How To Refresh Your Home Without Doing Major Work

Six ideas to give your space a brand-new look in 2022, no renovations required. 

By Sasha Gonzales        19 February 2022

If your home is looking a little “blah” or out-dated, but you don’t have the time or money to renovate it, you can update it or give it a fresh new look by changing out your curtains or lighting, adding new accents and accessories, or simply moving your furniture around. In addition to being relatively inexpensive, these home upgrading and makeover hacks won’t take up too much of your time and don’t require you to break down any walls.

1. Update the drawer pulls and door handles on cabinetry

Give tired-looking drawers, wardrobes, cupboards and cabinets a new, trendy look by removing the worn and dirty drawer pulls, door handles and knobs, and replacing them with modern ones. There are plenty of interesting and eye-catching designs to choose from, in bronze, aged copper, stainless steel, and so on. If your kitchen is still stuck in the 2000s, for instance, shiny steel hardware can help bring it into the 2020s. Don’t feel like you have to go with a bulky style, though – sleek and minimal can be chic, too.

2. Fill your home with plants

Whether your home is small or spacious, plants can lift its overall look and vibe. The greenery you pick doesn’t have to be high-maintenance. Cacti, succulents, palms, ferns, money plants and snake plants are hardy and thrive in our climate. Potted herbs and flower arrangements can be just as effective at enhancing your place. Homes with flowers and greenery not only look and feel more inviting; they’re also better to live in. Studies have found that indoor plants and flowers can boost our mood, increase creativity, reduce stress and help purify the air. Arrange potted plants of various sizes into clusters in various corners or your home to give it that “wow” factor. If you have a balcony, a large planter box filled with colourful flowers and plants makes a great decorative feature.

Not sure where to start? Read our article on how to take care of indoor plants.

3. Create a feature wall

No time or budget to paint your whole house? No problem – consider a feature wall instead. Select one wall that you’d like to stand out and paint it in a striking colour (Pantone’s Colour of the Year 2022 is Very Peri, a combination of periwinkle blue and violet) or simply wallpaper it (try a fun print). You can leave the “new” feature wall as it is or turn it into a mini photo gallery. Arrange framed photos in odd-number rows and columns for the best effect, for example, 3 x 3 or 5 x 5, depending on how big the photos are. Alternatively, you could just hang one large piece of artwork or an oversized mirror or clock on the feature wall. Find out more about choosing art for your home here.

4. Change your window treatment

New curtains, shades or blinds are an affordable and easy way to update your home. For a breezy and beach-inspired look, try sheer gauze curtains. For a simple and “natural” effect, go with classic bamboo shades. And of course, these days you’ll find curtains in a range of colours, prints and fabrics to complement your home.

5. Replace the lighting

Well-positioned standing or table lamps, new lampshades and pendant lighting are all good ways to switch up the lighting in your home. Use these as a design feature or to enhance or accentuate specific areas of your home. For instance, a table lamp in a sculptural shape can resemble a piece of art even when it’s not on; a large chandelier or ceiling light can make a strong statement; while pendant lighting can divide an open area into distinct spaces.

6. Rearrange your furniture

Simply reconfiguring the various rooms in your home can have a spectacular effect, making them look different and maybe even leaving your guests wondering if you’ve bought new furniture. And the best part is that you don’t have to spend a cent. Experiment with different configurations to see what works best. For extra style and interest, add area rugs, cushions, throws and decorative accessories like table sculptures, oversized candles and coffee table books.

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