Color Month

Before and After: This Colorful $350 Bedroom Redo Is a “Walking Ad” for Thrifting

published Jul 2, 2023
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About this before & after
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Peach oblong decal painted on green wall behind bed with figurines on matching peach painted shelf in bedroom with neatly made bed and two pillar nightstands on either side of bed before renovation.

Some people like calming, minimalist bedrooms, and others prefer something more bold, colorful, or patterned. Either look (or any look in between) is valid — the most important thing is that it makes you happy! If you want something a little more laid-back, take a peek at some of our favorite gray bedrooms — but if you’re looking for something bold to inspire you, then this bedroom makeover by Claire Billingsley (@odetoanabode) is a gorgeous example.

Claire, a self-described lover of “thrifts, DIY, maximalism, paint, [and] absurdity,” already had a colorful bedroom before, with green walls and a painted arch and shelf that acted as a headboard, but Claire says that was “a hastily made Zoom background when I jammed a desk into my bedroom for the first year of the pandemic.”

Claire has since moved her desk out of her bedroom, and she wanted to create a space that felt a little more intentional. “I’ve been trying to focus more on me lately and realized my lack of motivation for restyling the bedroom was just another way I skipped out on self-care,” she adds. “I had been prioritizing working on the spaces in my house that guests see when they come over, and figured that since no one ever saw my bedroom, it didn’t really matter what it looked like. I realized that even if no one else — besides my husband! —  ever sees this room, I deserve a beautiful and functional space anyway. I’m worth the effort, basically.” (Amen, Claire!)

Six days and “lots of Home Depot trips later,” she had her dream bedroom. Two things she wanted to keep were the low-to-the-ground (no-frame) bed and plenty of color. “This project was full of super-easy, renter-friendly DIYs,” Claire says of her redo. 

She started with the paint, covering the green and orange accent wall with a bold yellow (Behr’s Laser Lemon) that “sort of wiggles its way up,” as Claire describes. It stretches up to the ceiling, adjoining walls, and even goes a little to the floor where Claire had wanted to cover a patch of ugly wood. 

“I also added a bright orange accent to frame the bed and introduce another color,” she says. (That one’s Behr’s Japanese Koi.) “I think the paint is definitely the most impactful change I made in the space,” Claire adds. “I am always amazed at the power of paint!”

Claire also used paint to transform her nightstands, a couple of Facebook Marketplace finds that she painted white. She also painted two squiggly shaped shelves that she built herself. Cutting those was a DIY first for her, and using the jigsaw was “eye-opening,” Claire says. “It was so easy; I love wavy-shaped furniture and accents.”

In other paint projects, Claire spray-painted the two busts on her nightstands bright blue along with a funky frame that she DIYed by gluing dental molds around the perimeter of a basic box-shaped frame. “I was so in love with how the dental mold frame turned out that I’ve since made one with fake fruit, and I’m now working on one with Barbies,” she says. “I guess this is my ‘thing’ now.”

Claire’s mirrors and most of the accessories (save for the bedding and the shag rug, which are from Amazon) were thrift or Facebook Marketplace finds. “My house is like a walking ad for Marketplace, and this room is no exception,” she says. She says the more you search for secondhand goods on Facebook Marketplace, the more your algorithm will know your taste and what you’re looking for.

One more DIY lesson to take away from Claire? “I always keep a rainbow of spray paints on hand for random projects,” she says. You never know when that might come in handy for a bust makeover or a new self-made frame!

This project was completed for the Spring 2023 One Room Challenge, in partnership with Apartment Therapy. See even more of the One Room Challenge before and afters here.