Home Makeover Hacks to Give any Space an Instant Refresh

Time Several Hours

Budget $ $$$

Skill Level

WORDS BY Gillian Grefe

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Published on June 29, 2020

Sometimes we wish changing up a room’s design was as simple as hitting refresh on our web browser. While it isn’t as simple as clicking a button, redesigning your space is easier than you think.

You can make a room feel new to you with just a few basic projects—including making a few simple swaps and taking advantage of what you already own. Check out these home makeover hacks to refresh your spaces this season. 

Changing up wall color is a surefire way to bring new life into your home. While we’ll never say no to a neutral or clean, crisp white, painting your walls an on-trend color can make for a dramatic room makeover. Try Pantone’s color of the year “Classic Blue,” for a timeless, yet trendy statement wall. If blue’s not your hue, go for a vintage green. 

With time on your hands and the power of online webchat, turn this often tedious task into a fun catch-up, suggest Havenly design lead Heather Goerzen, “use this social distancing time to throw a solo (or duo) paint party.” 

Looking to take the trend a step further? It might be time to consider wallpaper, Heather suggests. “We love how a modern geometric print or traditional floral can set the stage for design greatness.” Use a simple design to paper an entire room or a bold, eye-catching pattern for a statement wall.

sculptural wall hanging

Refreshing a room doesn’t mean scrapping everything and starting from scratch. Many times, adding just a few of the right accessories can make a room feel brand new. For the biggest impact, turn to textiles, suggests Heather; “textiles are like the jewelry of home decor; they can be changed out to instantly transform a home style.” 

Leave big pieces like furniture, as is, instead of swap out pillows, throws, rugs, and curtains for a facelift. In bedrooms, you can even change out bedding for a new feel. 

Trying out new textiles can give you the opportunity to try out a new design style with relatively little cost or risk, with the potential for a  big payoff. “By making a few key changes,” says Heather, “you can take your home from a bohemian vibe with global patterns and bold colors to a more luxe aesthetic with modern designs and rich fabrics.”

If you’re ready to adopt a new design style in your room, investing in a piece of statement furniture will infuse new energy and style into your space. Maybe you’ve had a media console since your college days, or a futon that’s on its last legs, “now could be the time to part ways for a piece that’s more you,” reminds Heather.

The hack here is making certain that you have a solid sense of style in the room before buying a pricey piece. Aim for uniquely you instead of trendy or of the time. Remember, this isn’t a summer fling, it’s a long-term love.

Living room

Changing out artwork can have an immediate impact on how you feel in a room. But, don’t rush to swap out favorite sketches on the wall just because, reminds Heather. “Artwork is always at its best when it’s personal and connects to you on a deeper level.” 

Find wall art that speaks to you, whether that means browsing a local artist’s catalog online or picking out a new (to you) piece at the socially-distance flea market. 

Another approach is decidedly more DIY, says Heather, and easy to do even if you’re not an at-home Van Gogh. Take an old canvas in your home that you no longer want, maybe something you just bought to fill the space, and paint over it. It’ll transform generic, placeholder art into a one of a mind masterpiece that’s uniquely you. 

“It might sound intimidating, but if you keep it abstract—like a series of ombre brushstrokes or soft, geometric shapes—you’d be surprised at how stylish it can turn out.” 

Not only will it change the look of the space, but you also can’t beat the sense of pride it’ll bring each time you enter the room.

oversized wall art

One of the best home makeover hacks is a bit of a “lightbulb moment,” for many. “Lighting is an approachable update that will lend towards a striking transformation.” 

Swap out blah, uninspiring table and floor lamps for something that only lights your room, but makes a statement. Take it a step further and change up overhead lighting. Take overhead lights from functional to fashionable, add a dramatic chandelier or minimalist pendant to elevate the feel of the room.   

Warm Minimalism Dining

Famed designer Coco Chanel said it best, “Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take one thing off.” This too can be applied to home design. 

When we think about breathing new life into your spaces, we so often think of adding more, but rarely consider the power of taking things away. “One of the best things you can do to create a home that you feel good in is to learn and embrace the art of editing,” Heather says. 

Take out an item or two from a vignette, or consider how the walls would look with fewer art and images. Would losing a chair out of the living room make the space feel more minimal? Removing stuff can make just as much of a statement as adding things in. With less in a room, things guests never noticed before have a chance to shine. 

Casual shopping outside the home is still proving to be a problem nowadays, but the limitation can force us all to design a little more creatively. Forget about the interior design store for the time being and, “look around your household for items that you can repurpose as decor,” recommends Heather

Don’t worry, that doesn’t mean your silicone spatula has to take front and center in your living room, but you probably have some matching serving bowls or underutilized glassware that would display well on your bookshelf. 

While you’re at it, switch the bookshelves up altogether. Switch things up, Heather suggests, removing book jackets for a sleeker display, or stacking them horizontally on the shelf instead of vertically.  


Maybe everything you needed to refresh your room was there all along. It’s an old designer’s trick, and simply rearranging your room’s layout can make it feel like a new space entirely. 

Try layering, grouping, and reshuffling the room’s decor. Place your set of tapered candlesticks close together on the dining room table, instead of apart, layer the frames above your media console, or more them to a different place entirely. Seeing the same things in new places can transform the way you experience a room.

Not sure where to get started? Refresh your sense of design and check out our quiz to figure out what style suits you.

Words by Emma Diehl