The Flat Broke Decorator | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

The Flat Broke Decorator


Decorating a home can be intimidating. Couple the intimidation factor with budgets so tight that Abraham Lincoln is squealing for mercy in our wallets, and the situation could turn into a crisis in which the would-be decorator is lying in the middle of the living-room floor, staring at the ceiling in defeat. The purpose of this article is to restore hope to the color- and

Decorating is a process. You don't have to do everything at once. Do what you can, when you can. Hammer out a realistic budget for yourself and be patient.

I'm not a professional decorator. I simply enjoy an appealing environment. I have a lot to do on limited funds, and I have learned through trial, error and the sheer joy of experimentation. Here are some simple and inexpensive ways to decorate while maintaining your sanity.

• Clean the clutter and get organized first. Organization is the necessary first step to creating a beckoning environment. Don't know how to organize? I recommend reading "Eliminate Chaos: The 10-Step Process to Organize Your Home & Life" (Sasquatch Books, 2006, $19.95) by Laura Leist.

• Identify your personal style. What colors make you feel good? What type of furniture do you gravitate to? Figure this out and go with it.

• Paint is the cheapest way to repurpose an outdated piece of furniture. Take it a step further and put new knobs and drawer pulls on your repainted masterpiece. Questions? Most paint stores have experts who can walk you through the process. I have loved the results of my furniture painting experiments. If in the end you hate the color, you can easily repaint.

• Love vintage items, but hate the price tag? Think consignment! Consignment stores often carry a little or a lot of everything and are a blast to browse. It's like having visitation privileges for every era of the 20th century. I have bought lamps, furniture and ceramics at these stores. I'll bet there's at least one in your neighborhood. Go online to find a store in your area.

• Repaint boring walls. If you are confused over color schemes, many paint stores offer color palettes that flow well together. Get a sample size of several paints and try out the colors in a particular area before making a commitment. The experts at the paint stores can point out different decorative painting techniques once you've gotten comfortable
with the basics.

• Keep an open mind on road trips. I've bought adorable kitchen kitsch at a New Orleans French Market booth for $12. Flea markets can be amazing idea banks, too. I've seen old doors repurposed into tables for sale at a local flea market. What a great way to recycle!

Decorating, like life, should be a journey. Make it fun. Make it about you. Godspeed, and happy (bargain) hunting!

Recommended Consignment Stores (by no means exhaustive):

Repeat Street – 626 Ridgewood Road, Ridgeland 601-605-9393
The Orange Peel – 422 Mitchell Ave., 601-364-9977
From Our House to Yours – 830 Wilson Drive, Suite E, Ridgeland, 601-956-1818
From Me to You – 6080 Old Brandon Road, Suite B, Brandon, 601-939-2326
Forget Me Nots – 204 E. Government St., Brandon, 601-824-9766
Old House Depot – 639 Monroe St., 601-592-6200

Also try thriftstores N.U.T.S (114 Millsaps Ave., 601-355-7458), Salvation Army (110 Presto Lane, 601-982-4881), as well as garage sales.

Support our reporting -- Become a JFP VIP.

The news business has changed dramatically in the past year, and we need your help more than ever to keep bringing you important stories about Jackson and the Metro. Become a JFP VIP with an annual membership or you can Sign up as a monthly supporter. Thanks for anything you can do to empower our journalism!


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

comments powered by Disqus