The Best Tips for Fall Decorating On a Budget – An Exhaustive Compilation

best-tips-fall-decorating-on-budget-exhaustiveI’m coming at you today with the BEST fall budget friendly decorating tips. Are you excited!? Are you pumped!? Me too!! No one has a limitless budget–and everyone is looking for great deals and bargains galore. I was standing in the middle of dollar general the other day when I realized that I share shopping guides with y’all all the time but I never ever share some of my best shopping tips! That’s a real bummer. So below is the culmination of years of personal budget shopping research compiled into one place just for you. This is a hardcore budget shopping guide so grab a snack and get ready to save big bucks!

WHERE TO SHOP

Thrift Stores – It’s the last place you might think to look but I’ve found some amazing finds for literally pennies on fall dinnerware, glassware, flatware, cookie jars, figurines, faux floral, baskets, candle holders, candles, art, and picture frames. And bonus: it’s a sustainable way to shop. If you don’t already have a thrift store you visit frequently(you should because your missing out on great deals) visit the nearest Salvation Army which is located in almost every town. The next place I would look is a non-profit resale store.

Facebook Market Place –  You’re probably already on Facebook at this moment–hopefully that’s one of the ways you found this blog post–and Facebook Market Place is an excellent way to find great deals on someone else’s cast-offs. You would be amazed at all the stuff people are selling on there for next to nothing. The sky is the limit and you can be really specific about what you’re looking for by setting alerts for certain categories so you’ll get first dibs on an item you’ve been looking for.

Garage Sales – this is kind of a crap-shoot but the best way to go about this without wasting tons of time is to check the paper and craigslist a week before you’re planning on hunting. Sort through the posts and hone in on the houses that are selling the fall decor you’re looking for and get there early. Bonus: Garage sale shopping is an excellent excuse for early morning donuts.

Estate Sales – This is a real goldmine for seasonal decor and household items. Again, do your research a week in advanced online and in the paper to hone in on the houses that have what you’re looking for. Don’t expect to find treasures here at penny prices but do be respectful when asking about bulk pricing. Respect that these items belonged to a person who was once alive and that their family may attach sentimental value to them. Usually though, I’ve had great luck finding dinnerware and faux floral.

Dollar Tree – I love Dollar Tree. They have some really amazing deals and the stores are usually very very clean and the staff is always super friendly. My fall finds here are: dish towels, pot holders, dish drying mats, pillar candles, taper candles, glass taper holders($1 each), candleholders, matching dish sets/glass ware, charger plates, faux floral, seasonal disposable party supplies, small hanging signs, and wall hangings. Don’t forget BALLOONS! Dollar tree has the best balloon section for cheap! They are $1 each!

Dollar General – In Texas Dollar Generals can kind of be a hot mess, but if you live in Nashville were they are headquartered Dollar Generals are AWESOME! They have what they call super stores and they are like small Walmarts with grocery and three times the amount of stuff. If you are lucky enough to live in the Nashville area I’m probably already preaching to the choir. Nashvillians know! Dollar Generals in Dallas are still great and I buy the same sort of things from them as I do Dollar Tree with a few exceptions. My fall picks here are: floor rugs, dish towels, pot holders, dish drying mats, faux floral(I think dollar general has great faux floral), jar candles, metal yards signs & figurines, front door signs, wreaths, table runners, placemats, tabletop decor, serving platters, coffee cups, and string lights.

Hobby Lobby – God’s craft store is the best craft store! Right now all their fall decor–including floral–is 40% off. It’s a great place to shop and use the always available 40% off coupon. If something your looking for is not on sale then wait for it to go on sale–because it will. They have the best floral, ribbons, and votive/pillar candles, candle holders, and a wide range decor items, and their craft section can’t be beat. I can’t live without Hobby Lobby. They are the best.

Michael’s Craft Store – Like Hobby Lobby but less of a selection and the prices are a little higher. Definitely use coupons and shop sales here. Also sign up for their emails because they have crazy flash sales all the time and that’s where you can get some really good deals.

