Plans for Decorating A New Apartment

Did you catch the news on my Instagram?? We're moving to Austin, TX! It's going to be bittersweet to leave New Orleans and the house we're in has very much become our home but moving to Texas has been a long time in the making. There are a lot of little reasons for wanting to move but mostly Andy is from Texas and he really misses home and his family. Early 2020 we were thinking about a cross country move to Wisconsin but Covid has really made us reevaluate what's important and what we want. We want to get started in a city that's going to be our long term home. To have the time to build lasting friendships and connections. I don't think I could handle moving away from all of my friends again and again. So Texas here we come!

One of the things I'm most looking forward to in the immediate future is decorating our new apartment! I worked really hard decorating the house we currently live in during quarantine which you can check out in the series "quarantine makeovers." My biggest regret of our New Orleans house is not painting more of the rooms and making it feel like home sooner. We really do spend a lot of time at home so even though this apartment is just a starter place until we understand the city better I want to make it feel like it's ours. The apartment we're moving into is a completely generic build so it's really going to need some personalization.

This is the floor plan for the size apartment we're moving into.

Living Spaces

I'm going to say something that I know is an unpopular opinion but I don't care; I hate open concept rooms. I want walls!! I don't want my kitchen, dining room, and living room to be one room! Because of this disdain for open spaces I'm considering putting up a partition to extend this little jut out from the wall and make the living room feel like it's own space.

I like all of the ideas but I think the most doable and practical option would be the skinny cabinet with the open shelving above. I especially like that option because then I could paint the shelves the same color as the wall to make it really feel like one cohesive space. Sidebar, I'm fully aware that the collage above has annoyingly tiny photos. Sometimes Pinterest doesn't let you save the image and you have to resort to taking a screenshot! Ok back to the shelves! For pretty much any new furniture I'm going to try to search local thrift shops, secondhand stores, and curb alerts. But in my head I'm thinking something really skinny like those shoe storage shelves from Ikea I always see people using for all sorts of things. 

While we're talking about the living room, let's roll straight into the mood board and general idea I have for this space.

For each room I have a rough sketch and some ideas in my head but I know that once we're there it will be a lot easier to make decisions. I'm pretty settled on a blue; most likely something in between the two shades shown in the collage above. I have some paint to purchase for another project so I will pick up some swatches from the hardware store soon to get real color options.

The rug we have right now is a 6x8 from Ikea and it has served me well but I've had it a long time and I think I'm ready for a new look and something a little lighter that will blend in with Clems hair better. I thought about getting something from Ikea again but I didn't really like the options I saw online and then I started searching Etsy and wow they have an amazing selection!! I know I want a low pile as opposed to a flat weave and something a similar size and that we will want to keep for years and years. I put three options above, I think the black and white is my favorite but I know going with the Persian style is probably the better choice because it's a classic and I know I won't get sick of it. 

The last thing in the photo you'll notice is the mock ups I've made for the rocking chair! I shared this in my Instagram stories the other day but my neighbor Steven gave me this rocking chair a few years ago that's in rough shape and needs restoring. I love it but I've been holding off working on it until I found the perfect upholstery fabric and after years I've finally started to really, really search for some good options. I'm torn between a pattern that makes it more of a statement piece or a solid color that may fit into a variety of design styles. For the solid colors I found some good options on Etsy under the keyword "textured mid century modern chenille upholstery fabric." This brought up exactly what I was looking for. It's still mostly a solid but has just a little bit of texture to keep it interesting and looks very comfy. I also searched on under purpose > upholstery > jacquard. There is a lot of really terrible garbage options but trust me there are some gems hidden in there.

Dining Room Nook

I can't be 100% sure that this will fit but if it does this is my plan for this little area! I want to line up the cabinets from our living room makeover and then put the wall mounted shelves from Andy's office and the wall mounted shelves from my studio above the cabinets and paint them and the wall all the same color to make a built in look alike situation! Because we're downsizing to a smaller space neither Andy or I will have our own space so we will have to combine lots of things. My craft storage will must likely go into these cabinets and then his aviation books and study material will go on the open shelves. I also have it in my mind that I need to DIY some sort of book cover situation for his binders to make the spines look more aesthetic. I'm thinking of finding some cool linen pattern fabric to sew some binder covers and that will do the trick.

Because this dining room nook is really flowing into the kitchen, they will be the same color pallet. And I love a yellow kitchen!

This is the general idea. It's hard to get a feel for how long and wide that little nook is from the floor plan illustration and if I'll be able to fit the cabinets against the wall and still put a table in that area. I think the open shelves will go there no matter what and the cabinets may end up getting pushed into the living room.

The kitchen area I really don't have a lot of inspiration photos for because it's such a small area. I have considered removing the cabinet doors from the top cabinets in the kitchen because I'm not a big fan of the dark wood and I think it could help to lighten the area. We have really colorful plates and bowls so using open shelving to show off all of that would bring in a lot of personality.


