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It’s easy to get overwhelmed as a first-time apartment dweller when it comes to designing and decorating the place properly. There are lots of aspects to consider and there could be many areas that leave you out of inspiration. Whether you barely grasp the basics of good design or have a firm decor vision, it can be tough to figure out how to transform an apartment into a great place that you can call home.
If you want to revamp the current look of a modern apartment, consider checking out the following ideas to inspire you. We’ll show you some smart tips and tricks to work around the space limitations of apartments and create an attractive look even with minimal furniture or plain color schemes. Let’s explore the best modern apartment decor ideas to give every room a stylish look and a clearly defined purpose.
1. Fitted Storage
Square footage in an apartment is quite precious. You need to make the most out of the available space to properly store all of your things. A great solution in that sense is to try a fitted storage option. Even if your apartment isn’t particularly small, it could be a smart idea to use a fitted sideboard instead of a regular one. You will gain some extra storage flexibility by fitting a piece of furniture from floor to ceiling.
2. Textural Depth
Many homeowners focus a little too much on the color scheme when decorating a room while forgetting about the importance of textures. It’s essential to ensure that colors play nicely together but keep in mind that textures should also blend properly to add some depth and character to the space. Consider, for example, the beautiful contrast obtained by the smooth texture of a modern sectional sofa against the rough, industrial style of an exposed brick wall.
3. Stylish Entryway
Updating the look of the entryway is a sure method to add some chic appeal to your modern apartment. You don’t have to worry too much about space constraints. Even if you don’t have a clearly-defined entryway in your small apartment, there’s still plenty of room for functional decor elements. Some colorful and elegant wall-mounted pieces like hooks or floating shelves can bring a fresh vibe to the space. A large, round mirror can make a great first impression in the entryway.
4. Multifunctional Furniture
Not every modern apartment out there could be spacious enough to accommodate a wide range of separate furniture pieces with their own distinctive purpose. Try opting for multifunctional furniture where possible to make the most out of the available space. A good example is the use of a daybed that works as a sofa normally but can also act as a bed for guests when necessary. Some seating options like ottomans can work as side tables as well for extra functionality.
5. Natural Light
Using natural light to your advantage can improve the appearance of any modern apartment, regardless of decor style. If you choose sheer draperies or shades, that extra dose of natural sunlight entering the living room can make the space feel brighter and more welcoming. While blackout curtains can be useful in some situations, it’s highly recommended to allow more natural light into your apartment. Many sheer curtain styles can achieve this purpose without sacrificing too much privacy.
6. Layered Lighting
We’ve mentioned the importance of a healthy dose of natural light in your apartment, but you also need to keep in mind the way you use artificial light. Having a couple of extra light sources can create a visually-appealing layered lighting effect. Beautiful pendants or a shiny chandelier can draw attention to the ceiling while light sconces can make the walls stand out with the help of an atmospheric glow. Having light fixtures at various height levels in the room can improve the beauty of the space.
7. Wall Art
If you’re on a tight budget, decorating the apartment can be quite daunting. You can make a stylish art display without spending too much money, however. Pick a few of your favorite small prints and create a simple gallery wall or grid to showcase an artistic flair in the room. You don’t need to bother with complicated mounting methods or frames because prints can also be displayed with the help of colorful washi tape.
8. Patterned Carpet
The floor in the living room of your apartment can get easily overlooked. Even a dull space can be easily rejuvenated if you add some visual interest in the form of a colorful carpet. Pick an option with a geometric pattern to bring a sense of order to the space while taking care to match the chosen colors to harmonize with the other elements in the room. Graphic lines on the floor help to enhance the depth of the room by creating the illusion of a bigger space.
9. Open Shelving
How do you decorate an apartment more effectively while also gaining extra storage space? There are various solutions but open shelving represents one of the best ones for taking advantage of all the vertical space in the room. It’s a particularly great idea for the kitchen area of the apartment where space might come at a premium. Replace your old upper cabinets with floating shelves where you can store useful accessories and decorative pieces.
10. Room Divider
Some apartments feature large living rooms that could be more efficiently utilized with the help of a room divider that creates separate functional areas. The typical choice would be to install sliding doors. However, they may not always be practical in some cases. You can get quite creative when it comes to the type of room divider design used. For example, the room can be split easily by hanging a curtain. Another great solution involves the use of a tall bookcase to properly distinguish different areas of the room.
