No Paint Required: Temporary Patterns Transform Real Life Rental Kitchens

No Paint Required: Temporary Patterns Transform Real Life Rental Kitchens

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Adrienne Breaux
May 10, 2017
(Image credit: Minette Hand)

Your rental kitchen has to remain boring and pattern-free. I repeat: you DON'T have to embrace plain even if you don't own the place you're living in. These three renters didn't let anything silly like a security deposit keep them from adding pattern and style to the kitchens of the apartment they rent. And the best part? There's no paint required to steal these ideas.

Plot with dots

(Image credit: Minette Hand)

It's not paint painstakingly applied above; the adorable gold circles that dot the kitchen wall of this seating nook didn't take a lot of time or effort to create. Nor will they require paint to cover up when Catherine decides to change the look. The gold dots above are stickers from Paper Source.

(Image credit: Minette Hand)

Catherine chose the spots where each gold dot would go, and I love the random pattern she went with. But the great thing about these metallic polka dots is you could use them in any configuration you wish.

Make this idea your own: Don't feel limited to just wall surfaces — why not plot with dots on your cabinets or ugly appliances?

Go for a grid

(Image credit: Melanie Rieders )

'80s-style grid patterns have been popping up in interiors for a few years now. It's a great pattern when you want something simple and subtle. And its orderly nature can actually make a room feel more ordered and neat.

But, because of its popularity, grid pattern on wallpaper might be cost-prohibitive for you, like it was for Sarah, who wanted to add a little something more to the tiny kitchen in her small shared studio in Brooklyn.

"I spotted removable grid wallpaper that was beautiful but out of my price range. I took a chance with super thin washi tape and am surprised by how much I like the imperfect lines," Sarah writes.

Make this idea your own: Try a thin black washi tape like this one to create the same look, or use a different color (washi tape comes in a rainbow of hues). And like the dots idea above, take this pattern off the wall; apply it to cabinets, furniture...anything you can imagine.

Let your cabinets bloom

Faced with extraordinarily boring, plain white cabinetry can be painful, particularly when your kitchen is on full display in an open-plan living space. Kathryn faced this type of massive challenge when she moved into this military housing in Okinawa, Japan. But she didn't let the fact that she couldn't do anything permanent stand in her decor way. Armed with extremely stylish temporary wallpaper from Walls Need Love, she turned plain kitchen cabinets into a stunning floral focal point.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy )

As the above GIF shows, pattern makes an impact!

Make this idea your own: Find the removable wallpaper pattern that makes your heart sing. Or apply temp paper to another surface in your kitchen.


Curious as to what else you can upgrade in your rental? → Ten Things You Should Upgrade in Your Rental (and Then Take With You)

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