The Budget Living Room Challenge

HGTV Magazine asked three designers—all winners of HGTV competition shows—to create a fabulous room with only a sofa and $2,000. See what they did.

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  • Starts With a Sofa

    The foundation piece was this sofa. Gramercy 81\"-wide sofa in linen birdie, $1,325, shopsocietysocial.com

  • Tiffany Brooks, Season 8 HGTV Star winner

    Tiffany’s strategy for pulling together her living room included working with a tightly edited blue and yellow color palette and adding lots of bold patterns. Painting basic pieces, like the backs of the no-frills bookcases and the frames of two metal tables, “introduced glam touches to the on-budget space.” Total cost: $1,956.

  • Window Treatments

    Sanela 98\" x 55\" curtains in light turquoise, $50 for a pair, ikea.com; Adjustable 28\"-50\" curtain rod set with pewter ball finials, $29, overstock.com

  • Patterned Chair

    Hudson Swoop upholstered chair in gorgeous pearl, $200, target.com

  • Table Set + Spray Paint

    Vittsjö nesting tables, $60 for a set of 2, ikea.com. Tiffany spray-painted the black-metal frames Premium Metallic 18 kt. Gold Plate, $7 for 8 ounces, and the bottom shelf on the large table ColorMaster Paint and Primer in Gloss White, $6 for 12 ounces, both by Krylon, krylon.com for stores.

  • Pillow

    Room Essentials Oversized Dots 24\" x 24\" pillow in yellow, $25, target.com

  • Console Table

    Flank a console with bookcases to fake the look of a pricey all-in-one unit. Malm 47 1/4\"W x 16 1/4\"D x 30 3/4\"H dressing table with glass top, $150, ikea.com

  • Lamps

    Steel Droplet accent lamps in yellow, $60 for a set of 2, lampsplus.com

  • Side Table

    Safavieh Kendra 30 1/2\"H x 22\"-diameter pine end table in dark teal, $150, overstock.com

  • Solid Chair

    Safavieh Amanda Robin’s Egg birch and polyester chair, $321, wayfair.com

  • Bookcase + Paint

    Billy 31 1/2\"W x 11\"D x 79 1/2\"H bookcase in white, $60, ikea.com. Tiffany painted the back of each bookcase with leftover wall paint.

  • Rug

    Squares 7' x 10' polypropylene rug in blue, $250, target.com

  • Meg Caswell, Season 6 Design Star winner

    With raspberry pink walls, gold-painted tree stumps subbing in for a coffee table, and a rustic wheeled console, Meg’s living room feels “warm and cozy, but chic and edgy at the same time.” A tripod floor lamp and set of club chairs add the must-have light and extra seating. Pattern enters via pillows and fabric sewn into drapes. Total cost: $1,929.

  • Floor Lamp

    Ore 41\"H x 19\"-diameter 3-legged floor lamp in white, $87, wayfair.com

  • Rug

    Safavieh Courtyard CY6788 8' x 11'2\" polypropylene rug in chocolate cream, $234, rugsusa.com

  • Mirror

    The mirror’s intricate carving echoes the rug’s scrolling pattern. Segovia 36\" x 24\" whitewashed metal mirror, $100, worldmarket.com

  • Chair

    Wildon Home Augusto armchair, $249, wayfair.com

  • Side Table

    Weave 22\"H x 16 1/2\"-diameter metal barrel end table in antique gold finish with glass top, $96, overstock.com

  • Window Treatments

    Richloom Sketch printed cotton drapery fabric in bengal, $9 per yard, fabricguru.com; Adjustable curtain rod set with pewter ball finials, $29, overstock.com; In-Tension Rod clip rings, $10 for a set of 7, Bed Bath & Beyond stores

  • Console Table

    Aiden 50\"W x 15 3/4\"D x 31 1/2\"H wood and metal console table, $290, worldmarket.com

  • Painted Tree Stumps

    A blinged-out set of coffee tables for next to nothing: cast-off freebie tree stumps from a lumber mill are painted shimmery gold. Parlor Gold by Ralph Lauren Paint, $26 per quart, ralphlaurenpaint.com

  • Pillows

    Watercolor 20\" x 20\" linen and cotton pillow cover in orange, coral, and magenta, $60, motifpillows.etsy.com; 20\" x 20\" insert, $3, ikea.com; Caravan 20\" x 20\" cotton pillow in orange, $30, pillowdecor.com

  • David Font, Season 1 Brother Vs. Brother winner

    A snappy rug—like this blue and white design with a single red stripe—can kick-start a room. To offset the sofa’s classic shape, David brought in an arc floor lamp and a faux-leather petal chair. A tall freestanding mirror “fills a wall that doesn’t have any furniture—and makes the space seem bigger.” Total cost: $1,928

  • Chair

    Best Selling Home Décor faux leather modern brown petal chair, $299, amazon.com

  • Mirror

    Hanging-leaning 76\" x 32\" floor mirror in gray, $299, cb2.com

  • Pillows

    Gurli 20\" x 20\" pillow cover in red, $3, and 20\" x 20\" insert, $3, both ikea.com; Pillow Perfect Concorde chevron 11 1/2\" x 18 1/2\" pillow, $27, overstock.com

  • Bookshelf

    Hung horizontally, a long bookshelf in fire engine red is as eye-catching as artwork. Lack 74 3/4\"W x 11 3/4\"D x 11\"H shelving unit in red, $50, ikea.com

  • Sideboard

    Stockholm 63\"W x 15 3/4\"D x 19 3/4\"H TV unit in beige, $299, ikea.com

  • Floor Lamp

    Atomic Lobster 48\"W x 28\"D x 58 1/2\"H arc floor lamp, $299, cb2.com

  • Window Treatments

    Jacob 84\" x 38\" sheer gingham curtain panels with grommets, $25 for a pair, and adjustable 28\"–50\" curtain rod set with pewter ball finials, $29, both overstock.com

  • Coffee Table

    Furniture of America Kress 47 1/2\"W x 21 3/4\"D x 13\"H coffee table with glass insert in white, $232, overstock.com

  • Rug

    Ocean Liner 8' x 10' cotton rug, $229, landofnod.com

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