Design on a Newlywed Dime | Decorating our New Home


One of the hardest transitions we had as newlyweds was merging all of our decor that we had gathered over our college years! The stuff I held onto with such significance - like my souvenirs and decor from spending summers overseas and other thrifted treasures from college were not so loved by Taylor, no matter HOW much I loved them for the memories they brought. I had to take a lot of deep sighs and put things into boxes or give them away, and the same went for him. No more sports pennants on the walls. ;)  


Here's a picture of my college apartment to give you an idea of what we had to merge. Ha! Thankfully, Taylor's not as much of a collector of memories... such a clean man! 

Shortly after we perfected our 755 square foot Minneapolis apartment, we moved to Appleton, Wisconsin where we had the freedom to nearly double our square footage - AKA start all over again! A lot of our decor was pretty "college" - like the couches that were his grandparents' in the 90's that we found covers for. We had a lot of new space to cover, so we went back to our drawing board! Over the months we've been married, we've gotten pretty good at compromise and taking the other's interest to heart. I have a deep love of travel and incorporating that into my living space, and Taylor has a love of looking at where maps lead! WIN, WIN. We now have a map theme going throughout our house. Taylor grew up in the country, with a family that four wheels, canoes, hunts, etc. He loves the woodsy feel in a home, and although I spent the majority of my life in Suburbia, I love nature. We decided on blacks, golds, creams, dark browns... gender neutral colors, and a rustic theme to bring in our love of nature. 


*Find things that both of you love, and incorporate them into your decor! This will give you a space you feel inspired and comfortable in. 


This weekend, I went out to get a couple more things to perfect our living room, which inspired this blog post! We follow Dave Ramsey's living-on-a-budget plan, so we can't justify spending full dollar for much. However, as a newlywed, college student, or someone who likes to save money, it is possible to find nice things if you dig around! I'm going to share where most of the pieces of our home came from and for how much.


Our Living Room

1. When we moved, we decided it was time to fill up some of our space and splurge on new couches. No more covered couches from the 90's. ;) We found these 3 year old leather couches on Craigslist for $325 total. They were like new, and for much less than if we were to go to a furniture store! 


1. Mirror: Goodwill $20 

2. Gold/silver candle holders: Goodwill $2

3. Silver cones: Target $3 

4. Black and gold ceramic pieces: Hobby Lobby $7.50

5. Plant: Goodwill $2

6. Gold H: JB Knacker $0.50

Map wall

7.. Lamp: Target $40 (splurge ;))

8. Map picture: Hobby Lobby $50 (also a splurge, but it was 50% off and I LOVE maps, and a big piece like that was needed!)

9. End table: This was left at our old apartment when we moved in! Thanks, Shelby! :) 

10. Ceramic green/cream vase: Goodwill $5 

11. Brown vase with fake orchid (inside green/cream vase): Goodwill $4

12. Chateau serving tray: Goodwill $3

Gallery wall

13. Gold frame: *this was the Photo Booth frame at our wedding. Hobby Lobby $25

14. Map picture: Goodwill $3

15. Gold and black calligraphy: Hobby Lobby $10

16. Black frame: Target $10

17. Wooden end table: Hobby Lobby: $40

18. Plant: Goodwill $4

Key Holder Wall

19. Frame: Ikea $10

20. Wooden key holder: Wedding gift (pretty sure it's from Target!) 

21. Clock: Goodwill $15

22. Golden ornament ball: Goodwill $2.50

23. Bar stools: Craigslist $90 for 5 of them (one's in our garage); these usually go for $90 for one, so getting 5 of them was amazing! And they're beautiful. :) 

24. Curtains: My mother-in-law has a zillion curtains, so she came over one day and let us choose & put them up for us! Thanks, Tina! <3 


Our Bedroom

1. White window frame: Thrift store (I don't remember the name?!) $30

2. Map: JB Knacker $1.50

3. Lace embroidery circles: These were from our wedding. 

4. California map: JB Knacker $15

5. Yellow bottle/vase: I've had these for years! Thrifted. 

6. Wooden night stand: Craigslist $45

7. Suitcases: Also have had these for years. Thrifted. 

8. Books: Thrifted throughout the years. 



Our "Other" Room

Pretty sure the builders had this planned for a dining room?! We use it for all of our college or decor we don't know what to do with, and occasionally go in here to read.

1. Couches: from his grandparents. 

2. Brown arrow piece: Hobby Lobby $7.50 

3. Sticks with lights: These were also left at our old apartment. Thanks, Shelby! 

4. Antler wooden piece: Hobby Lobby $25

5. Pillows: Target $8

6. Gallery wall: All random pieces collected throughout college. 

7. Books: Thrifted throughout the years.

8. A & T: Hobby Lobby - from our wedding. Wish I would've chosen an H instead of our first names!


Our studio is not quite done yet, and I didn't photograph either of our bathrooms or kitchen. Why?! I don't know! Maybe someday soon I'll share our studio, bathrooms, and kitchen. :) For now, I hope this inspired you as you either merge decor with your lady/man, or search for ways to save money when you're decorating! Have the happiest Monday!


With love,


PersonalAli Leigh1 Comment