop the heat getting out and warming up the rest of the room.

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Keep your feet warm

If you’ve got wooden or ceramic tiled floors, you may find that your feet are getting cold in winter. Underfloor heating consumes energy and is expensive to install, whilst carpets are too permanent a solution. Instead, buy a few rugs to lay down around the house. Adding a new finish to an old wooden or tiled floor could also make it warmer to tread on.

Cover leather sofas

Leather sofas can be uncomfortable to sit on during the winter months. Sofa throws as found at sites such as http://www.ikea.com/gb/en/products/textiles-rugs/blankets-throws/ can be a good temporary option to keep your bum warm. You may also be able to warm up the sofa by adding a few fluffy cushions. A throw can also make a good addition to your bedding, giving you that extra layer in the winter or acting as an alternative to the duvet in summer when it’s too warm.

Foil your radiators

If your home has radiators, half of the heat could be getting lost through the wall behind it. A good trick for stopping this heat from being lost is to plate the wall behind with tinfoil. The foil will deflect the heat back into the room, so you won’t be turning up those radiators as often in an attempt to get the room warm.  

 

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Spring Cleaning That Needs Doing In The Summer

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The summer time is the period of the year where you see dust particles in the air and stream of sunlight let you know where the holes in the curtains are. It’s a good time to get ahead of the autumn rush, so when it comes to keeping a clean house in the summer, it’s best to do so like you’re having a deep spring clean. Below are three tips on the main things to look out for over the summer.

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Keep an Eye Out for Mold

The greater amount of humidity in the air during the summer means it’s easier for substances such as mold to grow in your windows and corners.For hard to reach areas, having a mold inspection will do you the world of good and often remove it for you.

Speaking of humidity, controlling the amount of it in your home in the long run is the best way to prevent mold from starting growing or expanding. Turn on fans and make sure they’re working properly and filtering out substances such as shower steam. Alternatively, you could have cooler showers to save on your bathroom ceiling.

Spruce Up the Grill

It’s no good cleaning the grill at any other time than the summer as these things can get dirty pretty quickly. Cleaning up a grill can be done very quickly when you know how. Take a few minutes aside after filling a bucket or sink with some soapy water and place the grates in the water and leave them about 10 minutes. Whilst the grates are soaking, get a brillo pad and rub down the insides of the grill. After the time is up and everyone else has been wiped down, scrub to your heart’s content and rinse.

If you’re not into the summer grilling scene, sprucing up the grill to sell it off if you’re just keeping it in a shed or a discarded part of the yard can put some money towards the christmas fund!  

Check on the Washing Machine

During the summer the people in your family are more likely to come in with grass and dirt stains all over their clothes. After putting them through the washing machine for the 5th time at least, it’s good to check what’s going on behind your washing machine. It’s a secret a lot of people don’t realise ruins their clothes.

First of all, check on the washing machine filter. If it looks damaged it needs replacing as you don’t want any dangerous objects getting through to the pipes. If you know your pipes are over two years old, or if they’ve never been replaced before, then get some new hose pipes. Also keep an eye out for cracks and major discolouration in them.

Keeping a clean home in a time when you can work together as a family doesn’t have to take up the day or break the bank. Summer is a great time to put your feet up, so don’t work too hard!

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5 Tips to building your home from the ground up

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Most people who want to own their own houses want to do away with the whole construction and just buy a house that has already been built. But there is a certain allure to actually having your house built from the ground up.

While a pre-made house has its advantages, building your house from scratch house from scratch also offer some benefits. One of which is that you get to design it yourself and not be stuck with a house that might not have all the things you will need.

If you are thinking of having your house built, take note of the tips below to help the process of house building to go smoothly.

