March 24, 2016  

How To Plan A Room Makeover Using Pinterest

It’s great to collect inspiration on Pinterest, but it can be overwhelming! Learn how to sort through the inspiration and create a cohesive room makeover plan.

Awesome tips for organizing your Pinterest boards to actually plan out a room makeover or decorating project. I need to do this!

Who else is obsessed with Pinterest? I’ll go ahead and raise my hand here. Do you find yourself pinning all kinds of amazing, genius, totally must-do decorating ideas? Let’s be honest, how often do you actually look back through those pins and figure out a plan for making those decorating dreams come to life? Not often, you say?

Pretty much every girl I know loves spending time on Pinterest, so I’m just going to assume you also fall into that category. I imagine you enjoy leisurely scrolling through your feed and pinning pretty pictures for fun, but all that Pinterest time just leads to overwhelm. You’ve never figured out a great way to plan a room makeover using Pinterest, right? Too much inspiration can be a bad thing sometimes. It often paralyzes us to the point where we never actually get around to decorating because we’re too overwhelmed to know where to begin.

Figuring out how to sort through all of that inspiration and come up with a plan for your next room makeover is a frustration I hear a lot. So today I thought it would be helpful to share how I collect ideas and inspiration and turn them into a cohesive decorating plan–all using Pinterest. If you need some help narrowing down your ideas and sifting through the thousands of bathroom photos you’ve pinned with no decision in sight, this post is for you.


I’m currently planning for my second time participating in the One Room Challenge, which kicks off on April 7. Bloggers are invited to take on the challenge and complete a room makeover in just six weeks and, since I’m always up for a challenge, I’m totally game for a second round. Transforming my ugly, weird basement room into a pretty craft studio last time was such a whirlwind, but it really motivated me to focus all of my energy on completing one room. I have a lot of rooms I want to decorate this year, and it’s almost April already so I know I need to get my butt in gear.

I have yet to decide which room I’m going to tackle for the One Room Challenge, but I’ve been working hard to narrow down my ideas and vision for a few top contenders. I collect my inspiration and ideas for each room on my Pinterest boards and use all of those pins to hone in on my decorating vision. And since I just went through this process for our bedroom, I thought you may be interested to see how I plan a room makeover using Pinterest.


1. Organize Your Pinterest Boards By Room

I have a Pinterest board for every single room in my house and you should, too. Oh, and think of more than just rooms. You could have one for your garage, your front yard, your patio, etc. Organizing your inspiration by room will help you a ton.

I have all of my boards set to secret, which is an option you’ll see when you create a new board. You can also edit an existing board to make it secret, which basically means that no one else can see it. I choose to keep my boards secret so I don’t overwhelm my followers, like when I go on a pinning frenzy and pin 32 DIY headboards in a three-minute time span. I also love secret boards because I like to collect my thoughts in private and keep some mystery to my plans before I tell everyone what direction I’m headed. Whether you choose to keep your boards secret or not is up to you, just make sure you have a board for each room.

Here are a few of my current secret house boards:

Good idea! Set up secret Pinterest boards for every single room of my house.

2. Pin Things You Could Actually See Yourself Doing In Your House

Once your boards are set up by room, you need to start pinning inspiration to them. I don’t recommend hopping on Pinterest and expecting to plan out a whole room makeover in one sitting. Rather, I like to collect my inspiration more naturally over time. Whenever I’m online and come across an image of a room I love, I pin it. I also pin specific products and project tutorials for anything I see that I think could belong in this room. Keep collecting your ideas over time, and you’ll eventually have a board filled with things you enjoy.

I want to encourage you to only pin things to your room board that you legitimately could envision yourself doing in your house. If you find a really awesome bright red living room but you would never in a million years paint your walls bright red, pin it to a different board instead. It doesn’t belong on your living room board if you’d never do it in your house. I have a board I call “Home Decor Love” just for all of the awesome photos I find that I want to share but don’t necessarily see happening in my own house.

3. Look For Common Themes

When you’re ready to get serious about planning your next room makeover, it’s time to narrow down your ideas on Pinterest and create a vision for what your room will look like.

Open up that room’s Pinterest board and start scrolling through all of its pins. As you scroll through for the first time, go ahead and delete any pins that are definite no’s. If you don’t like it anymore or are not sure what you were thinking, get rid of it.

