10 Easy and Budget-Friendly Ideas for a Living Room Update

Give Your Living Room a Makeover with these Simple Design Tips

The living room is the central hub of the home. As its name implies, this is where we live and gather as a family. The design of the space will serve as the backdrop for holiday celebrations, movie nights, and family photos for years to come. So, it is important to make sure your living room space is welcoming, inviting, and functional. Our interior designers and architects at our San Antonio design studio have compiled a list of 10 easy and budget-friendly living room updates. These living room decor ideas are perfect when you want to refresh your space but don’t want to take on a complete renovation. We hope you find some inspiration for your living room makeover!      

1. Organize Living Room Clutter

Since we spend so much time in our living rooms, they often become magnets for clutter and mess. Organizing the chaos is a simple and free living room update that will provide a fresh start and springboard for other decor ideas. When you organize your living room, we recommend starting by clearing out items to discard or donate. Then group items that will stay in the living room and things that need to be returned to their rightful place (like the kids’ rooms). Finally, decide on a permanent home for everything to live in, like a built-in, chest, or cabinet. Establishing designated storage zones will make it easier to put items away and find them in the future.    

2. Rearrange Living Room Furniture 

The right furniture placement is crucial for establishing good flow and grounding your living room space. One budget-friendly idea to redesign your living room is to try rearranging the furniture layout. Homeowners often push living room furniture up against the wall and center the design around a TV. Pulling sofas away from the wall can help some spaces feel larger. Instead of creating one furniture grouping around a TV stand, try creating distinct zones for conversation, TV viewing, and reading. The right furniture arrangement can help your space not only function better but also feel larger.   

Amity Kett

3. Transform the Living Room with Natural Light 

Letting in natural light can give your living room a makeover with just a simple window covering change. Heavy drapes and blinds can make a space feel dark, small, and unwelcoming. Swapping out heavy window coverings for translucent curtains or lightweight Roman shades will create an airy and updated feel. Once the living room is flooded with natural light, it will appear larger and more inviting.   

Amity Worrel

4. Update the Living Room with New Wall Coverings

At Amity Kett, our designers have a love affair with wall coverings. Decorative wall coverings are one of the best ways to transform your space and establish character in your home. Unadorned sheetrock and paint can leave a room feeling cold, unfinished, and empty. Paneling, wallpaper, and even upholstery can help warm your living room and show your unique personality. When applying wall coverings, our Texas-based interior designers recommend using your chosen material on every wall in the room rather than on one lone accent wall. Accent walls can make a space feel choppy, unfinished, and disjointed. If you love a wallpaper pattern, then cover the whole room in it!      

Amity Worrel

5. Brighten the Living Room with Bold Colors and Accents 

When updating a living room on a budget, consider investing in accent pieces rather than large furniture purchases. For example, bold accent pillows can give a sofa a whole new look, and new side table lamps can brighten the space. Switching out accent colors and bringing in new accessories is an excellent way to freshen up the living room while saving to invest in quality furniture pieces down the road that will last for years to come. 

Amity Worrel

6. Show Off Personal Collections in the Living Room 

Instead of buying all-new accessories and decor for your living room, consider giving the space a unique feel by displaying your personal collections. When the style trends of the 2010s embraced minimalism and uniformity, many homeowners banished their collections to storage units and attics. Now, homeowners are looking to show off their unique style and showcase the items they love. When displaying your collection, consider installing new shelving and grouping items to feel curated rather than cluttered. 

Amity Kett

7. Add Vintage or Thrifted Items to the Living Room Decor 

This year, our San Antonio interior designers have seen that cottage style is trending, and homeowners continue to ask us how to get the look. Cottage style is cozy, nostalgic, and welcoming, making it perfect for families looking to create a relaxing living room space. Also, cottage style uses vintage and thrift items, which means styling your living room will be affordable and even fun. Instead of shopping online for sales, take a day to browse local vendors and antique stores to find the perfect, storied accessories that will take on a new life in your living room update.  

8. Display New Artwork in the Living Room

Changing artwork is an easy way to update the living room. While it is great to invest in fine art for your space, there are other inexpensive and budget-friendly options to refresh the artwork in your home. For example, you could create a gallery wall of family photos. When planning a photo gallery wall, make sure to use matching frames, black and white images, and a range of different print sizes. This treatment will help to create a high-end look that feels cohesive and dynamic.

9. Splurge on New Living Room Textiles 

Even if you are decorating your living room on a budget, you can still splurge on a few things. Rich textiles are the perfect material to invest in for your living room update. Textiles like pillow covers, blankets, or new upholstery can help you layer in pattern, color, and warmth, giving your living room a high-end and comfortable feel without breaking the budget on new furniture pieces.  

Amity Kett

10. Incorporate Houseplants into the Living Room 

One of the big interior design trends for 2021 is the inclusion of nature and houseplants into design schemes. Houseplants can refresh your living room decor by bringing in an organic element that will help to lift the mood of the space and function to clean the air. You can also use greenery to fill empty corners and shelves in your living room with something purposeful and beautiful.  

Anderson Greenspan

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