Refreshing just one element in a room can create a big impact. Here are some changes to choose from.

Share story

Thankfully, giving your home a little refresh, or even a dramatic transformation, can be as simple as changing one element in the space. Which element, you ask? Well, that’s up to you. Here are some of the most transformative changes you can make to any room.

LAYOUT

Changing the layout of a room in your home is usually the most affordable change you can make. Ensure you have good traffic flow by moving seating or tables.

If your space feels cluttered, replace a sofa and a couple of armchairs with a sectional. It will require a little bit of investment, but it can make your room feel dramatically bigger.

PAINT

Paint is probably the second-most affordable change you can make in any room. A gallon of paint can cost as little as $25, and you have every color in the rainbow to choose from. Deep, dark walls can create a cavernous, cozy vibe. A soft lilac can give a room a bit more of a feminine feeling. Bright, rich walls are great for entertaining spaces.

WINDOW TREATMENTS

Window treatments are an expense. Even if you’re buying them readymade, you can easily spend $300 on a couple of curtain panels. But they can also completely change the personality of a room. A set of solid white drapes that brush the floor can create an intimate vibe in a minimal space. A pair of bright, patterned Roman shades can be total statement makers.

UPHOLSTERY

We wouldn’t recommend reupholstering just any old chair, but if you have a piece you love that looks out of place or has a little too much wear and tear, new fabric will give it new life. A few yards of patterned fabric can give an antique settee a modern look. A purple velvet slipcover for an armchair can be the perfect burst of color in a neutral space.

Clockwise from left: Sure Fit Designer Denim 1-Piece Recliner Slipcover in Black, $80 at Bed Bath & Beyond; Color by Crate & Barrel in Purple .01, $47 a gallon; Schoolhouse Electric Eduard Sconce, $199 at schoolhouseelectric.com
Clockwise from left: Sure Fit Designer Denim 1-Piece Recliner Slipcover in Black, $80 at Bed Bath & Beyond; Color by Crate & Barrel in Purple .01, $47 a gallon; Schoolhouse Electric Eduard Sconce, $199 at schoolhouseelectric.com

RUGS

It’s so easy to go so wrong with a rug. One of the biggest mistakes we see is a rug that’s too small for a space or that’s improperly placed. Upgrading to a larger size can make your room feel dramatically more expansive, and making sure it’s placed under the legs of your furniture will give it a clean, centered look.

You can also get playful with rugs. Layering rugs on top of each other is a fun way to introduce pattern and dimension. Can’t afford a large-scale rug? Purchase two smaller ones and set them side by side, or even on an angle for an element of surprise.

LIGHTING

Every room should have three sources of light: ambient, task and accent. Make sure you’ve checked those boxes so that, functionally, your rooms are set up for success. Beyond that, lighting can be one of the most gorgeous statements in a room. We always love a dining room with an oversize crystal chandelier as a focal point. And a pair of architectural sconces in an entry can say “welcome” in the chicest way.