3 Easy Ways To Give New Life To Your Apartment

By Emily Plummer on September 19, 2015

This article is brought to you by CORT, a subsidiary of Berkshire-Hathaway and the world’s largest furniture rental and relocation services company. To learn more about how we can help college students like you, click here.

From messy people to organized, clean-freaks to pile-makers, we all have our own systems for keeping our living spaces clean– or “clean.”

But let’s face it– college life doesn’t exactly allot extra time in our schedules for tidying-up. We do the best we can, but some days the bed won’t be made, the dining table will be covered in various plates, notebooks, and pens, and the dishes won’t be done.

It happens. And it’s hard not to let the clutter of your living space affect your already-cluttered mind, full of due dates, assignments, readings, concepts, and the odd fantasy of a spa weekend.

It’s important to keep your apartment a place of relaxation, life, and happiness, even while it falls into disarray at times. Therefore, I provide you with three simple ideas to give your apartment that home-away-from-home feel, that someone-actually-lives here vibe.

By giving your apartment just a little bit of TLC, you can revive its freshness and your own happiness being in it.

1. Flora

Otherwise stated: plants, living breathing decorations to liven up your space.

You’ve probably heard the age old wisdom of going on a walk outside when you feel stressed or have been in the library all day long. There is a lot to be said for the effects of nature on an overworked mind. Trees blow in the breeze, flowers release their scents into the air as you pass, grasses and vines and clouds and sky provide you with a whole new palette of colors to admire.

And while you can’t very well cultivate an entire ecosystem in your living room, you can bring a little bit of that outdoor feeling inside with you via plant life. Place a potted orchid on your windowsill, a small fern in the corner of your dining room, or herbs like basil and lavender along your kitchen counter.

These plants will provide a nice change of pace in the flow of your apartment decor. They’ll give you a sense– in whatever small way– of that nature walk feeling; you won’t feel so far removed from the outside world inside of your apartment.

You can be creative with your plants too. If you can’t see yourself remembering to water flowers, get a succulent or an air plant. They need very little or no water, so no need to stress over adding tasks to your household responsibilities. If on the other hand, you like the idea of caring for your plants daily, get some nice flowers that can become little companions as you check in on them each morning.

As an added bonus, many plants, like Aloe and Gerber daisies, actually purify the air around them.

Community gardens are great places to pick up plants that will liven up your home. You could just come out of it with fresher air, and a calmer living environment.

Image via Flickr.com

2. A Fruit Bowl

Here it is, one of the simplest things you can do to make your kitchen more colorful and inviting: invest in a fruit bowl.

We all have fruits in our diets, and for the most part they are pretty aesthetically pleasing foods. So why not take the opportunity to put them on display?

Any bowl will do (thrift stores are also great for picking up cheap dishes) and once you have it, all you have to do is fill it up. Red apples, yellow bananas, purple plums, and green pears can come together in this one place to provide a new source of brightness to your kitchen. The colorful medley of delicious looking fruits will refresh your kitchen with their subtle scents and vibrant appearances.

Entering the kitchen, your eyes will be drawn to mangos and grapes rather than dirty dishes and oven mitts left out. Plus, you’ll be encouraged to snack on healthy fruits, always available at your fingertips.

Image via Flickr.com

3. Curtains

This is a way to enhance the decor of your apartment, simultaneously making the place feel more lively and fresh.

Most apartment windows are covered by plain-looking blinds or shades– functional, but not very decorative. While you can’t rip these drab coverings out (unless you don’t mind giving up your security deposit), you can pull them aside to make way for some free flowing curtains.

Check out thrift stores for curtains, or even sheets that you could cut to size, and attach to your windows. Now, instead of blinds reminiscent of office buildings, your windows can reflect your own style.

When it’s not too cold, and if bug populations in your area permit, leave your windows open to allow the curtains to move with the breeze. Now you’ll be able to take notice of the fresh air permeating your home. Not to mention, the gentle movement of the curtains will add a liveliness to your otherwise stagnant environment.

From inside and out, your apartment will take on a more homey appearance. You’ll be able to stand outside and use your personalized windows to identify your own apartment from a sea of more typical ones.

Image via Flickr.com

It’s a difficult task keeping the home of a college student comfortable and inviting, while so much in our lives takes priority over housekeeping. But that doesn’t mean we have to accept a mediocre living space.

Enliven your apartment with my three easy suggestions. Then, when the mess comes, you can take refuge from the disorder in the company of your plants, the vibrancy of your fruits, and the gentle motion of your curtains.

Looking for a more convenient way to furnish your off-campus apartment? Rent stylish furniture from CORT and save time and money. For more information on furniture rental packages, click here.

By Emily Plummer

Uloop Writer
Hey, I'm Emily Plummer, a second year student at UC Berkeley, double majoring in Peace and Conflict Studies and History. Reading, writing, and travel give me life, and I'm excited to share my stories with you.

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