The HGTV host shares clever budget hacks, creative solutions, and insider tips to bring upscale design within reach.
Luxury home designer Michel Smith Boyd has styled some of the most expensive homes in the country, frequently working with affluent, high-profile clientele. However, he is no stranger to achieving a luxe look on a budget. In the new HGTV series Luxe for Less, he helps everyday homeowners maximize their funds while attaining their desired high-end home look.
“For years I’ve designed for celebrities and wealthy clients with big budgets, but the majority of us have to prioritize differently,” says the home designer. “I believe that everyone deserves luxury in spite of budget, so my team and I have discovered great ways to deliver the gasp-worthy spaces families crave.”
Premiering on Dec. 1, 2022 at 9 p.m. on HGTV and discovery+, Luxe for Less follows Michel Smith Boyd and his ingenious team as they share clever budget hacks, creative solutions, and insider tips to bring upscale design within reach.
“I love to create a better experience at home. My job is to go in and figure out with our clients what their version of luxury is, make sure they understand that they deserve it, and then figure out a way to deliver it," shares Boyd. "My favorite part of filming is watching the delight of the client. In the beginning, it’s a lot of nerves. They’re inviting a stranger into their home and trusting me with their biggest investment–their home. Watching them dig deeper into the process and get more invested couldn't be more gratifying. Seeing them getting excited and feeling really proud of their home, that’s amazing to me.”
Boyd shared with EBONY five of his top tips for easily and affordably adding more luxury to your home.
Be discerning when thrifting
Boyd emphasizes that luxe should not exclude common sense, so while shopping to achieve a high-end look, remain logical when considering purchases. “I enjoy thrifting. It's an incredible opportunity and lots of fun. Searching and finding something is like an adult treasure hunt. But remember, it’s only a deal if you needed it to begin with," shares Boyd. "You have to consider, why is this only $5? Is it something amazing that’s $5 or are you excited because it’s $5? I would leave room for discovery, but I also like the idea of having a loose list of what we’re looking for if it actually makes sense in our home. How much do you need it? Will you use it? Can you gift it? Those are my criteria.”
Focus on the senses
When styling living spaces, the HGTV host recommends homeowners approach creating luxury as curated experiences as opposed to single objects. “Placing focus on delighting the five senses is a fool-proof method for discovering what your particular version of luxury is and how to create it in your home,” he says. “I think luxury is an experience, so anything that really appeals to all the senses is what I am pushing for. I want to spend money on the things that we touch, like in the kitchen, definitely countertops. Choose a signature scent for your home. Luxury fragrance compliments the narrative you’ve created for your home. Your favorite hotel has one. So should you.”
Look to your wardrobe for inspiration
Boyd suggests taking cues from your personal style, as it provides insight on how to approach your interior palette, fabric selections, and mood. “This will help you establish the narrative that you want your home to have. I love the idea of getting to know a person while walking through their house. How they designed it, what they used, the color schemes, the finishes, the materials–it’s a narrative. And hopefully, the narrative supports who they actually are and what they want to convey to guests in their home," he adds.
Make your home a destination
A firm believer that people deserve the finer things in life every day rather than only while on vacation, he also aims to bring the hotel experience home. "I want to take some of that hospitality, escapism, calm, and all those things that make home a destination. That’s my version of luxury and that’s what I feel like people are discovering; that they do deserve it and not only do they deserve it, that they can actually define what luxury is for them," explains Boyd. "Your bedroom should be an ultimate destination. Invest in quality bedding, mattress pads, and pillows alike. We spend 1/3 of our lives in bed. Make it special."
Incorporate fresh flowers
“Fresh flowers are a must,” shares Boyd. “Florals are an instant vibe that you can easily add to your grocery list!”