How to Make a Room Look Expensive

Decorating can be expensive.  As much as we all wish it didn’t, decorating a magazine-worthy home costs a lot of money. Fabrics, rugs, furniture, mirrors – add it all up and it does some damage to the wallet. Throw in some coveted high-end items, and you can blow your budget pretty quickly.

However, the good news is some things can be done fairly easily to get a high-end look without spending a fortune. With one or two investments (be it money or time), you can make it look like you spent a lot more than you really did.

Here are a few ideas for making your living room look like a million bucks.

  • 01 of 08

    Decorative Molding

    Molding in a traditional living room

    via Houzz

    Decorative molding is one of the cheapest ways to give your room a high-end look without spending big bucks.  And with a little time and DIY know-how you can do it yourself in a weekend. However, even if you decide to hire a professional, it’s still relatively low-cost and well worth the investment. For the most sophisticated and elegant look, paint the molding the same color as the walls.

  • 02 of 08

    Display an Antique

    An antique chaise and mirror
    Glow Decor / Getty Images

    Nothing gives a room a sense of wisdom and history more so than a lovely antique. Antique items have a patina that simply can’t be recreated in items found in big box stores. You don’t need to spend a fortune, just find something that looks like you might have picked it up at a Paris flea market. Large-scale accessories like lamps, mirrors and pieces of furniture are great, but small accessories can also do the trick. Antique boxes, sculptural wall sconces, or even antique picture frames can give your room a certain je ne sais quoi that makes it look like you spent more than you really did.

  • 03 of 08

    Include Curvy Shapes

    Large sofa with curved arm in front of a decorative mantel
    CR Laine

    A room where all the lines are straight and clean will definitely fall flat. To add depth and interest to any room it’s important to use a variety of shapes. If the goal is to make the room look more expensive add some curvy items. These can come from anywhere – accessories, mirrors, lamps, furniture legs, the list goes on.

  • 04 of 08

    Custom Window Treatments

    Silk curtains
    Peter Mukherjee / Getty Images

    There’s nothing like luxurious curtains that fit a space perfectly to make a room look bespoke and quite frankly, expensive. Custom window treatments don’t always come cheap, but, if you’re interested in making an investment in your room, this is a good way to do it.

    Continue to 5 of 8 below.
  • 05 of 08

    Add Metallic Items

    Gold sunburst mirror
    Fuse / Getty Images

    A few metallic surfaces help add a luxe look to any room; however, it’s important not to overdo it. Ever see Donald Trump’s home? That’s too much! A gold leaf mirror, a brass table, a few pieces of vintage silver – these are all things that can help make your room look more expensive. It’s okay to think small. You only need a little to get a lot.

  • 06 of 08

    Fresh Flowers

    Lush floral arrangement
    Susan Findlay / Getty Images

    Fresh flowers can instantly lift the mood of a room; the bigger the bouquet, the more luxurious the look. That’s not to say you need a huge ostentatious display on every surface, but make sure any bouquets you display are not sparse, but rather full and lush. A big, bountiful bouquet of flowers on a coffee table or mantle adds instant class. Flimsy displays make it look like you cheaped out.

  • 07 of 08

    Create Vignettes

    Bookshelf display
    Getty Images

    Don’t just toss items on your bookshelf or mantle. Create considered vignettes on every surface.  It’s not hard and the impact is massive. Read up simple tips to create coffee table and mantel displays.

  • 08 of 08

    Dimmer Switches

    Dimmer switch
    Tetra Images / Getty Images

    The number one way to make a room look luxurious is with dim lighting. It may sound silly but everything (and everyone!) looks better in dim lighting. For each and every light fixture in your home add a dimmer switch. It’s not expensive and you absolutely will not regret it.