Balancing style wants with practical needs


Last week I received an e-mail from a sweet reader asking how I decorate my home on a budget. My husband is in medical school, so our budget is definitely tight… but that doesn’t mean I can’t have a home I love. There’s definitely a constant battle when trying to balance my style wants with practical needs. Here are few ways I do this.

  1. Shop Craigslist, garage sells and at Goodwill. Almost every piece of furniture I own was found at these 3 places for less than $50. Fifty bucks is kind of my max when purchasing furniture… yeah I’m cheap! ;) The only piece I’ve bought from an actual store was our couch and mattresses. To me that is something I want brand new. It just kind freaks me out if I can’t fully sanitize something. Here are a few of my favorite finds:

My craft desk I found for 30 bucks on Craigslist. Click here to see the before. Yikes!

Emmalyn’s armoire I found for $10 at savers.

  1. Find something you love in a store and create it yourself. If you see a fun lampshade or pillow while browsing in a store, analyze it and think “how can I make this myself for cheaper?”

Here’s an example with my kitchen shelves I saw at Ballard Designs. I loved the look and ended up building them for a fraction of the price.


  1. Think about practical needs verse things you want. There are a million thing on my wish list I would love to buy for my home, but practical things always take priority when I have a little extra money to spend.
  2. Stain resistant carpet, such as a Resista Carpet from CarpetOne is also one of those necessities with little ones around.
  3. I’ve found that buying or painting a piece of furniture a classic color is timeless.
  4. DIY! Just remember you can always DIY. Have you heard of Ana White? She has just about any furniture plan you can think of and gives you a FREE tutorial so you can build it yourself. There are tons of tutorials and inspiration out in blog land to help you get inspired and SAVE money by doing it your self.


I’m curious to know, in your home, how do you balance your practical needs with your style wants?

You live your life on carpet. Make sure you have carpet that lets you live your life! For more information on Resista Carpet visit

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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf ofCarpetOne. The opinions and text are all mine.

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Jamielyn Nye

Creative director and founder of I Heart Naptime. Jamielyn aspires to reach women, get their creative juices flowing, and to genuinely inspire. When she’s not creating, Jamielyn loves to chase her three little monkeys and snuggle up on the couch with her man.

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