1. Throw nothing away. Make an inventory of everything you have!
It's easy to forget the great stuff that's been lingering in a closet or behind a piece of furniture. Making a list of what you have is a good way to get a sense of what you might be able to use.
2. Identify what can be repurposed.
An old nightstand or end table with stains or water marks might become a work table with a fresh coat of paint or a cloth cover. A damaged picture might have a perfectly good frame. Bedsheets can become scrims or slipcovers. There are a million ways to re-use what you already have.
3. Figure out what looks the worst and the best
If your cabinets are shoddy, that's where you focus. If your windows are perfect, that's where you want to draw the eye. Every room will have a natural focal point based on the layout and the position of the doors. Keep this in mind as you move forward.
4. Empty the room and clean
This means you need to at least move all the furniture to the middle of the space, not out of the room entirely. Just about every home looks different when there is nothing to distract you. An empty room makes for a blank canvas.
5. Start with small changes that have a big impact
Little ideas can have an incredible punch. Swap out drawer pulls, add throw pillows, put on slip covers, add some accent paint, post up some inspirational sayings, new artwork, or framed photos. You can also change the knickknacks that are visible on bookshelves or coffee tables.
6. Donate what remains
Remember that inventory you took? Now is the time to figure out what you didn't really need. Pass it along to someone else who might put it to use in their own home!