Let’s face it: sometimes, it’s hard to feel like an adult. One day you’re playing MASH and drinking Hi-C, and the next you’re trying to figure out how to budget your bills with your rent. Most people moving into their own place for the first time find themselves overwhelmed with the task of making their new home look, well, like an adult lives there. If you’ve ever secretly wondered how everyone around seems to know everything about decorating to look your age (whatever that is), you’re not alone. We’ve got some great suggestions to help you decorate like an adult!
If you’ve ever walked into a dormitory or shared-living type place, you’ll notice that all of the plates, bowls, and silverware don’t match. Most of these have been hobbled together over time by previous tenants who have moved on. Sure, this can be convenient, but it looks pretty sloppy. An instant adult upgrade: complimentary kitchenware. This doesn’t mean all of your dishes have to come from the same maker: you can still go thrifting and mix and match! As long as you’re centering a certain theme (like a color or pattern) with every piece that you choose, you’ll be able to build a complimentary dish collection on the cheap to make your cabinets look tres chic!
This may seem like a small thing, but there’s something just so comforting about walking into a kitchen and seeing clean dish towels on an over handle. Nothing screams “I have it together!” like little bits of cotton that you use when you can’t find your pot holder. Does anyone ever clean up spills with these? No! They’re usually not the right material for cleaning up messes. But! If you buy ones that compliment the color of your walls or your dishes, you’re gonna feel like a functioning adult human every time you go into your kitchen.
This is an important one. Whether you’ve got a three bedroom house or a studio apartment, it’s always important to have space dedicated to certain tasks. When you have a guest over and they see chairs and/or a couch separate from the rest of the furniture, they’re going to know that this is the place to go for good conversation and a glass of wine. If you’re more into the boho lifestyle/can’t quite afford chairs yet, a couple of bean bags with a low table between them will do. Want to really make sure people know this is a specific area for sitting? Add an area rug! The more defined your living spaces are — bedroom, kitchen, seating area — the more adult you’ll look, even if you’re crammed into 200 square feet.
Have some good lamps, my friends. You don’t live in a dungeon. And even if you do live in a dungeon, you still need to be able to see! One sad standing lamp in the corner of a room just isn’t going to cut it. If you don’t have overhead lighting in your apartment, it’s time to invest in extension cords and lamps. You can also look into hanging your own fixtures, if you’re an aspiring electrician! Otherwise, there are rechargeable options that work with magnets for you to add pops or bright light around a dark room. Just charge them before you bring guests over. And sure, you may be thinking, “I’m bringing over a special someone for sexy time! The lights will be turned off anyway!” Here’s the honest truth: they’re not gonna be in the mood if they first walk into your place and it looks like you’re about to murder them in the dark. Truth.
Did you know that you can get a sample bucket of any paint of your choice at most home goods stores? That sample bucket of paint is a) free or dirt cheap, and b) usually enough to cover one small wall. Ladies and gentleman, this is how you paint an accent wall for little to no money. Adding a pop of color can shake up the monotony of an all-white room, adding depth to make it look larger. I swear to you, one of the first things out of a guest’s mouth will be, “I love your [insert color] wall.”
So you’ve got your accent wall; now it’s time to put something on it! Skip out on regular wall art that you can buy at any store — after all, you don’t want to have the exact “Live Laugh Love” sign as all of your friends — and instead look in more interesting places. Auctions, yard sales, and farmer’s markets are a great place to start! You can also check out cool vintage movie poster places online. These aren’t the film posters of our youth; these are gorgeous, one-of-a-kind movie posters that will leave people’s jaws on the floor.
With these easy tips and tricks in mind, you’ll be feeling like a bonafide home-decorating adult in no time!