Pulling off an expensive look with a small budget

Most of the time , expensive interior décor  is a result of a big budgets but can one attain that high end look with little to spend?  

“Yes it is very possible,” says Christine Masiika who is a creative director at SF Design House, an interior design firm on Seventh Street  Industrial Area. 

Diana Nigesa, a cofounder of SF Design House, says  one does not have to spend big to upgrade their space because there are some tricks to do it without necessarily breaking the bank.  

What is an expensive look?
An expensive look differs when it comes to different people. What looks expensive to one might not cut it for another person.  

“Our definition of expensive is one where every detail has been given the utmost attention,”  says Nigesa.  

“Everything should be well-thought out and executed. Good design is understanding how people live and what they like,” adds Nigesa. 

What should one do?
Masiika advises a homeowner who desires a classy look but has a small budget to find an architect who truly understands their needs and can deliver as required.  

“Be careful when choosing an architect.  Request to see other projects they have undertaken and find out whether they will be able to translate what you have in mind into reality.  Design is very subjective, a lot can get lost in translation and you end up with a totally different look,”  Masiika cautions.  

The client and designer should form a partnership whose main goal is to execute the project to the best of their abilities.  

“A good designer will help you pick, furniture, furnishings and finishings that is affordable and can add flair to your project. They will advise on which colours should be blended with what kind of furniture for maximum effect. For example, white is a luxurious colour, thus to make your home look lux, go for affordable yet striking white pieces such as a side table or a set of chairs.  Also, white kitchens do not necessarily cost more than coloured ones, but they always look more sophisticated,” says Masiika. 

Masiika urges homeowners to take their time when putting their look together.  Curating a look is more of a journey than a one-time activity. This is even more significant when you have a limited budget. Start small, focus on particular areas.

“While it is good to have an overall design look in mind when working on a room do not get so stuck on an idea that you are not willing to change things up. We do everything in its phase, one at a time,” she says. 

What says luxury more than an antique piece of furniture or art? And the bonus of acquiring antiques is that they are usually cheap. All you need is a buyer with a good eye who will pick quality pieces and help you restore them if need be. 

Let nature work for you
Bringing a little bit of nature into your interior adds some life to a space; add fresh flowers or some potted succulents. Whenever possible, incorporate materials that are found in nature for instance, pick solid wood furnishings rather than plastic.

Opting for leather, antique brass and crystal creates the feeling that your house is luxurious and expensive too.  They need to work together and sync because the structure and all these other things are interconnected. 

The message is that the expensive look on a budget is much easier to arrive at when everything works together to create a cohesive look. It is not just only the look thought that matters, things such as how the home feels and smells too are important. 

One of the most affordable ways to make a home feel luxurious is creating an illusion of space. This can be achieved by decluttering.  You do not necessarily have to be a minimalist, but the goal should be to make a “home” for every item in a room. 

“Another important element is how your home smells. Nothing kills a well-put together look more than bad odour. To make your space smells as rich as it looks, light a scented candle, use some essential oils or get a plug-in fragrance diffuser. Whatever you choose, the smell in our homes creates a sensory experience unlike any other,” says Nigesa. 

Christine Masiika the creative director at SF Design House, advises a homeowner who desires a classy look but has a shoestring  budget to find an architect who truly understands their needs and can deliver as required.

The designer should not impose their ideas, but they should just give advice where it is necessary.