Decorating Ideas for All Tax Return Budgets

Happy tax season, all! Income taxes are due next week and I for one will be glad it’s over. As a small business owner this is a waiting game I don’t like to play. If you’re one of the lucky ones and are receiving a tax refund I wanted to share with you a few ways you can update your home depending on what you get back from Uncle Sam.

If you’re getting a small refund then small changes that make a big impact are in order. A can of paint and a little elbow grease is the best way to make the largest change to any room. Paint will take your bedroom from light to cozy dark, update your dated blue dining room, or lighten up the powder room with a pretty pink. It’s so versatile and the color options are endless. Here are some of our go-to colors…


Another small change is to invest in new throw pillows for any number of rooms. I’m a big proponent of the neutral color sofa so you can change the room with little investment or effort. New pillows can really breathe life into a space without breaking the proverbial bank. We have a whole slew of new designs coming in that we are super excited about. Here are just a few that we love…


If you’re getting a medium-sized refund, then might I suggest a couple of bold changes, starting with a new rug for your space. If you’ve outgrown the Pottery Barn sisal and are looking for something with a little personality, a rug fits the bill. Change the color, bring in a pattern instead of the old solid, or go from cotton to wool for an upgrade and a change in texture, all of which greatly change the personality of a room. Here are a few of our Dash & Albert classics…


Another way to make a bold statement with a medium-sized refund is to invest in custom window treatments. Curtains, blinds, shutters, and Roman shades all bring a finished quality to any room. If you don’t have them then get them, and if you’re in need of a change, then now is the time to do it.

Personally, this is my plan for a refund, should we get one. For the last five years, we have quite literally had three Target-issued Roman shades nailed up over our windows. It’s quite embarrassing to admit, but this is a case of the cobbler’s children having no shoes. We have lots of fabric available by the yard from wonderful makers that would finish your space beautifully. Here are some favorites…


Finally, if you’re getting a large refund then it’s time for a whole room makeover. Pick one space that has been neglected for far too long and give it a little TLC. Our design partners, Shotgun Double and Gingham and Grosgrain, and our Red Barn Mercantile team are here to make your new bedroom, family room, or whatever room a reality.



You worked really hard in 2017 and it’s time to reap those rewards, wouldn’t you agree? To inquire about our design services please email


  • The latest from Amy
Owner Amy Rutherford started Red Barn because she wanted to deliver a service — to provide both old and new in one place. No longer will busy shoppers be limited to reproductions or forced to shop multiple flea markets for the look or gifts they want. The trick in blending old and new, vintage and modern, classic and quirky, is balance. And Amy’s knack for mixing rustic antiques with urban chic has created a look that is both fresh and familiar.

Red Barn Mercantile opened its doors in September 2007 with a single vision in mind: providing old and new to offer our customers signature whole-room designs at great prices.

We’re more than a furniture boutique and provide more personalized service than a big box retailer. We work hard to bring you the highest quality furniture and gifts, the most unique conversation starters, wall hangings and accent pieces, whether they come from off-the-beaten-track flea markets, or the latest designers.

1117 King Street
Alexandria, VA 22314


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