Renting an apartment does not have to mean living in a box with
white walls. While you may not be able to paint, there are many
ways to be creative when you decorate. Check out these tips to help
you design a space that is your own oasis of style.
1. Wallpaper is an impractical idea for an
apartment, especially if your landlord doesn't even want you to
paint, but removable wallpaper is a clever
option. It's readily available and easy to put up. Use it to create
an accent wall or paper a whole room. Make sure the pattern and
colours complement your overall colour scheme.
2. If removable wallpaper doesn't appeal to
you, try wall decals. Wall decals are a fun and
whimsical way to add character to a room. There are sizes and
themes to suit every space and include: quotes, natural themes,
abstract designs, cartoon characters, etc. Wall decals are easy to
remove if you want to change your look or when it's time to
3. A gallery wall is
created by grouping together framed photos and pieces of artwork on
one wall. It can be a meaningful way to express yourself in your
decor and make your apartment feel like home. Pick a suitable wall,
whether at the end of a hall or above your sofa, and plan your
layout. Most people use paper cut-outs in the shape of each picture
and then tape them to the wall to decide on the best layout. This
is a good step before committing to putting in nails. Another
option is to use picture rails to create your gallery wall. Picture
rails only require a couple of screws to secure them to the wall,
and they allow you the flexibility to change your art and
4. Another option is to embrace the
white walls and make them integral to your design.
Decorate using neutral earth-toned fabrics and natural woods, or do
the complete opposite and use bright colours that will pop against
the white backdrop of the walls.
5. Create the appearance of height in your
apartment by using tall bookshelves. This is one
of the most useful rules when it comes to decorating a small space.
Bookshelves aren't just for books, they're an ideal place for
personal touches such as your favourite art or collectibles. Use
lidded baskets for tidy storage on the shelves.
6. Put up mirrors as
decoration, not just as a place to check your hair. Mirrors can
make even the smallest apartment look bigger because of the way
they reflect artificial and natural light. A mirror placed across
from a window can really brighten up a small room.
7. If you have curtains, hang
them as high above your window as possible. This technique, like
using tall bookshelves, will make your room feel bigger by creating
the illusion of height.
8. Whether your apartment has hardwood floors
or carpeting, an area rug is a great option
to pull together your decorating scheme. Choose colours and
patterns to complement your upholstery and curtains, or choose a
light coloured carpet as a neutral. A light coloured carpet will
also work to make your room feel bigger.
9. You may desperately want the latest neon
green sofa to add colour to your apartment, but that is a big
commitment to a trendy item. Instead, consider painting
your furniture. A wooden coffee table painted in your
favourite shade is an easy way to add colour without spending a lot
10. Throws are always nice to have on hand for
napping or cuddling while you watch a movie. They also add colour
and texture to a room's decor. Throw pillows are
an easy, inexpensive way to add colour. With both of these items,
it's easy to change your apartment's look when you are ready to
re-create your space.
11. Finally, it's important to declutter. While
you are unpacking and setting up your apartment, take advantage of
this time to let go of things you no longer use. Clutter cannot
hide in a small apartment! Get into the habit of a seasonal
declutter to keep your apartment the haven you had planned.