10 Home Refresh Ideas to Elevate Your Home Without Remodeling

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If you want to give your home a makeover but don’t want to deal with the inconvenience and cost of renovations, this post is for you! There are endless ways to update a home, but these home refresh ideas will make it look expensive without breaking the bank.

classic white kitchen with unlacquered brass hardware, rattan kitchen island stools, Carrara marble countertops, hardwood floors, designer look, high end designs, upscale kitchen

Clean and declutter

The first step to refreshing your home is to clean and declutter. An organized home looks and feels more put together than one that’s filled with clutter.

Clean off surfaces, put things where they belong, and get rid of things you don’t need. Once you declutter, do a deep clean – one room at a time.

Start at the top and work your way down and don’t forget your baseboards!

Head to my Organization Page for quick and easy tips to get your home in order.

Paint the walls and trim

Nothing refreshes a space like a coat (or two) of paint. Maybe you need to touch up some areas or you want to go in a completely different color direction. Choosing the right color paint for your walls will greatly impact the look and feel of your home.

home office with BM Storm Cloud gray paint, patterned linen drapes, builtin cabinets and desk, antique brass hardware, dining room table as desk

SOURCES: Drapes | Table | Rug | Hardware

My home office walls were Benjamin Moore Storm Cloud Gray and while I love the drama of darker walls, my heart belongs to light and bright spaces.

Instead of doing pure white, I went with one of my new favorites – Sherwin-Williams Accessible Beige (at 75%). You’ll see more of it below!

home refresh with paint, walls and builtin cabinets painted SW Accessible beige, leather desk chair, bubble chandelier, hardwood floors with loloi cloud pile rug

SOURCES: Chandelier | Rug

Dark walls are very trendy right now. If you want to give it a try, check out this post for everything you need to know before you paint a room all black.

update a room by painting the walls dark, black magic wall color, white boucle chairs in a dark room with cane cabinet as bar serving area, LVP floros in basement

For a rich-looking space, paint the walls, trim, and doors the same color. This combination creates a sophisticated look. Just use a different sheen for the doors and trim.

Replace light fixtures

One of the first things to go should be any builder-grade boob lights. Nothing ruins a design like cheap, unsightly lights. For any spaces that require flush mount or semi-flush mount fixtures, choose one that matches your style and has a classic design. Skip anything too trendy.

room refresh by replacing boob light with modern light fixture, white walls with builtin shelves, woven shade on window, shelf decor,

Like many of you, my tastes are constantly evolving. While this has led to a few decor regrets, I see it as an ongoing opportunity to refresh my home.

Once the boob lights are taken care of, it’s time to move on to other light fixtures that have a big impact…pendants and chandeliers!

Whether they hang over your kitchen island or brighten your entryway, pendant-style lights can certainly make a statement.

You’ve probably seen them, but have you considered using picture lights around your home?

A great source of accent lighting, picture lights are one of those design details that elevate a space even if you never turn them on. Scroll back up to my office pic to see!

They can be hardwired or you can get rechargeable battery-operated ones instead.

Light bulbs

The brightness and color temperature of your lightbulbs can make or break a room. How do you want your home to feel? Cold and unwelcoming or warm and inviting?

For the latter, using bulbs with a warmer color temperature (2700-3000K) will do the trick. Daylight bulbs (5000K) have a cooler tone and make a space feel more like you’re about to have a medical procedure than a relaxing evening with your family.

recessed light replacement with adjustable color temperature
person showing recessed light flush in the ceiling

The key here is to be consistent. You can vary the brightness or lumens of the bulbs where appropriate but keep the temperature the same throughout your home for a cohesive feel.

Another lighting component that will spruce up your home is new switchplates with a dimmer. Sometimes it’s the little details that make a lighting design come together.

Update window treatments

Properly dressed windows are a home refresh idea that everyone will notice! It’s time to take down those plastic blinds and ill-fitting curtains and do it the right way.

home refresh ideas, replace drapes for custom look, dining room with hardwood floors, white walls with molding, linen pinch pleat drapes

Does that mean paying a fortune for custom drapes? The answer is NO!

A few years ago I found the perfect custom-look for less linen drapes that give high-end retailers a run for their money. Once I hung my first pair, I knew these were a legitimate alternative and replaced all my current drapes.

Stefana Silber adjusting her linen living room drapes next to builtin shelf

Available in multiple colors and patterns, it’s impossible not to find a perfect match. I recommend ordering the swatch samples to see exactly how the colors will look in your home.

Woven roman shades are the latest addition to the Two Pages family and they couldn’t be easier to install. Check out the simple process in my post that explains how to measure, order, and install them for more details.

Pairing natural materials of woven shades with linen drapes is the epitome of texture and layers- two of the most important details of any high-end design.

Another way you can update your home is with interior window shutters. They are a little costly compared to other options, but they are known to increase the value of your home when it comes time to sell.

home refresh ideas for windows, corner of living room with interior window shutters and linen drapes, white velvet West Elm Marin sofa, builtin shelves and cabinets

SOURCES: White velvet sofa | Drapes | Decorative cane boxes | Drawer pulls | Cabinet knobs

Add wall treatments

This is one of my favorite ways to refresh a room in my home. It takes a little work but it’s worth every bit of time and effort!

