Sunday, October 2, 2011

You Don't Have to Spend a Lot.....

To get a lot. It's true, it really really is. 
Our budget doesn't allow for vacations {we've never had one}, so we invite everyone over and cook out or go hiking in our own back yard.
Our idea of fine dining out is actually going IN to McDonalds and sitting down to eat our food there.

If you are on a miniscule budget you probably know this just have to make the most of what you have. 

It's budget break down time here, you may have seen it before. But I just want to show that it can be done with a teensy tiny almost non existent budget, because I am sure some of you might be like me and get frustrated every time you see an amazing room and hear that they did it on the small budget of $800. 
*GASP* Not me, no way can I afford $800 on a room!

Living Room
Ok I did make a splurge here, my first annual spring yard sale made almost $1,000 so I spent $200 on the rug from Home Goods. It was a gift to myself! But I think I made up for it with these other prices...
The dress form in the corner came from a lot I purchased for $200. I kept two and sold the others for a total of $600. Soooo definitely made the money back there.
Vintage chairs~Goodwill Outlet $8 each!!!!
French Sofa~Goodwill Outlet $17!
Chandelier~Craigslist $25
Italian Marble topped coffee table~$10 on Craigslist
Brass and Glass end table~$5 Goodwill
Mirror above mantle~$14 from Salvation Army
Fireplace Mantle~I think it was under $30 at a yard sale?
Rachel Ashwell Shabby Chic curtains~4 panels for $50 from Craigslist {I saved $50 on them instead of buying new from Target}


Kitchen island~FREE. It's a cabinet I found in the trash

Marble top~$50 from Craigslist, but it came with an iron base I sold for $20 so I actually only paid $30 for the marble.

Chandelier~$2 yard sale find

1959 GE Stove~FREE from Craigslist

China Cabinet~$30 from Ebay

Mirror above stove~$2 yard sale

Total of $64 for this look!
Ruffled quilt~Home Goods $50 {this was a splurge for me}
Nightstands~Goodwill Outlet $10 for both
Shabby Chic Headboard~$25 at a yard sale
Mirrors and Cherub lamp~All under $3 each at yard sales
Rug~Piece of fluffy fabric from JoAnn's with a 50% off coupon $5

I sold the previous bed frame to make the money to re-do this room. It sold for $150 which gave me PLENTY to buy the new items to make it look like this.

Tips on decorating a room:

If there is something you love but can not afford, sell something you already have that you don't love.

Craigslist, Ebay, and The Goodwill Outlet are my best friends!
Don't be afraid to bargain. Even thrift stores are sometimes willing to go down on their price.

Sometimes Craigslisters are wanting to get rid of a piece so badly that they are happy to deliver. This is helpful if you don't have a vehicle large enough. Never be afraid to ask.

Paint is a cure all for almost any kind of ugly. 

Reuse and Repurpose! 
Some of my favorite finds have been things people discarded in their trash.
Linking to:

Mod Vintage Life


  1. Wow, how inspiring to go out there and really find the good deals! I could only wish for deals like these. Seems our Goodwill stores are "on" to us, they have their prices so high. I will keep looking though.

  2. oh great job!! I too do not have that kind of money to spend on rooms, love the shows where they only have budgets of $10,000 someone should slap them! anyway you have done an amazing job, everything looks great. I love found treasure myself!

  3. I absolutely love your bedspread...I don't think my hubs would though!! And the mirror about the stove..that is so unique...I don't think I have ever seen that before. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Very impressive! I love your style and that stove!

  5. Nicki, you are the master, my friend!!!

  6. OMGosh Nicki...this is a fabulous post!
    These rooms look beautiful...and to see how much you paid...unbelievable!
    Love the chairs and the mirror over the stove!

  7. Wow! You must have some GREAT yard sales and thrift stores near where you are! I really love the chairs! SO pretty! Did they look like that when you found them? And a mantel for $30???? I would literally hit the floor if I find bargains like that! I get excited when I find a vintage lamp at the Goodwill for $5 haha! I can usually find some good small vintage pieces, but never anything like what you've found! Good job!!! Thanks for sharing : ) I, too, am on a very small budget!

  8. I love how you broke down all of these rooms. You have such a great eye and that you can produce all this beauty on a budget is just wonderful.

  9. I love that mirror over the stove. What a unique thing. I am a big thrift store shopper and love finding a great deal.

  10. You have done a fabulous job of decorating for almost nothing. I love the stove!

  11. I'm so happy to have found your blog and I can totally relate to your frugalitiy! What a beautiful home. :) xo

  12. I love your ideas and thriftiness. My readers would love to see what you have been up to. Visit our Monday Linky Parties and show them what you have been up to! Love, Me

  13. You are quite amazing! all of these rooms are beautiful and to think that you did it with such little money is spectacular.

  14. What fantastic budget makeovers!

    I would love for your to post this gem up on Fall In Love linky party on Wednesday.

    Until then come by and see my spectacular new spice cabinet.

  15. I am SO with you on these "budget decorated rooms" that are really NOT that inexpensive! Like you, I've redone every room in our house for $300 or under/each room. (Well OK, the kitchen cost $500 cuz we went with a very pricey, very top of the line SW paint. That was our splurge and I didn't want to have to do all that painting again too soon. LOL!)