  1. Spend time refining the design – you might have to edit your design several times before coming up with your final design, but that’s okay. Spend as much time as you want in coming up with the design that will fit not only your needs but all your wants in a house. List down the necessary things that should be built. Also, consider the years to come and make some adjustments as needed. Check out some floor plans and house designs you can find online to get inspiration.
  1. Get the necessary permits – make sure you have all the permits needed for building your house. Call the city or county where you will build your house and be ready with all the information that may be asked of you. If you are confused with some of the requirements, don’t hesitate to ask questions. You want to make sure that your house is not violating any city code as that will prove to be problematic in the future.
  1. Do your research – there’s no such thing as too much preparation when building your own home. After all, this is the structure where you will spend years of your life. Of course, you would want it to be the best. You will be spending your hard-earned money to build it, so you need to do a lot of research before you start building. Research the materials you will use, the soil where your house will be built on, etc. This requires time so you should not be in a hurry to build a house. Some take up to a year of preparation and research before building.
  1. Hire your contractor or subcontractors – the choice is up to you if you would like to be the general contractor for your house project. You can just hire subcontractors to do the manual labor for you while you oversee everything. Or you can just hire a contractor to do all the work for you. Just make sure that you get reputable ones.
  1. Lay a good foundation – the foundation for your house is very important. If it is not sturdy, your house may not be a sound structure. But before laying the foundation, you need to do the excavation. For that, you would need heavy machinery. If you do not own any, check here for heavy equipment rental rates and get started in the groundbreaking for your house.

Building a house from the ground up may be laborious and prove to be a headache sometimes. But if you do the process right, it will all be worth it in the end.

 

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Don’t Let Your Home Show Its Age

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A home that looks old and behind the times can be a serious problem. On the most basic level, it might just cause you to feel embarrassed. After all, when you have guests over to your home, you want them to be impressed by your design choices and the layout. That’s just not going to happen if your home looks like it’s stuck in the nineties or even the eighties. It can also be an issue if you’re hoping to get the house ready for sale.  

When people sell their home, many assume that buyers will be interested in the land and the building rather than the design of the property. After all, most of the features that make up that design will be removed during the move. While this might be true, buyers are often swayed by the design of a home. Don’t forget, that when you sell a property, you’re really selling them a dream. You’re showing them that this is a place that they would love to live. It’s hard to do that if you can’t show your home offers the modern luxuries from a contemporary design.

To make sure your home doesn’t look outdated, it’s worth looking at the design possibilities that could be aging your home, revealing the blemishes and wear and tear of the years.

Weird Word Art

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You might remember back in 2000 word art around the home was all the rage. You’d find it on shelves in the kitchen and jutting out of the walls in the hallway. It might have said things like ‘Welcome Home’ or simply ‘Eat’ if it was in the kitchen. It’s perhaps difficult to understand how this was ever viewed as stylish but it certainly isn’t anymore. These days, you’re far better to leave the walls of your home bare if the alternative is to have intrusive word art.

Of course, if you still love this decor possibility, forget the big bulky lettering. Instead, invest in wall decals. These fit beautifully into a minimalistic design and can still convey whatever you want your home to say. You can even get stylish lettering that is a tad more subtle and just as artistic.

Big Beds

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There was certainly a time when bigger meant better in the world of beds. Stylish beds were often high off the floor, included phrases like ‘four poster’ in the description and were as large as they could be for ultimate levels of comfort. But things have changed, and beds like this or sleigh beds stick out in a modern design like a sore thumb. They will always age a room and ensure that your home looks at least a few decades behind the time.

Instead, you should be opting for a bed that is low to the ground and might not have a board at the bottom of the bed. It certainly shouldn’t have towering pillars at each corner and instead should be feature that doesn’t draw attention. By doing this, you’ll find that your bedroom looks like the perfect place for a good night of rest in the modern age.

Fitted Bathrooms

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Do you still have a bathroom that is fitted to the walls with no possibility of moving things around and making the most of the available space? In the past, it made sense to have your bath fitted in one place, your shower in another and the sink attached to the wall. But technology and architecture has evolved, and it’s no longer necessary to do this to hide the pipes and plumbing. Instead, you can have a freestanding tub and still keep your bathroom clear of piping. All the best freestanding bathtubs can be completely separate from the rest of the room and some homeowners even use it as the centerpiece. You might find you want to do the same when you discover some of the incredible designs available.

