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5 Tips to Redecorate Your Home for Under $50

With January comes the excitement of a new year, and with your resolutions come the prospect of a shiny new you. But after the holiday decorations have been taken down and the intoxicating smell of cookies has subsided, you are stuck with the same old house.

If you’re like me, you probably resolved to save some money in the New Year, so bringing in a professional to decorate is not an option. I got an early start working on my resolution for a fresh new home in 2012 so I could share some simple ideas to revamp and reorganize your space on a budget.

Move accessories from one room to another.

Seriously– it works! Rearrange the décor items in your home by transferring them from room to room. Move the armchair from the sitting room to a bedroom, or bring the office lamp into the hall. I have a bunch of vintage dishes that I use to store jewelry and other things. I moved this amber compote from the living room into the bathroom. Perhaps a guest might not pick up the change, but my familiar eye notices a difference.

No new supplies. Total, $0.

Color-block the books on your bookshelf.

I love our library of books and DVDs but the wall of bookshelves in our office looks messy and overwhelming. I experimented with color-blocking each shelf and the result is so neat and tidy. First, I pulled all the books off their shelves and sorted them in piles by the color of the spine. You will probably have large piles of black or white books and you can also sort by the color of the main font.

I assigned one color to each shelf and played around with the directions of the books. Lastly, I put back our collection of vintage cameras and lenses into the open spaces on each shelf. I had no idea this technique would also help highlight our eclectic collection!

No new supplies. Total, $0.

Start spring cleaning early.

My crafting supplies overflow from canvas bags, starting from my closet to the corners of my room.  My coworker Julia shared that she started sorting her yarn and supplies by color in old oatmeal and coffee cans after she saw the idea on Leethal. This is such a great way to store any group of small items like paperclips and crayons in a cabinet or drawer, and you will be recycling too!

Can of coffee, $6. Can of oatmeal, $3. Total, a month’s worth of breakfast and the satisfaction of doing something good for the environment, priceless.

Give a lamp a facelift.

There really is nothing a coat of paint can’t fix. Repaint one of your luminary pieces in a bright color to make a bold statement.

My boyfriend bought this monkey lamp when he was in college and despite my love for the tailed creatures I have always found it dark and creepy. Knowing I wanted to keep it in my almost-completely-white bedroom, I covered it in a bright marigold spray paint. I purchased a plain lampshade that I covered in fabric from Ikea, a skill I picked up from years of watching Trading Spaces after school.

Spray paint, $6. Lampshade, $9. Fabric, $7. Total, $22

Deck the walls. Chances are the pictures that have been hanging on your wall for the past year are looking as stale as the ones that came with the frame. I decided to ditch the frames and hang photos on baker’s twine with binder clips. It wasn’t long until the line accumulated cards, stickers, tickets and other tsotchkes. It was an interesting and colorful mixed-media experience that was easy to change more frequently than framed pictures.

Baker’s twine, $16. Binder clips, $4.50. Total, $20.50

We all know change comes from within but sometimes forget to consider within our own homes. Revamping your home may sound less impacting than a resolution to help others, but getting out of a decor rut by making small and inexpensive alterations can change your whole perspective on yourself and the outside world. It’s a really great place to start!

Written by Gaby D

Gaby is the Community Outreach Coordinator. She knits, reads, collects vinyl, yogas, and is the lead singer of a Brooklyn-based rock band. She is half-part Martha Stewart and half-part Fran Drescher. If she's not sleeping, she's probably Tweeting. Her favorite uncommon good is anything made by Dana Brandwein Oates or Emilie Shapiro.

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