11. Throw Pillows
Renters will have a hard time personalizing their apartments because they’re pretty much stuck with the finishes that were in place. That being said, you can still add a few decorative items to inject the space with a touch of personal style. You might not be able to alter the plain white walls or change the big furniture items, but there’s plenty of room for improvements when it comes to accessories. A colorful arrangement of throw pillows can have a considerable visual impact.
12. Neutral Colors
Dark colors might not be very suitable for designing an apartment, especially if it’s on the smaller side. The same can be said about mixing lots of bright color tones that can make the area feel cluttered. In that case, your best bet is to focus on a neutral color scheme with simple, light shades that will essentially make the room attractive regardless of decor style. This approach works like a charm for small apartment rooms where you can take advantage of an airy atmosphere by blending delicate tones of white and cream.
13. Minimalist Bathroom
Most apartments feature small bathrooms that emphasize functionality above all else. Bringing too many decor elements into this space might not be the best solution. A clean, modern bathroom with minimalist features can look much more appealing. You simply can’t go wrong if you choose a bright white color scheme and elegant materials such as marble. Trends come and go but a light decor approach can withstand the test of time allowing the bathroom to retain its uniqueness.
14. Monochromatic Style
If neutral tones feel too plain for your tastes, there is still a way to inject personality into the room without creating a clashing look with too many bold color combinations. Embrace a specific color tone to bring character to the room without overwhelming the space and creating that unappealing busy vibe. Some people will only feel comfortable when surrounded by vibrant colors and there’s nothing wrong with that. Just make sure you commit to a single tone to maintain a uniform monochromatic style.
15. Tall Ceiling
Lots of modern apartments are designed with tall ceilings. You can take advantage of that extra height to create the illusion of a grand space that feels more attractive. One way involves the use of certain bold light fixtures that draw the eye upwards. Another solution is to include a low-slung bed that works nicely together with a tall bedroom ceiling. The large area rug reflects the bright appearance of the walls to contribute to the idea of a bigger space.
16. Personalized Headboard
The bed is likely the focal point of the bedroom in your apartment. A simple change to it can have a dramatic visual effect on the rest of the room. The headboard is one element that will make your bed stand out. It’s recommended to splurge on a stylish headboard with elegant lines and vibrant colors that will bring a touch of personality to the bed. This isn’t just an aesthetic upgrade because you can also benefit from resting your head against a soft surface when sitting in bed.
17. Breakfast Nook
Using the space in the apartment efficiently is important to work around square footage limitations. It might seem difficult to create a cozy breakfast nook in a small apartment, but it’s not as hard as it looks. You can use a few design tricks to prevent that feeling of a cramped space. Ghost chairs or glass tables can be used as a clever method to visually expand the area of the nook. Add beautiful artwork on the wall to make the area feel livelier. Don’t forget about space-saving lighting such as wall sconces.
18. Suitable Seating
As opposed to the way traditional houses are designed, apartments feature different layouts whose proportions need to be accounted for when adding seating options. There’s not a lot of space available for guests, particularly if the apartment makes use of an open floor plan. Try focusing on designing a comfortable seating area that’s compact and cozy at the same time. Check the flow of the space and include seating elements in a way that they all interact properly with each other. This is why sectional sofas and ottomans are very popular for apartments.
19. Tile Wallpaper
Just because you’re renting the apartment doesn’t mean you can’t make the place feel more homely through the use of decorations. The plain tile wall in the bathroom can’t be replaced but you can bring some fresh style with the help of patterned wallpaper. Consider using a peel-and-stick tile wallpaper such as this model from Amazon to add your personal touch to the bathroom. It can be easily removed once you decide to move out without any issues with the rental agreement.
20. Plant Decor
Natural decor elements look particularly great in modern apartments. Whether you prefer a neutral color scheme or bolder makeovers, it’s safe to say that a few houseplants can make a superb visual impression. The room can feel fresher and livelier even if you add a small houseplant to the coffee table. Go for trailing plants to decorate the bland white wall of the living room or choose a more imposing indoor palm tree to take advantage of vertical height.
21. Understated Style
Using color in small doses can be considered a clever idea for decorating an apartment. If you love vibrant color shades of pink, blue, green, or others, don’t be so quick to dress the entire room with them. Make the space feel more sophisticated by keeping the style understated with the help of a neutral-tone base. Ochre walls and cream furniture can be made more interesting by integrating small color punches through fun accessories such as throw blankets, flower vases, and wall art prints.