The Look for A Lot Less

Hello! I hope you are all doing well! Today I want to share with you some specific ideas for getting a designer look for less. I’ve been totally inspired by what I’ve been seeing around the blogosphere and will share a couple of projects as well as a few of my own finds!

Designer Look for Less

1. First, I spotted this DIY gorgeous marble tray knockoff featured on Knock Off Décor.

marble tray

Isn’t it great? Remember the rectangle marble tiles I used for my DIY marble Console Table?


Well, I think I would use those instead because I like the rectangle shape a little better than the square. The marble tray is just my kind of DIY– super easy an inexpensive! You get the full tutorial HERE.

I’ve been trying to think of a good place in my home where I could put the tray. If and when I think of one I’ll be making it (my darn practical mind gets in the way of DIY fun sometimes)!:-)

2. Okay, now hold on to your seat for the next one! While doing some research this weekend I came across a product I’ve never seen before (this is not a sponsored post by the way) and seems like it could be revolutionary.

You know how vinyl peel ‘n stick tiles for floors have come a long way (if not see here)?? Well, maybe this is old news to you but I spotted some amazing looking 3D peel ‘n stick backsplashes! Have you guys heard of or used Smart Tiles?



SmartTiles Self Adhesive Backsplash

White Subway Tile-Smart Tiles


(affiliate links used above for your convenience)

I haven’t seen them in person but these photos look promising and I read that they can be used over an existing tile backsplash! I don’t need a backsplash right now but I thought this could come in handy for someone else!?

It would especially save money for those who aren’t ready to do it the grout way, although I promise it’s not hard (here is my step by step tutorial). Handy mans charge an arm and a leg for tiling!

3. I found the next deal when I was looking for fabric online.  I scored these two green vinyl chairs at a thrift store for $6.50 a piece and I’ve been searching for “right” fabric for the right price to reupholster them in.

New Chairs from Thrift Store_edited-1
When I came across this fabric I fell in love!  Ticking stripes are SO classic!  It reminded me of fabrics I’ve seen on chairs at Pottery Barn and Ballard Designs except the price per yard is SO much less.  It’s only $6.98 a yard.

Ticking Stripe Fabric


Sadly, I’m not going to be able to use it for my chairs though.  The color of gray is very warm almost taupe which clashes with the cool gray color of my painted couch.  Also the fabric is back ordered until April 3rd so I would have to wait awhile for it (which I would totally do if it was the “right” fabric for the room).

This fabric would look awesome as drapes, pillow covers, a headboard, or to reupholster chairs.  Someone please use it and then tell me so I can live vicariously through you!:-)

Update:  I ended up buying it to make a pillow cover and went through Amazon because they had free shipping.  You can buy it from Amazon, Here.🙂 (affiliate link used for your convenience)

4.  I’ve been working hard lately on my closet turned makeshift mudroom.  Here is a sneak peak photo!

Light Fixture for Hallway


The purpose of heightening the “mudroom” doorway was so I could have a light fixture hang down to brighten up the dim hallway.  As usual I did a lot of research on light fixtures and found this one for a steal!  It’s only $54.98 plus free shipping!


via Amazon

In researching I saw many like it in the $150-$350 range so I was very happy to find it at such an awesome price!

5.  I’m loving the surge I’ve seen recently of using indigo as an accent color.  I don’t think I would ever be brave enough to paint the whole room indigo but I do love the indigo artwork below (if you love the rug you can find an inexpensive version here).


via Pottery Barn


via Pottery Barn

When searching for fabric to reupholster my green chairs I came across these fabrics and a few more that reminded me of the Pottery Barn artwork.

Blue and White Ikat


blue and white geometric fabric


It would be super easy to purchase a half a yard and then buy a %50 off matted frame at Joann’s for $7-$10 (I’ve bought some for our mancave at that price there).  Then pulling the fabric taut you could use duck tape to adhere the fabric to the mat.

The Pottery Barn version is $159 a piece and your version would be well under $20 a piece!  A pretty significant savings!:-)

I hope you have enjoyed these ideas for getting the look for less!  And that you have a great rest of your week!!:-)


Designer Look for Less


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Peel N Stick Backsplash Options

22 thoughts on “The Look for A Lot Less

  1. Linda

    Great ideas! Never heard of peel off backsplash, interesting. Do you know if backsplash comes in different textures? Good deal on chairs; they look like they’re solid wood.
    Thx for all the ideas! 🙂

  2. JJ

    Thanks for sharing these money-saving tips, Tamara. I really like the indigo fabrics you found. I recently saw the Smart Tile sheets at Lowe’s. Limited color/style options there, but I was intrigued. I expect that others will jump on the bandwagon, and soon there will be lots of choices, and prices will come down. It’s a good idea!

    1. Tamara Post author

      Thanks, JJ.:-). I agree it’s a great idea and I think it will be especially attractive to those who already have a backsplash but don’t like it. I think people worry about damaging the drywall by trying to take their old backsplash out.

  3. Christine S

    I love the mood board you created and all the ways to save money to achieve the look. You always inspire me in my home decorating efforts. Thanks Tamara!


  4. Jennifer@decoratingdelirium

    That tray is to die for! I might have to try it. I had not heard of stick and peel back splashes. Definitely a “why didn’t I think of that??” invention! Thanks for the inspiration!

  5. Pingback: The Look for A Lot Less – Provident Home Design | Iconic Form

  6. Vickie

    I used the smart tiles in a kitchen redo last year. Everyone thinks they are the real thing. One warning, when you take them out of the package they really look cheap. Once I started installing I was amazed how great they look

  7. Phyllis G

    Love love SMART TILES! I used in my kitchen by applying just a line of the smart tiles behind my faucet backsplash for a year before purchasing more for the entire wall. I wanted to be certain that they adhere without peeling or falling off.

  8. Phyllis G

    (Con) ….. THEY WORK GREAT AND NOW MY ENTIRE BLACKSPALSH IS A HIT!!! My friends and family are always surprised when I tell them they are peel’ & stick tiles…NOW I WANT TO TILE EVERYTHING 😜

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