Who doesn’t want to live in an extravagant home with expensive wall art, grand chandeliers and luxury furniture pieces that mesh perfectly well with the colour palette? Obviously, such lavish lifestyle requires some serious cash – and if you have moved houses recently, you would know how expensive it can be to buy even basic necessities and appliances for daily use, let alone a deluxe sofa that would serve little purpose besides making your apartment look expensive and enhancing its aesthetic appeal.
To be honest, not all of us can spare extra money to give our apartments a complete makeover. This is where your own creativity comes into play. As we have all heard, it’s important to put a touch of your personality in your apartment décor.
So, if you have a taste for costly items that you can’t afford, there are ways for you to fake fanciness without looking cheap or needlessly straining your budget.
Tips on making your apartment look expensive on a budget
Here are some affordable fancy décor and cheap home improvement ideas that will make your apartment look much more lavish than it originally is.
If you want to make your apartment look nice, you need to make minimalism your friend. No matter how much you spend on your apartment décor, your home will not look remotely expensive if it is cluttered.
Therefore, the first step to make your apartment look expensive is to get rid of everything that is either unnecessary or doesn’t serve a particular purpose. Contrary to what many believe, decluttering is not that hard. In fact, if you set your mind to it, you can make your apartment look bigger by cutting down on all the clutter in one weekend.
You can also take a look at some tips on how to organize your home and make your place look more presentable.
Pick a colour palette
The first rule of making your apartment look expensive is to be smart while choosing your colour palette. A fresh coat of paint can dramatically change the look of your entire home. Always remember that choosing a palette is more than just selecting three colours that you think would go along together.
In order to pick the perfect palette, pick colours from the same family that you believe would highlight the furniture and other items that you already have in your apartment. It’s generally a good idea to go with lighter hues to make your apartment look spacious and make it easier for you to incorporate different pieces together.
You can even use wallpaper on one of the walls to make it the centre of attention, but make sure you don’t go overboard with the colours.
Don’t overlook lighting
Lighting is the key element in all luxury homes. You don’t need to splurge on super-expensive light fixtures and lampshades, you just need to create a lighting concept that draws attention to certain areas of the room and add depth to your place. Instead of spending money on a chandelier, buy a pendant light that goes with the theme you have selected.
If you want to make your apartment look expensive and luxurious, go for a metallic hanging light. Meanwhile, if you want to give your home a warm, cosy feeling, you can choose pendant light with a coloured glass shade. Again, this is more about strategizing than buying costly items.
Create a wall gallery
The key to having a beautiful and expensive-looking wall art gallery is to make every single piece displayed on the wall look personal yet intentional. You don’t have to invest in lavish paintings or art, you just need to have access to a printer and some frames, the latter of which you can either buy in bulk to cut down on the cost or make them yourself by artistically putting together a few pieces of wood.
Dedicate a wall to your statement artwork where you can display motivational quotes, family photos, memorable moments and anything else your heart desires.
It’s also a good idea to invest in large-scale wall art for the living room or the hallway. Since good paintings tend to be a bit heavy on the pocket, you can either purchase a large canvas and go the DIY route or buy an oversized mirror with thick borders to lean against the wall. You can also use a big framed photo to conceal any visible wirings or the circuit box.
Replace your throw pillows
Swap your old throw pillows with bright, fuller ones. Adding some mismatched yet intentionally placed pillows to your living room couch or bed is perhaps the easiest and most affordable way to accessorize your apartment.
You can either purchase these throw pillows in bulk or make your own with the fabric available in the market. Another trick is to casually drape a beautiful throw on your old couch to give your apartment that luxurious feeling without going through the trouble of purchasing a new piece of furniture.
Incorporate more plants into your décor
Including more indoor plants in your apartment décor is a surefire way to make your apartment look more spacious and less overwhelming. You can place a big potted plant in the corner of a room and use windowsills or side tables to display smaller plants.
Decorate your home with peace lilies, snake plant, money plant, Chinese evergreen, aloe vera or cacti if you want to incorporate more green into your space. Although these plants thrive indoors, you can even buy artificial greens to brighten up your place. Adding plants is one of the most affordable ways to make your apartment look expensive.
