Wellbeing

6 Wall Decorations To Hang Instead Of Expensive Art (For Less Than $100)

Art is expensive. While it can, in certain circumstances, be considered an investment, few of us have the money to splash out on a painting by Nolan or Olsen. That doesn’t mean the walls of your home need to go bare. For wall decorations think outside of the square to style your home with cheaper – but still attractive – alternatives.

#1 Mirror, mirror

Mirrors are perfect for wall decorations. Not only are they useful – allowing you to check your lewk as you leave the house – they reflect light around your home, and give the illusion of extra space. This makes them perfect for small apartments or rooms, giving the impression of size, but work to improve the light and space in any room.

This trendy wall mirror from Zanui will set you back $99.95.

#2 DIY

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Why feel like you need to buy art to put attractive pieces on your walls? There are endless DIY tutorial videos online to teach you how to make a vast range of art. Pick a style you like and get painting – and given the painting you make will just be for your own personal enjoyment, don’t be afraid to copy a real artwork you like.

Head to a discount variety store or craft store to pick up whatever materials you need. Marbling, screen printing, stamping, painting, drawing, digital artworks… art is your opportunity to express yourself. And it’ll be an interesting conversation starter when you have visitors.

If you’re in Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane, you could go to Cork and Chroma to paint your masterpiece (with tools supplied and bonus wine) for around $60.

#3 Photos, yours or someone else’s

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Yes, photographs can exist in physical format, separate to a Facebook wall. You already take photos with your mobile – why not print some to hang around your home? The cameras in our smartphones are high-quality enough now that you could easily get away with printing your phone photos.

Dig back into your archive to find interesting pics from that arty phase you went through but never followed up on. Pick out travel pics from your favourite destinations. Or print pics of friends – they’ll love it (if you choose the right ones).

IKEA stocks a range of affordable (and nice-looking!) frames to house your printed pics for under $50. Kmart photo centres can print your photos for as little as 10c a pop.

#4 Wrapping paper (the fancy kind)

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Bear with us on this one – we’re not talking just any wrapping paper (you do you, though). Wrapping paper these days is getting fancy, with metallic paint, eccentric patterns, embossing and a bunch of different paper types. They’re works of art in themselves. Not to mention the style of wrap which reprints vintage posters. Instant art work.

Try these wraps in astronomy, floral or food themes for under $10. The frame is the more exy part of this set up with this $80 one from Officeworks as an example. Don’t forget you could make your own or try second-hand stores for cheaper frames.

#5 Maps, real or printed

We don’t use maps so often any more – not printed ones anyway. They’re a great homage to the past, though, and can give a quaint travel-style look to a room. Some wrapping paper already mentioned uses retro city maps as a design. Or you could find them online – check sites like eBay or other digital marketplaces for antique maps.

Depending on when they were printed and in what quantities the prices will differ. you may be able to get an interesting perspective with an old map with quaint out-of-date country borders.

Try this Paris map for under $10. Don’t forget a frame – or go nude and post it directly to the wall. You could also find high-resolution images of maps online to print for your personal use.

#6 Fabric with bold prints

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Find a bold print which either matches or offers a point of difference from your furniture and linens. A metre of fabric at your local craft store won’t set you back too much. Whack it in a Kmart or IKEA frame and you’re golden.

Try these interesting prints from Voodoo Rabbit (they can also print your own custom designs) for just over $20 per metre.


Mitch is Editor of The Cusp and plans to print and frame vintage travel posters of his favourite cities.