Or, how about a floating sink. There’s no need for a large trunk underneath your sink anymore. Instead, it can be fitted to the wall like a shelf with nothing underneath it. This looks tremendous and will certainly take a few years of the age of your bathroom.

Hanging Lights

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Hanging lights once again intrude into a room rather than complementing the surrounding aesthetic. As such, they are another feature that doesn’t fit into the modern home. Instead of hanging lights, you should consider purchasing fitted in spotlights. Simple yet stylish, these spotlights are also the perfect way to bring out areas of a room that  you want people to focus on.

As you can see, there are a variety of stylistic choices that can age your home. But once you recognize the issues, they are certainly easy to correct.

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Maxing Out Home Entertainment For Family Fun

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What’s a home to you? Is it a place of safety? Is it warmth and comfort? A home is many things to many different people across the world – and with the more money you have to inject into that home, the more things you can mold it into. A den for your hobbies, a workshop for your interests, or a hub of entertainment. It’s that last point we will focus on today – because a home full to the brim with entertainment is a good place to be. It’s time to take home entertainment, within the home, to the limits and start having more fun!

Firstly, let’s talk music. Everybody loves a bit of music. We can go analog through record players, or digital through modern connections – either way, it doesn’t matter much. If you want to play tunes throughout your house, Bluetooth speaker systems that link through the main rooms (bathroom, lounge and kitchen – maybe outside as well?) are a really good investment. The best looking speakers are the roof implanted ones, but this takes a lot of work. Corner speakers are a great investment, ones that you can setup simply by putting in a battery and drilling it into the apex of the wall. A professional installment is costly, but will no doubt look better on your walls. As for playback – the main hub speaker is needed for digital devices – you can hook this up to your phone or Spotify easily. CD players and record players can also be played through Bluetooth systems, so dust off that old collection of LP’s!

Disk Stereo Turntable Vinyl Record Player

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Most of the entertainment we consume is through visual means, and sometimes this means that a TV hanging on the wall isn’t good enough, not for us – nor the films that we are watching. If you’re aiming high, you might want to find out how to build the home theater of your dreams, but also think about the tech you’ll need to boost your films and games.

4K TV has been ‘in’ for a while now. HDR technology paired with 4K means that TV and games are going to look better than ever. You might not need a 4K set right now, but it’s good to protect against the future, so you aren’t spending over and over again. Mostly, media players are going to be digital – we are moving away from discs, especially DVD’s and we are moving away from Blu Ray players. We may have a 4K disc soon, but it’s likely that so-called ‘SuperHD’ will be mainly kept on digital platforms like Netflix. Entertainment computers with Kodi can also keep track of your digital apps – a single place for Amazon, Youtube and Netflix. Gaming is moving forward as well – with the PS4 Pro and The Xbox One X taking games into the future.

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It will cost you, but maxing out your entertainment in the home is a great idea to bring your family together and to have more fun in the home – just don’t become a couch potato!

 

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Unique Ways to Decorate Your Walls

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If you’re sick and tired of the same old white walls or painfully fashionable floral wallpapers that everyone seems to have in their home. It might be time to try something different; something that your neighbors won’t have already thought of.

Here are some rather unique and unusual ways to decorate your interior walls:

Design Your Own Wallpaper

If you like wallpaper. But you don’t like the fact that the stuff you can buy at the store is so samey, why not design and print your own wallpaper? There are numerous companies online that will allow you to do this, and it means you can really be creative with your home décor. You could use your children’s artwork, favorite photos or your own sketches to create something totally unique to you.

