“Cheap and Cheerful”


Don’t get me wrong, I love decorating. It’s the reason I got myself into this business. First and foremost, it’s my passion. There’s nothing more rewarding than stepping into my own creation and seeing it turn out even better than what I had envisioned. But lately I’ve been getting a solid taste for renovations and the design that goes into tearing something down and making it come to life again.

“Cheap and cheerful,” as we like to call it in the staging/contracting world; is a phrase that applies to any project that needs a quick and efficient refresh. I’m truly amazed how far a quick face lift can go in regards to freshening up a bathroom or kitchen. As an example, I will use my previous project where we took a master ensuite out of the 1980’s and into 2015.

At first, it really did seem like a gut job. It’s very easy to get discouraged (both homeowners and stagers) when you walk into something that looks like it could be weeks worth of work. However, if you keep the “cheap and cheerful” mantra in the back of your head, it becomes so much easier to determine what needs to be done. Essentially, we were able to assess what could be saved in the ensuite, and what absolutely needed to go. After deciding to keep the bones (shower, bath, tiles, and vanity) it was then a matter of what we could add to make it look modern, updated, and ultimately something a potential home buyer would want.


Miraculously, we were able to save the floor and jacuzzi tiles which looked pink paired with the previous paint. This was quite a bold move saving them, but when you’re working with a tight budget, these are quick decisions you have to make. After opting for a grey paint which had blue tones in it, those very same tiles looked stark white. It was like a paint miracle! We were amazed how the smart selection of paint by the contractor could take the pinky tones right out of the tile. We then had a cheery and basic ensuite to work with; very neutral and very easy to like.



From there we made the decision to take out the single dated sink/faucet combo and replace it with an ultra chic ‘his and hers’ double sink and new spacious faux stone countertop. Keeping with the “cheap and cheery” mantra, we kept the old vanity and reworked the plumbing to allow for the double sinks. Cleaning and fixing up this old vanity saved us a bundle, it looked brand new, and acted as a great base for the bowl sinks we ended up choosing. The final touches included new updated lighting, double vanity mirrors, new shower door, new toilet, and updated towel racks.



Just like that, we were able to take a dark and dated ensuite and make it bright, cheery, and luxurious. Needless to say; BRING IT ON HOME DEPOT!! I’m loving the reno and design process and it no longer intimidates me. Paired with my decorating, it really ends a project on a high note. Knowing you were economical and saved money for the homeowners AND managed to make it look fresh, new, and stunning, really puts a smile on my face 🙂

Happy reno’s everyone!!!

2 thoughts on ““Cheap and Cheerful”

  1. I love your creative approach to this project Samantha! The end result looks professional and clean. You’ve given a look that just pops! Not only are you an accomplished stager, but also ReDesigner. Great job!!

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