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Expensive looks without the expense

by Cathy Hobbs, Tribune News Service | July 31, 2021 at 1:42 a.m.
Mirrors serve as a visual headboard in this master bedroom. (TNS Handout)

What's wonderful about interior design is that it doesn't always have to be expensive to look expensive. If you're looking for inexpensive ways to refresh your space, here are some ideas, all under $100.

◼️ Mirrors as a headboard

Whether you are using mirrors horizontally to widen a space, vertically to add height or in a grid pattern to mimic windows, this is a great way to bounce light and color in a space.

◼️ Removable wallpaper

Removal wallpaper provides a graphic alternative to paint. (Scott Gabriel Morris via TNS)
Removal wallpaper provides a graphic alternative to paint. (Scott Gabriel Morris via TNS)

Wallpaper remains a hot trend. Not sure you want to take the plunge? Try using a removable or temporary wallpaper.

◼️ Incorporate industrial elements

Industrial pipe can be used for everything from ladder rungs to help hold up shelves.

◼️ Curtains made from drop cloths

Who doesn't love no-sew curtains? Drop cloths are the perfect weight of cotton for a curtain, especially for those looking for privacy. Grab some drapery pins and attach them to a rod, add grommets, and you're good to go.

◼️ Repurposed items as shelves

Skateboards serve as clever shelves in this child’s bedroom. (Scott Gabriel Morris/Handout/TNS)
Skateboards serve as clever shelves in this child’s bedroom. (Scott Gabriel Morris/Handout/TNS)

From recycled wood to skateboards in a child's room or family space, it's time to get creative.

◼️ Succulents in sand

Tiny succulents are hearty enough to be around for weeks, if not months. Pair them with plain white sand in a glass jar or vessel and you have a beautiful accent piece for your home.

◼️ Inexpensive side tables and carts

Bar carts or side tables don't have to be traditional. Garden stools and carts can be used as side tables and decorative accents.

Decorative books serve as inexpensive accessories. (TNS Handout)
Decorative books serve as inexpensive accessories. (TNS Handout)

◼️ Rice paper or other items placed in shadow boxes or Plexiglas

Rice paper is modern and neutral. One creative idea is to place large pieces in frames.

◼️ Wine glasses as candle holders

This is my new "it" idea. Just take wine glasses, flip them over and place a small votive on the bottom, which now serves as the base for your candle. Put something decorative under the mouth of the glass for an even more creative look.

◼️ Removable wall stickers

These are so much fun and can add instant color and graphics to a space.

Cathy Hobbs, based in New York, is a television host and interior design and home staging expert with offices in New York, Boston and Washington.

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