- Updating the color or finish of your walls is an excellent way to set the tone for home decor. Four white walls have their place in a minimalist environment, but most decors benefit from a bit of color or texture. Start small with antique white, pale yellow or trendy blue-based gray on your walls. You may want to go bolder for an accent wall. Try a sophisticated muted lime green or a jaunty pumpkin orange. Go French country with mottled yellow faux finish or Asian fusion with cool earth tones trimmed in faded green. Stencils are a great way to create a wall trim. You can do fleur-de-lis in faded cornflowers for a cottage look, or paisley in fuchsia or metallic gold for a bohemian groove. Wall decals and mural kits allow you to add texture and dimension as well as color to a room.
- Before investing in new sets of furniture, examine your current inventory. A quick coat of paint, a new set of hardware or a swatch of fabric over the top may be all the update you need. The days of all-matching furniture suites are gone, so feel free to mix it up. Go classic with French chairs and tables with sculpted legs. Try the eco-design look with rustic wooden finishes and repurposed pieces such as an old door as a top for a breakfast nook table. Set aside some of your budget for a focal point piece in the rooms that matter most to you. A Formica table and diner-style chairs create retro charm in the kitchen. An armoire with hand-painted panels adds a crafty artisan touch.
- Extend your house decor's theme with accessories. An architectural element adds visual pop to the room, be it an arch over the kitchen window, cornices as supports for a floating shelf or a ceiling medallion in plaster relief. Use textiles to add color and texture. A wool rug with an intricate design can define space in an open living area. Scatter floor cushions, throw pillows and throws in various patterns across furniture and by windows, connecting them with a common detail or motif. Bring nature into your home with accessories as well. Fill bottles, vases, pails, pitchers and teacups with wildflowers, sprigs of herbs, twigs or bouquets of leaves or flowers. Dedicate a display niche or a floating shelf to a tableaux of river rocks and sea glass, or candles set amid shells and coral. No matter what style you choose, integrate family heirlooms, souvenirs from travels, favorite artworks, personal photographs and your own projects into decor to make your house a home.