    I love what you've done! Like my husband and I say, "Just cuz you have money doesn't mean you have style!" It's all about creativity and YOU my dear, definitely have it!

    Check out my $300 laundry room re-do here at And while you're there, do feel free to sign up. The "how much did it cost" part 2 is coming up ;-)

  16. Oh my gosh, this is fantastic. Sooo pretty!


  17. Both your rooms are absolutely gorgeous!! I love all the beautiful blues you used for the color.

  18. Your ability to stretch a dollar is inspiring. Your home is so beautiful and I loved reading where you scored your finds and the tiny prices attached. Bravo to you. So many decorators have money to burn and it shows. Anyone can do that, not everyone can do what you do! Keep up the great work.
    Blessings & hugs,

  19. Nicki, I saw your lovely post at Rebecca's party. I love your philosophy of design and your home is just beautiful! You have done an amazing job, which dispels the belief that beauty does not have to cost a fortune!


  20. Nicki, your rooms are gorgeous! You have indeed done an amazing job on such a minuscule budget! I love your vintage chairs. Enjoyed my visit here and have become one of your newest followers.

    Have a wonderful day,

  21. You definitely have this down to an art! Great job. I love your style!

    Have a wonderful week,

  22. So lovely! Thanks so much for sharing!!!

  23. I am VERY impressed! You make me want to make a trip to Goodwill immediately! LOL! Lovely rooms. You've done a wonderful job being thrifty as well as designing these beautiful rooms! Visiting from Type A.

  24. you always impress me! and i'm totally jealous of your goodwill outlet!

  25. Finding things other people no longer value is the way to go! Just beautiful!!

  26. Beautiful! It looks like it belongs in a magazine!

  27. You're so talented--love all your rooms! Thanks for linking to Share the Love Wednesday at Very Merry Vintage Style-

  28. Both rooms are gorgeous! You are the Budget Queen with great vintage style! You have an eye for expensive looking things and you get them for dirt cheap. I'm so impressed!

  29. One word- WOW!!!! My favorite finds are the blue chairs! I would love for you to come by and share for Treasure Hunt Thursday!

  30. Hello! Your home is pretty. I really enjoyed reading your tips on how to create a place we love, on a budget. Thanks for sharing

  31. Your home is very pretty! You'd never know it was done on a budget...a real budget. You've found some treasures at super prices. Lucky girl!

  32. Wow - I am totally blown away by your amazing spaces. I LOVE your decorating mantra, especially that you find everything for virtually free.

    We are moving into a 1901 farmhouse next month, which will require a complete change in decor. I've got the same decorating philosophy you do.

    Visiting from Savvy Southern Style. Following you now. :)

  33. I love what you've done to your place!

  34. Wow, I need to hang out with you!! LOL! Your home is beautiful!


  35. What a great job on such an incredible budget. I must say I have never seen such good prices at our Goodwill, but I'm glad for you that you found such gems.

  36. I can't believe you have found everything that you have for that amount of money! Our GW has upped the prices so much it's terrible!
    You have certainly did a great job! I'm now a follower too!


  37. You've done a beautiful job on a budget, my favorite way to decorate. It's all so pretty.

  38. Good golly girl! I want to shop your Goodwill! What amazing finds at even more amazing prices. Our Goodwill is HIGH. You'd never find chairs like that marked at that price. *sighs* Vanna

  39. You've done a lovely's amazing what diamonds in the rough you can find at thrift stores!

  40. This is a awesome post. I am so inspired! The chairs from Goodwill are amazing--$8?!! Also, the bedspread from HomeGoods was a steal for $50--beautiful!

  41. Great Post! Love your aesthetic and your nose for a bargain! I only wish my Goodwill was priced as well as yours, though. :)

  42. Wow are you kidding are totally amazing and have floored. I admire woman such as yourself...W.T.G.... it all looks so wonderful.

  43. i love this post
    because i get so tired
    of folks writing that they
    'only' spent $1000 on a room
    when i feel like i might not even
    be able to spend $100

    which can sometimes be quite discouraging

    i love your rooms
    and the way you bargain hunted
    and improvised
    to get the look you wanted
    on a real budget!


  44. I featured this today on Mod Mix Monday!

  45. What a fantastic blog you have here. So glad I found you. You are so inspiring!

  46. Such beautiful rooms. I'm in awe of your decorating and bargaining skills. Love it!

  47. Wow...amazing..Love bargains too.. I wish i could find like the chairs that u have lol:)Excellent Budget decorating tips..

  48. You are an insiration. Look what you have done on such a small budget. Great work! So happy you have shared both your positive attitude and your tips and trade secrets.

    Keep up the great work!

    Small House / Big Sky Donna

  49. Wow your rooms are great but it makes me sad because I would Never be able to find anything that cheap here..I bought nightstands similar to yours for $30 at a thrift store. Refused to go lower. My town is tiny i rarely find anything great your home's amazing!

  50. I big AMEN to this! I have always worked on a budget with a family of four and growing up in a large family that swapped things around with eachother to get something new without spending to get it. Now me and my family are a little more stable and I can spend mostly what I want, but decide to not do so because the best excitement comes from other's throw aways in my book! You definitely got some really great deals and you seem like you really know what a budget really Cheap and easy is my motto so you fit right in!


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