A tight budget need not mean that your home lacks charm. You don’t need fabulously expensive furniture and fittings to create an environment which draws people to it. What you do need is a little ingenuity and some imagination.

Perhaps the most important details in a home are the small touches, the little quirks which make it individual and welcoming. Lighting and scent are two of the major points which you should address to begin with in your journey towards a cosy home.

Plants can add a magical element to any room.
Plants can add a magical element to any room.

If your rooms have only overhead lights in them then change that immediately. Lamps are capable of changing the look of a room instantly, they can draw attention to a pretty picture, they can be used to throw shadow onto dingy areas or walls which need repainting and the good news is that lamps may be bought for very little in charity shops.

Fairy lights can also add a lovely touch to any room, drape them over curtains or in glass vases to add some extra twinkle to your space; both coloured and white fairy lights are effective.

Don’t worry too much if you don’t like the colour of the shade…that can be remedied easily with the help of some fabric scraps. Look at the fabrics which you have access to or buy up old sheets and other bedding in pretty prints.

Recovering lamps is a simple project to undertake, all you need is sharp scissors and some glue. Similarly, wallpaper may be used to recover lampshades effectively.

Once you have added some new lighting, you can begin to look at other small details. Is your sofa looking a little worse for wear? You can create a sofa throw from sheets or blankets in bright colours or with pretty prints.

Plants and vases of flowers always look welcoming and they need not cost the earth either. If you have a garden, plant some Sweet Peas. These  thrive on having their blooms plucked and the more flowers you pick…the more that will grow!

Rag rugs are simple to make and beautiful to look at.
Rag rugs are simple to make and beautiful to look at.

Your local wood or forest can also yield some lovely things for vases such as Pussy Willow, interesting branches and natural grasses. Arrange these in tall vases and place near windows or lamps to make the most of the effect.

Looking at our Grandparents ways can also teach us some lessons about cheap and cheerful home comforts. Rag rugs are very therapeutic to make and can add a beautiful focal point to a room. Use up old sheets, dresses, t shirts…any sort of fabric can be added and the more colourful the better.

Scented candles and incense can add a lovely element to any room, flickering light and a lovely perfume both come together to create an atmosphere which is at once relaxing and stimulating.

A home need not be expensively furnished to make it into a pleasant place to be, colour, light and perfume are the main ingredients when it comes to making a lovely environment. Keep your eyes on the prize when it comes to charity shops and visit regularly to ensure that you don’t miss out on any bargains!