5 No Fail Ways To Change The Look Of A Room

Have you ever had the urge to give any of the rooms in your home a whole new look, but don’t want to go to the trouble or expense of a whole remodel?  I’m right there with ya!  I love the idea of being able to make small changes in a room, but wind up with a totally “new” space.  Check out these 5 no fail ways to change the look of any room in your home!

5 No-Fail Ways To Change The Look Of A Room || Worthing Court


To me, nothing catches a person’s eye more than adding something unexpected to a room!  Think back – how many times have you walked into someone’s home and been taken aback (in a good way!) by something unexpected they used as part of their decor?

I did just that when I gave my very dated, cheapo bookcases a total makeover with paint and with addition of a sliding barn door.  Who expects to see a barn door on bookcases – right?  But, I get more oohs and aahs over that one thing than I do over the entire office remodel


The Evolution of a Farmhouse Style Office In A Suburban Home || Worthing Court



Think outside of the box when it comes to adding functional items to your home that you want to look pretty.  You can do more with many pieces of old furniture than just repaint them!  I took an old hutch apart and repurposed the top half into a dropzone and hung it near my back door.  This thing is a real workhorse, but it still looks pretty in the space and compliments the rest of my home.  


DIY dropzone made from an old hutch || Worthing Court


You’ll rarely hear me talking about giving rooms a whole new look without talking about the power paint!  It is one of THE most affordable and easy ways to make changes that I know of.

My dining room makeover is a prime example of where I opted to paint my existing furniture, to get the look I was after, instead of replacing it.  Yes, I was definitely a bit scared, but I’m sooo glad that I took the leap!  I even went to far as to have a paint store color-match some spray paint that I was using


How To Redecorate A Dining Room - if you have a piece of furniture that is too large to carry outside a paint store can color match spray paint for you || Worthing Court



We’ve all heard the adage – edit, edit, EDIT!  The theory behind it is to get something looking just the way that you think you want it….and then take something away.  You can apply the theory all the way from how much jewelry you wear to the way your decorate your home.

I’ll volunteer to be the guinea pig here – what do you think I should have taken away from last year’s fall mantel?  Be honest, but please be gentle on this thin-skinned girl!


Fall Mantel In A Suburban Farmhouse Home || Worthing Court



My home is mostly neutral, but I’ve come to realize that I can’t be happy in a totally neutral room.  I need little bits of color here and there!  How much color I add depends upon the season or holiday that I’m decorating for.  If I’m not decorating for anything special like fall or Christmas, I tend to add color sparingly and in more muted tones.


Budget Friendly Window Treatments And Hardware || Worthing Court

I bet you know some other ways to get a whole new look without completely redecorating a whole room.  Please share with all of us!



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  1. Your vignettes are always beautiful! You asked what to take away on your fireplace. I would leave the vignette on the right side of the hearth and remove the left side. As I like to play around with the look of the mantel, I was wondering how it would look to remove the shutters behind the lanterns. I think your beautiful arch would pop more and become more of a focal point. It’s always easier to see it in person, just a “try it and see” suggestion! Thx for sharing your pretty home!!

    1. Shirley McKellar says:

      The wood back back drop and the basket is too much. A nice mirror with the removal of Yellow wall would be good. You could add a subtle gall floral arrangement in front of the mirror. The overall picture is too busy.

      1. Shirley McKellar says:

        Somehow, what I previously submitted got somewhat distorted. It should have read “The wood backdrop and basket of flowers are too much. A nice mirror with the removal of “Hello Fall” would be good. You could add a subtle fall floral arrangement in front of the mirror. Overall the scheme is too busy.

  2. I love the basket of fall foliage hanging but I don’t care for the wood board behind it. The rest of the decor on the mantel and hearth look great. Wish I had a mantel to decorate.

    1. Yep, totally agree…remove board behind flowers to see arch/flowers more!

    2. Terry Pask says:

      I agree remove barn wood behind hanging basket. The arch piece is so beautiful, its a shame to cover it up with the barn wood.

  3. I think the wood board thing behind the basket of fall foliage, the twig wreath below it and the amber / brown bottle could be removed and the remainder of the mantel decor would be outstanding! Thanks for sharing all your beautiful vignettes with us!

  4. Linda Owens says:

    Oh my, the mantle looks perfect just the way it is and I really don’t see anything that needs to be taken away. I guess if you have to take something away it could be the small sheaf of wheat? I love the way you decorate and I always get good ideas from you.

  5. Carol Elkins says:

    I love, love, love your bookcase! As for your mantle, I would take away the wood behind the hanging basket of fall flowers and maybe remove the wheat on the left side. Whatever you do, I’m sure it will look amazing!

