5 interiors hacks for those on a budget

As most of you may have noticed, we haven’t exactly splurged at any point on our flat. Apart from our loft extension, everything else has been done in small stages and where we can we have upcycled, restyled and used a lot of paint (!). So I have dedicated this post to offering a few hacks that you can use around your home without it costing you the earth…


We have now carpeted three rooms with remnants, and it has saved us so much money! We are getting our study and spare bedroom carpeted this week (today if all goes to plan!) with excellent quality wool carpet for £300 (we were quoted similar for just one room by Carpet Right). We also saved money by pulling the carpet up ourselves (most places charge to do this) and by keeping the underlay that was already there. Apparently our underlay is good quality, and can be re-used, so check before you throw it out…

For our loft, I knew I wanted white wood floors but real wood floors were so expensive, so our builders laid down cheaper pine and we painted it. I passed on this info to Hannah Rochell who did the same with her loft, and I love the grey. My husband stripped and sanded our stairs himself, and the good news is it doesn’t have to be perfect if you’re painting over the top. We’re going to do the same with our living room floor, and then cover with an oversized Moroccan rug.

Hannah Rochell’s loft conversion, see the post here



3. Farrow & Ball colours needn’t be expensive…

You can go into your local Homebase and ask them to mix other paint to Farrow & Ball colours (as sometimes, they are the best!). Or, as we actually love F&B paint quality (you really only need 1 – 2 coats) we just paint small portions of rooms – for instance our living room is painted in Dulux Brilliant White but behind our bookshelves is Farrow & Ball ‘Railings’ for that expensive look, but only buying one small tin of paint.



I remember seeing this on friend Anneli Bush‘s site and going straight out to buy the spray! A great tip for updating handles on wardrobes and cupboards.

See Anneli’s full post here


Erica Davies’ repainted linen cabinet

It sounds so simple, but sometimes it takes a while for the thought process to get there. In our bathroom, we actually have an old Argos cabinet I used to have as a student, but painted white and with fancy knobs added (H&M have some fab marble ones), it looks like made to order furniture!
We recently painted our Ikea shoe cabinet, too, and although it took loads of undercoats, a few mini meltdowns and you can;t stand (too) close, I love it and wouldn’t change it now.


  1. We've tried painting cabinets before…unfortunately, they have started to show major wear and tear (I blame it on the kids). WE considered painting our concrete floors in our kitchen, but ultimately decided to lay down laminate tile. The painted wood floors look great though and if we actually had some real wood floors, that would definitely be worth considering.

    1. Ours was was a decision of 'shall we get rid…or do it up and see what happens?!' So it was a good risk – we'll see how it holds up (no kids helps, I'm Sure!). We were so lucky we found wood flooring under our carpets, but the cheap pine floors look just as good! x

  2. I have that same Ikea shoe cabinet! but mine is still the bog standard cream, definitely tempted to change it after seeing how good yours looks…

  3. This is so great, keep doing what you're doing and keep up the great posts! Love it! Please check out my blog if you get the chance and let me know what you think! x

  4. Hi Alex. Great tips 🙂 on a totally unrelated subject, can you recommend any mid price boyfriend jeans? MiH bit out of my price range. Will be my first pair as have been wearing skinny jeans for what feels forever! 😉

  5. Great post – where have you been looking for living room Moroccan rugs? We've been looking for something for months to add some colour to our monochrome living room but haven't found anything!

  6. Hi Alex, really enjoyed reading this, my hubby is currently sanding our stairs and he wants to buy dulux trade white – I want F&B whimborne white as he doesn't think there will be much difference, could you advise please? would really appreciate it xx

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