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5 Cheap Ways to Update a Room With Lighting

When we moved into our 1850s farmhouse two years ago you felt like you might hit your head on the ceiling because the light fixture was so long and wide. It was an eyesore. The lighting in an outdated house wasn’t bringing a warm and inviting feeling.


My husband and I are DIYers he more than I, and I knew those lights couldn’t stay. I’m a cheap girl at heart, so I also knew I would deal with it until we had the money to fix it up and put in recessed lighting.

If you are new here, we moved into our farmhouse on a six-month spending freeze, times were crazy stressful, but it was worth it.

If you are unhappy with a room consider adding new lighting. Whether you change out a ceiling light, or replace ceiling lights with recessed lighting or add a new lamp, lighting is a budget-friendly way to update a room.

This is especially a game changer for the long winter months we have in upstate New York.

Here are five ideas to give your living room or any other room in your home an updated look with lights for less.


lighting ideas for rooms without ceiling lights

Consider Adding a floor lamp. 

Our living room doesn’t have any ceiling lights. We had some different lighting next to our fireplace. We changed those out and added in LED lights, I also got a couple floor lamps.

This one I got from BJs marked down to $14.98!  The little table is perfect.



lighting ideas for rooms without ceiling lights

The other one I love for reading on the couch or chair and purchased from Target.

You can add an Edison bulb in the clear view lights like this or any other type of lighting to give it the look you want.

I have an Edison LED lightbulb in it. A two pack at BJs is $9.99.


lighting ideas for rooms without ceiling lights


Get Some Mirrors

My favorite places are Big Lots, BJs Wholesale, TJ Maxx Marshalls. Adding a mirror in each room can help give the space a bigger feel.

You can see from this post why I love shopping at BJs and started a WHOLE blog dedicated to it. I scored two of these amazing wood style mirrors for only….$19.99! I know it’s an incredible price. You may want to follow me on that blog too!

I add a big Red Star over it in the winter and put up a Christmas tree and more little lights at the top.



lighting ideas for rooms without ceiling lights

Recessed Lighting

The reason this makes it on a list with the word cheap is that if you are replacing energy-sucking lights as we had in our kitchen this will cost you less over time. This is the frugal choice.

You will pay more upfront but in the long run, you will save money and have much better lighting.

We got kits at BJ’s over the spring. I haven’t found these again at the club, which always reminds me of how things show up when we need them for less! Always keep your eyes open when looking for deals.

Costco or Sam’s club may have something similar.



lighting ideas for rooms without ceiling lights

Change LightBulb

Try adding a different lightbulb to the room. You can add in LED which gives off that stark white or dim it down with my favorite Edison bulbs. They make LED ones of the Edison bulb which is even better. Changing up the watts or style of the light bulb can really make a difference in your room.



Add a Chandelier

Looking for a little special touch to a room? Consider Adding a chandler. Don’t toss out those wire baskets from the flower shop!

Go the cheap route and make your own! I love this one from my lovely friends over at The Merry Thought.




lighting ideas for rooms without ceiling lights

Remove Curtains

I change curtains frequently because I start to feel they block out the light. In the winter I want that draft went but I don’t want to lose the light.  Since our living room doesn’t have any ceiling lights or wiring, we need all the light from the front corner window. It is one of my favorite features in the room, but windows look bare without any type of covering.

Curtains were too bulky, and the sheer curtains just got in the way with the couch.

I finally found something that has worked for the last year and I’m still not sick of it. These bamboo roman shades that block out some sun but yet still let light in. At night it closes up the room and gives it a cozy feeling but even during the day, the lighting is nice enough you can leave them closed.

If you are struggling with curtains or the look, check out the roman shades. I purchased these ones from Wayfair.


That sums it up, friends! I hope you feel inspired to add a little light to your room. Especially if it’s the winter months. Go ahead set that budget and start creating.


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