How To Style Your Apartment•
Posted on February 05 2018
The process of styling an apartment or home from scratch can be grueling, trust me I know, I've moved every two years since college. I recently got a question on how I went about styling/furnishing my apartment and I felt it would be perfect to capture the process in a blog post to share with you all. I am no interior designer, but I don't think you have to be to style a place you love. Here is my story and 5 tips on how to go about styling an apartment.
1. Mindset is Key
When I moved back to Los Angeles a few things were different, mainly, I wanted to buy furniture I could keep for a while. Years of repurchasing the same furniture started to feel irresponsible and quite frankly I was tired of all the money I was wasting buying things I wouldn't keep or that wouldn't last.
My mindset was the first thing I got together, upfront I decided I would buy furniture that could stick around for more than a few years. Additionally, I knew what 'look' I wanted to go for, years of pinterest and discovering my own personal style helped with this. I would suggest starting here, landing on what you want this furnishing process to mean to you long term and defining what look you want to go for. Once you have decided what you are purchasing furniture for, e.g. the 23 year old you or the 35 year old you, you kind of have a sense of what is in and out of scope. When you are trying to determine your 'look' I definitely suggest cruising over to pinterest and starting pulling together the places that speak to you. Once you notice what your naturally gravitating towards that may suggest what style you should go for in your home. One of my favorite photos that I found during my planning process is below, designed by Justina Blakeney.
2. Use What you Already Have
When I moved I only had a van to haul everything down to Los Angeles so I was very selective with what I kept. Cost was definitely a factor for me because I did not have enough in my budget to totally start from scratch. I kept my bed and mattress, typically a big expense, and most of the decor I had (which I later donated).
Before you go out and buy all new things take an inventory of what you have. This will cut back on the stress of starting with nothing, giving you more time to focus on styling.
3. Start with the Big Stuff
I was determined to get a vibrant couch in a cool color like orange, blue, or pink. I wanted something that would be bold, fun and constantly make me smile. Finding the right couch was crucial for me because it would be the foundation for everything else, so when I found this beauty at Living Spaces I was sold. The material seemed like it could hold up well over the years and would not get all sunken in like some do. I was also able to find a really cool entertainment center as well, it was this big, bulky, industrial iron looking thing, but I loved it.
Starting with the bigger/more expensive items like a couch, TV stand, bed frame, or dining table allows you to set up the foundation of your home. Typically you would want everything else to work around these items, not the other way around. Do not be afraid to go bold, rather than going to the more traditional pieces choose something that will add to the style of your space. Since the larger items are sometime the most eye catching it is important to keep the style factor present along with everything else.
Excuse the bad quality my beginning stages (below), this is the only photo I have before it was complete. At this point I had the big stuff and everything I kept from my old apartment, like the pillows and the frames.
4. Pick a Color Scheme
I had purchased a blue couch and a very large black and wood entertainment center, so I really needed the right colors to pull everything together. I decided to go with pink to soften up the room a bit and white to bring the brightness.
When selecting a color scheme for your space go with colors that compliment what you already have, if any. It may be helpful to check out your local Home Depot or Lowes to grab a few color wheels and figure out what palette you like the most. Consider a few key elements that can change the feeling of a room like brightness, white space, balance, and darkness.
Also consider how you want to incorporate your color, is it through candles, curtains or even baskets?
The good thing is that colors can be changed a lot easier than key furniture, so try not to stress to hard. Make a decision that you will love in the long term if that is the overall mindset you have for your space, but remember, color is not difficult to change if you change your mind down the line.
5. Starting Bringing in the Pieces You Love
Their are a few key decor items you know you need (maybe): pillows, pictures and/or frames,plants (faux or real), and tables. I am pretty sure that list varies for everyone but I started their. I purchased each of the decor items in my space piece by piece, finding a place for each throughout the process. Most of them were relatively inexpensive and some were not. For me, I find joy in the 'putting it all together' part, but I understand that constant searching and building is not for everyone.
The key is to really bring in the decor you love that adds the style factor you are going for and provides function. Bring in items that will make you laugh, smile, and start conversations. Do not shy away from hanging photos! Art has the ability to turn up the heat in your house! Navigate through the items you choose with the concepts I mentioned earlier top of mind: brightness, white space, and balance.
Now that you have a few key steps to get you going, check out our collection of unique home decor items that you can incorporate into your home story here!