Use What You Have Decor | i should be mopping the floor

Use What You Have Decor

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If you're in need of a creative outlet during this stay-at-home period, I'm giving ideas on "Use What You Have Decor" today. I completely made over our TV room using mostly items from around the house, as well as a couple of orders online, and some thrift store items I had "waiting in the wings". I'm honestly so happy with how this room came together with very little money spent. When you really get creative and think outside the box, being able to use what you have on hand proves to be a great solution.
Use What You Have Decor
I've been chatting about this space on my Instagram account for a bit now. This was previously my dad's den (as he named it). Since he passed away, it's been a place we kind of avoided. But, I was ready to inject a bit of life and color back into it, so we could make it a happy space once more. I think my dad would have gotten a big kick out of it, too.

If we hadn't been at home social distancing, I'm not sure I would have had time to work on this area. It was the motivation I needed. And to avoid going out, I shopped my house for this one...plus a couple of items online, as well. See all of the details below.


Use What You Have Decor

Creativity has always been a way I fill my time. If you're like me, that can be difficult when supplies are somewhat limited (there are countless times I wanted to just hop in the car and run to a thrift store or Homegoods, but I was well-behaved and definitely did not). But, I did work hard to find a way around the lack of shopping, but still allow my creative juices to flow. I'm sharing some fun tips to use what you have on hand to make over a space in your home.

Vintage Yellow Couch

This TV room is filled with items from all over our house (including closets!).

Tips to Use What You Have on Hand

  • Look at the idea of redecorating your space as a way to redecorate multiple spaces in your home...by swapping items from room to room and breathing new life into each area.
  • Use pieces for other-than-normal purposes. We used a dresser for a television stand in this space. And the coordinating dresser mirrors were used as pieces of art.
  • Look hard at items before getting rid of them. I reused lampshades by painting them with fabric paint to match in here, instead of getting rid of them since they didn't really go in the space.
  • Think about items that are in one space, but maybe never used much. Would they be used more in your new space?
  • If necessary, purchase one or two statement pieces that will tie your space together (we purchased our rug since it made everything work well together).
  • Paint goes a long way to making things work...even fabric paint can change the look of upholstered pieces.

You can see how I shopped my own house for this new space below.
White Ikea Ektorp Sectional
Above is how this TV room used to look (see it all here). It was a great space. But, after we moved my dad in with us in 2018 (after my mom's unexpected passing), we moved all of our own furniture out and he had his items in here, and it became Grandpa's den.

This above sectional found a home in our main living room and I'm kind of married to having it in there. After my dad passed away earlier this year (after a short battle with Pancreatic Cancer), my brothers wanted some of his pieces from this den of his, understandably. So, the room was then ready for a bit of a makeover.
Colorful Living Room
We definitely upped the color factor in here this time around.

Chinoiserie Chic Living Room
This space started with the couch. I purchased it well before we were social distancing, and it just sat in here...waiting to get a little attention. Nobody really "got" the couch like I did...until the room came together and we all agreed it wasn't my craziest purchase ever.

Vintage Couch
We happened upon this couch at a thrift store in another town (we weren't looking for furniture that day, but I don't ever pass up a thrift store SALE when it's done up like this one was). Everything was half off...including my eight-foot couch that came to $40 (an eight-foot couch, y'all!). The only issue was that I then had to rent a truck to get it back to our town. Good thing I have teenage boys to help me haul things around (doesn't he look thrilled with my purchase?).


Hot Pink Rug

After the couch was in place, I searched for a new rug online that had the mustard yellow in it. This rug is the only brand-new thing in this entire space (find it here on Amazon). But it tied everything together perfectly. The art behind the couch was in our main living area. It was a thrift store find a few years ago. I shared how I made it over on my Instagram a while back. When we rearranged that living area around the holidays, the art seemed a bit out of place. It's now just a blank wall in there, but that also lends itself to another DIY art project (which I enjoy!). The coffee table was from that room, too. We actually ordered a similar one to replace it in the other space.


Blue Club Chairs
And the blue color for these chairs came straight from the rug. These blue chairs were definitely not blue to start with...see the original chair below. The reading lamp between the chairs was from our master bedroom, but rarely used in there.

Club Chair Makeover
I used a really cool fabric paint on these old chairs to give them a totally new look. It was my first project after we were staying home. You can see how I painted them and the paint I used here. It was a nifty process.


Painted Upholstery
The dresser that holds our television belonged to my parents. It has always been one of my favorite pieces.

Vintage Dresser

Above, you can see the same dresser in the room I created for my dad in this home. He loved this space and it was perfectly him. I haven't done anything else with his room and probably won't for a bit. That's still a toughie.

Laura Ashley Drapes
The mirrors from that same dresser are hung on either side of the window (pictured above). Since the window in here is narrow, the mirrors almost give the illusion that it's a bit larger.


Plaid Club Chair

The chair under this mirror was originally from an estate sale, (it didn't start out looking like this). When my dad used this space, this chair went to the sunroom. I'm really glad it's back in this space.

Cherry Armchair
Above is how the chair originally started out. We actually purchased it from an estate sale two doors down and carried it up the street to our house. You can see this arm chair makeover here.


Striped Drapes

And the drapes in this new space came from our dining room (pictured above). I made these to have a brighter look in here. But, in the winter months, they proved a bit thin for actual coverage and to help keep cooler temps out. So, I switched to a heavier drape in the dining room and had stored these fun striped drapes in a closet. Since the window in this TV room is much smaller, coverage won't be an issue. I'm so glad these are back in play, as their fabric is one of my favorites. If you want to make drapes for yourself, see the video tutorial for these in my Blind Hem Stitch Tutorial.

How to Paint a Lampshade
The little desks have been with us for over 15 years. We bought them for a dollar each when an elementary school was remodeling and getting rid of them. Our boys used to sit at them and have their breakfasts when they were toddlers. I recently painted them aqua and we're using them in here as side tables (they were just sitting in my office space, unused). Their open sides face the couch and hold my kids' game controllers and such (those toddlers are now teenagers!). The brass touch lamps were in my dad's bedroom. I simply painted the shades with the same type of fabric paint I used on the chairs, only this time, I used Azalea Matte (find it here). I went from black to pink, so I used three coats of the paint for coverage.

Brass Touch Lamps
You can see those brass touch lamps above in my dad's bedroom. Who doesn't love a good touch lamp? They're like magic, y'all.

Preppy Pillows

I made the pillows with the piping to try to tie all of the colors of the space together (I already had the actual pillow forms...they were from my son's bed, but he never used them when he made the bed, so I scooped them up). The striped pattern is the same fabric as the drapes (yay for being a fabric hoarder about now!). And the watercolor multi-colored dot fabric was something I found in my stash (not sure where I got it?). I used my envelope pillow tutorial for both of these pillows, and just added some hot pink piping for trim. The small pink lumbar pillow was from our living area's piano seat. The *people* who play the piano toss it on the floor...I took that as a sign it was in the way (wink).

Chevron Artwork
The chevron-esque artwork on the wall between the two doors was a piece I made in 2015 for our previous home (you can see the Wall Art Tutorial for it). It never really landed in a great place after we moved, but I really love how it works in here. Happy I held onto it. It's also covering up an old built-in radio speaker that gave up the ghost long before we bought this house. But, it's too much of a pain to remove the system from every room, so we've found creative ways of covering the speakers or somehow working them into the decor, whenever possible.


Peace Lily Blooms
I have an old-school matchbook collection going strong in more than one room of our house. I added a few of them to an old bowl of my mom's to put on the coffee table. Since we aren't able to get out and buy fresh flowers right now, I've been clipping the almost-spent blooms off of my multiple Peace Lily Plants and adding them to vases.

Vintage Church Plates
The plates on the right and above the television were extras from my church plate collection in the dining room. They've been sitting in my hutch for a couple of years now. I'm so glad to have them on display, finally. The smaller piece of artwork above the plaid chair was from our main living area. It was originally from a thrift store. The lamp also came from that living area, but it works better in here. If you're keeping track, I have a bit of work to do in that room, now. Ha!

Colorful Mid-Century Living Room

Having this space functioning again has been a wonderful thing during this time where we're all in the house every day. It's a nice spot to retreat to, away from the busy-ness that the rest of the house can often become. And I'm proud of how budget-friendly it was.

Colorful Living Room Makeover
Is there a space in your house that you have time to update while social distancing?



Easy Living Room Decorating Ideas


22 comments:

  1. those are some crazy happy wild colors enjoy! But you did a awesome job redecorating and home shopping :)

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    1. Awww, I really appreciate that. Thank you so much for stopping by. xoxo

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  2. Looks great...beautiful and so colourful too....great job

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  3. I would never have thought of all those colors together, thanks for great inspiration!!

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    1. Thank you so much, Linda. That rug was what did it all...not sure I could've dreamed these wild combos up, either! xoxo

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  4. Love what you did! Color makes me happy too.

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  5. I have no sense of style at all and would never dream all those bright happy colors would come together so beautifully. That would be a perfect reading room for me - so much light! I love it!

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    1. Awww, thank you so much, Kathy! I actually read in here all afternoon yesterday, myself. xoxo

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  6. What a happy, cheerful room. You did an amazing job redecorating it.

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    1. Thank you so much, Amy! I really appreciate it. xoxo

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  7. How fun! Love that you used pieces you had in other rooms.

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  8. I absolutely love this room, Kristi! The colors look wonderful together and all the furniture looks so cozy and very comfortable! Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Thank you so much, Pat. I sure appreciate your kind words. xoxo

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  9. I would never have thought of those colors. Looks great. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Thank you so much, Jan! Kind of a wild combo, but I'm happy with it, too! xoxo

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  10. So beautiful. A very happy space, for sure!

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  11. I am so proud of you for making a beautiful room by shopping your own home (mostly)! Thanks for sharing with us and telling us a bit of the story behind each piece! It gives me inspiration to see what you did! And the various pieces that you repurposed! Thumbs up!! JulieM

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    1. Awww...thank you so much for your kind words, Julie! It was a fun room to put together. I really appreciate you taking the time to let me know you were inspired. xoxo

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