Three Easy Apartment Decorating Secrets

 

Sofa with colorful pillows in room

 

So….some of you noticed that I was MIA for the month of July. I was supposed to be on vacation in Ohio. But I did do a bit of research on three easy apartment decorating secrets for you apartment dwellers . Let’s just say a wedding, a funeral and surgery for one of my daughters wiped out most of the month. What should have been a fun time with family, turned into a longer, less relaxing vacay.

The wedding of hubby’s nephew -wonderful.  An unexpected funeral made for somber family time in my hometown.  That visit was cut short by an unplanned trip to Atlanta.  Our youngest daughter had a long overdue, poorly timed (for me), tonsillectomy.  Let’s just say, as an adult, that surgery is not the fun, popsicle and ice-cream-eating time off from work that you’d expect.  It’s rough and you need a nursemaid.  Mom to the rescue.

Ten days in her apartment, staring at neutral walls, had me dreaming of what I could do if only I could get my hands on paint, accessories, and a day to shop for something other than mashed potatoes, popsicles, and soup.

What would I have done, design-wise, in my young twenty something’s apartment?  Well to start, I would have attacked the walls to give her place some interest, movement and and express her individuality.

Wallpaper for Renters.  A friend who lives in an apartment told me about this and I am a fan.  You can make a statement with wallpaper in an entry or on a feature wall without worrying about how you will take it down.  Companies like Sherwin Williams have washable, eco-friendly Easy Change Wallpaper.  Who knew?

Take it outside.  And then, her “outdoor space” would have been next on the list.  Don’t tell me you have an itty bitty balcony.  Fresh air can be had for the price of that extra dining chair and a piece of fluffy sheepskin.  Plop down a small woven rug and side table and you can sip Starbucks all day Saturday without the “cell yell” environment.

6-small-city-patio

Chalk it Up.   An organized space gives big returns in small spaces.  Maximize a small wall the way that Jenna Burger of SAS Interiors did so well here with her family’s chalk painted wall.  Enhanced with  calendars, file holders, and clipboards, it can prove to be  the hardest working spot in the home.

Mary-Etta-Designs-Discusses-Apartment-Design

Source BHG’s Jenna Burger

I’m happy to say that my daughter is doing much better, is back to work, and even managed to move to another apartment since I left mid-July.  It’s a good thing that I didn’t act on any of these fun projects.  But now she has a new place for me to help design.  Sounds like I need a road trip.  Atlanta in the fall?

MELogo

Fall Design Trend: Spicey Interiors

Fall is finally here and, for once, I am glad to say goodbye to summer.  We have had a scorching hot last few weeks in Southern California.  And the drought drags on here.  So rain would be much appreciated! Just saying.

I love fall. My memories of fall in the mid west  meant blazers, corduroys and fall colors in our wardrobe.  I’ve always loved the spicy warm colors.  I Still do!  The Fall Design Trend: Spicy Interiors, is one that never grows old for me.

This is still one of my favorite projects.  The client fell in love with the bed linen.  I designed drapery to compliment the room.  That highly influenced the wall colors.

This is still one of my favorite projects. The client fell in love with the bed linen. I designed drapery to compliment the room. That highly influenced the wall colors. Spicey!                     Photo by Mary Etta Designs

The thing about spicy reds and oranges is that they really work throughout the entire year.  But they take a front seat in the fall.  You could actually live with these colors, as I do, all year long.  The design below shows a a transitional space with 2012’s color of the year- Tangerine Tango on the sofa.  And it still looks perfect in 2014 with the buttery yellow walls and deeper toned spicey pillows, mirror, candles,  and accent wall.

The sofa is not such an imposition in this classic room thanks to the back wall having the same color, not to mention spectacular architecture.

The sofa is not such an imposition in this classic room thanks to the back wall having the same color, not to mention spectacular architecture defining the space.                        Photo courtesy HGTV.com         

Fall colors are earthy colors.  When you repeat a color often enough, it takes on a neutral feeling.  So the earth tones can be used in your larger pieces as a neutral.  But if you like to keep your neutrals in the beige or gray palette, then use the earthy spice tones as accents to mark the transition from summer to fall.  The nice thing about fall is it takes us from Back-to-School toHalloween and Thanksgiving.  And the spice, rusts, and brown tones work with all of those themes.

Neutrals are smart upholstery pieces for those of you who like to change your accessories with the season.

Neutrals are smart upholstery pieces for those of you who like to change your accessories with the season.  Photo courtesy HGTV.com  

From crayons to ghosts to Turkey dinners, fall colors work wonders to brighten up those earlier sunsets.  Add lighting in the form of table lamps and candles and you get the warmth you may be missing from the hot summer sun.  Do you have dark leather or upholster pieces?  If you need to replace any large pieces, consider a spice color sofa or larger chair.  It will keep your room from falling flat and looking like a dungeon.

I love how this design is so smart in breaking up the dark brown furniture pieces with a spicy sofa.  Very Smart.

I love how this design is so smart in breaking up the dark brown furniture pieces with a spicy sofa. Very Smart.       Photo courtesy HGTV.com

So get ready to spend more time indoors with the fall colors I love.  Happy Autumn!

MARY ETTA DESIGNS LOGO