How to Refresh a Room on a Budget

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I’ve been sharing quite a few dining room projects with you over the last few weeks and I’m excited to let you know we finally have a finished room! We started with how we built our farmhouse dining table, then I shared a DIY chalkboard, and can I tell you I’m stoked to have a piece of art that can be changed for each season!

Now, finally, the finished dining room is ready for your viewing pleasure! Read ahead to see just how this space was created, and learn some helpful hints on how to refresh a room on a budget!

How To Refresh a Room on a Budget

When originally putting the room together, I used items I already had on hand that didn’t necessarily fit the space. There were curtains that were too short and not wide enough for the window, a mixture of wall art that didn’t fit anywhere else, and some vintage kitchen tools and crocks that stood out in the wrong way. All of these things were loved at one time, but they didn’t fit the space or color scheme I had in mind. The entire space was lacking a focus, and that needed to change.

DIY Farmhouse Dining Table Before

A few weeks ago I made a trip to Big Lots to grab a few office supplies and decided to take a stroll through their home decor and furniture. I was pleasantly surprised by the huge selection of rugs, wall art, pillows and furniture that was in stock.  All of the home decor was in the front of the store, and each aisle was perfectly organized, making it easy to choose the right products.

Big Lots Collage

There was an area rug that stood out to me, and I knew it would work perfectly in the dining room. From that rug, the rest of the refreshed design inspiration just flowed. The beautiful curtains in a complimenting blue color were the perfect accent, and once the curtains were home and hung, the quality of the fabric far surpassed what I expected. There were also a few other treasures in the form of wall art, a beautiful distressed picture frame and a pillar candle holder that came home with me. These high value pieces fit seamlessly into the farmhouse style I was going for, but were still easy on the wallet. That makes frugal me (and my husband) so very happy!

Accessories Collage

The wood panel artwork adds the perfect finishing touch to my simple mini gallery wall. The blues and grays compliment perfectly with the rug, and the wood tones bring in the hues from the table.

The distressed frame pretty much jumped off the shelf and into my cart. It adds a natural element as well as some texture, and ties in the deer antlers on the other shelves. I put some blue scrapbook paper, rather than a photo, inside to tie the rug and the curtains together with the color and pattern.

Dining Room Finished 2

With just a few key pieces, I was able to completely transform this space from a hodge podge of items with no direction, to a beautiful, stylish, area with a focus!  

Dining Room Full

If you have an area at home that needs a facelift, here are a few tips to help you refresh a room on a budget.

  • Only replace a few, key, big impact items.

Big impact items include curtains, rugs and accent furniture. These are the items that first catch your eye and keep you looking for more. These items can really define a space. I found the perfect area rug at Big Lots and was able to base my design direction from that one piece. Then it was easy to pair curtains and wall art to tie everything together and keep the design grounded. Since I only replaced a few items instead of everything in the room, I was able to stay within our budget.

  • Check out thrift stores for accessories

You never know what treasures you will come across at a thrift store. The key to finding great pieces is to check back often. In my dining room refresh, a few of the accessories like the white pitchers and vase, previously came from a thrift store.

  • Shop your home

Look around your house for items that can be sacrificed from one room to use in your new design. Maybe you have a beautiful punch bowl that would look better displayed out in the open, rather than tucked away in a cabinet. This is the best way to refresh a room on a budget, because it doesn’t cost you a thing! I used some crystal that was stored away to add interest to the ladder shelf, and instead of keeping my good dishes in the china cabinet, I set them out on the table and bookshelf.

  • Repurpose

Just about everything can be repurposed into something new and beautiful, it just takes a little bit of creativity. I saved a wine jug that has an interesting shape and color, now it fits in perfectly with the new decor. Some dry beans and lentils make the perfect vase filler, and add a touch of natural element and texture. That old rusty rake was going to be thrown in the trash and now it’s a beautiful piece of art! Design is there, you just have to look for it!

Be sure to stop in your local Big Lots to ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ over all of their home decor!  Styles and assortment vary by store, so you never know what hidden gem you may stumble across!You can also follow them on Facebook,Twitter,Pinterest and Instagram to stay up to date on what’s new, and ideas to help spruce up your home!

 What areas of your home need a facelift?  What are your favorite ways to breathe new life into boring decor? Let’s hear what you have going on in your home below in the comments!


  1. I love your budget refresh! I wouldn’t have been able to leave without that rustic frame either. It’s gorgeous. Great tips, pinned for later!

  2. These are good tips. It shows that just because people aren’t able to use their homes as ATM’s anymore, doesn’t mean they can’t be creative with decorating!

  3. I find the Dollar Tree to actually be a great place to find home decor items. Their fake flowers are actually pretty good looking considering how affordable they are. They also have some really beautiful picture frames.

  4. I’m loving everything, it gives a cool and fresh vibe with the colors that you use. Thank you for sharing your wonderful idea.

    1. Hi Susan! There is just enough color in this space for me. Instead of basing the design off of color alone, I added in a lot of texture to give it depth and to play off the blue and neutral tones. Thank you for stopping by!

  5. Every time I go into Big Lots I am pleasantly surprised to find so much pretty country decor that I can actually afford.

    I loved your farmhouse table, and the way it all came together is just beautiful. Can you come do my place next? 😉

    1. Thank you Trish! I love having one so close to my house, as that was not the case in our previous home. Although sometimes I think my husband wishes we weren’t so close 😉

  6. Your dining room is absolutely GORGEOUS. I love the rustic charm you have going on in there. I want to recreate it in my space! 🙂 #client

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