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Budget Decor Made Simple

You don't have to spend a fortune turning your home or apartment into a creative living space full of vitality and life.

Interior decorator Steve Lyons says a new look at home can be achieved with commonplace items. He says budget decorating is just as good as using the expensive stuff.

In real life Steve Lyons is a very serious interior decorator whose designs appear in mansions, luxury apartments, cottages as well as simple living spaces. His work as an interior designer spans 20 years and he is the owner of No Big Deal Interior Decorating in New York.

His budget pieces range from items that cost as little as $5 - for a lamp that takes just 20 minutes to assemble - to wall pieces that can be made for less than $50.

He showed CBS This Morning how to make a lampshade, a collage for a child's room, a wall sconce and a room divider from objects you would never imagine could be reworked.

No major tools are needed. Use a glue gun, paper clips, scissors, Velcro, safety pins, twine and other simple fasteners.

Here are the how-to steps for some decorations:

"You Light Up My Life" Lampshade

Cost: $5 to $7 for lampshade


  • 1 lamp shade of translucent material
  • photos or photo copies of pictures of friends or family
  • colored paper

  • pair of scissors
  • rubber cement or spray adhesive
  • glass or cup to use as a template
Step 1: Using a glass or cup as a template, cut large (3-inch to four-inch) circles so that the faces of the people fall within the circle.

Step 2: Using rubber cement, glue photos to outside of lampshade with the image side not showing. Arrange them in an interesting polka-dot pattern.

Step 3: Place shade on lamp base and turn on. Photos that you could not see will suddenly be illuminated.

Bonus: As a surprise you could have photos hidden on the inside of the shade that will magically appear when the light is on.

Alternate design: Cut the pictures into vertical stripes and alternate that images, one inside, one outside, etc., until they circle the shade completely.

Kids' Collage

Cost: Under $9


  • 1 picture frame, approximately 18 feet by 24 feet
  • 1 Astro Turf mat, approximately the same size
  • 1 package inexpensive children's toys such as a baseball set, snorkel tube set and paddle ball set
  • Optional, inexpensive colorful hat, plastic eyes, plastic fish
  • pair of scissors or mat knife
  • glue gun
  • ruler
Step 1. Measure inside dimensions of frame and cut Astro Turf to that size.

Step 2. Using a glue gun, glue Astro Turf to frame, glass side up.

Step 3. Selecting toys of a particular theme, arrange them on the Astro Turf and glue them down using glue gun. It is a good idea if some of the items overlapThe glue gun will secure them in place.

Step 4. Hang on wall

The Big Wheel Wall Sconce

Click here for pictorial instructions or follow the steps below:

Cost: $11.25


  • plastic chrome hubcap
  • 2 plastic salad bowls
  • inflatable inner tube
  • 2 sockets & wire
  • 2 colored bulbs
  • dimmer switch (optional)
  • drill
  • glue gun
  • wire cutters
  • clear tape
Step 1. Drill a hole in the center of the hubcap for a light switch.

Step 2. Push wired socket through hole and attach to other side with nut.

Step 3. Glue small salad bowl to the back of the large bowl.

Step 4. Drill hole in the side of bowl, run wire through hole and attach socket to the bowl.

Step 5. Tape large bowl to the inside of the hubcap.

Step 6. Use an inflatable tube that will fit the hubcap and bowls.

Step 7. Blow up inner tube. A bicycle pump could be used.

Step 8. Attach plugs to the wires. Tape inner tube to the bowls. Add dimmer (optional).

Step 9. Hang on wall.

Picnic Plate and Napkin Ring Room Divider


  • plastic picnic plates in two sizes (in two different colors)
  • loose-leaf rings

  • paper hole punch
  • Crazy Glue or Duco Cement
Step 1. Glue small plate to inside of large plate.

Step 2. With hole punch make four holes in large plates at the equivalent of: 12 o'clock, 3 o'clock, 6 o'clock and 9 o'clock.

Step 3. Attach plates together with rings.

Step 4. Suspend from curtain rod, portable clothing rack or room dividing screen.

You can find more about Steve Lyons and his decorating ideas at his Web site at

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