How I Do Frugal Decorating

I’m in the process of renovating my 16-year-old master bedroom. I have no idea how I want my bedroom to look because for me, it all depends upon costs rather than preference. Let me explain. I know I want to rip out my 16-year-old carpeting and replace it with some new wood laminate flooring BUT I have no idea what style I am going to get or how the mood of the room will be set until I start looking at laminate flooring costs. I may have my heart set on one style BUT when I actually get to the showroom, the costs of my dream might be cost prohibitive.

Thus begins my frugal decorating journey. I literally do it by the seat of my pants.

In the interim, I have been combing through interior designer magazines and master bedroom makeover YouTube videos. I’m getting a feel for what’s in and what’s out; what should be DIY and what should be definitely store-bought.  This way, when I finally get to the flooring showroom, I can match a frugal price to what’s chic, hip and “in”.

I know once I have the new flooring installed, the look of my room, as it is now, will totally change. My bedroom furniture, which consists of an armiore and two matching night tables from Broyhill are timeless and will suffice. As will  the latest wall paint. The walls are in very good condition and even if I had to re-paint I would choose the same, soft yellow/beige color. I just have to touch up the white trim on the floor boards and around the windows as well as finally paint the radiators white. My Tempur-Pedic mattress is still good for a few more years but my black wrought iron headboard is in question. As are the matching black wrought iron curtain rods. I’ve noticed most bed have a tufted, upholstered headboard. I started pricing them out on and I could buy a decent designer model, queen-sized headboard for around $150.

I know that my decorating desires have to be restrained to my spending limits. This can be very disconcerting at times because I can’t always get what I want. I always, however get what I need. I can’t retail shop. I can only shop sales, close-outs, floor models, sample sales, thrift and Goodwill.

We’re installing this style in our bedroom

First stop: Lumber Liquidators to pick out and price our new flooring. As our luck would have it, the salesperson told us if we could wait a day, the entire store was having a total liquidation sale. We found the style laminate flooring we wanted @$1.89 a sq. foot. If we waited the one day till the sale started, we could get the same flooring for @$1.59 a sq foot. That was a savings of over $150 just for waiting! Which we did.

I also noted that our new flooring has little traces of black strewed about. That black convinced me that I don’t have to buy a new headboard. I can keep my existing black wrought iron headboard (it’ll go perfectly with the new flooring) as well as the two matching curtain rods. So, that’s even more of a savings for us. Score! The green curtains, however, may need to be updated (or maybe dyed)! Stay tuned for that.

We already have two recliners in our bedroom but they date back to 1994. Gulp! Both those oldies are being tossed. (DH is going to keep one however, the dual recliner, for his barn). We are either going to buy two new recliners (I have my heart set on Lay-Z-Boy but as I said, price rules) or one dual recliner, or two comfy, upholstered chairs with ottomans, or a comfy love sofa. We have a very large master bedroom. I’ve split the room into two parts: one side for the bed and the other is for us to use as a TV sitting area. I keep our large, flat screen TV inside the armoire.

I’m certain I’ll have to update the bedding. Maybe not so much the sheets but I probably will buy a duvet cover for our down comforter. Perhaps a few matching pillows (it’s pillow time again!) Our dust ruffle has to go! I’m not worried about our two matching side table lamps because those can be easily painted to an updated color. Right now my dust ruffle and lamps have roses on them. I know, I know, the roses have to go. I’ll also need some new artwork, but that’ll also be a DIY project for myself, as will be the lamps. I’m good at that kind of stuff!

I’ve alloted $1,000 for our master bedroom redecorating, which sounds like a lot of money. Right off the start we spent $470 on the new wood flooring, which is almost half the budget! DH is installing the flooring, along with his buddy. Costs to take into account will be the dumping fees of the old carpeting and wood flooring waste. I’m also certain DH will be slipping his friend a few bucks for helping us out. As you can see, the money doesn’t go very far. Another must-have item, will be a new area rug. Again, I have nothing set in my mind as to style, texture or color. I usually buy our area rugs at Big Lot. They have a great, highly discounted area rug selection. Fingers crossed that I can find a good deal there and NOT go over our budget. $1,000 isn’t looking too adequate right now.

But watch me pull a rabbit right out of my hat!



  1. We replaced all our downstairs carpet and stairway carpet with wood last year with wood and really have been glad that we did. It looks terrific and is much easier to keep clean.


    • Hi Florence. Our master bedroom is the last room with carpeting. Can’t wait to haul the dusty thing outta here! The new wood laminates coming out now are terrific. Some are even waterproof! We have natural bamboo in the living room and kitchen and the dogs scratched it something horribly! (no dogs allowed in LR) Who knew?
      Anyway, can’t wait to finally get this done!
      Thanks for your comment.


  2. Cindi I have found GREAT bargains on comforters and designer pillows at Ross. Just updated my guest room and bathroom for $150! Take a look, you might find some great deals!


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