  6. mattsgramma says:

    Well after looking at your mantel about six times, I wonder if “editing” the grapevine wreath would better as there is plenty of texture in the big basket above? So glad the link was corrected..was driving me crazy!

  7. This is what I’ve done when I couldn’t decide what to edit…Remove everything from the vignettes then add only 3 of those things back. After looking at it for 24 hours, add 2 more things. Then 24 hours later, add 1 more thing and continue adding 1 every 24 hours if necessary. I love vignettes but sometimes I need to see blank space again to rest my eyes and see the space differently. That’s just something that works for me. I think your rooms are beautiful by the way!

  8. While I love that you brought color up high with the flowers, basket, etc, it seems awkward to me somehow. Maybe you could rework that idea keeping the color pop but making it less heavy.
    I so admire your style and wouldn’t miss a post for anything!

  9. Great tips Suzy. I agree with most in removing the wood board to expose the beautiful iron work and wall color. I would also remove the grapevine wreath and wheat. Let the hanging basket be the “star”.

  10. Dianne Lanier says:

    Green advice. Thanks!

  11. Jacki Salinas says:

    I love the sliding door you put on your bookcase! That’s probably my favorite thing you’ve shown – very out-of-the-box thinking!

  12. All great tips! As far as your mantle…I’m more of a simple girl. I would remove the board behind the basket of florals…to see more of the iron work. And I would simplify each vignette on either side on the hearth. But, that’s me…simple. Your home always looks warm and welcoming! 😉

  13. Candy Thomas says:

    I wouldn’t change a thing! I think you are brilliant!

  14. I always love to see what you do to something to give it a new look! I have stolen some of your ideas for sure!!

  15. Your home is beautiful and your vignettes stunning. If there was anything I’d edit from your Fall vignette would be the rustic board that your floral basket is hanging from. The basket would look lovely hanging from that gorgeous iron gate (is that what it is?).

  16. I would first remove the twig wreath and try that first, leaving a little empty space (I forget too that “white” space is important). To me the hearth looks too heavy. Left side crate and lantern are too similar in size and too tall. The right is too much wicker. Maybe less repetition of materials although your colors are good.

  17. Your fireplace and mantel look amaaaaaazing!! I love the baskets! I agree with removing the board and would also remove the shutters.

  18. Thanks for fixing the link. Love your style!

  19. Ok, for what it is worth….;-) I would personally lose the wreath as it strikes me as being too close to your focal point hanging basket (which I LOVE, btw). Then I would take away the wheat & brown bottle as well I would then bring the lanterns and pumpkins in a little closer to the center point of the mantel and not center them directly in front of the shutters and see what it looks like at that time. You can always add the other stuff back if you don’t like it, right?

    I really like all of your Fall decor and I know it would be hard for me to edit out anything that I really liked, too. Good luck with that.;-) Thank you so much for your advice and sharing ideas!!

  20. I always look forward to your posts…I love your style! As for your fall mantle, I really couldn’t suggest much of an edit other than possibly switching the bottle and the wheat. I love the overall look! I’m going to search through your posts in case you don’t see this but did you paint your mantle AND the brick. I still have the blah oak mantle and brick fireplace that I’ve had for 17 years and really want to paint it like yours but have to admit I’m terrified and have no idea what paint to use lol!

  21. Beverly Lamm says:

    Hi, I will make some comments on your mantel. While I feel everyone decorates for their personal tastes, and that is the way it should be, it will be seen different from everyone. I love the way you layer the décor. To me this makes the setting much warmer. I would change two things. Take all or several of the small items off the mantel. I think the hearth would look better with only one piece of décor in the middle of the hearth. Also, to add some color and more sitting area, I would add two boxed seat cushions in a color that coordinated or matched some of the fabric in the room. Having two cushions would allow you to decorate the center with a cushion on each side or use one cushion and decorate on each end of the mantel. Everything you do looks great, I want to do the shutters for an area I have in a bay window.

    The one thing I would like to ask is I have a huge wall hanging from Kirklands that is metal and I would like to spiff it up. It is painted with a mingle of gold paints now that was damaged in a recent move. Could you offer some help on how you painted? Thank you so much,

    1. Hi Beverly. If the piece that you’re asking about is all metal, then I might consider spray painting it with a solid color. If you’re wanting a bit of a layered look with the colors, you could then dry-brush another color(s) on top on the spray paint, once it’s dry. If you try that approach, keep a rag handy while you’re dry brushing so that you can wipe any excess paint off as you go. Hope this helps!

