Decorating Plain Walls or Carpets in an Apartment

Typically I try to mix up the subject matter of my posts, but even though I just did an interior design post on Friday, I’m going to post another one today. Why? I spent the weekend in Halifax looking for new digs! We still have to get paperwork sorted out but we think we’ve found a place, gunning for a move-in date two weeks away.

We found that many apartment buildings in Halifax had carpets, even if they allowed pets, which is likely to help insulate in the winter and cut down on noise level. White walls and white carpets can look kind of blah at first, but think of it as a blank canvas and the possibilities are endless. I’m so excited to decorate a whole new space! My taste in design has changed a lot in the past few years, especially since I started writing this blog and discussing what designs I like and the trends I notice.

There are a lot of restrictions on decorating in a rental space but sometimes restrictions can inspire. There are loads of resources out there for apartment-dwellers, and Apartment Therapy is top of the list for me!

Use Modular Furniture (via Apartment Therapy)

Use Modular Furniture (via Apartment Therapy)

Apartment Therapy has done several articles on decorating small space. The images above are from an article on the 10 things you can do to customize a rental. Using modular furniture is good for a rental space because it can adapt to any new furniture you choose to add. It can also be useful for dinner or gatherings; a sectional that comes apart can be spread around the room for better seating.

Layer Colored Rugs (via Apartment Therapy)

Layer Colored Rugs (via Apartment Therapy)

Even if you already have carpets, don’t be afraid to lay down some nicely patterned or colored rugs! They help give the space character and have the bonus of giving more heat for your toes in the winter, and a little bit better sound isolation.

Paint a Piece of Your Furniture (via Centsational Girl)

Paint a Piece of Your Furniture (via Centsational Girl)

If you’re stuck with white walls and white floors, Centsational Girl suggests painting a piece of your own furniture. You could go with a super bright neon, or keep it calm with a neutral (mint is really popular right now). This new place will be the perfect opportunity for me to go yard-sale shopping, find a plain ol’ boring piece of furniture and start another coffee table project! There are so many possibilities here; you could use one color or several, paint the entire piece or just portions… have fun with it!

Swap or Add a Light Fixture (via Centsational Girl)

Swap or Add a Light Fixture (via Centsational Girl)

Replacing a lamp shade or light fixture is another way to bring color to your room. If you like DIY, Design Sponge has an article on creating your own fishscale paper lantern which looks very cool.

Add Additional Shelving in Kitchen (via TheKitchn)

Add Additional Shelving in Kitchen (via TheKitchn)

TheKitchn lists ways to make a small apartment kitchen more effective. Extra shelving can help organize some of counter-clutter. Hooks are a great solution as well, for large utensils, pots, even hanging mugs. One of the tips I keep seeing is to work with what you have; if you can’t change the color of your red kitchen cabinets, work with it instead! It’ll look much better if you design with red in mind instead of trying to hide it.

Make the Kitchen You Have More Functional (via TheKitchn)

Make the Kitchen You Have More Functional (via TheKitchn)

Taking the cabinet doors off can really open up your kitchen, and is great if you have crappy doors that you can’t otherwise change. Painting the shelves inside provides a nice pop of color. Notice how they’ve hung wineglasses above the sink to save more space. It’s all about using what space you have as effectively as possible.

How to Deal With Narrow Rooms (via HouseBeautiful)

How to Deal With Narrow Rooms (via HouseBeautiful)

HouseBeautiful has some very specific things you can do in especially small places to make them look better, and work better for you. In a narrow room, use small furniture that’s easily rearranged to give the illusion of more space. Adding mirrors will help give a dark room more light.

Use Multifunctional Furniture (via HouseBeautiful)

Use Multifunctional Furniture (via HouseBeautiful)

Be picky with furniture; don’t simply pick up anything at a yard sale or flea market just because it looks good and is cheap! The table above  is a chess table that doubles as a dining table. Treat your space carefully and make sure your purchases are worth while. Furniture that can be taken apart and stored easily or furniture that includes storage are both great buys.

These blogs have way more tips than I could fit into one post, so click the pictures for more info! I’ll be looking to decorate our new apartment as cheaply as possible with art school around the corner and will keep you guys up to date on progress. We’re able to paint our walls, so we’ll definitely be having some fun with colors. 😀

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