How to Create an Interior Decorating Budget

Dec 9, 2019 | Plan Your Decorating Project

When it comes to furnishings and decorating your home, how can you create an interior decorating budget? Well, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. If you look around at our Signature  4-Stage Decorating services, you might even say, “Nadine, what does ‘from $1,500’ mean?”

That’s your starting point. The simple truth is that every home is different, as is the feeling, comfort, and lifestyle we each want from our homes.

You want a home that feels personal, inspiring, and the essence of what YOU consider living beautifully. A copy-paste interior with the personality of boiled chicken? No thanks! (I think we can all agree that’s bland.)

But it’s also true that you can’t start any home project without knowing your expected investment. So here’s how we are breaking it down for you…

The 1930s Canberra Bungalow

The 1930s Canberra Bungalow

Silver, Gold, and Platinum Level Interior Decorating Budget

Since I can’t predict an exact number for you, I’ve organised furnishing investments into 3 Levels: Silver, Gold, and Platinum.

Each of these investment Levels (with estimates!) account for your desired furnishings’ quality, material, functionality, origin, the size of your room, and more.

These estimates also take into account a classic style interior, which is naturally more layered and detailed than its minimalist modern counterpart, and therefore requires more furnishings.

At the end of this post, you will be able to download our Guide to Budgeting a Decorating Project to estimate the investment for your forever home. For now, let’s talk about what each Level includes…

What Does a Silver Level Interior Decorating Budget Look Like?

  • Large rooms are filled generously
  • Quality fabrics from mid-range suppliers like Warwick
  • Australian-made quality sofa work rooms and ready-made items
  • High-quality Asian imports for most furniture
  • Quality hardware for window furnishings
  • Quality catalogue artwork in set or custom framing
  • Most soft furnishings will be ready-made
  • Stock rugs, flat weave, sisal, and non-New Zealand wool rugs
Hamptons in Reid

Hamptons in Reid

What Does a Gold Level Interior Decorating Budget Look Like?

  • Very large rooms are filled generously
  • Sprinkling of designer fabrics, cushions, here and there
  • All Australian upholstery in custom fabrics and crafted by high-end workrooms
  • Case goods from combined sources of Asian imports, Western- or local-made
  • Motorization in the most important window furnishings
  • Sprinkling of designer fabrics, embellishments and hardware for drapery
  • Quality catalogue artwork in custom framing
  • Mix of ready-made and custom soft furnishings
  • Oversized and custom New Zealand wool rugs
The Deakin Classic

The Deakin Classic

What Does a Platinum Level Interior Decorating Budget Look Like?

  • Massive rooms are filled generously
  • Designer fabrics on anything you desire
  • Upholstery from high-end Australian workrooms or imported from USA and Europe
  • High-end imported case good from USA and Europe, or bespoke local
  • Extensive window furnishing motorisation
  • Multiple treatments per window for a classic, layered look
  • Commissioned fine art
  • Custom soft furnishings with embellishments
  • Custom hand-knotted rugs from Nepal

Can You Mix Decorating Levels?

Of course! If you’re like many of our clients, your desires and tastes won’t all fall into one Level. It’s more likely that you’ll have many selections from one and several from another. (See why it’s so difficult for us to give you flat quote?!)

When you’re calculating your investment, you’ll be able to gauge whether you lean more toward one Level or another, OR if you want your home to include Silver Level furnishings in one room (such as a guest bedroom) and Gold or Platinum Level furnishings in another, such as your living room.

1930s Canberra Bungalow combinees Silver and Gold Level Decorating

1930s Canberra Bungalow combinees Silver and Gold Level Decorating

How to Calculate Your Desired Furnishings Investment

Okay, now the fun part. All of the above info is included in our Guide to Budgeting a Decorating Project at the end of this post. I suggest downloading it and following these steps to pencil in the investment and room-by-room budget that fits you best.

1. Gauge Your Level

Go through each of the 3 Levels and decide which furnishings best fit your space and tastes. Circle them in the workbook, so you can see which Level contains the highest number of selections.

2. Look at Pricing By Room

Next, you’ll be able to look at each Level’s estimated investment per room. For example, furnishing a master bedroom will naturally be more expensive than furnishing a guest room. You can also assume that if half of your selections come from the Silver Level and half from the Gold Level, your estimated budget will likely fall somewhere in between.

Circle the anticipated investment Level for each room that you plan to furnish.

3. Check the Numbers

Because these estimates are not an exact science, we’ve given you a second method: calculating by square metre. Use the dimensions of your space and the Level you selected in the “Pricing By Room” section, and multiple by the cost per metre squared.

4. Create Your Budget!

Now, you’re ready to pencil these numbers into the final chart in our Guide to Budgeting a Decorating Project. We’ve given you space to spread your investments over 6 months, 12 months, 2 or 5 years, so you can plan based on the finances available to you over time.

And yes, if you need several years to decorate your home, it’s O-KAY! That is precisely why we’ve created our Signature 4 Stage Decorating service. This is your forever we’re talking about, not a quick flip.

We’re here to help you take it at your pace.

What do Classic decor and furnishings really cost? Get our free expert guide!

Realistically plan for your next decorating project with our free guide to home furnishings budgeting worksheet!

Okay, now it’s your turn. Download our guided workbook below to calculate your budget. Any questions along the way? Be sure to ask us in the comments or send us a friendly email to studio@journey-home.com.au

Good luck, my friend!



Top 3 Thing To Know When Creating a Furniture Layout For Function & Beauty

Your guide will arrive in your email box shortly

Your guide will arrive in your email box shortly

Your guide will arrive in your email box shortly

Design & Decorating Project Planner

Your guide will arrive in your email box shortly

Hamptons colours for Canberra homes

Your guide will arrive in your email box shortly

Nadine Neilson

Your guide will arrive in your email box shortly

Yay, you're now on the VIP waiting list.