Now that you’ve removed any random pins and refreshed your memory of everything you saved to your board, it’s time to start analyzing pins and looking for themes. What wall colors are most prevalent? What furniture and accessories are common in several pins? Identifying these common themes will help you narrow in on a vision for your room makeover. I like to jot down a list of common themes while analyzing my pins.

Review your list of common themes and use that to help you determine the decorating style and direction for your room. You likely have a few different “looks” in mind, so now’s the time to choose one. You don’t need to have a perfect vision at this point, but you do need to have a general idea of what look you’re going for so you can start making decisions that lead to a cohesive decorating plan.

4. Fine-Tune Your Decorating Vision

Once you have a general vision in mind, it’s time to create a brand new secret Pinterest board for your room. I know you already have a board for your room, but your new board is going to be the place where you only allow yourself to pin things that fit within your decorating vision.

So, now you need to gather the very best, focused inspiration on this final board. Scroll back through your original room board and pin everything that fits within your vision to the final board. This moves over all of your favorite pins into a more focused place. My original bedroom board was filled with pins I loved, but it looked pretty scattered:

This is a Pinterest board filled with bedroom ideas.

But my final bedroom board contains pins that all fit within my vision, and they follow many of the common themes on my list. See how this final board of mine looks much more focused that the original one above? By the way, this is quite the sneak peek at what I’m envisioning doing for our bedroom makeover.

This is a Pinterest board filled with bedroom ideas.

When you finish this step and scroll through your final board, I hope you get excited about your plans. You should love the direction you’re headed and you should be able to start visualizing what you want your actual room to look like.

5. Make Decisions And Fill In The Gaps

The final step in planning a room makeover using Pinterest is to observe all of the decisions you’ve already made. When looking at my final bedroom board, for example, it’s pretty obvious that my wall color is going to be a very dark navy/grey/black. It’s also obvious that I’m looking for white bedding, possibly with pops of color in a throw blanket or pillows.

From here, I like to start writing down a list. Paint color = dark navy. Bedding = white. Curtains = white. At this point, there are usually a few things that I want to research further or that I feel are missing from my board. I’ll start searching Pinterest for those things. For example, I didn’t have a clear idea in mind for a headboard, so I started searching for DIY headboard tutorials to give me some ideas of a style that will work with my vision.

Once you’ve worked through these steps and have a clear vision in mind, you can begin DIY-ing and shopping for materials/decor to make your room makeover a reality. Yippee! You’ll love being able to actually use Pinterest to your advantage in planning your next room makeover.

How do you collect inspiration for your decorating projects? Have you used secret Pinterest boards to plan room makeovers?

Thanks so much for stopping by today!


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About the author

Emily Counts is the founder of Small Stuff Counts, a home and organization blog she created in 2013. Her goal is to help moms make home life easier so they can create beautiful, organized, and thriving homes. She shares life at home as a mom juggling two young kids and being a working mom with a corporate job. The Iowa-based blogger lives in the suburbs of Des Moines, Iowa, with her husband, two children, and rescue dog. Emily has collaborated with brands including The Container Store, Cricut, Command Brand, Bissell, Sam's Club and Rubbermaid.

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  1. Really great suggestions, Emily! And how exciting that you’re doing ORC challenge again – can’t wait to see what you take on!

  2. I love seeing your process! You’re so organzied! I’d love to join in on the one room challenge but I’m temporarily moving 7 hours away from my home for a month in May. Maybe in the fall! 🙂

    1. Thank you! I didn’t know you were moving for a month..and temporarily? You should totally plan on ORC for this fall, I know you’d love to do it. Have a great day!

  3. Love it! I’m in the process of planning a move and therefore a new home lay-out. Great ideas for me and for anyone else using Pinterest.

    1. Glad you took away some ideas for planning the rooms in your new home. Moving definitely makes the wheels start turning to dream up decorating plans. Thanks for stopping by, Ariel!

  4. I think my fav tip is “pin stuff you can actually see yourself doing” – what a great way to keep on track with your overall goal! my problem is I always get sidetracked by all of the beautiful things that other people do an pin but, will I really ever DO 1/2 of them? probably not. 🙂

    1. It’s SO easy to get sidetracked on Pinterest, isn’t it? Happens to the best of us. I think it’s totally okay to get lost on Pinterest and pin things you probably won’t actually ever do, but I also think it can be a fantastic resource for collecting and narrowing down inspiration for a specific project. I hope these tips help! Thanks for visiting!

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