10 Affordable Ways to Make Your Home Feel Special

These 10 decorating ideas are inexpensive, simple ways to make a house feel like a home.

Have you recently moved and looking to make your space your own? Maybe you've been there a while and you're just looking for a fresh new look. Whatever the reason, we have some home décor hacks that are simple and inexpensive.

1. Turn your backyard into a relaxing oasis with garden lights.

garden lights at a family gathering

Lights around the garden can give your backyard a welcoming and whimsical feel. During the warmer months, they’ll allow you to entertain and enjoy your outdoor space long after the sun goes down. Hang a few strands of cafe lights, stagger a few lanterns around your seating area, set up a fire pit or find tons of ideas for every style and budget on Pinterest.

2. Choose a bold paint color — or even put up some striking wallpaper.

brightly painted bedroom

All-white everything—including walls—have been trending on home decor blogs for a few years now. It’s time to switch things up! A new coat of paint in a vibrant or unexpected color can really transform the look and feel of a room.

If you’re nervous about taking the plunge or feeling overwhelmed by the sheer volume of options out there, try one of these “power paint colors” favored by the editors of This Old House magazine.

Alternatively, if you’re really looking for a big change (but aren’t too sure you’ll want to live with it forever), you can try a funky temporary wallpaper.

3. Be strategic with your indoor lighting choices.

room with good lighting

As any Mariah Carey fan knows, good lighting is essential. Creatively placing low-voltage lighting (such as Edison bulbs) around the house is a decor fix that creates a visually appealing contrast of light and dark areas. Get started by following Apartment Therapy’s great DIY guide to creating your own simple and chic lighting accents.

4. Get cozy with fun cushions and throw pillows.

couch with colorful throw pillows

Large cushions and colorful throw pillows scattered around your living room make it easy to get comfy on the couch or flop fashionably on the floor. They’re great for both romantic evenings and family movie night. You can pick a color scheme or even swap things in and out seasonally.

5. Mirror, mirror on the wall.

girl working in a room with a big mirror

Strategically placed mirrors will make rooms of any size feel larger and lighter, which can make a huge difference if you have a small apartment or need to brighten things up. Besides serving a functional purpose in your home, mirrors are an easy way to add a quirky touch to a space—you can often find vintage mirrors at antique shops or flea markets.

Find a little inspiration from The Spruce’s 16 ideas for decorating with mirrors.

6. Put a frame on it.

gallery wall of frames and cool images

Are your walls feeling a little bare or a bit stale? Swap out your existing frames for something new and colorful! Framing unique posters or photographs adds a polished yet personal touch to a room. You can even print straight from your social media feeds using a service like Social Print Studio.

7. Embrace the philosophy of "less is more."

minimalist bedroom

When in doubt, get in touch with your inner minimalist. It's always better to have a few quality or truly meaningful items on display than a house full of knick-knacks. Be brutal and throw some things out—or make a few bucks off of things you don’t want.

Are you ready to purge and take the plunge into minimalism? It probably won’t happen overnight—it’s a journey.

8. What's old is new again—try vintage.

stylish room with vintage furniture

The “mid-century modern” craze has been going strong for a while now, and there’s a good chance that your parents or other older relatives have some nice things that they'd be more than happy to unload. Alternatively, you can visit some junk shops for a bargain on a one-of-a-kind find.

9. Keep your makeover environmentally friendly by upcycling.

man painting a DIY project

A little imagination and a bit of DIY spirit can go a long way when you’re looking to add a personal touch to your space. A coat of paint can turn empty wine bottles into flower vases, reupholstering can make an old chair look like new, and pallets can be turned into all kinds of adorable—and useful—household items. The possibilities are endless once you start getting creative.

10. Plant ladies are the new cat ladies.

room decorated with plants

Millennials love houseplants, and why shouldn’t we? They give rooms a bright, homey, fresh vibe. Hang a plant from the ceiling, place a few on your window sills, or get some unique shelving just for your floral friends.

For more, check out our home decor and DIY Pinterest boards, where you can find pins of all our suggestions. Don’t forget to share your own interior design tips and tricks with us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.