Molding and trim add visual interest to your walls. As you can see in the images below, I installed wall molding in my entry and continued it up the stairway and down the upstairs hallway.

You can hire a professional but that adds unnecessary costs, especially since this is a job you can DIY. For details about the process and all the tools and materials you’ll need, read my post on hallway molding installation.

entryway with wall molding  going up stairway, hardwood floors
upstairs hallway with white walls, molding, photo gallery wall

Another project you can DIY is vertical shiplap. This style is a bit more relaxed than molding, but it still creates a fresh new look.

You can install individual boards or use panels. My vertical shiplap tutorial goes into the details of the process.

home refresh in mudroom, vertical shiplap, colorful wall art, nuvolette wallpaper, mudroom builtin cabinets, checkerboard marble floors

I’m at the point where I’m comfortable hanging wallpaper and love the way it transforms each room. Choosing a pattern can be overwhelming, but the process of hanging and removing wallpaper doesn’t have to be.

primary bathroom with neutral color scheme, novelette wallpaper, cane bed, beige velvet quilt, white nightstand, hand knotted rug on hardwood floors
room refresh with wallpaper, plaid neutral wallpaper in bedroom desk setup along wall with linen chair
girls room with block print wallpaper to refresh the space, scalloped wicker side table mauve velvet bed

Change up your wall art

A photo gallery wall is unique because you can swap out the photographs and keep the frames and configuration the same. Update your photos with the latest but keep a few old ones to reflect on fond memories.

blank wall with asymmetric photo gallery wall with black and white family photos, home refresh ideas

You don’t have to go out and buy new wall art. Most of the things you already have are probably versatile enough to be used in other rooms in your home. Go ahead and shuffle things around to refresh your home. See how different this floor mirror looks in each space?

Anthro gleaming primrose floor mirror in hallway
home refresh idea, rearrange furniture and decor, Anthro Gleaming Primrose mirror moved into primary bedroom with wallpaper

Update your cabinet hardware

Cabinet knobs and drawer pulls may not seem like a big part of your interior design. Go ahead and change them then see what a big difference it makes!

Even if you keep the same finish but change the style of hardware it will be noticeable. I was hesitant to jump on the brass hardware trend, but I couldn’t believe how it transformed the look of my kitchen.

The original polished nickel hardware and light fixtures had a classy look, but the switch to unlacquered brass hardware added warmth and a bit of luxury.

corner of classic white kitchen with Carrara marble countertops, polished nickel hardware
updated and refreshed corner of classic white kitchen with Carrara marble countertops, unlacquered brass hardware

Again, I recommend going with a style of hardware that fits with the look of your home. Classic and vintage collections are always a top choice. For my home office cabinets, I added Cremone bolts to the doors and I love the charm they bring to the space.

home office with builtin cabinets and desk, metal inserts in doors, Cremona bolds, picture light over large wall art, paint is BM Storm Cloud Gray
close up of antique brass Cremone bolts on home office cabinet doors

Rearrange furniture and decor

I’m all about shopping my home when it’s time for a home refresh. If your space allows it, try rearranging your furniture for a different look. I’ve had several different setups in my hallway over the years and it’s neat to see how you can update a room just by moving furniture.

white hallway with molding, white boucle bench with throw pillows styled near stairway
home refresh, same image with different bench and pillow

Sometimes I feel the urge to get new furniture and all it takes for me to get past it is to move my stuff around. For example, I have several side tables in my home. Switching them around or replacing them with an ottoman does the trick.

If you are into refinishing furniture, that’s a great option too for sprucing things up! I learned how to paint the vanity in our primary bathroom and am thrilled with the results. Notice the color – SW Accessible Beige!

original bathroom vanity in garage ready to be painted
home refresh bathroom, painted vanity in marble primary bathroom , SW Accessible Beige

The change of seasons is an inspiring time to give your home a makeover. The colors and textures used in each season can be wildly different. Swapping things like throw pillows and blankets for the upcoming season will surely give your home a fresh look.

Summer decor is light and breezy but when the temperatures start to drop I make the change to a fall color palette. Woven materials, plaids, earthy tones…all reflections of the season and transform my home with little effort.

wood cane cabinet styled with boots and other decor, wall art above with fall landscape, vertical shiplap on wall

Don’t overlook your floors! They tend to get dirty and your throw rugs are no exception. Get a new area rug for your living room or brighten your kitchen with a new runner. You’ll be surprised how much this inexpensive update will make a room feel like new!

Budget-friendly options

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to do a home refresh. If you find an expensive light fixture or cabinet hardware you love, there is always a less expensive designer-inspired option out there. See for yourself in my Restoration Hardware furniture on a budget post.

You don’t have to modernize your entire home at once. Stick to “shopping your home” or doing something simple like updating bathroom linens or getting new dishes. Little changes add up to big ones!

Sources

See something you like? Tap the images to check them out!

large piatto pendant
round wooden table
Anthropologie gleaming primrose mirror
Serena and Lily Shore Bench
glass bubble chandelier
white 3 drawer nightstand
brass cabinet door latch
scalloped side table
Anthropologie cane bed
wal art
vintage look laundry basket on wheels
Serena and Lily Balboa counter stools

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