Welcome to $50 Challenge, where we arm two intrepid shoppers with $50 each and send them out to one of our favorite retailers.
Target is where our paychecks go to die. Seriously, it's like a decor danger zone in there. But sometimes, we like to challenge ourselves to really stick to a budget. So we sent two Hunker editors over to our local Target and armed them both with $50 to see what fabulous treasures they could dig up — without completely breaking the bank. (P.S., we also like to play out these challenges in real time on our Instagram from time to time, so give us a follow!)
Video of the Day
Contestant #1: Leo, Hunker's Senior Director of Content
When I go to Target, I'm usually looking for cute accessories and home upgrades that look more expensive than they actually are. The problem is, Target usually has a lot of that. And then I buy many things. So it doesn't quite work out.
OMG, we love Chip and Joanna's Target stuff. I was kind of confused when I first saw this wood vase — was it a candle holder? But nope, it's got a handy glass test tube that transforms it into a chic bud vase. It really has a very chill Scandinavian vibe.
Not to make this into the Chip and Joanna show (because they already have their own, obvi), but the Hearth & Hand collection is just so well designed. This pack of cloth napkins feels WAY more high-end ... like they could almost come from a certain bedding start-up.
I mean, you give me $50 and set me loose in a Target, I'm going to come back with at least one thing I have absolutely ZERO use for. I saw this lava lamp and so many '90s memories rushed back — specifically those of begging my mom for one of these from the Delia's catalog ... and never getting one. Well, LOOK AT ME NOW, MA!
You could spend a few hours scouring Etsy for the perfect vintage glassware, or you could just pick up a bunch of these silver ombre tumblers which feel super midcentury. Serve many alcohols in them!
Wood bud vase, napkin set with four napkins, lava lamp, two cocktail glasses: $44.85
Contestant #2: Laurie, Hunker's Editorial Director
I was put to the test with this challenge because when I go to Target, even if my intention is to just get one or two things, I usually end up spending around $300. It's just this weird thing that happens. What is that?
Being that I'm currently renovating my home, I've got decorating on my mind. This cute little stoneware vase would be a perfect object to style on my living room coffee table or bookshelf. It's sweet, and it's a total steal.
I've been looking for a vase like this. It's mission: To sit pretty on my kitchen island with big, tall branches of eucalyptus leaves artfully arranged in it. Or maybe a giant monstera leaf for a more tropical feel. (Looks like someone likes vases.)
Oooh, I feel like the big winner with this one. I'm picturing this in my aforementioned living room holding extra blankets and cute pillows. Or, maybe it could be the perfect boho-modern holder for that fiddle-leaf fig tree I've always wanted. (Yes, I know, I still need to use a regular pot for the plant.) Either way, this baby is going on display, and not necessarily in the corner.