How to decorate your living room on a budget
Looking for simple budget living room ideas? We spoke to a Persimmon homeowner about how he gave the living room in his Hatfield a new look for a low cost.
All images: @from_hatfield_to_home
A new place to call home
My name is Jonathan and I work in a primary school. I live with my husband, who also works in education, and our 5 year old son.
We purchased our Persimmon Hatfield 9 years ago as a new build. At the time, we were both cabin crew and the location of our house was great for commuting to London.
What first attracted us to the Hatfield house was the beautiful open and light hallway. With the house being a new build, I loved how it was just a clean slate to put all our ideas into.
We chose Persimmon as we felt they provided the most value for money with house size and extras compared to other builders. The Persimmon sites also seemed to be in more desirable locations in our area.
Image: The first step in in the living room transformation was assembling the IKEA bookcases.
Happiness in a Hatfield
The Hatfield house has been great for us and has grown and adapted really well with our family. I love how adaptable all the rooms are and how easy it is to change their purpose and function. We have had bedrooms as dressing rooms, offices, nurseries and guestrooms. We've used cupboards as offices and even a kids’ art space.
One of the biggest transformations we've made to our house was knocking the kitchen through into our garage. This has created a fantastic open plan family room with living space, dining, utility and kitchen with access to the garden.
Image: The bookcases are fixed in place and the new fireplace surround constructed.
A living room transformation on a budget
Our most recent transformation has been in the front lounge. The space had become very unused after we created the family room and was looking shabby and unloved. I've always been inspired by Victorian and Georgian houses, and in particular the large fireplaces with built in cabinets. I'd always longed to create a room like this in our house.
After receiving several over-the-top quotes to create this look, we decided to tackle it ourselves. With a little bit of imagination and hours of scrolling Instagram, I came across some units from IKEA that I just knew we could work with - after all who doesn't love an IKEA hack! The IKEA Billy bookcase hack has been all over Pinterest and Instagram recently and it’s easy to see why. Our initial units only cost £500. After we added some MDF panelling to the back, a few pieces to the front, filled them and painted them with some Frenchic Lazy Range paint, we had ourselves some bespoke cabinets that cost £650 all in for two units.
Image: The bookcases are finished with MDF and painted using Frenchic.
Top tips for a home transformation
I hear you ask if we have any experience and the answer is no. Total novices, but it's amazing what you can learn off YouTube and an Instagram story. People keep asking me how we fit it all in to the front room of a Hatfield and my answers are always the same: with some imagination and looking past how you feel the rooms should be used, you'll be amazed how adaptable and how spacious the Hatfield can be.
One tip I'd always say when planning, decorating and changing a room is don't rush. Look around, create collages of things you like, moodboards and draw your ideas out. I always draw out ideas without measuring, that allows me to get the look I want and then worry about fitting it in afterwards. Also don't discount cheaper retailers or even charity shops, you'll be amazed what you can find in there, and with some paint you can give it a whole new lease of life.
Image: The finished look, a stunning and classic focal point of the living room, all done for £650!