The Dappered Space is a series designed to help guys apply the sense of personal style they’ve developed to the space they inhabit. Watch for articles on furniture and decor sales & picks, advice on how to style a room or work space, and tackling creating a space that reflects your own (and perhaps a significant other’s) personal tastes. We’ll suggest items that can be sourced online, but always keep in mind that deals can be found at consignment and thrift stores, local stores with floor models, discount stores, and even yard sales.
As seasons turn from cold to warm, or warm to cold (as is impending for us now, hopefully), I don’t know about you, but I get the urge to spruce up my space. This can take the form of some deeper cleaning, but I also look to add some new elements in. It can be changing up what’s on the wall, changing linens, adding a new decorative touch here and there. You can refresh your space very affordably if you look in the right places. Here are some suggestions, and (mostly) affordable picks, on sprucing your space up.
1. Create a wall grouping
- Cast Iron Octopus Hook – $3.98
- Record Album Frame – $11.95
- Ceramic Wallscape Planters – $19 to $29
- Hanging Shelves – $28
- Wolf Metal Wall Art – $51
- 36″x 24″ Framed Stream Train Wheels Print – $173.39
- Metal Framed Mirror with Shelf – $175.70 w/ 2DAY ($225) (code expires 9/10/19)
Empty spaces can be underrated, but sometimes filling up said space in an intentional way can create a desired affect. If a single picture hanging on a wall isn’t doing it for you, add to it by creating a grouping. Compliment the picture with other hanging objects. A mirror or two, a planter that attaches to the wall, a small shelf, a decorative hook. All these things can come together in a cohesive fashion to create a well placed grouping, and you might have some interesting objects hanging around your house that would look right a home on a wall.
2. Clean out & organize your drawers
- Madesmart Interlocking Drawer Organizer Bins – $8.95
- Royal Casa Bamboo Adjustable Drawer Dividers (4 pack) – $29.87
- InterDesign Linus Medium Drawer Organizer Starter Kit – $37.95
I know this isn’t something your guests will see, but you see it. Every freaking time you open the drawer. Can you tell I’m a little bitter about a junk drawer in my space right now? Every time I open it, I feel like it sucks some energy out of me. And I even have an organizer tray in the drawer! Clear out some junk, and make it easier for your brain to find the scotch tape or a paperclip. Opening a drawer to grab a pen should not be an exercise in patience.
3. Swap out a rug
- Black/White Chevron 5′ x 7′ Area Rug – $129.99
- Bazaar Piper Gray 8′ x 10′ Area Rug – $159
- Synthetic Rawhide 6’2″ x 8′ Rug – $174.67
- Brookside Handel Indigo 6’7″ x 9’6″ Area Rug – $329.97 ($799)
Or add a rug if you don’t have one. This will immediately change the look of the space you want to freshen up. Home Depot can be a good source for affordable large rugs. You can also check your local TJ Maxx/Homegoods store, they typically have very affordable rug options.
4. Upgrade an appliance
- Keemo 2 Slice Toaster – $39.99
- Cuisinart Perfectemp 14 Cup Programmable Coffee Maker – $99.99
- Oster Heritage Blend Blender – $59.99
Are you still working with a cheap toaster from college? Perhaps your blender has seen better days. Or maybe your coffee maker was a Rite Aid purchase in a moment of caffeine deprived panic. Any of those appliances that typically sit out on your kitchen counter add visual cues to the room, whether you realize it or not. Upgrading to a cleaner, new version can completely change the look of a counter. Also, keep the outside of your appliances wiped down. Caked on gunk and finger smudges aren’t a good look. (photo credit)
5. Rearrange a room
Simple, yet effective. Exercise your creativity and change a room up in your home. It’s oddly refreshing to walk into a space that is still familiar because all of the furniture and decor is the same as it was, but the layout is completely different. Don’t let things like where the cable outlet is located stop you from trying a new setup. Get creative. (photo credit)
6. Try some new pillow covers
- Home Brilliant Plaid Cotton/Linen 2-pack Pillow Covers – $11.98
- motion52 Navy Blue Pillow Cover – $10.80 to $19.80
- Arrows 12″ x 20″ Pillow Cover – $14.50
- Mecor Cotton/Linen 4-pack Decorative Pillow Covers – $16.99
A striking pillow case/cover can immediately draw a guests eye to it. Plus it can set the tone for a room. Throw pillows can be expensive, but pillow covers, with affordable inserts, won’t break the bank. Just be sure when you shop for covers that you either buy the right size for the pillow you want to cover, or buy pillow inserts if they’re not included.
7. Intentionally place an item on an empty tabletop
- Portico Standing Planter – $19.99
- Iron Lantern – $25.99
- Tabletop Glass Fireplace – $34 to $45
- Deep Sea Sand Art – $85
- Coffee Table Books – prices vary
I know this one seems vague, but I’m not talking about grabbing a bowl out of your cupboard and setting in on an empty end/coffee table. I’m talking about placing something really cool or eye-catching on an table that typically sits empty. You don’t have to clutter things up. Just one unique item can be all it takes.
8. Git rid of the things you really don’t want anymore
People are weird. We’re like squirrels. A lot of us like to pack stuff into our space. I’m sure this behavior comes from our distant past, when our environment wasn’t saturated with disposable stuff, so when you found something valuable, you kept it around. But now we are inundated with cheap shit, and it’s fun to buy, so we collect. If you’re feeling kind of overwhelmed by all the stuff you’ve collected, you can apply this exercise to each and every thing. Ask yourself: Do I want it? Have I used it in the past 12 months, or will I use it in the next 12? Does it serve its purpose any longer? (As in do you actually use it?). If you answer no to any of those three questions, part ways with it. Bonus: sell it and make some cash! (photo credit)
9. Add some plants
- Agave Plant Watercolor Art Printable Poster – $4
- Mid Century Modern Plant Stand with Cement Pot – $29.95+
- Nature in Circles Framed Wall Art – $40
- Faux Potted Senita Cactus – $22.48
- Golden Dieffenbachia Silk Plant – $47.77
- Artificial Tropical Yucana Tree – $61.99
If you tend to kill plants, add some fake ones. We’re meant to convene with nature. Having a little of it indoors, even if it’s in the form of fake plants, photos, or art, is relaxing. Get some green in your environment.
10. Clean up your fridge (both inside and out)
- Black Marble Magnets (set of 4) – $10
- Brass Shotgun Shell Magnets (set of 4) – $8.75
- Meal Planning Fridge Magnet – $12
- StorageMaid Refrigerator Organizer Set – $34.95
Refrigerators have the tendency to become a hot mess, inside and out. Inside gunk gets spilled, old food mysteriously disappears to the back, and things can just get pretty haphazard. On the outside a mish-mash of magnets might be dutifully adhering expired coupons, that picture your 3 year old nephew drew for you, a recipe you tore out of a magazine. That, too, can get haphazard pretty quickly. Getting this mess dialed in and organized can create a whole different feeling approaching your fridge, and opening it up. And who says you have to use the outside of your fridge for random pieces of paper? Attach stuff you actually like to look at. And if you’ve had a recipe attached to your fridge for more than 3 months and you haven’t made it, toss it.
About the Author: Sarah is a long time member of the Dappered team, typically working behind the scenes editing posts, taking some photos, and keeping the books in good standing. Occasionally she’ll come out from behind the curtain to offer her two cents.