Monday, March 9, 2015

Apartment Love

Approximately 33% of Americans live in apartments.
(I just googled that, so I have no idea if that is a reliable statistic or not).

I'm gonna venture a guess that most of those people still want their apartment to feel like home, regardless of the fact that they might only live there for a year or two before packing up and moving on to another place.   If you search for ideas online, you'll find many recommendations to paint the walls, or even use removable wallpaperWhile those are both good ideas, what about the people who don't want to mess with the hassle of paint or wallpaper for such a short period of time?  Or those who prefer to invest their money in decorations that they can take with them when they move?  Is it possible?  You bet your fine ass it is!

Enter Emily, my sister.  Event planner extraordinaire, Kate Middleton look-alike, and design savvy apartment dweller. 
You should see the out takes from this little photo shoot.  Let's just say her dog did not want to sit like a lady. 
When I visit her place, I am always struck by how classy, warm, and expensive it feels, despite the fact that she, like most of us, is decorating on a budget.  In previous apartments, she has invested the time and money into painting the walls, but this time around she opted not to.  Despite that, she has still created a lovely home using items that she will be able to take with her when she moves.  Since I enjoy her style so much, I thought y'all likely would as well.  Her place is bursting with little ideas and touches that just about anybody can incorporate to make their spaces look and feel loved.
 When you walk in the door, the kitchen is immediately to your left.  This is probably the hardest room to customize in an apartment, because you don't have much space to bring in your own art or furniture, but she still added some lovely accessories and arranged her utensils in a grouping for a decorated look. 

I should have scooted her oil thing to the left a little bit for this photo.  I'm really bad at this.

She turned this wine bottle into a soap dispenser.  Too cute! 

 Just past the kitchen is her dining room: 

This table was our grandma's, and Emily restored it a few years back.  I think she bought that mirror at Kirkland's, but don't quote me on that. 

I'm sort of in love with her china cabinet. It is so sparkly and gives the space an elegant and sophisticated flare.  

On the wall on the opposite side of the dining room, you will find this:
Emily created small vignettes or groupings on her shelves, which gives the impression of visual organization.  You hardly even notice the speaker on the bottom shelf.  (Side note: Any time she has guests over, she will turn that speaker on and softly play background music.  It's like you are in a classy hotel or something.  I'm telling you, the girl's got hosting skillz.  I think she's been an event planner for too long, she just can't help it.)

Just beyond her dining room is her living room: 

The couch is from Gallery furniture.
I think that store may only be in Houston though, so sorry to all you out-of-towners. 

The map canvases are from  Emily informs me that their online stock is way more impressive than what they have in stores.  I shall have to keep that in mind.

I am completely obsessed with this ottoman.  Those tufts, those nail heads. Swooning!  She found it on sale at Grandin Road for $199.

On the wall opposite the couch (the same wall the TV is on) is this little shelf.  During the holidays, Emily uses this shelf to hang their stockings.

Just to the right of this main living space is the guest bathroom:
This may be my favorite room in her entire apartment.  It is difficult to translate into photographs, but this space just feels luxurious.  Very cozy, almost spa like.  Which is odd since I usually associate spas with light and airy color schemes.  Regardless, I'd totally take a bubble bath in here. 
Something I'd like to point out.  Notice that she used a rug rather than a bath mat in here.  I think rugs are so much more luxurious than bath mats, mostly because of their size.  This rug works perfectly in her space.

 Isn't that little wire tub so adorable?

The sparkly glass tray with soap, lotion, and body spray is not only pretty, but also convenient for guests.  I also like how it lends a touch of femininity to a somewhat "heavy" space (what with the dark counters and cabinets and lack of natural light). Speaking of lighting, I'm a big proponent of using lamps in bathrooms whenever you have the opportunity.  The warm glow is much more forgiving than harsh overhead lights.

The artwork pictured above was created for her by a friend, and I'm pretty sure that is a quote from a love song that is meaningful to Emily and her boyfriend's relationship.  Some band called Minus the Bear.  Maybe.  Not sure.  I'm really bad with pop culture.

Okay, now imagine yourself crossing back through the living room/dining room to the other side of the apartment.  As you are about the enter the bedroom, you pass through a little hallway.  Really its more of a nook than a true hallway:

This is the kind of space I feel like most people would just leave empty, or at the most stick a picture on the wall and call it a day.  The fact that Emily took the time to furnish this area makes it feel so much more... whats the word.  Special?  I'll go with special.  It's almost like a little foyer into the bedroom, and gives the illusion that you are entering a new wing of the home.  Does that make sense at all? And again, that lamp light is oh so cozy. 
I didn't realize until right now how many family heirlooms she has scattered throughout her apartment.  What's with that?  I don't think I have ANY.  I'll have to pick that bone with my family later.  I digress.

Welcome to the bedroom.  Despite the fact that it isn't very large, it really feels like a master bedroom. 

All those pillows create such a lush, and again, expensive look.

 The art above the bed is from a garage sale, and she purchased the frame seperately. 

Bedding is called Waterford, from Dillard's. 
**Update:  The bedding style is Ophelia, the brand is Waterford. 

Here is the room from the opposite corner.  She has a large mirror propped in the corner that is functional, but also gives the room a bit more visual space.

The side tables were found at a garage sale as well.  The headboard and dresser (which you can see in the reflection of the mirror in some of the photos) are again, both antiques passed down from family members. 

Since this lamp is a little bit smaller than the one on the other nightstand, she was smart to set it on top of some books to make it taller.  It is important to keep scale in mind when you are purchasing your accessories.  If they are too small for your space, sometimes they can look cheap. If they are too big, it may start to look crowded.  

Last but not least, is the "master" bathroom:

The blue and green color scheme ties in with her bedroom, creating a cohesive flow.  

So, what did you think?   I hope you enjoyed the virtual tour of my sisters home as much as I did and that this gives all the apartment-dwellers out there some inspiration for turning their places into homes.  

post signature


  1. You are totes adorable I love it and I love your sisters apt. super chic!!!!

    1. Thank you!!! :) You are totes adorable! :)

  2. What a cute post! Thanks for featuring our home!

    1. Glad you like it! I had a lot of fun featuring your place :)


I'd love to hear from you!