If you already have lamps then you can just change the lamp shades and this can affect the lighting. Lamp shades are a really cost effective way of doing things. Just keep it simple and experiment with different options.
Having said that if you do have the money to purchase some new furniture then that is a lot more fun. It is important to set a budget though prior to looking as you know what it is like when you are out shopping and you get carried away with what you see.
Even if you inherited from Aunt Kay and you aren't particularly keen on the style you can invest in slipcovers for the upholstered pieces in a neutral fabric to unify the pieces, then use your creatively through accents.
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