Living Room Project Update: How I Spent $500 in One Room

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3 months ago I shared with you my plans for the living room, using the $500 I was given by a sweet friend. Today I’m back with the reveal! Below is the “before” picture. My plans were to find a new rug, new window coverings, at least one corner table and a few accessories.

And here is the “after!”

The window treatment might be my favorite part of this project. I ordered light filtering Bamboo Shades from Home Depot. They offer enough privacy for this room and look exactly how I hoped they would.

I couldn’t be happier with my rug. It’s a 7×10 Artistic Weavers rug from Home Depot that I was able to purchase on sale for just over $100!

chair / lamp

Another item on my list was a rattan shelf or plant stand for this corner. I found this one at a local vintage boutique for $75 and it’s perfect! I styled it with things I had on hand. (Since taking these pictures I’ve handled the cord situation)

While shopping for my bamboo shelf I came across a pair of brass bookends that were also on my list!

Having a rug large enough to go all the way under the couch makes the room look much more finished.

I did not find anything for the hallway wall on the left (in the picture below). I’m okay with that – I don’t want to buy something just because I have a space to fill.

Here’s how I spent the $500:

  • Rug: $103
  • Bamboo Shades: $211
  • Bamboo Corner Shelf: $75
  • Accessories: $20
  • Labor (to have the shades installed): $50

That leaves me with about $40 in my budget! The two things I’m still looking for are a small plant stand to place next to the black book shelf and something for the hallway wall. Even without those things, I feel like the room came together so nicely!

As I was writing this post, this verse came to my mind: “A desire fulfilled is sweet to the soul.” (Proverbs 13:19) I’m so thankful for the kindness of another that allowed me to fulfill some big desires in my living room! Everything we have is a gift of God’s grace.

What is your favorite part of this project? I really think the bamboo shades get my vote!

20 thoughts on “Living Room Project Update: How I Spent $500 in One Room

  1. What a generous friend!! And your room looks fantastic! Amazing what accents and those “small” extra touches can do to transform a space!! Thanks for sharing – and the inspiration!


  2. What an incredibly generous gift put to great use! πŸ˜€ I love these wonderful updates! Your new rug in beautiful white and blue definitely suits your style! The bamboo shades look lovely too! Rejoicing with you in this desire fulfilled! ❀


  3. Your living room looks lovely!! The rug is the star of the show for me. It makes such a big statement. Great job updating this space. I hope you find those last couple of things that are on your wish list.


  4. I love seeing the before and after pictures! I think both the rug and shades get my vote; it’s just too hard to choose one or the other! I love how you knew what you were looking for and waited until you found it! I can speak from experience that your room is very inviting and comfortable! You did a great job! How gracious of the one who sent the gracious gift! The Lord is so kind to us!!


  5. That rug is absolutely beautiful!! I’m actually not usually a huge fan of throw rugs, but I LOVE that one!!! It’s just so pretty and elegant, and it really ties the room together. Fantastic job!!


    1. I feel like it looks less cluttered that way, with just the white pages showing. Books that I use often are on the shelf in my office – a lot of these are just for decoration or are books I’m hanging on to for sentimental reasons. πŸ™‚


  6. I agree with the other readers. The rug is my favorite addition. I also really like the bookshelf. I know it’s not part of the $500 spree, but I think it adds so much to the room. Makes it cozier and it’s practical having a shelf by the 2 doors for keys, mail, or whatever. Your photos always amaze me that you don’t have cat toys and beds out in the open! We also have 2 cats, and their stuff is everywhere!


    1. Thanks Helen! I love the bookshelf too – and I added the plant on top with this update. It really made the bookshelf look finished. The cats have a bin of toys and their kitty houses in my office. I put away their toys once a day – they often drag out all of them at night! πŸ™‚ And I used to keep a kitty bed in the living room, but they prefer to sit on the arms of the couch or in our laps and ended up not using them. πŸ™‚


  7. I think the shades are lovely, and I really like the rug, too. I like how you determined exactly what you wanted and made a plan. I am working on curbing my impulse purchases!


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