If you can’t score a bargain on fabric, definitely find a pattern you love and use it. Get more usage out of smaller yardage by covering accent elements―such as pillows, lampshades, stools, side chairs, and the backs of cabinets―with it. (FYI: It takes about 1 yard of fabric to make one 18-inch pillow.)
For large pieces, such as a sofa, opt for a neutral slipcover. You’ll save your budget from reupholstery costs and give yourself more freedom to alter the look. This is always a good thing!