Work With What You Already Have At Home

Sometimes it can seem as if designers want you to replace everything you have and start fresh with each design season. In reality, a lot of good home basics just need a little building up to go from acceptable to exceptional. Here are some ways to give your rooms an impressive update by working with what you already have.

1. Uninspiring moldings.

The rich detail that decorative molding adds to a home is getting ever more popular, but it can certainly be pricey, especially if you tear out existing trim and start fresh. If you have decent but drab molding in place, beef it up with additional strips. Add to the crown, baseboard or even door and window trim, then paint it the same color.

2. Slim modern sofas.

Modern “apartment” or starter sofas often have a low back, and if you have one, you may tire of not being able to really sink in it. Rather than tossing it, try tossing on oversize cushions. With a few layers in eye-catching colors and prints, you can build the back of your sofa into a plush place to unwind. At the same time, you’ll create a more personal look.

3. Short curtains.

Curtains from a package can be great for the budget, but they won’t necessarily be quite the right length to get that floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall designer effect. However, with a little sewing skill (or a relatively easy job for a professional seamstress), two curtain panels can be combined into one perfect-length set, with a custom color-block effect that nobody else will have.

4. Skinny or outdated lampshades.

Perfectly good lamp bases often get passed down as heirlooms (or simply hand-me-downs), but the shades end up being dusty and dated. Modernize a look with chunky cylindrical shades to give a table or floor lamp more oomph.

5. Teeny photos.

Small photos (especially keepsake photos from years gone by) may not be able to fill much more than a few pages in a scrapbook, but slip them into oversize frames with deep matting, and suddenly you have a full gallery collection with each image presented as a work of art. You can get creative and use darker papers to achieve different effects. The photos themselves don’t have to match in size or orientation because the oversize frames can go in any direction you wish. Or choose them all in one shape for clean consistency.

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7. Download These Apps

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