20+ Best Apartment Decorating Ideas and Techniques

Apartment Decorating Ideas – Just because your home is pint-sized that doesn’t mean you have to live with pint-sized decor. Try these apartment decorating ideas on for size, and you’ll find your small apartment has never looked bigger.

Apartment Decorating Ideas

Go Curvy

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Because most apartments are boxy, it’s fun to add some curves. Designer Libby Langdon suggests round tables, chairs with a curve and rugs that are either shaped or adorned with spirals and dots.

Lighten Up

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“A light rug can open up your room and make it feel larger,” says Langdon. A bound carpet remnant can work great. If your apartment came with stained or dark wall-to-wall carpeting, cover it up with a rug in a lighter hue.

Go With Curtains

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You don’t have to live with those standard-issue apartment blinds. Add a touch of drama with curtains, and consider the tricks you can do with them to make your space appear larger. Hang curtains outside the window or even on bare walls. Hang them floor to ceiling to create height, or have them flow from a cornice that hides the curtain rod.

Curtain Illusion

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Introduce a rental to luxury with gorgeous drapes. Hanging several sets of drapes along a wall is an apartment-approved way to give your walls personality without the permanency of wallpaper or paint. It also gives the illusion that there are windows hidden behind the drapes, rather than just an expanse of blank walls and one tiny window.

Layer It

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Contrary to what you might think, small spaces don’t have to forgo a bed with lots of linens and fabrics. Layers and an elegant mix of colors, prints and pillows can make a space seem airy and give depth to what is likely one of the biggest pieces in the home.

All About Scale

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Unless you’re trying to make a statement with a dramatic, overstuffed couch, your small space will actually look larger with moderately sized or slightly smaller furnishings. It’s all about scale!

See Clearly

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Lucite tables or chairs and glass tops all give the impression of openness while still delivering the function you need.

Bathroom Furnishings

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Bring furniture into your bathroom and you’ll be adding plenty of function. A slender table with a drawer can be used for storage and a sturdy chair can become a perch for clean towels.

Sleep On It

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An old solution for cramped spaces has come back into style for good reason. Today’s Murphy beds pop out of sight and look just as great when they’re in use, says designer Dawn Burns-Pratt.

Brighten Things Up

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Add light up, down and all around to create interest and the feeling of space. “Lights are the most amazing way of making a home feel warm and welcoming. Using several lamps throughout a space creates a warm glow in the room,” says designer Ron Marvin.

Priorities, Priorities

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Because small spaces are very limited, you need to figure out your priorities and allocate accordingly, says Marvin. Some people need a desk area, but not a dining area. Some people want a living area and would prefer a bed that folds up. “Make the space work for your needs and don’t hold yourself to what is traditional in a home. It’s your home.”

Float It

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Designer Jason Landau loves mounting floating shelves wherever there is space. Because they float, this kind of shelving adds tons of storage but looks sleek and contemporary. And then go crazy with the stacking, he says.

Be Entertaining

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Turn your TV wall into a focal point. Hang paneled artwork behind the TV to frame it, and surround the TV with plenty of storage.

This TV could have been placed on the console beneath it, but to maximize space and functionality in an apartment rental, take your TV to the wall and place a console beneath it that can be used as a serving surface when entertaining.

Plus, having a piece of furniturebeneath a wall-mount TV grounds it and prevents it from seeming as if there’s a random black object floating on the wall.

Adapt Your Apartment

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Finding nonpermanent ways to update your apartment is key to making a rental feel like home. You might want to switch out your sink, but your rental agreement makes it a no-go. Instead, modify it to suit your tastes. Hang a skirt around an open sink, using adhesive-backed hook-and-loop tape to hide unsightly plumbing. Hide baskets or a low shelving unit of bathroom essentials behind the skirt.

Faux Built-In

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Some vintage apartment buildings come with gorgeous built-ins, ideal for storing modern necessities. If your apartment is lacking, fake the look by flanking a doorway with identical bookcases that reach almost to the ceiling and install moldings around the tops of the shelves. As a style bonus, paint the bookcase before installation, or line the backs with pretty paper.

Cozy, Chic Dining

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A cramped dining nook can become worthy of dinner parties with a few smart strategies. Use clear chairs or a glass-top table to visually expand the space and make it feel bigger, hang up some artwork, and adjust the lighting.

Install wall-mount sconces that don’t need to be hardwired, or place lamps on a narrow console. If your dining area came with a chandelier, see if you can cover the bare bulbs with shades, which will diffuse the light, softening the room’s glow.

Furniture Placement

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Picture your apartment’s living space without any furnitureto help you think beyond your current furniture arrangement. Decide if the room is large enough to divide up in to zones that will make the space more functional.

Then get creative with how you start to arrange furniture. It might make the most sense to “float” the sofa in the middle of the room and place your TV on the wall facing it. You can then use the space on the other side of the sofa for an office or dining area. Place a console behind the couch to use for storage to serve both zones.

Outside In

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Use colorful garden stools as impromptu coffee tables or as bedside tables. These relatively lightweight furniturepieces can easily be moved from room to room and are much easier to carry up apartment stairs than a bulky table.

Apartment Assets

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Turn awkward apartment features in your favor. Tap odd corners or narrow closets for storage or a cozy seating area for one. In this living room, two narrow nooks provide storage for office and crafts supplies, and curtains can be drawn to conceal the spaces.

Hardworking Furniture

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A daybed can be a couch by day and a guest bed by night. Plumped up with plenty of pillows for back support, you can sink comfortably on to a daybed to watch TV or read a book. But when overnight guests come, they’ll have a comfortable place to sleep. Keep a large basket nearby for extra linens to make the transition from couch to bed easy.

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