Dingy bathroom. Poky lounge. Carpet that’s retro in all the wrong ways. Welcome to the world of the renter… There’s nothing more depressing than living in fifty shades of beige. Sometimes it just feels like one long #livinthedream moment.
But wait! It doesn’t have to be this way! You don’t need to own your space for it to feel like home.
If you’re waiting until you’ve saved enough money to buy everything new, arrête!* Décor is like happiness. It’s a journey, not a destination. (Ah, poetry.) In our Rental Sweet Rental series, we’re taking it room by room. Here are 8 tips to giving your dining room/nook a make-over.
*It’s French for stop. We thought it sounded less didactic. And a bit more posh.
Clean your carpets
Professionally. Do it. It will lift your look. Free yourself from the microbial legacy living within its pile. (Yuh-huh. Revulsive.)
Invest in a rug
If you have polished floorboards, a rug softens noise. This way your impromptu-dinner-party-turned-karaoke-marathon can continue into the wee hours without risking any neighbour-wrangling.
Also, in cases of ghastly carpet, a large area rug is the best paper bag you’ll find. It should be big enough so all four legs of your dining chairs are still on it when everyone is sitting down. Not sure what we’re on about? Read this. Love jute? Look here.
Switch out your light fixtures
Say no to archaic light fittings doubling as insect graveyards. Define your style with a replica lighting design. This is an investment for the long term. No way you’re leaving it when you hit the road, Jack.
So you’d love a mismatched-but-modish pendant lighting installation above your dining table but your dragonlord won’t let you fiddle with the electrics? (P’raps not such a bad thing…) Enhance the mood with overlapping light sources. Host a romantic morning tête-à-tête then switch it up for a reserved business luncheon.
Give your windows some love
We don’t like to be prescriptive ordinarily, but Venetian blinds? It’s a no. Relegate those eyesores to that shelf at the top of the pantry that you can’t properly reach and leave them to gather (more) dust. Replace them with floor-to-ceiling curtains (these are space-enhancing due to their vertical lines) or Roman shades (uber-cool).
If you’re handy on a sewing machine you can DIY-it-up Martha Stewart style like this. If you’re more likely to stitch your finger into the mix, best to outsource.
Accessorise til the cows come
Make an impact with your colour choices
Experiment with colour to discover the combinations you like. Try before you buy. Pinterest the heck out of your look. We’re a bit old-school. We love a good mood board. The smell of the Clag glue, the cutting and pasting of pictures from alllll the homemaker mags. Heaven.
Add a duct tape feature wall
Yep. You read that right. If black is still the new black in your book + you’ve got a little time on your hands, check out this quirky DIY feature wall. Change up the colour with different coloured duct tape. And remove it seamlessly when you leave.
Here’s to making a little haven for yourself in your rental home! Go forth, chickens! Nest.
Featured images sourced from myparadissi.com, lightscapes.homedepot.com and Zanui.