(Almost) Free Bathroom Updates

Updating your bathroom doesn't have to be expensive. Actually, it doesn't have to cost anything at all. Take a look at what you can do with a little creativity and some housewares you likely already have on hand.

Shop Your Home

The best way to decorate for free? Shop for items in other rooms of the house. In this modern rustic bathroom, designer Sarah Richardson transforms seldom-used candy dishes into a ring holder and a soap dish. An aging garden figurine adds vintage charm to this vanity vignette.

Make Mirrors Do Double-Duty

Bathroom essentials look neater piled atop a tray, but other household items, like painted cookie sheets or even mirrors, can do the job just as well. In the 2009 HGTV Green Home, designer Linda Woodrum used this mother-of-pearl mirror as a pretty base for glass jars and decorative accessories.

Unique Dresser Storage

Repurpose Damaged Furniture

Before you discard furniture, ask one last time: \"Is there another way to use this?\" A dresser with missing drawers might seem like trash, but if it still has shelves, it can be a treasure. Give it a fresh coat of paint and you've got a whimsical bureau for your boudoir. Photo by Jennifer and Kitty O'Neil

Use Bottles for Display and Storage

Don't keep your beautiful bracelets hidden away in a jewelry box: display them in your bathroom on bottles. Use vintage glass containers like RMS user mysweetsavannah did in her bathroom, or recycle a beautiful bottle from your pantry.

Bathroom Decorations

Create Your Own Artwork

No budget for artwork? Find an extra frame and print something from a free printable website, or design your own graphic art. To create this bright accent, Michelle Hinckley of 4 Men 1 Lady painted a frame citron yellow and used her computer to turn the classic \"Keep Calm and Carry On\" print into a gentle reminder for her three boys.

stone tile part of master bathroom charm

Add A Potted Plant

The bathroom is a natural place for plants: with higher humidity than most rooms, many varieties will thrive. Choose one that does well in moist environments with low light, like ferns or lilies. Design by Eileen Gould

White Bathroom With Center Vanity

Get Organized

A clean and organized bathroom is a prettier bathroom. Fill display jars with a few necessities, and keep less attractive essentials, like hair dryers and toothpaste, tucked in a closed basket, drawer or cabinet. Design by RMS user paintingismypassion

Think Beyond the Basket

Think about alternative containers when accessorizing your bathroom, like this rustic metal bin originally designed to store firewood. Tuck linens into wooden buckets, ceramic pots or old storage benches for a rustic, whimsical look. Design by RMS user CafeIzzy15

Dollhouse Furniture Vanity Decor Photo by Jennifer and Kitty O'Neil

Put Collections to Work

We all collect something, from salt and pepper shakers to rare rocks. Keep your favorite finds from turning into dust collectors by giving them a job to do. In this bathroom, a row of mini chairs serves as playful storage for hand towels and soaps. Photo by Jennifer and Kitty O'Neil

Colorful Kids Bathroom

Dress Up Family Photos

If you need artwork to fill a bathroom wall, look no further than your family photo album. Or borrow an idea from RMS user designing_diva and take room-appropriate photos. Decorate the frames, add a song lyric or a quote to the wall and create a fun, one-of-a-kind focal point.

Don't Forget the Flowers

The quickest route to a refreshed bathroom is a freshly-cut bouquet. Fill a vase or jar with flowers, evergreens or berries from your yard for an instant (and free) update. No yard? Fashion paper flowers for long-lasting beauty.

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