  22. You made some wise furniture choices in the beginning. You update traditional furniture and transformed it beautifully (so clever). We have the same taste and style so you help to visualize how to transform my decor to more stylish fashion. Thanks for sharing your secrets!

  23. nancy dempsey says:

    Hmmmm…I think the wood backdrop behind the hanging basket would be a good idea. Also the grapevine wreath. I think the Fall branches in the basket are beautiful and would look even better against the black and white piece.
    Thanks for sharing and being so brave!

  24. Julie Briones says:

    Thanks for these great tips, Suzy… and for being willing to be vulnerable to some loving critique. You are a wonderful sport and blogger!

  25. Do love the barn door on the office bookcase….great idea, again! Enjoy the waning days of summer.

  26. Thank you for inspiring the endless possibilities, Suzy!

  27. Dianne Lanier says:

    I like your video…keep it going!!

  28. Vee Muller says:

    Brand new to your blog. Right away I like your use of color! I too, need some color in my home. And love the barn door on the bookcase.

  29. Judy Hubbard says:

    I love this blog for decorating tips! I especially like this post about 5 ways to change the look of a room without spending a lot of money!
    And I look forward to more fall decorating ideas.

  30. I would take away the light-colored stack of wheat near the front of the mantel. The color seems out-of-sync with the rest of the decorations.

  31. Great suggestions. Thanks for sharing.

  32. I love the gray desk in your office. You’ve done a beautiful job refinishing it. The dark stain in the grooves highlights the beauty of the woodwork. Love the stained top as well.

  33. bonnie rush says:

    I enjoy your blog and I love that you asked us to suggest any changes we would make to your mantel. This inspires me to take a closer look at my home for ‘editing’. Thanks!

  34. We are in the process of repainting. ripping out carpeting and putting in laminate flooring in our home office/den right now. It looks so much nicer now! I love all your ideas and am constantly running to the computer to check out your blog.

  35. Nancy Walden says:

    I added an unexpected piece to my office yesterday. My daughter had a dresser she needed a new home for an I decided to take it. It’s 43″ wide, 20 inches deep and 5 feet tall so it makes quite a statement! It’s also antique white with a wood stained top so it adds some color to a room full of stained furniture. I was a little worried about how it would look since I was replacing a shorter table but I love it!

  36. Wendi Blue Chaddick says:

    Great tips! Thanks for sharing!

  37. Suzy,

    This post is so timely. Last week, a friend gifted me a beautiful chair; which has triggered a re-do of my guest room. I do love most of the existing pieces, but recognize that it is time for a change. Paint is the perfect solution. Can you share the name of the brown paint you used for the dining room. I know you mentioned it was mixed to match a can of spray paint. Do you recall which one? I have pulled so many lovely ideas from this post to borrow with pride 🙂 I have been following your blog for quite some time now (years) and am always grateful for the inspiration. Thanks for ALL you do. Blessings!

  38. Carol Jones says:

    Live the way you can stroll through you house from room to room. The east transition with color and coasyness…wish I could have you come to my place and do your magic.

  39. Debra may says:

    The bottom of the fire place is beautiful. I would remove the wood board, the shutters and black lanterns from the top. They all look to over powering and then i would spread the rest out to either side giving it a softer look.

  40. I love your desk in your den. Can you tell me where you purchased it? Thanks for all your décor ideas. I always look forward to all your ideas!

  41. Hi Katie. I purchased the desk in my office about 12 years ago at a local store. I believe the brand is either Stanley or Hooker.

  42. I think the wreath is too much (at least directly under the basket) the wheat looks out of place to me and there is something about either the shutters or those black lanterns that take away from the whole setting. Not sure which one it is…🤔Maybe bring a little bit of your fall colours from the flowers in the basket down onto the the mantle as well. I like that the hanging basket brings a lot of Autumn warmth to the entire vignette…My eye is directed right to it immediately, but then my eye travels down to the mantle and it just seems too bland..(to my tastes anyways). I like colour. Whatever you do, it’s your room, your mantle and your tastes. Beautiful no matter what!

  43. Thanks for sharing your lovely home. I’ve learned a lot in the last year or so about cozy minimalism and how fewer larger items have more impact. I’ve tried that in my own home and have really embraced it. With that said, I agree with removing the wood behind the hanging basket so that more of the cream/iron piece shows. I would also remove the shutters and the grapevine wreath with sign and move the lanterns in slightly. You could put the amber glass bottle and a pumpkin with one lantern, and the wheat and other pumpkin with the second lantern. Love what you’ve done on the hearth!