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10 Inexpensive Ways to Refresh a Room

Even if you're short on time and have a limited budget, you can give your favorite room in the house a new, fresh look. Here are 10 simple ways to refresh a room.

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Add a Statement Wall

A statement wall—whether in the bedroom, living room, dining room or kitchen—is an easy way to make a seemingly big change without much effort. Try prepasted wallpaper in a fun print, create a full gallery wall or experiment with a new paint color that will complement the rest of your decor. Here’s how to install wallpaper.

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Add Some Greenery

Plants can help make a room feel fresh and inviting. You don’t have to have a green thumb to refresh a room with plants, just look for ones that thrive in your home’s environmental conditions. If you’re worried about maintenance there are indoor plants you (probably) can’t kill. Take into consideration how much sun the room gets, if the plants are safe for pets and children and how much they will need to be watered.

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Try a New Rug

Rugs can tie a room together as they add warmth and help define spaces. Make sure you have the right size rug for your space. Experts agree that some of the flooring around the rug’s edges is fine, but you should make sure at least some of the furniture rests on the rug. With this simple hack, you’ll be able to make any rug extra cushiony.

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Give Window Treatments an Update

Refreshing a room can be as simple as just updating the window treatments and the options are nearly endless. Try sheer curtains to let in more sunlight or replace vertical blinds with roman blinds. Try out these trending living room curtain ideas.

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Refresh Accent Pieces

For an easy way to refresh a room, try swapping out some accent pieces. Replace your living room throw pillows and blankets with new ones in a different color or print. Try a new lamp or hang a new piece of artwork. Change out dusty candles for fresh, seasonal colors and scents. The list can go on, but there are plenty of cheap decor ideas, like these, that look expensive.

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Add a Statement Piece

Need a major update? Try an oversized piece of artwork that makes a statement. Or, for a more eclectic look, consider propping up a large piece of artwork against the wall. Hanging a large, oversized mirror can also make a statement and help small rooms appear larger. Did you know that artwork has the ability to make a small room look bigger.

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Replace Hardware

For a simple refresh that takes very little time, replace the hardware on drawers and cabinets. Try brass pulls for an on-trend look on a media console, or wooden pulls for a farmhouse look. Take inspiration from the best modern cabinet hardware.

Buy brass pulls now on Amazon.

Buy wooden pulls now on Amazon.

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Rearrange Furniture

Sometimes refreshing a room is as simple as rearranging some furniture. Try something new, such as using an open bookshelf as a room divider or move the couch away from the wall for a different seating arrangement. Opening up the space or simply using it in a different can make it feel like a new room.

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Move Display Items to a New Spot

When was the last time you rearranged your knickknacks? Take a look around the room and see if there’s a way to rearrange your display items. Sometimes regrouping items such as framed photos, vases and candles in different spots helps the room feel like a whole new space. Also, consider whether or not there is anything you no longer want on display.

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Add Some Color

Want to try a new wall color? Rejuvenate a tired room with stylish color. Soft blues can make a room feel tranquil, a bright pink or yellow can make it feel cheerful and a deep gray or even black can bring a touch of sophistication. If the options are overwhelming, check out how to choose paint colors.

Rachel Brougham
Rachel Brougham lived through a major home renovation in 2019, knows the ups and downs of home improvement, and loves sharing tips with readers. A veteran journalist of both print and television, she’s won several awards for her writing and has covered everything from the environment and education to health care, politics and food. She’s written for several publications beyond newspapers including Bob Vila, Taste of Home and Minnesota Parent, and she currently writes a weekly syndicated newspaper column. Her memoir, Widowland, about the sudden loss of her husband, was published in 2022. She specializes in everything from home decor and design to lawn and garden, product reviews and pet care. When she’s not writing, you can usually find her tending to her garden (both vegetables and native plants), playing with her dog, watching sports with her family or getting some exercise. A native of Michigan, she currently lives in Minneapolis. An avid user of Instagram, you can follow her @RachBrougham.