living-room-362266_640So, you want a new look for the family room, but you don’t have a lot of money to spend. You could go to the mall and max out your credit card on a trendy couch, but that would pretty much blow your savings, leave the rest of the room unchanged, and you’d be second-guessing the choice by the time of the sofa delivery. But you can get a brand new look for your entire family room without having to pay a fortune. Take a look at these clever decorating hacks to get the most from your décor dollars!

Repair, don’t Replace

We’ve been conditioned to get new furniture every few years, but in the past, furniture was handed down for generations and only thrown out when the pieces could no longer be repaired. Even if your sofa is torn, scratched or stained, it probably has decades of use left in it, and it makes more financial sense to repair your couch than to replace it. Repair often costs less, and can make even an old couch look like new.

Cheap but Chic

You don’t need to buy your furniture new. You can often score amazing finds at Ye Olde Thrift Store, online, or estate sales. You might not find the chair of Louis XVI at the thrift store, but you could find a really nice abstract painting to replace the Van Gogh reproduction that you’ve had for years. If you have a very specific item in mind, you can often find it from local online sellers for half off retail (or more), and estate sales can be a goldmine, especially if you’re into antique or one-of-a-kind furniture and art. Just be sure to get to the sale early, and on the first day, because antique dealers will be there as well.

Redesign, not Retail

You can have a furniture pro do a total resdesign of your existing furniture for less than what you might pay for new furniture from a pricey showroom. You can have arms and legs added or removed from chairs, you can get all new upholstery in fresh new designs, colors and fabrics, you can even change the shape and height of tables and sofas!

Custom Furniture

If you want something truly unique, you can have a furniture pro create custom furniture completely to your specifications. Think: a round bed with wrought iron rails, a two-toned, double-wide divan, a couch with several complementary patterns of upholstery, like a patchwork quilt. You’re really only limited by your imagination!

Wall to Wall

If you’re bored with the look of paint and wallpaper, your walls can become an element of furniture in your family room. You can have your walls upholstered in leather-look vinyl or padded upholstery to mimic the feel of a 50’s diner, a Victorian parlor or a English library. This look can be a lot of fun if your family room doubles as a game room.