Friday, January 23, 2015

7 Easy Ways to take your home from Builder-Grade to Designer-Grade

Feeling uninspired by all the cookie-cutter elements in new homes today?   New builds often lack character and charm mostly due to the fact that builders, to cut on costs, use the same materials that they get in bulk for low prices in the majority of the homes they build .  Most builder-grade materials are prebuilt or mass-produced furnishings such as cabinetry, but can also include lighting, flooring and paint. Here are some quick and simple ways to take your home from boring builder-grade to exciting designer-grade without breaking the bank in purchase upgrades.

Tile It

Kitchens and bathrooms sell homes.  They are the two most valuable rooms in your home and so they are the best places to start upgrading to bring value to your investment.
Bring in some tile to white bare walls in your bathroom.  Glass and mosaics can add a ton of interest.  Try to vary the tiles you use for a more textured look. 
Use tile around mirrors, and try bringing the tile up to the ceiling for more drama.

Photo by Wish Décor

Photo by Wish Décor
Many builder-grade homes do not have any type of backsplash installed in either the bathrooms or the kitchen. Add a backsplash behind sinks and around bathtubs.

Photo by Wish Décor
Tile little nooks used for towels and toiletries. 
Just a little tile work can go a long way. All these minor touches can add great pizazz to ordinary bathrooms and can take them from drab to fab in no time.
Bring In Some Charm with Hardware
Changing old cabinet hardware for new is a sure, inexpensive way to quickly add form and function to any piece of furniture and it can do the same for your cabinets as well.  Hardware can instantly transform your builder-grade cabinets and update your entire space.


 Design Is In the Details
Try adding some decorative legs (finial feet) to your existing cabinetry. It is a little detail that offers a polished, custom look to standard cabinetry without burning a hole in your wallet.
Sarah Richardson Design
Another way to change the look of ordinary cabinets in your kitchen or bathroom is to change a few cabinet doors.  Changing the doors is considerably less expensive than changing the framing. You can simply add glass doors, doors with a different contrasting color or even omit the doors in some areas to create open shelving for more depth and interest. If you are particularly handy, sanding and painting cabinet doors is also a great way to bring in some personality and character.  Just like in bathrooms, adding a backsplash to your kitchen will also greatly improve the appearance of your kitchen as well.

Samantha Pynn Design

Photo by

Add Some Dazzle with Fixture Flare
Lighting plays an important role in a home's design scheme.  Switch out the old, standard, unattractive low-quality fixtures and turn tired lighting into something special by adding some sparkle to your lighting .
Photo by Wish Décor
Photo by Wish Décor
Swap a fixtures dated dome for a crisp modern drum shade that will diffuse light softly throughout the room.  Covering a shade in a coordinating fabric will give your space that "pulled together" designer look in no time.  
Photo by Wish Décor
 Mirror, Mirror on the Wall
You can add instant charm and have the fairest house on the street by replacing your bathroom mirrors. A great way to elevate the look and feel of any bathroom or powder room.

Photo by Roomscapes Luxary Design Center
Photo by crbs co.
Want to add even more zest? Pump up the volume by adding wallpaper.  It is a great way to add interest with patterns and textures and can be used for any accent wall in your home.
Let There Be Color
Nothing screams builder-grade like white paint on every wall.  Adding color to the walls of each room in your home is an easy and relatively inexpensive way to improve the atmosphere in your home and make it come to life with energy.   
Don't Forget About The Windows 
Another quick and easy way to dress up any room and instantly change its appearance is to add quality window treatments. Try to keep rods simple and go for rods with decorative finials for a more polished look.  Hang insulated drapery whenever possible.  They have a protective liner that helps block out heat, cold drafts and sound when closed.  If you still want some natural light to enter the room while still providing some privacy, hang a lace or sheer curtain inside of the insulated panels using a double curtain rod. These curtains will help you save on both heating and cooling costs if you have builder-grade windows. 

Photo by Wish Décor
Photo by Wish Décor
You can take your home from ordinary to extraordinary by implementing all or some of these simple upgrades. Embellish cleverly and take it one project at a time.  This way you can slowly create the home you always wanted without breaking the bank.




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