Five Insta-Upgrades To Prettify Any Rental

There’s no shame in renting. Owning a home is good and all, but it definitely comes with a certain amount of responsibility, financial and otherwise. While renters out there don’t have to deal with shoveling snow from the front walk or replacing a leaky faucet (dial up the landlord, baby!), many times one does face aesthetic limitations. Can’t paint over the Day-Glo white walls? Facing a whole house of grim, wall-to-wall carpeting straight out of the ’70s? We feel your interiors pain. Luckily, Apartment Therapy has a few thoughts (ten, to be exact) on how to work around such decorating roadblocks. We gotta say, these are lifesavers. Wave your lime-green cupboard issues goodbye and five other great tips, after the jump!

  1. If your rental comes with some surprising color choices (bubblegum pink bathroom tiles! lime kitchen cabinets! dirt brown refrigerator!), work with it, rather than against it — with accessories. Green tea towels, dishes, and kitchen chairs make the cabinets seem pulled-together and bright. Just like you meant it to look that way.
  2. To really make an apartment your own, hang some artwork. Even better? Cluster frames on a wall rather than going all out and spending loads on one giant piece of art. (Just make sure you invest in some Spackle and touch-up paint.) If your landlord is dead-set against any nails going into the wall, try some picture hanging strips instead. For cheap art, check out photography site 20×200.
  3. Replace outdated ceiling lights with something a little more stylish. Or, if you’re stuck with what’s already hanging, I once read: “Lamps are the jewelry of the home,” and it’s true. Indulge in beautiful table and standing lamps; they offer softer, more prettifying light. I love these. They’re a cheaper version of the classic designer gourd lamps from Christopher Spitzmiller.
  4. A problem that many renters face? Wall-to-wall carpet. By adding bright accents and layering area rugs over the floors, the carpet doesn’t seem so bad.
  5. Use modular furniture that you can customize to fit your space (and the next space you move into, too!). A sectional sofa, for instance, splits up into chairs or a loveseat.

[Apartment Therapy]