Whether you’re starting some spring cleaning or never had a chance to make your apartment feel like home, a few simple tricks can make your space look straight out of a Home Goods catalog. Try these 10 tips for any aesthetic – from boho chic to clean modern.
1. Mirror mirror
Mirrors are a miracle worker in any apartment – especially tiny ones. They create an illusion of more space in the most cramped college apartments, and reflect light naturally. Added bonus is a hair check before you bustle off to class (hello cowlick).
2. Green thumb
Admittedly my ‘green’ thumb is more of a withered brown. If you’re a pro plant-owner find a few for windowsills, tables and bookshelves, but make sure you find greenery suited to the light and temperature conditions of your apartment. For serial plant killers like myself, find a few faux plants.
Pro tip: whether real or fake make sure you regularly dust your plants!
3. Clear clutter
Competing art and decor can have the opposite intended effect. Go through each space and stow away two to five items that don’t belong. Though decor is essential, too much can clutter your space and make it look like it was decorated by a discombobulated 15 year old.
4. Pillows, blankets and throws oh my!
This one isn’t rocket science. For dull and drab spaces add pops of color and texture by throwing some blankets and pillows on your couches, beds and chairs. Your home will look super sophisticated, and you can snuggle up while binge-watching Netflix.
5. Light her up
In any apartment, the more light the merrier. Have a variety of overhead, standing lamps and desk lamps to any room for an instant boost. Though you may rarely use all your lights at once, it’s great to have options for doing work or hosting friends for girls night in. Smaller more decorative lights, like salt lamps or twinkly lights, can also add a mystical touch to any space.
Pro tip: unplug your lights when you aren’t using them! Your electricity bill will thank you.
6. Get creative with storage space
Most of us in an apartment don’t have ample room for childhood teddy bears and old prom dresses. If you need to make storage in an already tiny apartment, find units that can double as furniture or seating. Get a TV stand with drawers underneath, or a plush ottoman that you can stash your goods in.
7. Hit the thrift store
For many college students, decorating is not a high priority when it comes to delegating finances. For cheap and unique household finds, explore your local thrift store or Arc. Just make sure you clean stuff off before hanging it up!
8. Double duty
If you’re cramped for space, use things you own as a decorative bowl, tray or box. Whether it’s for fridge magnets or your keys, you can save space in your cupboards and display cute items. If your displays are too mismatched pick up a spray paint color, like gold or silver, and cover up any kitschy patterns or neon colors.
9. Wall art
The biggest decor don’t is leaving big white walls blank. Whether it’s a few simplistic art prints, canvas paintings or framed photographs, some well-placed hanging art makes your space look less like a prison cell.
10. Rug it up
Much like throws and pillows, a good rug or carpet can keep your apartment cozy and add some life to any room. No shame in a few smaller rugs if big ones are too pricey – think in your entryway, bedside and in the living room.