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Dream Guest Room: The Look for Less

These tips from the book Sensible Chic will help you design and decorate any room so that it looks and feels as expensive as a designer original.

Use these cues, inspired by this amazing guest room makeover, to design and decorate any room so that it looks and feels as expensive as a designer original.

  • If you’re intimidated by painting a whole room, simplify the job by adding color to one accent wall. This saves time and money and allows one wall to become an immediate focal point.
  • When shopping for furniture, imagine pieces without the detail. Look for parts that you can easily disassemble, so you can adapt them to your style. In the Sensible Makeover this trick was used for both the bed, which originally had an ornate headboard and footboard, and the feminine side table, which had a large sphere in its base.
  • Save money by mixing and matching. To get a personalized look, search for complementary colors and textures that aren’t necessarily sold in a coordinated set. In the makeover room the bedding and pillows were pieced together: a duvet cover found on a clearance table and a bolster pillow made from two pieces of foam and covered with inexpensive fabric and ribbon trim. The plain window treatments are trimmed with fabric that complements the duvet cover and ribbon trim on the pillow, so all the elements look like part of the "set."
  • Artwork doesn’t need to be expensive. Tear-outs from old botanical books and insect guides, postcards, and advertisements are great examples of inexpensive art, as the eye-catching pieces in the Sensible Makeover room prove. Look for these items at flea markets, garage sales, and estate sales and surround them with ready-cut mats and discount store frames for thrifty artwork in minutes.

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