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Decorating on Deadline

On this season of Tamar and Vince, the couple moved into a spacious new home—a house that Tamar feels needs a complete makeover! But decorating has been placed on the back burner since her career is tops on her list. The reality is that giving a home a quick face lift does not require a lot of time or money.

“I have a few decorating principles and my rule of thumb is to only have things in your home that you truly love,” says Jill Vegas, interior decorator and author of Speed Decorating: A Pro Stager’s Tips and Trade Secrets For a Fabulous Home in a Week or Less. “Your home should make you feel good because when you feel good in your home, you feel good in the world. And what a blessing that you can control your environment and love the home you have right now!”

Here, Vegas offers her top five quick-fix decorating tips for anyone with limited time and money.

#1 Overall Decorating Tip: “When you tackle each room, keep asking yourself the same question: ‘What can I live without?'” states Vegas. The decorating process needs to start with de-cluttering, and she suggests using her strategy, which she refers to as “fierce focus:” In 30-minute intervals, go drawer by drawer, shelf by shelf or area by area, putting aside everything that you dislike and/or is unnecessary. “Many people have hodgepodge furniture—items they inherited from various people that say nothing about who they are,” explains Vegas. “I say to sell what you can, like on Ebay, a consignment shop or at a yard sale, and earn some cash, which you can then turn around and spend on some new home items that you do love.”

#1 Quick Tip for Decorating the Bedroom: “This seems to be the most neglected room in the house,” says Vegas. “People tend to think that no one will see the bedroom, so they close the door and leave it the way it is—and each night find themselves crawling into the dungeon of shame! But this is where you hibernate and you deserve to sleep in a beautiful cave.”

She suggests focusing on just one wall, perhaps the wall behind the bed. “If you don’t have a headboard, consider painting the wall one color, placing wall decals on it or even putting up wallpaper. And if you live in a rental, consider tempaper—temporary wallpaper, which is self-adhesive and removable.”

Another quick tip: Purchasing a bed-in-a-bag, complete with new sheets, comforter, pillow cases, pillows shams and dust ruffle, which can be purchased at many budget-friendly stores, like HomeGoods and Ikea.

#1 Quick Tip for Decorating the Kitchen: “It’s all about the lighting in this room,” says Vegas. She advises looking into a new light fixture. “And you can do this even in a rental house or apartment—just take down the light fixture that was provided for you, store it and put up the new one.”

If you have a few more bucks to spend, she then suggests buying a new area rug for the floor and/or a runner for the table. “Both of these items will also make the kitchen more inviting,” she says.

#1 Quick Tip for Decorating the Living Room: “The living area is great because you can easily have instant gratification thanks to new pillows,” states Vegas. “If your pillows are limp and lifeless, get rid of them! Four to five new pillows will give the entire room a completely new look.”

If there’s more money in your budget, she also suggests purchasing a throw blanket in order to add a little extra color and warmth to the most lived-in room in the home. “The bottom line is that you don’t need a new sofa to give the living room a makeover,” she says.

#1 Quick Tip for Decorating the Bathroom: “Grab a can of paint and choose a color that makes you feel as if you’re at a spa retreat,” advises Vegas. “Once you’ve determined the color of your walls, then purchase a new shower curtain, a couple of matching accessories (perhaps a tissue box holder and waste basket), and one scented candle that matches the color of the room.” The bathroom can be decorated very quickly and at any price point!”