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New York city life is expensive, and space is limited.
This has resulted in a lot of innovative residents finding ingenious ways to make the most of their living space, whether sharing it with others or living alone. Most New Yorkers have had to share their living quarters with others in their lifetime, it’s a huge part of the NYC experience.
That being said, living in small apartments with housemates is not a uniquely NYC phenomenon, and there are many home decor tips that anyone can take inspiration from, no matter where in the world your humble abode is situated.
Keep these budget-friendly home decoration tips in mind to make the most of your limited space.
Managing Shared Apartment Spaces
A big part of living with others is learning to compromise, and New Yorkers have creative ways to let everyone make a personal contribution to the decor, often at expense of taste.
An innovative way to let everyone express themselves without creating a cluttered look of clashing styles is by sharing a gallery wall.
This look is actually enhanced by using a mixture of tones, textures, and shapes, so you can really spread your creative wings. If housemates all have furniture pieces which don’t really match, a little bit of DIY in replacing the fittings with matching knobs, or repainting them with matching shades of wood varnish, can really tie the overall look together well.
When it comes to sharing a space with others, maintaining boundaries is vital.
Room dividers are a great way to divide up the space, especially in open-plan apartments that have less privacy.
There are many creative ways to divide a space which can really enhance your overall aesthetic, whether you opt for a fold-out screen, a tall bookcase, a curtain, or creative furniture arrangement.
Maximizing Small Apartment Spaces
Whether living alone or sharing with others, small apartments tend to feel claustrophobic and cramped.
There are a few tricks you can use to open up the space and make it seem roomier than it is.
One optical illusion which you can use to your advantage to elongate the space is to use long curtains which touch the ceiling and the floor, or as close to each as possible.
Separating designated with floor rugs also helps improve the flow.
One item you can never go large with is the mirror – and the more the merrier! Mirrors can really create an illusion of depth, especially in smaller rooms, when positioned opposite hallways or big windows. A mirror will always look good above a fireplace.
Always keep clutter to a minimum, and keep everything stored away as much as you can.
If possible, removing doors or partition walls can really open up the space and improve lighting and ventilation. House plants are also a great way to help freshen the air and improve the overall aesthetic.
Good lighting doesn’t need to come at the expense of floor space; wall lamps or side-table lamps add lovely ambient lighting and won’t trip you up.
Never block natural light with furniture or dark curtains, except in the bedrooms where too much light could cause sleep disturbances. When it comes to painting the walls and furniture or choosing wallpaper and drapery, neutral tones always work best. You can choose a paintable wallpaper, such as Allen+Roth wall paper, and paint it in your favorite shade of white or keep it in its default color.
There are a lot of hiding places and storage spots you can use if you think outside of the box.
Under the bed and behind furniture is great; stacking things up against the wall is not. This will create a claustrophobic vibe which you do not want.
When positioning your bed, keep in mind that beds look their best when viewed from the bedroom entrance head-on, so foot-first below the window is usually your most visually appealing choice in a smaller space.
You can also add a lot of room to your living area by downsizing your sofa and entertainment unit – going the minimalist route. Just make sure your sofa is as comfy as it is compact, and you’re good to go.
When it comes to furniture pieces, you would be amazed at the visual effect that acrylic and chrome furniture has in smaller New York apartments.
Chrome -or mirrored- furniture has an effect of visually enlarging the space, and they have very modern aesthetic which matches with most decor, save very pattern-rich textures.
Focus on your vertical space, using small bookshelves and side tables against the to keep clutter to a minimum.
Outpost Clubs provides common living spaces for rent in NYC. Make your living easy, rent a cozy bedroom in a beautiful house. Open new opportunities for networking with people who share the same spaces with you. Outpost Club provides end-to-end housing services in New York.
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