Both Leah and I are about to re-start the apartment/house search process. Our respective leases end in June, and for a variety of reasons, we have both outgrown our current dwellings.
No, neither of us are pregnant. Sorry mom...still no grandkids.
However, pets and boyfriends take up space. Just saying.
Thinking about another apartment, I started thinking about what made my current place "mine." Partially there's the fact that the shower is so tiny that anyone under 5'4" has some trouble actually fitting in the stall. But in terms of it being "my apartment," it was what I put into it that mattered.
When it comes to renting, many places won't allow you to paint and I'm certainly not installing upgrades in a place that I'm renting; but I started putting together a list of simple, easy ways to make a rental feel like home...and unlike brand new hardwood floors, these won't break the bank!
That weird couch your family gave you isn't going to work its "homemaking" magic on its own. However, a couple of throw pillows and matching (or at least cohesive) curtains can make all the difference!
Pictures, Paintings, and Prints
Remember how your dorm felt like just a room to put your stuff in? Now you get to pick that stuff and hang things that don't have command strips attached to them. Spruce up blank white walls with anything that screams "me!". Leah has an awesome silhouette of a dog's head that she painted herself (total DIY win) hanging in her place. It adds a touch of charm and it's totally unique!
Rugs serve a dual purpose. First, they add color and design to your place. Most rentals have plain beige carpet, so rugs are your chance to put your spin on floor coverings! Second, they protect that sad, beige carpet so that you get your security deposit back at the end of your lease. Win-win.
I didn't think of this originally when I moved into my first apartment. I thought that decorations would be enough, but I quickly realized that a lot of my things didn't have a place. I ended up piling things on my desk for a while which was problematic for sooo many reasons! By providing myself with (cute) storage containers, I'm able to come home to a clean and productive apartment that feels less like a hotel room and more like a home.
Two different people in my life have suggested that I add this particular home addition to a decor post. Those people are my father and EJ. Once again, they're scary similar...but that's a post for another day.
Personally, I'm more of a fan of pets you can cuddle with. But of course, not all rentals allow four legged friends, in which case, fish are a great substitute. Fish tanks are also a pretty artistic outlet, so they will also dress up your space!
Alright, back to apartment hunting. I don't want to let it slip just yet, but keep an eye out for some potential life updates coming soon!