No matter the distance or the destination of our travels there is still one place that ranks above all others. It's a place where the sights, the smells, and the sounds all come with a heightened sense of familiarity. That place is our home! I very rarely post personal things about our home so I thought I would branch out and take the opportunity to share with you not only why we love our safe haven, but also some tips for your own home decoration and organizational decisions.
Many times when we first moved in to our apartment I searched for tips and tools for decorating small spaces. While many blogs have great ideas about this, they all seemed to involve spaces that you could repaint, knock out a wall, or build some shelves in. What about those of us who are renting and can't renovate our small space? What can WE do with our home to make it that place we long to come back to everyday?
So, after some trial, some error, some advice from others, and a lot of careful thought we were finally able to make our small, rented space feel like US (which was the most important thing)! We were finally able to create a space that we LOVE to call our home. Please check out some of our tips and feel free to share or comment! We would love feedback from you.
Tips for Bringing Tiny Spaces to LIFE!
We live in a 900 square foot apartment right smack in the middle of everything that Raleigh has to offer! We love it! We know that we are far more fortunate than some and we are grateful for every square foot that we have. However, the longer we live in our cozy home, share the same last name and the longer we remain in Raleigh we find the more stuff we accumulate. This was something we feared would be unavoidable from the beginning of our marriage. So, while we are absolutely in love with our home and the location, we have had to find ways to be creative with the smaller space!
Have a home for everything within the home!
We have found that one of the easiest ways for a house to become cluttered is to not have a designated space for everything. The kitchen towels, the spices, the keys, the mail, even the gifts that we have bought ahead of time have a specific place they belong. This minimizes the opportunities for things to end up on the end table or laid out on the counter. To the eye it truly minimizes clutter and to the mind it provides rest, peace, and a sense of accomplishment knowing that things are organized.
Organizational tips to give everything a home within your home:
Baskets! Baskets! Baskets!
Labels! Give everything a name and location!
Utilize drawer space!
Hanging baskets can be a best friend!
Less is much, much More!
This is a simple philosophy that by utilizing can really uplift a room! One of the challenging areas we find to consistently put this into practice is on shelving. Do you guys love built in shelves as much as I do!? Wow! They are amazing! We are so fortunate to have them provided in our apartment and we adore them. They provide texture to the wall and really give us more space to house items. Regardless of how much we love them it is very important to remember that they can become overloaded. The eye is naturally drawn to areas where there is a lot of stuff. So, if you think that you can load down those shelves with pictures, books, accessories, etc. without others noticing, think again! Shelves can make a broad statement if used correctly. We have really had to narrow down items that we purchase and place around the house, especially our shelves. This can be difficult. For me, its pictures! I LOVE photos and want them everywhere in our home but I know this can clutter things.
Tips for decorating with less!
Swap out photos in frames every few months!
Have a designated home for everything! (see above)
Get rid of things you don't NEED or that don't have sentimental value!
Decide on a theme you want for the room! Stick with it too!
Stackable items make great decorating tools!
Create a light, open space!
This was something else that we struggled with. Those with small spaces can certainly relate. The more stuff you add to a room, the darker it seems to get, especially if it's darker stuff. I personally tend to love the dark woods as an accent. Therefore, we have quite a bit of dark wood furniture. This meant that I would need to learn how to accent that dark texture with light in order to make the space feel like we weren't sitting in an ancient pub underground somewhere.
Tips for making a space seem bright and open!
Accent darker textures with a lighter one!
Don't be afraid of white! A white rug on the floor in a room covered with a lot of wood really opens up the space!
Remember that less is more rule?!
Don't use dark or long window treatments!
Use furniture that you can see underneath!
Some final non-categorial tips that we found throughout our journey of creating our desired space: