Budget-saving decorating hacks and ideas

When you want to go extra on your space, it doesn’t always have to mean spending a fortune. Making it a place of joy and inspiration can be done with budget-saving decorating hacks and practical ideas. You’ll still need to determine your budget, which will guide you in what you can actually do from that wish list of everything you want to add or change in your room. With a budget in mind, you’ll have an idea what you’ll likely need to buy, DIY, or have a professional do it. If your budget is minimal, know that you can always take your time. Decorating (or redecorating) your space isn’t a race. Take your time to achieve the aesthetic you want for your space. Here’s how to get started. 

Declutter and organize.

The best way to start any decorating pursuit is to get rid of clutter and to organize. It doesn’t matter if your house has ‘good bones,’ if they’ll be buried in clutter. Besides, when you start to declutter, you’ll likely find some things you can resell or discover a furniture or home accessory you can upcycle

To make organizing easier, make sure you have containers (like Cut the Scrap crates or this leather tray) where you can put away small objects that tend to clutter. And if you’re OC and want most of your kitchen spices and dry goods in the same containers because they just look nice that way, you can make it easier to identify what’s inside with these sticker labels.

No green thumb, no problem.

Do you really need a green thumb to be able to grow some plants? While that’s up for debate, having greenery in your space is always a good thing for your mental health, creativity, and your productivity (studies back this up!). 

If you’re still uncertain about your plantita skills, you can always start with succulents or moss. Yes, moss. And the great thing with moss, aside from the fact that you don’t have to take care of them, is that homemade decor brand Studio Habil has been incorporating them into wall art pieces and terrariums for several years. They require no maintenance and provide that natural element to a room.

Cover that eyesore.

If your home is a rental unit, there are a lot of restrictions on what you can and can’t do. Built-in breaker panels and wall vents are essential, but if they’re in the middle of a room they can be an eyesore. You can cover them with a framed artwork or a decorative vent. Frame these Pilipinas Art Prints by Kaliwete Creatives and hang them in front of that condo breaker panel. (You can also easily remove them should you need access to the breaker.)

Unexpected wall art.

Give a plain wall some warm tones and natural textures with woven art. No need to actually spend a fortune for a large woven piece if you don’t have the budget. You can hang your placemats! Bangkuan weave placemats or abaca mats can be hung together using small nails to secure them on the wall. Check how this blogger did it.


Make it multi-purpose.

Have too many of a certain object that you don’t know what to do with? If you’ve got more coasters than you can actually use, you can turn them into a decorative piece too. You can use this pretty concrete coaster set by Krete Manila to hold your small potted plants that get to grace your desk. You can even make your own concrete tray using old containers.


As Selia Agsalud of Common Room reminds us when they redecorated their own space in the office, “Your space is yours, so there is no right or wrong way to fix it… design it in a way that makes life easier and lighter.” Whether it’s upcycling what you already have, buying a few small items as home accents, or redoing an entire room, there are many ways to make your space truly yours with a little creativity and pieces that make you happy. 

Written by Mabel David-Pilar
Mabel has been a writer and editor for many publications, including shelter and food titles and a book on the most endangered Philippine trees. She spends most of her time writing, illustrating, stalking Common Room’s online shop, and making ferments. Together with her sisters, she co-created startersisters.com to celebrate fermenting in the Philippines.