Leaving the nest whether it’s when you head off to college or post-graduation, it can be both an exciting and difficult time. Odds are you’re going to be living with a roommate for a while until you make enough money to really live on your own. In the mean time, it almost becomes a competition between you and your other almost-adulting friends as to who has the best apartment. Usually the friends who got some incredible job working in computer science, accounting, or finance in Manhattan win the games hands down. However, you can make your apartment stand out even with a not-so-lively location. It doesn’t take those stunning city views or that rooftop pool to make your apartment the best place to hang out. Since you’re all going to be leading busy lives, it’s important that you make the most of the time you’re able to spend with your college buddies. Start by inviting them over for a drink.
Have you ever been to a fancy hotel that has a mirror or a piece of artwork hanging on the wall that actually turns out to be a TV once you hit the power on button? Well, if you haven’t, they’re called hidden TVs. If you get yourself one of those for the entertainment area of your new apartment, you’re going to leave your friends speechless, plus it’s just cool. Let your TV blend in with the décor of the room rather than stick out like a sore thumb. It’s very adult of you to design a room so well!
Yes, hammocks are usually found outside in the courtyard or next to a pool, but when you live in an apartment, odds are you don’t have either of those. Hanging a hammock in your room or living room adds a casual and comfortable touch. It doesn’t have to be a traditional hammock either. There are many that you can hang up and take down by mounting hooks into walls that are close together. You can also look at indoor hanging swings, those are always fun.
A Mini Bar
You just graduated from college but that doesn’t change your inner 21-year-old self. Invest in a mini bar, even if it’s really small. It’s a way to show off the alcohol you have and a focal point for gatherings. It’s also a step up from a keg or from vodka bottles just lying around on the counter tops. A mini bar is classy, but still says I like to party.
A funky bookshelf
No apartment is spacious. For that reason, you’re going to learn to use your closet space wisely, fold your clothes extra tiny in your drawers, and value the purpose of a bookshelf. Maybe you won’t be using the shelf for books, but all of those knick-knacks and picture frames that just don’t fit on the coffee table can now have a home. You can find really basic shelves at stores like Target or get really unique and look on sites like Pinterest for DIY ideas.
Lighting is everything, especially in a small stuffy apartment. If you don’t get a lot of natural light, you’re going to have to over compensate with lamps. First of all, make sure you’re using bright light bulbs, because nothing brings the mood down more than a yellow-ish dull bulb. Once you’ve got that part figured out, find lamps or light fixtures that really add something to the space. Metal light wall fixtures are super popular nowadays and you can find them in just about any style or shape.
Don’t ever think that you can’t make a crappy apartment the coolest place to live with a little love and creativity. Making your first home away from a home a place you want to be is challenging and also really fun. Get into the process and make it yours.