When it comes to settling into and decorating a temporary home, it can be difficult to make decisions about how much time, effort and money is placed into the process. Whether it’s at a dorm, first apartment, town home or even a first house, when the situation is temporary it’s best to know how to pick and choose what to invest in. It’s all about finding the balance between practicality and comfort, and it helps to get creative.
Often times when you move into a temporary home, there are limitations to how much you can decorate. For instance, it’s probably not worth it to paint the walls a different color in an apartment you will only be in for a year or two. And while living in a dorm room, you’re given the furniture you can use. So without the option to make any huge changes, it’s important to add small personal touches.
I’m all about vintage additives in my apartment, from old animal-shaped bookends to aged rustic keys I picked up at a flea market. Find your style and go with it, decorating with various objects that you enjoy looking at and that express what you love. It’s these quick and easy little items that will make your space feel more like home.
Interior Tip: Add a candle, or ten. Candles are one of my absolute favorite ways to add a personal touch. Find some cool scents. Find some candles with pretty designs. Find places in your apartment that could be livened with a little light, and add a candle.
When you’re a student or just have an extremely small budget, it’s best to have the “take what you can get” attitude.
Since I’m currently without any kind of kitchen table at my apartment, I made the decision to purchase some bar stools to sit up against my kitchen counter. I was extremely surprised and appreciative when my mom decided to give me a pair of old maroon stools that her dad had given her years before. While I could have purchased ones that looked a bit less dated, my mom’s bar stools both saved me money and added a vintage feel to my kitchen, all the while making me feel right at home with familiar furniture. And it’s still a really nice feeling to have such a cool family heirloom of sorts at my apartment.
My dad even pulled a few white plastic shelves out of his shed and offered them to me to see if they could be of use. While not the prettiest piece of furniture to look at, the shelf has been a great addition to my closet, allowing me tons of extra room for housing shoes and jeans.
When you’re not quite in the best financial situation to be picky, just take what you can get, get creative and make the best of it.
When I say “splurge” in this case, I’m not necessarily talking about an expensive item, unless that’s what you prefer. For me, my “me” item is more of an area of my apartment: my make-up desk.
My “me” time is typically in the morning. When I get up, I like to enjoy a hot cup of coffee while putting on my make-up for the day, usually while watching one of my many TV shows. It’s the quietest time for me each day, especially when it’s a busy day filled with work or school. So when I moved into my apartment and I knew that time in my day would be much quieter and peaceful than when I had roommates in a campus dorm, I knew I wanted to “splurge” on a little desk area for myself in which to spend my lovely mornings.
I was able to find my desk at a cheap price because it had been discontinued from a store, and atop I placed a mirror, a cup full of make-up brushes and various other hair and face products. I placed it in front of a window, allowing me a pretty view while also gifting me direct natural sunlight in which to do my makeup.
This “you” item could be anything. A little reading area in a corner of your apartment. A pretty drink tray on which to display your favorite liquors. A bookshelf filled with all your favorite things. Anything that feels like an indulgence just for you to celebrate your space.