Moving into the Castile Apartments in the fantastic neighborhood of Clarksville in Austin was one of the best moves I have made. The unit, while very plain on the inside, was nestled into a great little apartment community with a welcoming courtyard and pool. It was also in the middle of one of the best neighborhoods in Austin — walking distance from downtown, but lush with greenery and great parks.
What I loved about this home: The community, as well as the sense of neighborliness, was overwhelmingly positive in these apartments. Although the apartment itself offered little in the way of architectural interest or beauty, it was a blank slate with which I could begin to establish my own sense of home style. It was my first solo apartment in Austin, and I had the chance to make it mine.
What changed when I moved on to my next home: My modern sensibility softened out a bit with my subsequent apartments. I began incorporating more vintage finds, and a more relaxed color scheme (not everything has to match!). I've never been afraid to experiment with color, but I have switched up the palette numerous times.
Best bit of advice for people moving into their first home: As cliche as it sounds, have fun with it! Expressing your individual style without reservation makes for a happy home. That style can evolve, so even if your first or second apartments are a far cry from what your current home looks like, it's great to see where you began! For a more concrete piece of advice? Don't hang your pictures too high. I did, and have learned better, after working in galleries and museums for years now! The center of the image should be 55"-60" from the floor, in most cases. It makes your ceilings look taller and your decor look more cohesive.
Images: Jessica Tata