Accessorize with an area rug
Add impact to your apartment with a thick, colourful area rug that reflects your personal taste and style yet fits with the overall theme. It can be tricky to purchase the perfect rug, but as long as you have got the colour palette sorted out, you’ll be completely fine. According to most experts, rolling out a large rug makes your place appear bigger whereas a small rug dwarfs the room.
Add mirrors to your apartment
Knocking down a wall to create more room is not always a possibility, particularly if you are renting out the apartment. Instead of making any major architectural changes, you can make a room look twice its size with some strategic mirror placement.
If you install a large mirror in your living room, it will reflect the room back, making it look bigger than it actually is. Even though it’ll merely create an illusion of spaciousness, it will still give your home that rich, extravagant look.
Don’t forget, expensive looking home décor can make a ton of difference.
Invest in contact paper
Covering your worn out countertops with adhesive contact paper is an easy and affordable way to give your kitchen an instant makeover. You can even upgrade your bathrooms with this. These sheets, available in different patterns and textures, are widely available and do not damage the original surface.
So, even if you are living in a rental, contact paper is perhaps the best option to make your apartment look new and recently renovated. These sheets are usually available in marble and wood patterns, but you can easily find designs that go with your overall décor in the market.
Pay attention to curtains
Fake fanciness (and high ceilings) by installing your curtain rod only an inch or two below the ceiling and letting your drapes fall to the ground. It’ll not only look elegant but will also make your rooms appear bigger. It’s important to note that just like small rugs, short curtains will give your apartment a boxy feeling, which is definitely the opposite of luxe living.
As far as the fabric is concerned, choose something that stands in contrast with your apartment decor since exact matches, especially in darker hues, tend to make homes look small and cheap. For an even classier look, spray paint your curtain rings golden or use trendy napkin rings in their place.
Camouflage your TV
Nothing will kill the vibe of your trendy apartment like a big black electronic box hung on the wall. Televisions are of course compulsory in most households, but let’s not leave it hanging on the wall or sitting on a small table with all the cords on display.
Instead, you can make your TV part of your apartment decor by using a thick frame to cover all the exposed wires and giving your appliance an artistic touch. If that’s not a possibility or if you aren’t a big fan of this idea, you can take attention away from the TV by mounting some wall art around it.
Buy basic white dishware
As Leonardo da Vinci once said, “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”
If you are going for luxurious décor on a budget, you might want to invest in basic white dishware along with golden cutlery to compliment it. There are several upsides to this. First, simple white crockery appears more elegant – especially when you can’t afford to splurge on more expensive alternatives. Secondly, a broken white plate is easier to replace than an exquisite, costly one.
Add a centrepiece
Every home needs a centrepiece. It doesn’t matter if you are living in an apartment or a house, invest in a unique item – be it a vintage coffee table or a trendy side chair – that would draw your guests’ attention as soon as they enter your home.
As stated above, it is important to express yourself in your home decor, but you also need to make sure you don’t go overboard with decorative items. Accent your apartment with mismatched accessories but don’t clutter it with unnecessary things.
DIY a bookshelf
If you have some empty wall space in your hallways or any of the rooms, install some wooden shelves and create a DIY bookshelf. Even if you don’t have a lot of books to display, it’s completely fine as you can always fill it with personal belongings like photo frames, small plants and other knickknacks.
However, do not make it too crowded or overwhelming. Leave some shelves empty to give your decor a modern look and make your apartment look expensive without actually spending a lot of money.
Keep it clean and shiny
Your apartment cannot look luxurious if it’s dirty and messed up. Apart from decluttering, you also need to regularly clean all visible surfaces and corners.
Polish the door knobs and cabinet handles to give them a new shine, wipe all glass surfaces with all-purpose cleaners, clean wooden surfaces with oil polish and then wipe them gently with a clean, dry cloth. As long as you keep everything is in its right place and keep the place tidy, your apartment is bound to look elegant.
It’s also important to update all your existing fixtures and appliances if you want to make your apartment look fancy. For instance, if your refrigerator and stove work perfectly fine but have lost some of their colour or polish, buy stainless steel liquid or spray paint and give them a fresh coat to make them look brand new.
You can even try these weekend DIY home improvement tips to upgrade your place.
Once you have accomplished your goal of making your apartment look luxurious on a budget, don’t forget to throw a small party and give the guests a detailed tour of your extravagant-looking home.