Re­vamp your home for less!

In­te­ri­ors whizz Sam Tay­lor-crooks – owner of home blog Dove Cot­tage – shares her tips on how to give your pad an In­sta­gram-worthy look on a bud­get

Closer (UK) - - News - Dove­cot­tage­

With­out the bud­get for luxe lamps and plush blinds, our dream home can of­ten seem out of reach. Luck­ily, in­te­ri­ors blog­ger Sam Tay­lor-crooks is on a mis­sion to make beau­ti­ful homes ac­ces­si­ble to ev­ery­one. Sam says, “Just be­cause you’re rent­ing, on a tight bud­get, or (like me) are not cur­rently liv­ing in your ‘forever home’, it doesn’t mean you can’t live in beau­ti­ful sur­round­ings.” Here are Sam’s se­crets to cre­at­ing your dream digs on a shoe­string…


“I never buy any­thing with­out do­ing my re­search first and can of­ten find some­thing al­most iden­ti­cal for less”, says Sam. “The shop­ping tab on Google is a great way of do­ing this quickly. I love the su­per­mar­kets – par­tic­u­larly Sains­bury’s and Tesco – for stylish, high qual­ity and great value ac­ces­sories. And bud­get stores such as B&M and Home Bargains are great for the re­ally on-trend bits. Aldi’s spe­cial buys, es­pe­cially their lux­ury can­dle du­pes, are amaz­ing too. One of my favourite finds is some lad­der shelves which have re­ally trans­formed my small, bland bath­room. I stum­bled across them in Ikea’s gar­den sec­tion – I think they were orig­i­nally in­tended to house plant pots!”


“I’ve found so many bargains on ebay – it’s not just some­where for un­wanted Christ­mas gifts,” says Sam. “A foot­stool that sits in pride of place in my liv­ing room was made-to-or­der by a seller on ebay us­ing Laura Ash­ley fab­ric. At just over £100, it was a third of the cost of de­signer ones I’d been look­ing at.”


“There’s noth­ing I won’t re­vamp with a slap of paint”, re­veals Sam. “I al­ways rec­om­mend us­ing chalk paint. Rust-oleum Fur­ni­ture Paint is my go-to for great value – it’s re­ally thick and can be painted on to most sur­faces with no need for sand­ing or prim­ing. Just make sure you use a wax on top to seal the paint and pre­vent chip­ping. I also use a small roller rather than a paint­brush to avoid brush strokes.” Also check www.ikea­hack­ for loads of ways to up­cy­cle IKEA stuff.


“Some­times, do­ing some­thing as sim­ple as chang­ing the han­dles can trans­form the look of a piece of fur­ni­ture with very min­i­mal cost” says Sam. “Try hard­ware stores like Home­base or B&Q for cheap but beau­ti­ful door­knobs and han­dles.”


“I have lim­ited DIY skills but I’ll al­ways have a go at recre­at­ing some­thing be­fore shelling out”, in­sists Sam. “In the past I’ve made an up­hol­stered head­board (sta­pling fab­ric on to ply­wood) for a quar­ter of the price of a shop-bought one, spray-painted an £18 Ikea trol­ley to cre­ate a glam bar cart, and even used pine planks and glue to make my own Vic­to­rian-style wood pan­elling.” Check Pin­ter­est and Youtube for ideas.

The lad­der shelves have been as re-imag­ined bath­room stor­age

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