Peel and Stick Wood Planks

If you like the warm and cozy country look, peel and stick barn wood planks could be the perfect solution for you. Not only are they very affordable, and every easy to apply to the wall, but you can use them to create interesting patterns and designs above and beyond the typically wooden wall cladding you see in so many homes.

Fill Them with Fabric

Not many people think of covering their walls with fabric rather than wallpaper or paint, but it’s a brilliant way to create a unique look that none of your friends will have in their homes. All you have to do is find a fabric you like, order a lot of it and then starch it. Once it’s starch, it will remain smooth, and you can use the starch to roll the fabric onto the walls. You might have to use a few thumbtacks to hold it place while it’s wet, but once it’s dried, it will be stuck fast and, more importantly, it’ll look fantastic.

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Wow ‘Em with Washi Tape

If you’re looking for a unique wall solution which is affordable and easy to achieve, look no further than washi tape. This origami paper inspired tape comes in a vast array of colors and styles, making it perfect for children’s rooms, and it can be used to create pretty striped walls in very little time. You literally just stick the tape to the walls, and you’re done.

If stripes aren’t your thing, you can use the tape to create all manner of interesting designs, providing you have a little bit of artistic ability, anyway!

Origami

Speaking of origami, a good way to spice up a plain white wall is by creating lots of origami flowers, birds or animals and then sticking them to the wall. If you want a subtle look, you can just add a few to one corner, or if you want something with more of a wow factor, you can create a whole feature wall of your own origami creations!

I hope this has inspired you to think outside the box when decorating your home. Walls don’t have to be bland, and they don’t have to be just like everyone else’s – you just have to be brave enough to break the mold and do something different!

 

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Budget Tips Creating a Child’s Dream Bedroom

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Detail of a teenager bedroom with desk, bed, shelf, and yellow wall

© ccaetano

You will no doubt have the mindset that you’ll do anything for your child, and that includes creating a bedroom of their dreams. Sadly, you are sometimes restricted by a tight budget, and matching the imagination of your kid can prove to be tricky as a result. While it might place restrictions on certain furnishings and features you can buy, a little bit of imagination of your own means that developing a wonderland for youngsters is still very much possible. So if you are currently in the position of decorating a child’s bedroom on a budget, read on for some tips on how to realise those dreams.

Focus on their interests

First of all, it is important that you take on board your child’s interests before proceeding with styling their room. For instance, if they have a passion for space, animals or all-things Disney, base the design of the rooms on these topics. Not only will it cater to their tastes, but it is also a great starting point if you’re struggling with where to start when decorating the room.

Revitalise the walls

One of the biggest – and most inexpensive – ways to add character to a room is by focusing on the walls. Obviously, adding paint or wallpaper is a relatively simple way to reflect your youngster’s favourite colours and/or interests, while also supplying plenty of character and a welcoming ambience. Alongside this, you also have the potential to add some wall features – sticking to the budget guidelines, think of things like a homemade collage or framed posters.

Add new flooring

Like the walls, targeting the floors is one way to add a large impression to a child’s room. This doesn’t mean you have to completely rip up the flooring and start again, either. After all, that could eat into your budget significantly. In fact, merely placing a rug on the floor can help to add an extra layer and tie the room’s decoration together in a subtle yet impactful fashion.

Change up the bed

If you already have a bed frame and mattress in place, that will help with keeping your outlay down. Although if the mattress could do with being replaced, do it – ultimately, comfort is more important than any design elements. Also, a duvet cover – whether it is just a simple, colourful cover or one that boasts popular licenced characters – is an ideal way to inject personality without needing to spend much money. The Threel online shop has a selection of affordable, charming duvet covers available for example.

Brighten up with curtains

For crafting a child’s room, the inclusion of a rug is not the only way to add a small feature to produce a sizeable effect. Bright curtains will help add character to the room, and if they match the duvet design – which you will find in certain cases – it will ensure the room isn’t too much of a mishmash of colours and styles. Oh, and not to mention that changing the curtains is super easy to do!

 

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