Friday, November 14, 2014

ORC Fall 2014: A Grand Makeover: Cost Breakdown

This picture, right here, cost me about $500.00. 

Once upon a time, I thought about becoming a designer. Once, back in my Graduate school days, as I contemplated stealing the cobalt blue milk crates instead of the yellow ones, all stacked neatly in the alley at the back of the store, I thought about it again.

I thought that just because someone couldn't afford pricey fabrics and furniture, that didn't mean they couldn't have a fabulous, stylish looking place. And then I realised that though that might be true, that client, so broke they used milk crates as bedroom furniture (which I totally did), that client wouldn't be able to afford me.

But, things have changed. Have they ever. It is more than possible to decorate stylishly without a lot of money--though, admittedly, it does take some. There are blogs out there which show you how it's done on the high end--and then there are blogs like mine who can show what can be done on the down low.

I always wonder how much makeovers cost. I am always curious about budgets--how far can a dollar be stretched? A lot depends upon where you live: not just the price of things in your area, but the availability of second hand stores and outlets and fabric stores, and most importantly, the variety and quality of the stuff they carry. So, while this information, in its specifics, is really only germane to me and the people who live in our area, it may be generally helpful to someone who wants to know how much a makeover done "on the cheap" can cost.

Two things helped keep the costs low: I already had the fabrics I needed for the slipcover and the drapes--and my seamstresses (my mother and me) worked free of charge.

Talking about money is always a delicate thing. Think of these prices as illustrations, as examples. One can always pay more, and sometimes, one can pay less.

Major Purchases: $191.98
Rug 7x10 (from Target): $149.00
Pouf (from Target): $41.99

Projects: $211.58
Wood trim above fireplace and window wall:
already had some.
for the 5 1/2 feet we needed to finish up: $8.87
Wood putty: $3.97
Total: 12.84

Shelf above TV:
wood, already had.
stain, already had.
Total: 0

Paint for the back of the bookcase: (Marquee, Rush Hour) $26.47
Tops for bookcases: boards (Home Depot) $ 28.80
Trim pieces: $10.40
Total: $65.67

2 sets of Ritva back tab drapes from Ikea. Already had on hand.
Thread: $5.75
Total: $5.75

Slipcover for sofa:
We used one I'd purchased years ago for about $150.00  which my Mother sewed. (Not included in grand total)
Total: 0

Coffee table:
Vittsjo coffee table (from Ikea): $69.99
wood for the top (Home Depot): $18.18
stain: $7.97
brush: $3.49
Total: $99.63

End Table:
(Part of the Vittsjo coffee table, above.)
Wood for the top (Home Depot): $18.18
Brackets: $3.87
Screws: $2.97
Cork protectors: $2.67
(These last three items were needed to have something to put the glass on for the bottom shelf.)
Total: $27.69

Accessories: $527.95

Lamp base (Target): $19.99
Lamp shades (Target): $23.99 (x2)
Total: $67.97

TV area:
Wooden bird (Target): $7.49
Video box (Ikea): $9.99
CD box (Ikea): $7.99
Total: $25.47

Left of fireplace:
Branches (Ikea): $4.99
Vase (Bouclair Home): $9.99
Ceramic bird (Bouclair Home): $3.99
Total: $18.97

Scholarly Monk (Pier 1) $89.99

Right side:
Picture Frame (Target) $9.74
Squirrel: (Bouclair Home): $7.99
Boxed agave plant (Bouclair Home): $4.99
ZZ plant: (Ellerslie Gift and Garden): $21.95
Pot (Ellerslie Gift and Garden): $13.95
Total: $58.62

Coffee Table Accessories:
Candlesticks, (Ikea) $19.99
Planting Bowl (Target): $11.89
Cacti: (Ellerslie Gift and Garden): $23.75
Basket for remotes (Bouclair Home): $5.99
Total: $61.62

Pillows, textured blue-green (Target): $24.99 (x2)
Pillows, plush indigo (pier 1): $29.95 (x2)
Zebra cushion. base (Pier 1): $19.98
plus fabric (Walmart): $9.27 (x2)
Throw (Walmart): $19.97
Total: $168.37

Other chairs: $36.94

slipcover, made from fabric I already had.
Pillow: $26.95

Platform rocker:
throw (Ikea) already had
Pillow (Ikea) already had
Pillow cover (Ikea): $9.99

Grand Total: $931.51

Speeding ticket assessed while buying the rug from Target: $70.00

So, a grand. Does that surprise you? It seems about right to me.


Rita said...

I appreciate the very detailed and thorough breakdown of costs. I've never really done that with one of our projects--probably because I haven't really wanted to know. I think we (OK, maybe just I) like to think that DIYing and thrifting and such means we aren't really spending money. When I look at some item in a thrift store that needs rehab, I need to add the cost of everything it will take to do the repairs into the cost of the item. That includes paint, stain, sandpaper, fabric, staples, etc. I have tended not to do that.

I also appreciate seeing the grand total of all those small accessory items. It can be easy to overlook $5 here and $8 there, but they add up, too. Your room looks lovely, and I know that for many, the idea of doing a complete room overhaul for $1K is a huge bargain. But $1K is a significant sum for me, not matter what I spend it on or how far it's gone.

Money. It's all relative, huh?

Alana in Canada said...

Thank you, Rita, I appreciate the comment. I was quite nervous about posting this precisely because money is so relative. But, I, too, end to gloss over the actual cost of a DIY--and I thought that if I put it out there--in public--on record--that it might be a little harder to be in denial about it all next time.

MMarie said...

I too like the breakdown. What I found interesting is that some things seemed expensive for what they were (say the little bowl of plants) but sometimes it's best to look at the overall picture. You save some in one place (curtains and slipcover) so you can splurge a bit in another spot. The room looks beautiful and it took many small things to pull that off. Spending $1000 on a new couch would have given you a new couch but the room would not look so inviting as it does now.

I'm sure being in the room lifts your spirits and satisfies your soul like perhaps a vacation/holiday would. But the vacation would only last a few days then you'd be back to your regular life. I see this as an "investment" in you and your family and the enjoyment will last much longer than a vacation/holiday!

Alana in Canada said...

Thanks MMarie. I like that perespctive.

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