Take it from me — planning a week of outfits is easier than deciding what type of throw pillows to buy or how many coats of paint will bring “life” to your small, yet cozy, apartment. Now, if you’re a cost-savvy recent graduate, a collegiate sharing a space, or even someone who doesn’t know how to take your humble abode from less humble to more luxurious, we’ve made a list of small “hacks” that we encourage you to use when looking for budget-friendly ways to upgrade your space! Being your own interior designer is hard work but we promise, we’ve found ways to make it a little easier.
Buy Fresh Flowers– Head to your local farmer’s market or grocery store and treat yourself to flowers every week. Not only will they smell great, they will provide that necessary pop of color and overall liveliness to your coffee table (this one seems way too obvious, but we can’t forget it)!
Less Is More- You don’t need much to make your apartment look great. In fact, the less you have, the cleaner and sleeker it will look! Try decluttering and putting items in containers or bins. This way, you’ll still have access to all your things, but your guests won’t have to see them (unless they’re cute things, then leave them out!)
Area Rugs- We all grew up with that one grandparent who had those hideous rugs covering their living room floor (sorry grandma), but that doesn’t mean you can’t “chic” it up a bit. This is where you should incorporate a printed or bold rug that complements your throw pillow patterns and the rest of the room. In the event you’ve already doubled up on the patterns and textures, choose an area rug that isn’t busy and balances out the room.
Less Might Be More, But Multiple Patterns & Textures Is A Must — Whether it’s an outfit or bedding, do yourself a favor and steer clear of layering on multiple designs or textures that clash. No matter what the lavish images on Pinterest or Google may try to encourage you to do, we don’t suggest mixing pink polka dotted pillows with a cow print rugs, teal vases, and a corduroy pin striped couch. While it’s always good to challenge yourself to try something new, sticking with the classics (a nice suede, leather, chevron combo) will never fail you!
Invest in House Plants — Green, living things make everything prettier! Add a little sunshine in your room to make those plants grow and you’ll find brighter days ahead of you!
Buy a Bar Cart — Although this house staple may seem a bit “trendy”, it’s a must! We all have those cute cups, patterned straws, and sleek liquor bottles that don’t need to be shoved in a cabinet or drawer. Having a sectioned off area for all these things will help showcase your personal taste and bring a little pizazz to the room.
It’s All In The Details — Small things matter. Add new knobs to an old dresser, repaint the molding in your apartment, add a metallic tray to your coffee table or hand paint some drink coasters for a pricey look without the price tag. Not only you will appreciate those things, but your guests will notice and adore the small things as well.
Make a Statement — Have one item in your living room or bedroom that says something. Whether it be a bold chair, a large mirror, a fur throw, a piece of art or a vintage lighting fixture, splurge on one standout-item. It will draw everyone’s attention and will be that special thing they remember.
Hang Your Drapes High — Unfortunately, the majority of us won’t be living in high-ceiling, crown-molded bungalows for quite some time. In order to recreate the look, hang your drapes higher and wider than your windows. This will draw the eyes upward and fool everyone into thinking your apartment is more spacious than it really is.
Be Matchy-Matchy — Now, I know we talked about incorporating different patterns and textures, but finding containers, as well as kitchen and bathroom accessories that are similar, will make everything look much more put together. They don’t need to be expensive either. Try a fresh, clean, white look. Its timeless, elegant, and you’ll save a few bucks!
For more inspiration, check out our Interior Design board on Pinterest!