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  • Writer's pictureKatie

Creativity Challenge: Home Decor

Creativity Challenge: Creatively Decorating Your Home

We all want to live somewhere beautiful. Even the dingiest, smallest spaces can be given life by some deliberate and creative decor! Trust me, I know dingy and small. We lived in a 600 square foot ancient cinderblock apartment for the first few years of our marriage and between that and living on a small budget I had to get very creative when it came to decorating!

Our challenge for you is to choose one space in your home, an item you’d like to find, a wall that needs filling, a spot that needs sprucing, and find a creative solution! This can be done on a tiny or huge budget. Be creative, look places you might not otherwise look, and be open to doing a bit of work to make it happen! 

Here are your steps: 

1.Pick the space/item

2.Set a budget for yourself

3.Set a date to be finished by

4.Get going!

5.Share what you find and what you do! Don’t forget to tag @thackshackart and use hashtag #thackshackcreativitychallenge so I can share your genius solutions!

Never fear! I’ve been scouring the web and talking to some creative friends to get some ideas for ya. See them below!

My top inexpensive home decor hacks:

-Ikea throw pillow covers: Ikea sells pillow inserts for $3-$7 (depending on the size) and covers for $6-$25 each. I love the basic ones, usually around $6, and stock up any time I’m at Ikea! Once you have the inserts it’s easy to throw the covers on and change them out with seasons and holidays. It makes a big impact on a room without spending waaaaay too much on a single pillow. I have a couple inserts but also just put the covers over other decorative pillows I have if I need more than two at a time! They don’t usually sell too many online so you’ll need to have a store near you. Inexpensive pillow covers can also be found on amazon or other online stores!

Hint: Ikea doesn't sell many online so check out a store for the best selection! Link below for one example:

-Thrift stores: if I’m totally honest, thrift stores give me the willies. The smells really get to me and my brain automatically imagines the spookiest past lives of the items sold there. BUT when I can get past those things, there is some really good stuff to be found, and a clorox wipe can get rid of any dark past. My best tips for thrift store shopping:

-go in without a time constraint and without kids/other people in a hurry: it takes time and some focus to sort through items and find the gems. Go when you can take some time and invest some mental energy to your hunting!

-Go in with something in mind, but keep your mind open enough to be flexible with similar items: walking into a thrift store with no vision can be dangerous. Everything is cheap and some items that look really awesome in a thrift store can look a little iffy in your home. That’s a recipe for spending more money than you need to and risking ending up with things you don’t really like or won’t use. However, go in knowing that you likely won’t find the exact item you are looking for, but that a little tlc can go a long way with used things! Example: You want a cool off-white minimal vase. You find a vase with a beautiful shape but its not off-white. Buy the vase, go home and spray paint it! Bam. Brand new decor! 

-Walmart/dollar store: my friend @mikaylasweitzer is the queen of dollar store decor. She makes things from these types of stores look pinterest worthy! Her secrets:

-Definitely be open minded. You may not find exactly what you wanted but you can usually make it work. Glassware is great from the dollar store. 

-A coat of spray paint makes everything look more expensive. Buy something neutral so you can use it on lots of projects. 

-Walk around Target for inspiration, take a few pictures and then hit the dollar store to see what you can replicate. 

-Walmart has the best affordable faux flowers and greenery. Look for the store brand stems!

-Check out DIY accounts/pinterest boards! These are some of my favorite accounts for diy things! @posh.cheapskate, @builds_by_kristen, @sarahellenrandall, @thefliphubb, @angelarosehome @arrowsandbows

-Shop your own home: While I do enjoy throwing things away and keeping our belongings fairly minimal, I have a tendency to hold on to decor items so I can “shop” my own home when I need a change! I don't hold on to everything but I do keep some decor items. Just because you’re not feeling that blanket or frame or mirror at one moment doesn’t mean you won’t be feeling it in six months or a year! I like to keep potential decor items in specific spots in storage closets so I can “shop” when I need to mix something up. I keep cute baskets/bins/containers in one spot, candles and other yummy smelling things together, pillow covers/throw blankets in the same closet, a shelf full of alternate frames or wall decor I can switch out, vases and pots together in a closet, etc. That way when I start getting tired of my decor I can easily switch a couple items out without having to go out and buy something. Don’t be afraid to trade the picture frame in the upstairs bathroom with the one on the shelf in the hall, or to put the spider plant into the pot where your now dead succulent used to live, or to take the throw blanket from your bed and put it on the couch! Moving even frequently seen items from one room to another helps mix things up! 

-Cheap picture frames: my fav places to get picture frames are Hobby Lobby and Michaels. Here’s why. Both places almost constantly have a sale going on frames! Often it’s bogo or you can usually find a 40% off coupon or code on their websites. That way you can get decent quality frames for much cheaper than you’d get somewhere else. Ikea, Walmart and even grocery stores with a marketplace (like Smith’s Marketplace) often have good deals on frames, too! My absolute fav frames are the front loading ones. They’re usually around $10 or less, they look neat and minimal and you can very very easily change out the art or photo inside.They are also easy to spray paint if you want a different color! I have a ton hung in my home and get compliments all the time. I bought six once for about $50 total (with a coupon I found online) at Michaels. 

My favorite frames:

-Furniture: Furniture can be tricky because typically we all want good quality without super high prices. Thrift stores/estate sales/garage sales/FB marketplace type secondhand shopping is awesome for furniture! We bought a beautiful Crate and Barrel couch for $150 on a Utah classifieds website that the people sold so cheap because they were moving and just had to get rid of it. These kinds of places and sites are hit and miss so you have to check in a lot, and things go quick so you have to jump on it when you find something good! Learn a new skill and try your hand at reupholstery or refinishing! Even paying a professional or a DIY loving friend to do it for you could be cheaper than buying something brand new. 

Our $150 Crate and Barrel Couch we found on our local classifieds page (originally $2,500) and some of our Ikea pillow covers!

Now go get creative! Share your finds and your new decor on instagram and tag us @thackshackart and use the hashtag #thackshackcreativitychallenge.

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