Have you ever wondered, “Am I spending too much on this”? When it comes to home furnishings sometimes it’s hard to know! Do you have a tough time figuring out what you should spend on things like sofas, side tables, trendy accents or lighting? I think most of us do. With a little homework, a budget and knowing what to splurge on and what to save on you can make a decision on the right furniture for your home! I have decades of first hand experience and lots of research under my belt to help you! Let’s make today the day we know… should I save or should I splurge!
I am the Queen of finding great… no, outstanding buys! I’m not bragging… just fact. Ask any of my friends. 70% off is music to my ears! My home may look expensive but it’s created from being a savvy and shrewd buyer. I like expensive I just don’t like paying for it! Developing an eye for beautiful things and how to put them together is so important!
What to splurge or save on is a very relative question! What I might think is a splurge might be a save to you. It all depends on income and how much we are willing to spend on things for our home. Only you know your budget and your sense of style!
One big piece of advice that has served us well here at StoneGable… create a budget for any home furnishings and try to stick to it. We save up before we spend and that saves a whole lot of buyer’s remorse and financial worry!
Here are some important questions to ask yourself when thinking about buying home decor.
QUESTIONS TO ASK:
How many years do I want to get out of this piece?
The longer you want to hold on to a piece of furniture or home accent the more you should consider spending. Quality is the important thing when you want something live in your home any length of time.
Just a word of caution: many of us get tired of a piece far before we think we will!
How long do I expect this piece to hold up?
Only spend the amount of money you want your home furnishing to hold up. Here, let me explain…
We bought two 18th century sofas 31 years ago (I was just a baby). We saved and saved and spent a fortune on them. They were exquisite! As years passed styles changed and I finally tired of them. One problem thought, they were still beautiful… not in style, but beautiful! Never did I think when I was purchasing them just how long I expected them to hold up. Because we spent so much money on them and they stayed in great shape for decades I could not in good conscience get rid of them. They lived at StoneGable for 27 years! Twenty years longer than I really wanted them. If you remember one thing from this post… remember that!
How much will this piece get used?
If a piece gets heavy use spend more. Think about quality and great wearing fabric!
Is this piece a classic or trendy style?
Classics can stand style changes and therefore get more use than any other styles because they stay in vogue longer. So, spend more on classics that stand the test of time. Trendy is fun but think of them as almost disposable!
Can I use this in another part of my home?
You can get lots more wear from a chair that you can move from the living room to the bedroom. Or a side table from the family room to the living room. The more places a piece of furniture or an accent can be used the more you can (not should) spend!
Now, let’s talk about what home furnishings to splurge on and what to save on! You might not agree on everything on either list. And that’s okay. These lists will give you something to think about!
We spend up to one third of our lives in bed. Your body deserves a comfortable, well made mattress! This is the number one home furnishing to spend your money on! A good night’s sleep is priceless!
Heavily Used Furniture
Furniture you use every day should be a splurge. Consider comfort first! Buy good quality, reputable brands when they are on sale.
I like to get 7 to 10 years out of a sofa. So I will spend just enough to get 7 years out of it. But I want 7 comfortable years that the sofa and the material has held up very well!
Kitchen tables and chairs, dining room tables and chairs (if used heavily) dressers, bookcases and buffets are all examples of “splurge” items!
If you sit any length of the day at a desk or office space get a great chair. Your back will thank you!
Recliners tend to be very hard use chairs. And they have moving parts. Get the best you can afford! Now you can find beautiful, chic recliners that look like club chairs. Who knew?
Just like a mattress, pillows make a big difference in your sleeping habits. Get one that works best for you no matter the cost! And replace it when it wears out!
Mirrors are a real toss up. I have both expensive, investment mirrors and very inexpensive ones! So, maybe mirrors can be both a save and a splurge. I must admit the mirrors I still swoon over and the ones that are fabulous quality and cost more. A beautifully made mirror stands out!
Save money when buying accent chairs that don’t get much wear! You can even find accent chairs at vintage and second hand shops. Think about painting or having them reupholstered.
Many discounted online furniture sites have amazing buys on accent chairs! A note of caution… make sure you know the shipping cost.
There are so many places to find affordable and amazing decorative or throw pillows! Don’t get sucked into the uber expensive fabrics that send the price of pillow through the roof! Think of accent pillows as seasonal jewelry. If you pay less for them you can change them up.
One small investment is buying down inserts for your pillows. They make a difference!
Nightstands, side tables and coffee tables are the kind of furniture that you don’t have to spend big bucks on. I would say don’t go cheap, but don’t splurge. Think about upcycling what you already have with paint!
There is gorgeous lighting out there! And some lighting is way too expensive for most of us! All these gorgeous lamps and chandy’s and light fixtures might look amazing in our homes but unless they are scrutinized it’s hard to tell their quality. For me, lighting is all about style. Most popular high end styles have more inexpensive knock-offs! Save your money and get a knock off!
The chandy in my dining room was just over $200.00 on amazon.com. A great buy!
I might get some blowback from this! If you are an art lover and invest in art then by all means splurge. But if you just want to fill your walls with what you love I say save! Sometimes art can look expensive and original if you splurge a little on the frame.
Curtains are a save item in my book. I make or find them on sale. My local Pottery Barn Outlet has beautiful curtain panels for less than $12.00 a panel. If you save on curtains you can get more than one pair and change them seasonally! There are really nice online curtain companies. Peruse them and I bet you can find stunning curtains for a reasonable price!
I made the curtains in my living room and dining room. They fabric was on sale. The biggest cost to me was sweat equity!
Accent Pieces and Accessories
Instead of investing in expensive accent pieces and accessories that will go out of style and end up in the basement, invest your time looking for inexpensive accessories that LOOK expensive! That’s a win/win!
Like mirrors I could put rugs in either the save or splurge category! If you are buying wall to wall carpeting that must last for years, I say get the best you can afford! But if you are using area rugs, find good ones on great sales or buy great looking inexpensive rugs.
We spent big bucks on a few gorgeous oriental rugs for StoneGable that are now rolled up in our basement. Will we ever use them again? Probably. But that’s a whole lot of money to be sitting in the basement right now! My favorite rug is a zebra pelt in the living room. I got it online. I can’t say is was inexpensive, but it was a song compared to a real zebra pelt!
One of the most asked questions I get is, “Where did you get your dining room rug”? It’s actually an indoor/outdoor rug. Perfect for a dining room and quite inexpensive! Nothing we spill on it stains! BTW: It came from Ballard Designs.
TRENDY DECOR ITEMS
Trendy items are here one day and gone the next. Use them in your home with an edited eye and don’t spend much money on them! They will update your room but just don’t let them brake your bank!
I hope this will help you make those hard decisions about saving or splurging on furnishings! Whether you decide to save or splurge make sure you LOVE what you put in you home!
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