 

FREE STUFF

Nature has a bounty of things for free that you can use to decorate your home. I gather branches, acorns, and fallen leaves from the park near my house. I gather pine cones from the tree across the street. I’ve gathered wild flowers and sunflowers from the field up the road. Sometimes, when I see a tree service trimming trees in a neighborhood I stop and ask if I can have a few small branches. If you had a fruit tree in your yard you could use the fallen fruit like apples and pears. See wild grapevine on the side of the highway or climbing a tree in your neighbors pasture? Stop and take some home with you or call your neighbor and ask if you can cut a few vines to take home. If you own your house you could buy a packet of wildflower seeds and plant them to use as cut flowers in vases around your house. Be creative! Decor from nature can be anything you want it to be.

 

DIY

DIY is your budget keeper friend. You don’t even have to stretch your brain too far for ideas–search Pinterest. Use search terms such as: DIY Fall Pillar Candles, DIY Fall Wreath, DIY Fall Pine Cones, DIY Fall, etc. I’ve compiled a short list below to jump start you with easy and budget friendly DIY projects.

  • Candles are your friend. Tie a string, yarn, or twine around each one with a few twigs or a cute tag for a festive fall look.
  • The Dollar Tree has great plate chargers for $1 a piece. You can leave them the color they come in or spray paint them any color you like to match your fall table-scape.
  • Use leaves and pinecones as filler. Place a few small leaves in the bottom of a mason jar and place a pillar candle inside. Tie some twine around the lid. Festive and easy.
  • Buy faux pumpkins from the dollar tree and spray paint them white so they transition through every month until Christmas. Use as vase filler, in bowls, or strewn across a mantel or TV stand for a festive touch.
  • Buy the $1 glass taper candle holders from the Dollar Tree and spray paint any color that suites your decor color scheme. You can do this for any candle holders you find at the thrift stores as well. It’s a great way to turn transform something from ugly to elegant–stick with white or gold for a universal look you can use year round.
  • Ribbon and burlap are your friends. You can transform any jar, vase, candleholder, basket, front door, or table-scape with ribbon or burlap fabric. Hobby Lobby has the best prices and selection for fall ribbon and fabric. Bonus: use their 40% off coupon which you can download and print from their website or get from their app.
  • Spray paint pinecones you’ve gathered and make a fall wreath. Use your 40% off coupon at Hobby Lobby to buy a cheap grapevine wreath to glue them too. Bonus: find a ugly wreath at a thrift store and remove all the floral using its wreath for your new pinecone wreath.
  • Find baskets and spray paint them to match your fall decor. Add ribbon and faux floral to make them more festive.

 

