Designing on a Budget

As seasons change, so does my home decor. Any excuse for me to shop and redesign is my guilty pleasure. But of course, when it comes to spending, I’ve got my “Mister’ reminding me that saving for our kids’ college tuition is probably more important than a revamped living room full of fall decor and painted pumpkins.

All joking aside…I love to decorate, and shop, but I’ve got a wicked knack for bargain shopping. Truth here – my husband is proud of me with my shopping skills for home decor, “she’s got an eye for design and an ability to find things at an affordable price.”  To me, that’s better than a bouquet of flowers or jewelry any day! Then of course he follows up with: “Although she shouldn’t be shopping as much as she does.”

If you’re like me – champagne tastes on a beer budget, you’ll want to start honing these skills.

  1. Do your research
    • What’s your design inspiration? Sites like Pinterest and Houzz can help kick-start some ideas
  2. Do some window shopping – online or on site
    • Take a mental inventory of things you would like to buy – price and location so you can compare
    • Check-out the online sites for more inventory (bigger selections and more variety)
  3. Do price comparison and look for promo codes/coupons
    • Compare costs from different stores
    • Check for promo codes on sites like,, or just putting in ‘[name of store] promo codes’ into your web browser (ex. Pier 1 promo codes)
    • Check the store site for weekly sales/promotions, (ex. Hobby Lobby alternates their weekly sales on specific products)
    • Shop on major ‘holiday’ sales promotions (ex. July 4th, Labor Day, Black Friday sales)
    • sign up for the store’s email newsletters or mailings
    • download the store apps which will give you special pricing base on their loyalty programs, ex. Target’s Cartwheel app
  4. Ask yourself – Is it worth it?
    • Do you really want that product, or can you purchase something similar?
      • If the product is a one-of-a-kind, then maybe buy it, but if you can find something cheaper and just as good, why not save.
    • Is it a functional piece or is it decorative?
      • I tend to spend more on functional pieces and less on decorative pieces. Ex. If I am purchasing a desk for my office, which I will use every day, I am willing to spend that extra hundred for the quality.
    • Can you afford it?
      • This is a no brainer, but sometimes we just can’t resist. But before you buy – ask yourself if you purchase this item, what are you sacrificing? (i.e. don’t buy the fancy couch if you can’t pay for your rent).

And there you go. Stick to these ‘must-dos’ and you’ll start saving on your next home decor. Please share and let us know what your biggest splurge and your biggest save on my Facebook page was: VillyPoo.



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