In the screenshot from the website you can see the wall they've painted bright yellow. It's kind of an odd area because there's the front door and then the door to the coat closet so you can't really add furniture or do much. BUT I think it would be an amazing spot for a bright mural! I had originally thought a mural would be really good to do in the bathroom but after looking through photos I realized there isn't the right kind of wall space and I have other ideas for how to personalize that room.

As you can see I'm mostly interested in a cowboy theme. The cream and blue vintage illustration was the first idea I had for a mural. It was something I wanted to do in our bedroom in New Orleans but ended up not going for it. For this space I think I'm favoring the bright pink and girl standing on the horse. It would be cool to write in scripty letters Howdy or something. I'm on the fence about what the final design would be. But I do want to note that if I choose one of the newer designs where I can track down the artist I will contact them to get permission to use their artwork. Especially since I have the intention of sharing the mural on my website. I think this project will be something I add after we've finished up the kitchen and see what colors and design will compliment it since it's in the same area.

The Bathroom

At first I thought I wanted to do a print like the black and white pattern that goes all the way down to the baseboards. But after considering all the things in the bathroom that make it really annoying to paint around like the toilet. I thought it would be a good room to do a half wall like the other photos show. I think it would be inexpensive to get some decorative trim to create the half wall look. I'm not sure what the top color will be but I do like the black and white pattern so I might just use some craft paint and a sponge to do a simple repeating pattern.

I also like the idea of adding lots of picture frames like in the two black and white patterned bathrooms. I have a few art prints that I think would look good with that contrast.

The Closet

I am very excited for this walk in closet! I love the idea of a closet looking like a fun little boutique that gets you excited about getting dressed. I am not really sure how big this closet is and I'm assuming the shelving in there is going to be the standard white metal you find in most apartment complexes. This inspiration board is definitely a stretch because realistically I'll just want it to function more than anything and it's going to be a walkthrough to get to the bathroom from the bedroom so it can't be too cluttered. But even with that said it's still fun to look through ideas I have saved on my Pinterest board.

I'd really like to paint this room and potentially add a fun pattern using a big jumbo paint pen to draw designs on the wall but I'm concerned that it may be a similar situation as the bathroom where it's super annoying to paint around all the shelving and trim in here. I'm also keeping in mind that this is a closet and the wall space will be mostly covered with our clothes and it just may not be cost effective to paint in here. Most likely, I will end up painting this room last and use whatever leftover paint we have on hand and potentially mix colors to make a new frankencolor. I'm also not opposed to painting the ceiling in this room so that you get more of a pop of color. And speaking of ceiling, this room most likely will not have a ceiling fan which means I could do a really fun lighting/lampshade/pendant hack in here!

There are some furniture pieces I want to try in the space when we move in. I'd like to see what the rolling table that currently lives in our kitchen looks like in this room. I like the idea of having a table top to put things like jewelry or perfume to have while I get ready. I'm thinking I would have to put it in the same position it is in the kitchen where it's pushed against the wall. I know there is definitely not enough room for it to sit in the middle of the closet without it being a total pain to walk around. If the table looks weird in there then I think my backup would be a smaller shelf like the black one you can see in that same photo that has our dishes on it. And we also have a circular ottoman that I think would be great in here to sit on for putting on shoes.

The Bedroom

There's really not a lot of big changes for our bedroom as for as furniture goes. The big change is that I will definitely paint this room! I would say bedroom and living room are highest priorities for being painted. I have a lot of ideas saved for bedrooms but I think what I really want to try is a dark moody room.

I originally really wanted to paint the bedroom that mossy green shown in the inspiration board but I think it would really clash with the taupe/green rug we have. So now I'm considering maybe using that shade of green to paint the chest I have (not photo shown in the photo). The chest will most likely go at the end of the bed. The dresser I'm going to keep as natural wood because I think it will look really good against a dark painted wall. Which speaking of wall color, I'm really leaning towards the black more than the navy. I'm also considering the possibility that the rocker I'm recovering may end up going in this room in the corner as our designated piece of furniture to hold all the clean clothes we don't want to put away. Which is helping me to decide between fabric samples because the bedroom and living room are very different vibes. I think I'm leaning towards a black and white print or the red fabric with velvet red dots. The other things that may change in this room is that Andy has been wanting to make the switch from queen to king size bed which means we'll need to get a new frame and I really like the idea of a simple canopy bed frame. But I'm a little on the fence because the more I like at photos the more odd it looks in a room to have a giant metal cube. I think I could make it not look weird by adding some sheer fabric on the canopy that makes it feel moody and like you're in a little nap cave. We'll see what happens! The other idea I have saved to this inspiration board is to rig a box that could potentially store the projector which would be really awesome to have for movie nights.

The only space I basically have no ideas for is the little porch/balcony space. I'm not sure of the sizing and I'm most likely going to look for some new to us outdoor furniture on facebook marketplace or craigslist once we're settled in. It will obviously be filled with plants and I have some outdoor string lights but that all feels like your standard porch stuff. There's nothing super unique or crazy I have planned as of now.

I hope you liked this very stream of consciousness design plan I have going! I will say this is probably the most organized I've ever been for a move and it feels really good to get all my ideas out into organized mood boards. Let me know what you think or what you would do differently in the comments below!

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