MORE TIPS & TRICKS

  • Tuesday Morning, Home Goods, At Home, Walmart, and the Target dollar bin, are always great places to check for really good deals. You just have to make sure you don’t get sucked in. All stores mix in their higher end stuff with the dollar bin stuff so be savvy and if it looks like its worth $1 but they want $5, skip it.
  • Repurpose items you already own in your home like chalkboards, plates, candles, glassware, etc.
  • Shop post season sales. 
  • Free printables! The internet is full of free fall printables so take advantage!
  • Spray paint is your friend. If you find something you love the shape/size/contours of but hate the color, spray paint it.
  • Michael’s Craft Store has really great fall scented 32oz jar candles for $6. You can use their coupons too and save an extra 40% sometimes 50% off. That’s $3 per candle. they make great teachers gifts too with a little ribbon and cute name tag added.
  • Walmart has a great selection of inexpensive fall wax melts, wax warmers, and candles. They also carry a line of candles and fragrances from Better Homes & Gardens and Yankee Candle that are inexpensive and a really great deal!
  • The cinnamon broom. I think a lot of people remember their moms hanging up a cinnamon broom during the fall and winter months as kids–I know I do. It’s a two-for-one that smells great but also is a decor piece that adds to your home.
  • Buy faux florals, candles, vases, faux pumpkins, ribbon, etc in neural colors so it translates from September all the way to Christmas. You’ll get more bang for your buck and some of your items such a cream or white colored candles, metal(or metal colored) candle holders, plate chargers, can work with your Christmas and New Years decor too.
  • Sign up for email and text alerts so you always have coupons to shop your favorite stores and jump on sales as soon as they happen.
  • Mix faux and real(or live) pumpkins/gourds and floral. It adds more life to the space and also saves money year to year.
  • Price matching! Stores like Target will price match an item if the price lowers within fourteen days of purchase. Seasonal stuff tends to go on sale frequently during the fall season so watch your emails and alerts and take advantage!
  • Be a part of store’s reward program. Even my local thrift store has a rewards punch card that gives $5 off a purchase. Every penny counts!
  • Check for coupons. Always check for coupons. Search Google or the stores website/app.
  • Reuse what you have year after year. This one seems so simple but I know there can be a lot of internal pressure to ‘keep up with the jones’. Don’t believe that lie you’re telling yourself! Stick to what you love and make it work for you year after year.
  • Hone in on a color scheme & decor style. This is kind of similar to the point above but deciding on a color scheme and decor style keeps you from buying lots of decor that feels bitty and non-cohesive. Buying only a few pieces that coordinate can pull a room together easily and keep you from wasting your money and time.

And finally, I believe you should make room in your budget to splurge on one thing you really want. Items I’d recommend splurging on are ones that can be used throughout the entire holiday season and year after year such as; neutral colored(or colors matching your non-seasonal home decor) cozy throws and blankets, a quality front door wreath, a quality faux floral garland, a glass or ceramic vase to hold fall floral, serving dishes such as a giant platter, that fall throw pillow you’ve been eyeing for weeks and weeks.

Whew! I hope that helps y’all and gives you tons of ideas and inspirations on how you can decorate your home to the nines while still maintaining your budget! I’m sure there are so many tricks and tips I don’t know but that you do! Please share them with me in the comments below and I’ll add them to this post. The more tips and tricks the merrier, right? I hope you’re having a great day and thanks for spending time with me today. I really appreciate y’all caring about my little ol’ life and hanging out with me. Have a great day!

oxox

Maegan

 

Retro Prairie Book Mobile DIY

To say I’m excited to share this DIY tutorial is an understatement! I’ve looked all over the internet and I think my tutorial is the very first tutorial ever made specifically for a Book Mobile. If you’re new here, this DIY was highly requested because of the mobile I made for our Nursery in this blog post. Book mobiles aren’t just for nurseries but also look good in little girl and tween rooms too and would be great decor at weddings and baby showers! I have more exciting news at the end of post so don’t forget to scroll all the way to end! Alright! Let’s jump right in!

Time: 3-4 hours depending on how elaborate your embellishments are

To replicate this book mobile you will need:

1. Book 2. Wooden Horse 3. Ribbon 4. Hammer and Nail 5. Glitter Glue 6. High Temp Hot-Glue Gun 7. Pencil 8. Twine & Fishing Line 9. Several Pieces of Cardboard 10. Paper Flowers 1 & 2 2. X-Acto Knife 12. Paintbrush 13. Blowdryer 14. Glitter 15. Black Paint 16. Ruler

*You will also need a drill if you decided to hang the wooden horse as seen in this tutorial.

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-2

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-3

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-41. First, measure the spine of your book and trace it onto a piece of cardboard. Place your extra cardboard beneath the piece you traced your spine on and with your exact knife cut out the new spine from the cardboard. Make a light first pass with your knife–then a deeper second pass. The cardboard spine is there to provide support for the spine after you’ve removed the pages.

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-5Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-6Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-18

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-72. Release the spine from the end pages of the book. Make several shallow passes at the base of the end pages. The end pages are usually thicker and will be glued to the last thinner pages of the book as well. If you press too hard with your knife you might cut through the spine of the book. As you cut through the end page you will feel the netting as you cut closer to the spine. Cut through the netting slowly from top to bottom. Once the page is released repeat on the other side. Again, be careful not to cut all the way through the spine.

