Renovation vs. Decorating: What We’ve Decided for Our New Farmhouse (& How to Decide for Your Home)

Decorating, Renovation

When we talk about redoing our home, I want to be clear that we did not buy a fixer upper.

While our home is older, we bought a house that has already had a lot of work done, and the bathrooms and kitchen really reflect it—they are beautiful! The previous owners put a lot of work into the house and we feel honored to accept the baton and pick up where they left off.

That said, there are things we’re going to change in our home. Some improvements we want to do to improve the usability of the house, and some are updates to the design and visual appeal of the home.

When we’re thinking of redoing this house, we start to think in terms of renovations vs. decorating. While in some ways, it’s all wrapped up together, in others, it’s an important distinction.

So today, I’m going to dive into that distinction and what we’re working on in our house.  

Renovations

Generally, we like the layout of the home we bought, so we don’t have to do too much renovating. We do plan to enlarge one of the bathrooms if the walls play nice with us, so that’s certainly a renovation project. 

When we’re thinking of redoing this house, we start to think in terms of renovations vs. decorating. While in some ways, it's all wrapped up together, in others, it's an important distinction. So today, I'm going to dive into that distinction and what we're working on in our house.
This isn’t going to cut it for a master bath…

We also have a plan to remove our current front door and relocate the front of the house to what is currently the patio door.

Then, we’re going to hopefully add an attached garage.

These renovation projects aren’t really urgent, and given that it’s winter in Minnesota, we will probably wait at least until the spring, especially for the garage.

While we have a lot of design thoughts, we’ll need to hire out at least pars of these projects to subcontractors.

Small Renovation Projects

We do have some plans that are more along the lines of renovation, but are more for decorating purposes than any real function. 

This includes things like redoing some flooring, adding wallpaper/wall coverings, and moving/replacing lighting. We also might want to repaint our kitchen cabinets or replace the doors on some of them.

These projects might qualify as renovation projects, but they’re certainly not as big of projects as moving walls or plumbing. We will do these projects ourselves, with some help from outside sources if we need it.

Decorating

Finally, we have a lot of ideas when it comes to decorating. 

We’re bringing all of our major furniture to our new home because, luckily, we bought pretty neutral items that are going to fit in almost any home. 

When we purchased our bed, guest bed, sofa, and couch, we intentionally thought about timeless design, sizing that would work in many spaces, and quality that would last forever. (I know they’re popular, but this is why we didn’t buy a white sofa!)

When we’re thinking of redoing this house, we start to think in terms of renovations vs. decorating. While in some ways, it's all wrapped up together, in others, it's an important distinction. So today, I'm going to dive into that distinction and what we're working on in our house.
Our table & chairs and sofa from Room and Board.

It’s no surprise that all of these major furniture items came from Room & Board—they have so many timeless options, and the quality is phenomenal.

That said, our accent furniture is a lot more flexible because we didn’t invest as much in it. We are open to reusing what we can, and looking at it with fresh eyes, potentially in new rooms. That said, we are also excited to have a blank slate and to get to play with decorating it!

We are going to slap fresh paint up pretty much everywhere, add some new furniture, figure out storage solutions, add rugs and pillows…overall, decorate!

Decorating is fun because it can be so low-commitment…don’t love it? Switch it out!

How to Decide: Renovation vs. Decoration 

When you’re looking at your home and trying to decide what level of project you really need, it can be hard to commit to an entire renovation vs. just trying to refresh a space with good decorating. 

I would say, when you’re considering everything, you should think of function first. Does your kitchen function poorly? Is the layout making you nuts? Do you really need a larger bathroom? It’s probably time to renovate when functionality is missing.

If the layout of your space is working, though, you could take on some projects like floors or wallcoverings. Or, what you might need is just some fresh furniture, or even moving around the things you have.

If you can’t decide what level of project is right for your home, start with redecorating and see if it works for you. That way, you won’t invest a ton of time and money changing a layout that could have worked fine for you.

What do you think? Are you thinking of renovating or decorating your home? Tell me on this Instagram post what you want to do in your home.

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