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12 Décor Items That Are Not Worth the Splurge, According to Designers

An art TV in a white living room

Design: Brittany Hakimfar; Photo: Bryan Wetzel

Let's face it: furnishing and decorating a home can be expensive. If you're wondering just where to cut back, we're here to help. We polled designers on the decorative items that just aren't worth the splurge. Read on to learn about the 12 instances in which the pros say it's A-OK to go the budget-friendly route.

01 of 12

Designer Throw Blankets

A living room decorated with a blanket-topped armchair and a blanket-lined sofa

Katie Hodges Design

"Hermès and other logo-decorated throw blankets are not worth the splurge. I would much rather invest in a piece of original artwork or quality custom upholstery. There are beautiful wool and cashmere throw options from attainable retailers like Williams Sonoma and RH—don’t waste your money." —Jessie Miller, Jessie D. Miller Interior Design

02 of 12

Side Tables

neutral scheme living room with unconventional wooden side table

D Burns Interiors

"In your living room, the stars of the show are the sofa, the rug, the art, the coffee table, and the lighting. Those side tables flanking your sofa, not so much. They’re holding up your lamps, displaying your favorite objects, and they’re a place to put your book and your drink down. They don’t need to shine—therefore, you don’t need to splurge." —Michele Taylor, Michele Taylor Interiors

"I don't splurge on accent tables because they are pieces that do not get much active use. Their entire job is to sit there and look pretty while providing a small amount of resting surface for lightweight items. Therefore, the workmanship is not as significant as it would be for a harder working piece (like a coffee or game table)." —Shannon Cassell, Shannon Cassell Interiors

03 of 12

Vanity Units

vanity organization ideas

arbor & co

"There are so many options when it comes to vanity units. It is not always necessary to spend loads on one. Revamping a chest or drawers to use as a vanity unit not only can add some charm, but also you can be creative with the drawers and handles. I have managed to get a large tile for the top, bought handles off Etsy, and painted the wood to make it look fabulous." —Charlotte Jarega, Jarega Interior Designs

04 of 12

Rattan Pieces

A bedroom filled with floral wallpaper, woven rattan furniture, a pleated lampshade, and soft linen bedding

Rikki Snyder

"Rattan is everywhere now—you can spend almost $20,000 on a vintage Paul Frankl style rattan sofa set, or just over $200 for a chic chair from IKEA. Either way, you get a fabulous hit of trendy rattan, and at least with the IKEA chair, if you move on to another trend in a few years, you'll be able to do so guilt-free." —Bethany Adams, Bethany Adams Interiors

05 of 12

Woven Rugs

A dining room decorated with wooden furniture, plush sheepskin throws, a woven rug, and plants

Ashley Montgomery Design

"Layer your wood floors with large-scale natural weave rugs and thick felt rug pads from discount online sources. You can cover a lot of ground while getting a base layer of high-end-looking texture for less. You’ll get similar, if not the same, wear and look out of lower cost natural weave rugs that can also be found at four times the price from a higher-end retailer." —Melissa Mahoney, Melissa Mahoney Design House

06 of 12

Décor Accents

A bedroom with an antique nightstand topped with books and flowers

The Grit and Polish

"Curating second-hand décor and staging items at thrift and antique shops or Facebook Marketplace is a resourceful way to find eclectic gems to fill your home. Opting for more affordable décor items to fill your open shelving, coffee tables, consoles, or nightstands are great ways to save some money without making it look like you did." —Jaclyn Genovese, Spaces by Jacflash

07 of 12


wicker basket lighting in dining room

Calimia Home

"You don't have to spend thousands of dollars on lighting. As long as the fixtures are installed correctly, and your bulbs are the right temperature for the function and style of the room, you can buy beautiful lighting that doesn't break the bank." —Marlaya Ross, Studio One Nine Design

"Every now and then, manufacturers overproduce items and will set up shop on marketplaces like Amazon to sell through excess inventory. Sometimes, you can find your favorite luxe pendant or chandelier for a fraction of the price." —Timala Stewart, Decurated Interiors

08 of 12


A sun room with layered curtains suspended from a white rod

Afro Bohemian Living

"Curtains are an essential finishing touch to every room, but that doesn't mean you have to spend a fortune on them. Plenty of major online retailers sell drapes for a fraction of the cost in a multitude of colors, textures, and patterns to appeal to a variety of styles. If you're sewing machine-savvy, you can easily make your own with a piece of beautiful fabric from a local store." —Marlaya Ross

09 of 12


floating shelf and mirror in modern small entryway

House of Chais

"I usually advise my clients to not splurge on décor items like mirrors. You can usually find good quality mirrors that look very close to the high-end look and since that is one of the last pieces of the puzzles after all your furniture or fixtures— going less on something that will always bring a touch of shine is your best bet" —Nicole Hurd, Hurd Homes

10 of 12


An art TV in a white living room

Design: Brittany Hakimfar; Photo: Bryan Wetzel

"Art can define a space—a huge statement piece can ground a wall—but it doesn’t need to swallow your budget as well. Art schools, even at the high school level, have shows where student work is displayed and sold to fund future projects. The shows can easily be found online, and as the investment is usually in the hundreds not thousands, the pressure is off and clients can buy what they love, knowing their dollars are going to a great cause." —Sam Sacks, Sam Sacks Design

11 of 12


A kitchen with off-white cabinets, a white marble countertop, and antique gold hardware

Rikki Snyder

"While individually, the price per item may seem reasonable, the quantities can really add up throughout a project. Familiar retailers like CB2 and Anthropologie now carry an assortment of hardware designs. And don’t underestimate the power of Etsy! From vintage to handmade, Etsy has beautiful hardware options for every budget." —Mara Silber, Mara Silber Studio

12 of 12

Coffee Table Books

coffee table with books

Cathie Hong Interiors

“Although the impact the books provide for the design is priceless, we don’t believe it’s worth the splurge for all brand new. The most beautiful and interesting books, that have once been loved add a piece of history to your space too." —Amanda Jacobs, Journey + Jacobs