Budget Bedroom Makeovers

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Is your bedroom starting to look old and tired? Revive it in a weekend with these inexpensive and easy DIY ideas.

Update Your Headboard

Transform that old wooden headboard with this inexpensive trick. All you need is a staple gun, scissors, quilt batting, and a designer bed sheet or thin bedspread.

Start by covering the front and sides of the headboard with several layers of quilt batting, enough to achieve a padded look. Pull the batting around the sides and, using the staple gun, fasten it to the back of the headboard. Then cover the front of the headboard with the fabric, pulling it around the sides and stapling it over the batting on the back. For a more finished look, take additional fabric (cut to fit), fold over the edges, and staple it over the back of the headboard after completing the front. To give the headboard a tufted look, staple the front of the headboard at regular intervals and sew or hot-glue buttons over the staples. Voilá—a custom-upholstered design that will change the way you feel about your bedroom.

Pay Less for Curtains

Retirement affords people the time, at long last, to enjoy redecorating their homes, but not always the income to do so. Kat Butler, a recently retired magazine editor from Kearny, New Jersey, offers this shortcut for sprucing up a bedroom on a fixed income. Buy coordinating sheets on sale and make your own custom curtains. It’s cheaper than buying cotton by the yard, and there’s enough fabric for long panels, if desired.

Make Bamboo Curtain Rods

If you’re setting up house, don’t get hung up on spending big bucks on simple items such as curtain rods. Newlyweds Charlie and Dana McGimsey of Elizabethtown, Kentucky, decided to limit themselves to a few fairly primitive purchases in order to stay within their budget, and they ended up with a perfectly wild decor. Try their scheme in a bedroom you’d like to redecorate cheaply. Buy 6-foot-long bamboo garden stakes, balls of thick jute twine, and several yards of cotton blend, leopard print fabric. (You could substitute an ivy or wildflower print to complement a woodland or garden theme.) For the curtain rods, use the twine to tie bunches of bamboo (cut to window width using pruning shears) together, then throw in decorative knots as embellishments. Use the fabric to make simple curtains and a bedspread. Save the remaining fabric to cover an old bench or stool, then add twine contrast piping and macramé corner tassels. You’ll have a bedroom decor wild enough for Tarzan—and you’ll be wild about the savings.

Make a Romantic Canopy

Add romance to your bedroom by using this sensual shortcut from former antiques dealer Suzanne Flynn of Elizabethtown, Kentucky. Pick up several yards of inexpensive tulle netting and drape swaths of it above your headboard. Attach it to the wall and headboard discreetly with straight pins, a staple gun, or stick-on Velcro tabs. To enhance the draping, make some tulle rosettes by first cutting the tulle into 8-inch-diameter circles. Layer several circles on top of one another and drape them over your index finger. Gather them together and secure them with a tight-fitting rubber band. Repeat to make several rosettes. Pin the rosettes to the gathered points of your wall draping. Spray on some magic with gold glitter fabric paint.

For another great makeover idea, read the Yankee Crafter’s tips for customizing curtains.


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