How to Decorate a Bedroom With High/Low Buys

Decorating doesn't have to be expensive. Many designers swear by the high/low approach — using several affordable items mixed in with a few pricier pieces. It's a great way to make the most of your decorating budget and put your hard-earned money into the items you care about the most.

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Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Layered Linens

Making a beautiful bed doesn't have to be intimidating. Layering a duvet or comforter over a neutral coverlet is an easy way to get the plush, inviting look you see in designer rooms. Another designer trick: Put two down inserts inside your duvet cover for that super fluffy look you see in catalogs.

Worth-It Embellishments

Pillows should be soft and comfortable, so put your money into a quality down insert, not the pillow cover itself. You can always doll up an inexpensive cover with no-sew embellishments. A quality fabric adhesive is all you need to attach a colorful trim or fabric panel, giving the pillow a high-end look.

Bed Investments

When it comes to smart spending, it's all about the bed. We spend approximately 1/3 of our lives in bed, so invest in a mattress that's well-built, well-reviewed and comfortable. You'll also want to spend a little extra on high-quality sheets, but be sure to look beyond thread count (TC). A 400 TC cotton sheet made with high-quality fibers will be stronger and softer over the long run than a 1,200 TC sheet made with sub-par fibers. Look for terms like Egyptian long-staple or anything with "pima" in it for cool, soft sheets that won't pill after the first few washings. If you're a stickler about wrinkles, a polyester/cotton blend may be your best bet.

Stress-Free Decorating

When you don't spend a fortune decorating a space, you're more relaxed about making changes or improvements over time. Feel free to play around with accessories, move things around and mix up styles. Give yourself some time to see what works.

Mix + Match Lighting

There's no rule that says you need matching lamps. Unify different lamps by choosing similar heights and the same style/color shade. Also, for a boutique hotel vibe, put your lamps on dimmers.

Consider Tone + Scale

Skip the matching bedroom suite, and instead, create your own combination of pieces. Unify the different looks through tone and scale. For example, mix and match your bedside tables. Make sure they're in the same color family and of similar height and size, so there's still a sense of symmetry when you walk into the room. You'll also want to make sure their heights are similar to that of your bed. A bedside table that's too high or too low can throw the whole look off.

Transformative Color

When it comes to decorating, paint is worth its weight in gold, and it'll only run you about $40 per gallon. Repainting your bedroom in a color you love is an easy, affordable way to completely transform a space. For a serene, spa-like feel, go with cooler tones like light blues and greens. For a cozy feel, opt for warmer colors like a rich greige or terracotta.

Keep It Simple

Light fixtures and fans don't have to break the bank or make an outrageous style statement. Skip the fancy, budget-obliterating fixtures and go with an understated fan that blends into the room's ceiling. (Get one with a remote for easy on/off when you're already snuggled into bed.)

Pieces With Good Bones

Check out estate sales and second-hand stores for big-ticket items with good bones. Often, a new fabric or fresh paint color can turn a dated cast-off into a chic conversation piece. Avoid any seating that sways, creaks or sags when you sit on it. When shopping for dressers, avoid any piece with sticking drawers.

Window Treatment Tricks

Custom drapery can eat up a budget faster than you can click "Add to Cart." Simple panels purchased from a big box or online retailer are more affordable and super-easy to customize. Many dry cleaners offer alteration services and will be happy to hem curtain panels at a reasonable price.

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