6 Ways To Redecorate Using Things You Already Own

Blogger Nicole Balch of Making it Lovely shares her expert advice.


Colorful curtains make the rounds in Balch’s home

Is your home due for a change?

Before you start earmarking pieces for the donation pile or making a shopping list, give your furniture a second look. The bench in your entryway might be just the extra seating your living room needs. Or that rug in the bedroom could add the perfect pop of color under the kitchen table.

The idea that furniture is an investment that should be repurposed time and time again is precisely what prompted Nicole Balch, the blogger behind Making It Lovely, to create a series showing her readers how to do just that. In her “Making it Yours” posts, Balch tracks a piece–be it a modernist-style chair, a chesterfield sofa, or an oriental rug–through multiple rooms, showing how each can be given new life with a quick change of scenery.

The posts epitomize her motto for the furniture in her home, which is this: “Choose either timeless designs for furnishings, or something that truly speaks to you, and you’ll be inclined to find new uses for your items later.”

Here, Balch, whose curated collection for Joss & Main launches Tuesday, June 17, 2014 at 9:00 p.m., gives us a few of her best tips for buying furniture that you’ll re-purpose, plus how to shake up a room using what you already have.

1_circleMake quality a priority.
“Look for quality materials that you know will stand up over time,” Balch says. “Pressed particle board is great for the budget and can be a good options for certain things, but solid wood is stronger and sturdier.”

2_circleThink about re-use from the beginning.
Balch’s test for a good piece of furniture is whether or not she can envision it in more than one room in her home. “Can you think of at least two spots for that piece of furniture you’re considering? If you can see it working in multiple areas, you have options for moving it around to rearrange your home without spending any money,” she says.

3_circleChoose a timeless shape.
“Pay attention to the shape of upholstered items as much as the fabric,” she points out. “Sure, you may love the color or pattern on it now, but if you also truly love the lines of the piece, you can refresh the look later by having it reupholstered.”

4_circleGet creative.
For added flexibility, think beyond an item’s original function. “A dining table can become a desk, a craft station, or a family game spot,” Blach suggests.

5_circleGet crafty.
“Consider repainting and refinishing before replacing. Sometimes a new color is all you need to bring a piece back to life,” she says.

6_circleSwap accessories.
It’s not always the furniture that needs changing. Sometimes, it’s its context. “Changing the accessories of a room can often change how you feel about the furniture in it,” says Balch. “New throw pillows and a blanket can help you fall in love with your couch all over again.” sign_off