{style inspiration} Want the Look for Less? Knock it Off!

You know the saying "you're eyes are bigger than your stomach"? Well, when it comes to my decorating wish list, often my eyes are bigger than my budget. And I know I'm not the only one! It's so easy to walk through a store or flip through a catalog and fall in love with an item that you just can't afford!

A good shopper knows that with a little patience and perseverance, you can often find a similar item for a much better price. I've always been proud of my skills when it comes to bargain hunting, but lately I've been having a lot of fun with another method for getting the look for less - the knock off!

Blogland is full of inspiring knock off projects, but if you have your eye on a particular item and you are looking for ideas of how to recreate the look on your budget, your first stop should be Knock Off Decor.

If you haven't visited this site - you must! It's an amazing collection of some of the best knock off projects from around the web, representing budget version of items from all the high end stores, including Crate and Barrel, Pottery Barn, Anthropologie, Z Gallerie, Urban Outfitters, West Elm, Restoration Hardware, and many more! Knock Off Decor simply shows you images of original version and the knock off version, then links you back to the original blog post for each project where you'll typically find a detailed tutorial. Beckie, the brains behind Knock Off Decor, aims to inspire her readers with budget friendly projects, but she always gives due credit to the cutting edge designers behind the original products.

I have been fortunate to have two of my recent projects featured at Knock Off Decor. A few weeks ago, it was my License Plate Map High Low Project, and just yesterday my budget friendly version of Restoration Hardware's Vintage Industrial Letters were up on the site.

While my license plate map saved me a whopping $3,760 dollars, not every knock off is about saving hundreds or thousands of dollars. Especially when you are decorating an entire room (like I am doing currently for the One Room Challenge), every penny adds up and even a small savings can be worthwhile. My DIY version of the vintage industrial letters rang in at $3 each, compared to $15 each at Restoration Hardware Baby & Child.  While the original price wasn't that bad, an 80% cost savings is nothing to sneeze at, and that savings will allow me to add another detail to the room that otherwise might have not been in the budget.

Here are a few of my favorites among the fantastic knock off projects that have been featured by Knock Off Decor in recent months. Be sure to link through to the original blogger's post if you want to pin any of these projects to Pinterest.

GEOMETRIC TABLE LAMP: Original - Lamps Plus / Knock Off - Sarah M. Dorsey Designs
WOOD PATTERNED COASTERS: Original - Anthropologie / Knock Off - Just a Girl & Her Blog
RECLAIMED WOOD SHELVES: Original - Restoration Hardware / Knock Off - 7th House on the Left

It's amazing what you can do with a little creative and an investment of a little time! If there's an item on your decorating wish list that's just not in the budget, head over to Knock Off Decor and you might just find a way to make your very own version.  Best of all, a DIY version can allow you to customize in a way that better fits your space. Notice how Abby, from Just a Girl and Her Blog, altered the colors of her wood painted coasters to match her decor. Want that lamp in a different color, or need those shelves to be shorter? Create it just the way you want it!

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