Before and After: A Charming Vintage-Style Redo for this Bare Bedroom — for Just $774

published Jul 26, 2021
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About this before & after
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Before: White bedroom with wood floor, featuring only a bed and a table
Credit: Joan Diercks

A bedroom doesn’t technically need anything more than a bed — but it sure is nice to create a beautiful and calming environment that’s fit for a good night’s sleep. That’s true even for guest rooms. While they might not get much action — especially in COVID times — having a sleeping area that feels thoughtful and welcoming is something that guests always appreciate.

Credit: Joan Diercks

That doesn’t mean you need to spend a fortune on your guest room, though. In fact, you can accomplish a lot with some well-placed DIYs and some furniture swaps. Take this bedroom redo from homeowner Joan Diercks. Joan and her husband, Caleb, wanted to transform what Joan calls this “pretty simple guest room” into a place that made their friends’ and families’ stays more pleasant.

Credit: Joan Diercks

Over two months, Joan and Caleb were able to transform the bedroom from bare bones to warm and inviting, and they only spent $774 to do it. First up, they got rid of the old plain bed frame, instead replacing it with an iron-look one with a vintage feel. They also moved the bed so that it doesn’t block the window.

Behind the bed, Joan and Caleb created a charming feature wall using wood paneling installed vertically and painted white. The paneling has the same rustic feel of shiplap, but the vertical lines make the room’s ceiling seem even taller. (Another smart visual trick: adding curtains to the window, with a rod that’s higher than the window frame.)

The bed’s new feature wall also includes some practical touches, like a new nightstand and a pair of plug-in sconces that flank the bed frame; they’re perfect for guests who like to sink into a book before they get some shut-eye.

Credit: Joan Diercks

Fresh bedding and some vintage-style artwork above the bed help pull the whole look together. Now, the bedroom is an inviting escape for visitors — all for less than $1,000.

“I love the mix of styles,” Joan says. Her advice for nailing the combo? “I would say buy a lot of stuff at once and see if they go together,” she advises. “It’s easier to see if things work when they’re all together and then returning them, versus buying things one by one and determining they don’t work after the return date has expired.”

When it comes to redecorating on a budget, a little experimentation can go far.

Inspired? Submit your own project here.