Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Cheap Decor: As Low as the Floor

I am a decorating magazine fiend.

I love them all. 

Actually, I must say that my favourites are the Canadian publications Canadian House & Home and Style at Home. 

I also quite enjoy the American publication Better Homes & Gardens.

And I miss...oh how I miss...the amazing but now defunct Domino.

A moment of silence for the passing of my favourite decorating magazine.
Boo Hoo!

No really!

Thank you.

Now in these publications, they often have a feature called "Hi / Low" whereby they showcase two rooms that are quite similar, but one is decorated with items that are significantly more expensive than the other. And the reader is supposed to guess which one is the expensive one and which one is the "cheap" one.


Now with my vast history of reading and studying these magazines, I am almost always right in picking out which is which. I usually recognize a lamp from IKEA in the cheaper room or notice the intricacies of the design quality of the chair in the expensive room.

But my thing is this. 

The way that I decorate goes way beyond (or behind?) the "low" decorating showcased in these magazines. I am no frickin' millionaire peeps.

My idea of a decor "splurge" is purchasing something at Homesense, or Bouclair or some Big Box Retailer. Sometimes even a larger item from IKEA is considered a "splurge" in my book. 

But sometimes IKEA is just common sense. 

...and they have yummy meatballs peeps!
And $1 breakfasts yo!
True dat!

You see, I really love to find stuff using the consignment route. My "low" purchases tend to come from garage sales, The Goodwill, Value Village (VV Boutique is what my Mom and I like to call it!), The Salvation Army Thrift Store and Flea Markets.

I mean come on!
How fun to look through all of these treasures!!!

I luuuuuuuuurrrrrvvvvve a good deal! I also love the thrill of the find. I actually wrote about this a while back here

I generally use decor and design magazines as inspiration rather than shopping guides.

If I see an idea that I like, I ear mark it or tear out the page and stash it in one of my many "home inspiration" binders. And then I source my stuff as inexpensively as I can.

I have even found beautiful treasures at dollar stores, on the side of the road and by another fun past time (that my husband hates!) - dumpster diving! 

OK. To be clear...I don't actually dive into dumpsters like this chick.
But if someone's garbage at the side of the road is my gold, I have no shame in grabbing it!
Yo! You got a problem with that?

Finding something great for free is the best deal there is!

Hi and Low cost decorating is, of course, all relative to whatever your budget is. But I think if I ever struck it rich, I would still be scouring the aisles at the thrift stores, hunting for the next treasure, and framing my children's art to display in my home.

But I must admit, I would also take a few field trips to Elte, Ginger's, Restoration Hardware and all of those other beautifully curated shops that I get much of my inspiration from.

Until then, you will find me Goodwill Hunting...looking for treasures, with a smile on my face.

"Hi Low, hi's off to shop I go!"




  1. I am so with you Lora! Love your home decor related posts! I have been reading your blog for about 6 months...I am such a fan! How do you do it all with your boys? And you are so beautiful as well! I am in the US but will check out those Canadian magazines you mentioned! I miss Domino too. Take care! Janice Dover

  2. The dumpster dive picture is priceless!