Post # 1
FI and I just moved into our first place together and are very excited. We are all moved in and spent pretty much all of our decorating budget on necessities (I.e. Bedroom curtains, lamps). Aside from our couch, all of our furniture is decades-old hand me downs from family members . I don’t dislike any of it but all put together I think it looks pretty cobbled together and a lot like a college apartment (because of the fact that clearly none of it was meant to go together). Any suggestions on how to inexpensively make the place nicer and less like a college kid’s apartment?
Post # 2
you could easily spray paint the chairs and table to be the same color. that might make them look less tossed together.
Post # 3
Curtains would go a long way! Try buying material at a fabric store if curtains are really expensive. Otherwise, the only way we knew to make our place look more grown up was with new furniture (we buy from tehe”bargain bin” at our local furniture store. They have expensive pieces that were slightly damaged for like $200!)
Post # 4
Your furniture may be older, but it is neutral so easy to work with.
- pick a color that you want to use as an accent color and use various shades of it in your accessories- you don;t have to buy new pillows, just get new covers.
- piut the little rug under the coffee table in storage or use it as a mat by the front door, or in front of the sink. It really doesn’t serve any purpose under the coffee table.
- find a larger piece of art for over the sofa or add some pics to make a grouping. The present pic is on the small size.
- add curtains. I see you have venetian blinds so you can get just two panels of curtains and hang them so they just overlap the edges of the window. You can get a curtain rod really cheaply at a thrift store- sometimes drapes too.
- if you are up for it, you could spray paint the dining room chairs and the two end tables the same color. You would have to take the backs and seats off the chair frames. Before you do this, see if you can find anything that gives a brand name. Some of these chairs are worth over $1100 each! Another option would be to paint the dining room table.
Post # 5
I don’t know if this helps but everyones apartment looks unfinished when you just start out. I have been living on my own for 10 years and just now have grown up furniture lol. My neighbor is in her 40’s and just bought some more permenant pieces so you are definitly not alone 🙂 It will all come together with time. Happy Shopping!
Post # 6
I agree with all of these recommendations, except the dining room set. I love those chairs and the table too. If you don’t want to keep them, I’m positive you would get interest if you put them on Etsy or Craigslist. I’m cringing at the idea of painting them!
Post # 7
As someone who sells and deals in vintage, that kitchen table set you have might be worth a lot. I love it so much. I also love that leather chair and ottomon you have. Oh my goodness.
Check out some interior design blogs to get some inspiration. Apartment Therapy is my favorite, also Design Sponge, and Decor8.
And like a PP said, PLEASE DO NOT paint that kitchen set.
Post # 8
hmmm cheap things I can think of are:
-colored accent wall behind couch (mine is gold!) and bigger artwork (find used or DIY)
-new pillow cases for couch
-replace standing college-style lamp for tablelamp
-find a big bookshelf to replace random coffee table by TV, display books and pretty odds and ends.
you can accomplish all these things at garage sales, resale shops, goodwill etc! I like going to resale shops in ritzy neighborhoods- they have nice stuff for cheap.
Post # 9
Also I think a table runner would look nice, with neutral placemats.
Post # 10
cbj9: IMO, small accessories make the biggest differences. Even if you keep all of your furniture. A slipcover can make you feel like you have a brand new couch, without the extreme expense. Pretty, modern vase/flower centerpieces for the dining table and coffee table can spruce up an entire room, unique pillar candle setups, cool light fixtures, mirrors and window treatments. I would also get some unique, modern pillows to layer on the couch and a cute throw blanket or two. Mount the flatscreen to the wall, and ditch the console (or paint and use it elsewhere). Some personal framed photos to take up some of the negative space on the walls. Pinterest has some cool ideas for how to display several together as a centerpiece on an accent wall or above the couch. Even a set of modern dishes on all your placemats really will pull the whole dining area together… It makes a dining area look mature and tidy.
Target has cool stuff on clearance all the time and you can find some neat stuff at goodwill or craigslist (we find things and repaint them to match our decor sometimes). Overstock has been really great for us, as well!
Post # 11
I agree about curtains and bigger/more art. I think the rug is too small and the chairs could be refinished or changed to make an impact. Mirrors are great too.
Post # 12
Love the suggestions you’ve already received.
My suggestions would be appropiately sized art and lighting ( size matching scale of the room). Side tables and appropriately sized lamps will really enhance scale of the room, pull it together and as result will look more grown up.Good lighting can work WONDERS. New paint (love PPs suggestio of an accent wall!) always makes a huge impact.
Congrats and have fun!!
Post # 13
- Wedding: October 2014 - Cape May
Curtains will go a long way to soften the room.
Add a bigger piece of art work behind the couch. It should be closer to the width of the couch. (I painted my own using canvas and cheap paint I picked up on sale. I’m totally not an artist bit it was cheap!)
Pick a few colors you want to focus on and try accessorizing using your key colors.
Post # 14
Framed pictures and art on the walls that fit the space better. Mostly bare walls always kind of scream “we just moved in.” Either one large piece that is about the size of the couch, or multiple smaller photos of varying sizes in similar frames to take up the space
Post # 15
CHristine2809: OMGMrsW2B: I did say to check the make of the chairs first. Some are valuable, but some are just junk that will look ever so much better painted.