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Update times eight — easy, inexpensive ways to ‘remodel’

By: Gloria Young, Home & Garden
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These days, elaborate remodels and extensive makeovers are out of reach for many homeowners. But there are still many budget-friendly ways to update a room or add pop to the décor. Save money by letting imagination be your major resource, Local interior designer Gaytrell Lapp suggests the following ways to reinvent a room without busting the budget. 1. Think dual Reevaluate the use of a room. Turn an extra bedroom into a home office/extra bedroom. One way to get some extra space is to put in a hideabed sofa instead of a traditional bed, Lapp said. 2. Rearrange Changing the furniture can create a totally new viewpoint. You may even want to bring in an interior designer. Cost for a consultation runs approximately $70 to $125 an hour (some designers have a minimum fee), Lapp said. “They would have new ideas of how to change things around and create a floor plan,” Lapp said. “That eliminates mistakes.” 3. Repaint It could be changing the color of an entire room or simply creating an accent wall. “While I’m not a real fan of one-color accent walls, it breaks up the room,” Lapp said. “Occasionally it’s fun to do a crown molding and then do a different color on the ceiling or a faux finish.” Faux finishes aren’t that difficult, she said. “If you’re a hands-on person, you could have fun with it,” she said. The ceiling is a little more tricky. If it is going to be a different color than the walls, there should be a transitional point — crown molding or a wallpaper border. And don’t think the ceiling always must be a lighter shade.. “If there are recessed areas, it can be very interesting to add a color accent,” Lapp said. “One time a client was accenting with burgundy. There was a recessed ceiling, so we used a faux-painted method. It added a dramatic look and interest.” Another option is to add wainscotting or wallpaper board and pull some color that way. 4. embrace change Often homeowners forget what’s stored in the cupboards. Pack up what you have on display, and put out some other things. Another easy option is to change accent pillows, area rugs, lamps or wall art. “If you have a color scheme you’re changing, or want to focus on different things in the room, you can change art work by reframing or rematting,” Lapp said. 5. Do Windows Keep the mini-blinds or duets, but add decorative rods and stationary drapery or curtain panels. “(You can) soften a room by adding some fabric or a cornice board,” she said. 6. Take cover Changing slipcovers offers a bright new look without the cost of buying another sofa or chair. “Occasionally some furniture lines, like Rowe, offer slipcover options,” Lapp said. “Sometimes you can buy a slipcover made to order. Or visit an upholstery shop.” You may want to turn to a designer for help. “That’s the fun of working with a professional,” Lapp said. “They can provide resources and ideas. There are lots of tricks to the trade. It doesn’t always have to be expensive.” 7. Bring in nature Add a large plant for drama, create a potted garden, re-pot or simply switch plants to different locations. 8. Declutter Sometimes rooms get overpowered by too much stuff. Take out a few things and then survey the space. If it looks better, keep it that way. “Sometimes the biggest hindrance is that people have so much stuff,” Lapp said. “It’s just in the way.” Auburn resident Shelly Fletcher, owner of Details by Shelly, is a specialist in getting organized, “I think the biggest mistake I see in people’s homes is that they try to make the clutter fit the space, not the space fit the clutter,” she said. “When you’ve got clutter in your house, what happens many times is that you tend to put it on a shelf — any shelf. ... Sort through your clutter, then choose the things you love or that work for you to put back into the space.” Getting riding of clutter can offer some financial perks, too. “After you’ve purged the clutter, go sell it and use that as a windfall to buy wallpaper or paint,” Fletcher said. Lapp suggests doing a little homework before getting started. Look through decorating magazines and do Internet research. When you find a room or look you like, clip it or print it for reference. Look at where you can make the biggest impact. Then take it one room at a time. “You can enhance features you have,” Lapp said. “Make the most of what you have. “