*This is where the blowdryer might come in handy. Every book is different and some have their pages glued onto the spine–that was not the case with this book. But, the book I made my original mobile did. If that is the case, use your blowdryer to help soften the glue and run your knife gently between the spine and the glue to release it.

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-83. Once the pages have been removed place your cardboard spine into the spine of the book. If the cardboard is a tight fit trim it down a little but not too much. The cardboard spine helps the book’s covers stay open. Once the cardboard is the right size glue it down.

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-104. You’ll need to cut a paper spine for your pages to hang from. Cut an inch wide section from one of the books end-pages (because the paper is thicker) and tri-fold it hotdog style. Glue onto the carboard spine.

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-95. Take the extra cardboard and place it under the spine of your book. Using your hammer and nail punch a hole halfway down the spine.

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-116. Thread the twine through the hole and tie a figure eight knot. Pull the string until the knot is flush with the spine and glue it into place.

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-127. Cut pages loose from the binding and determine your page layout. If your book has illustrations you might want to feature them toward the bottom.

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-138. Start by folding your pages hotdo style and gluing three of them into the spine to create your base. Glue at least one page to each side of your new paper spine.

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-149. Keep glueing your pages until a shape starts to form. Make sure your pages are glued on straight. This is tricky to do and I had to stay on top of mine to keep them straight.

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-1710. Paint your horse front and back.

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-1611. While your horse is drying, choose your flower layout and hot glue them to your fishing line. Leave plenty of extra fishing line on the ends to hang them. I also included ribbon for this tutorial because if fishing line isn’t your thing ou could always substitute pretty ribbon!

Maegan-Johnson-Original-DIY-Book-Mobile-Boho,-Retro,-Cowgirl,-Prairie,-Tools,-Items-Needed,-Black-Beauty,-Wedding-Book-Mobile,-Teen-Book-Mobile-1513. Once the horse is dry, paint your horse with glitter glue and glitter your horse wherever you want.

14. Drill a hole in your horse and tie it up with the fishing line.

15. Decide the layout for your embellishments layout and glue them down to the book’s cover.

Hang and enjoy!

Maegan Johnson Original DIY Book Mobile Boho, Retro, Cowgirl, Prairie, Tools, Items Needed, Black Beauty, Wedding Book Mobile, Teen Book Mobile,21Maegan Johnson Original DIY Book Mobile Boho, Retro, Cowgirl, Prairie, Tools, Items Needed, Black Beauty, Wedding Book Mobile, Teen Book Mobile,24Maegan Johnson Original DIY Book Mobile Boho, Retro, Cowgirl, Prairie, Tools, Items Needed, Black Beauty, Wedding Book Mobile, Teen Book Mobile,25Maegan Johnson Original DIY Book Mobile Boho, Retro, Cowgirl, Prairie, Tools, Items Needed, Black Beauty, Wedding Book Mobile, Teen Book Mobile,22Maegan Johnson Original DIY Book Mobile Boho, Retro, Cowgirl, Prairie, Tools, Items Needed, Black Beauty, Wedding Book Mobile, Teen Book Mobile,23

Maegan – xx

 

GIVEAWAY WINNER IS: @Amymooreporter

 

Now as promised the Big Announcement:

 

ONE LUCKY WINNER WILL WIN THIS BOOK MOBILE!

To Enter:

1. Join my email list–you can find the sign-up at the bottom of this post under my photo or in the sidebar if you’re on a desktop/laptop

2. Like this post on my Instagram page and tag a friend on that same post

Done!

One entry for signing up for the email list. One entry for liking the Instagram post and tagging a friend. You get two entries if you do both!

This giveaway will run from 07/12/2018 – 07/19/2018. Winner will be contacted and announced on 07/20/2018. Winner will have 24 hours to contact me. If the winner does not respond to contact in 24 hours another winner will be picked.

*Open to US residents only. Must be 18 years or older to enter.