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Before & After: Bland Bookshelves Become a Crisp Credenza
I love to build things and have built all kinds of shelving, but I admit I’m all for a shortcut that makes my life easier (and in this case cheaper). These $10 garage sale bookshelves I found are solid wood, well-built and side by side were the perfect size to create a credenza. There is no way I could have built them myself for $10, the wood alone would have cost at least $50, not to mention the time and labor.
Dec 28, 2015
DIY 3D Paper Reindeer Head (Just in time for Christmas!)
If you’re looking for a non traditional holiday DIY (that you could totally leave up year round), look no further than this stunning paper reindeer. It should take you about 3 days (on and off) and come in under $30, so get cutting! Glue Stick Double-Sided Tape 100 lb Cardstock Paper Ruler (with sharp edge) X-acto Knife / Scissors Instructions Download template. Print template out on 100 lb cardstock paper (using the paper color of your choice!
Dec 22, 2015
Simple Last-Minute Holiday Centerpiece Ideas
Don't let the holiday countdown stress you out–we're here to help you make the most of it!
Dec 19, 2015
Before & After: A $5 Find Gets a Sleek New Look
We needed some extra storage space in our new house and when I spotted this piece that was the perfect size for just 5 bucks, I purchased it with the idea of turning it into something completely different. At first I was a bit reluctant to take the legs off because they were the cutest part of the thing but couldn’t really change the style if I kept them so, off they went. I then removed the moldings and the doorknob and suddenly the piece was a blank canvas.
Dec 19, 2015
Before & After: A Craigslist Chair Gets a Little Shimmer
I have been teaching myself to reupholster furniture. When I found this sturdy vintage arm chair with cane sides on Craigslist for $15 I knew it could be a gem. The chair has a wonderful horsehair cushion and did not require any new batting. I cleaned it up, applied Annie Sloan Chalk paint in Old White, lightly distressed the edges, and put a couple coats of wax on the frame.
Dec 18, 2015
Before & After: A Turquoise Chair Gets a Tropical Print Makeover
When I first looked over a few snapshots of Adrien and Jon’s house in anticipation of shooting their House Tour, I immediately latched onto the palm frond chair. I had been looking for the perfect palm fabric for a personal project and begged Adrien to reveal her source. I was soon on my way to downtown L.A. to scoop up some of the Tommy Bahama (yup, that’s right) Swaying Palms fabric from Michael Levine.
Dec 17, 2015
3 Super Simple Ways to Wrap Cookies as Gifts
Freshly baked cookies during the holidays are the best gifts ever. You want all your hard work to shine and for your goodies to look and feel special. However patience, talent, and time are often in short supply. Here are three of the easiest ways to package up your homemade treats! Pick a theme (like plaid!), buy some materials, and have yourself a good ‘ol time packaging up your cookies. The three packaging “recipes” from the video are below.
Dec 9, 2015
Out-of-Sight Style: Inspiration and Resources for a Compact Closet Office
We recently featured a House Tour of Joe and Alana’s 160-year-old Newport home. Alana works for a commercial production company and a creative agency, both in New York City, while Joe is the founder and president of a company based in Warren, Rhode Island. To be together, they travel between the Big Apple and the Ocean State, an arrangement which requires them both to work remotely at times.
Dec 3, 2015
Before & After: The “Embrace it Loft-Style” Kitchen
Shehzeen was faced with an all too familiar problem, a rental kitchen that just didn’t work. The color was off, the placement wasn’t ideal, but she made apartment lemons into very cute lemonade. From Shehzeen: I live in a rental so doing any kind of a permanent overhaul to the kitchen or its appliances is out of the question. Also, my kitchen was extremely open plan and was sitting right there in the living room.
Dec 1, 2015
Where To Find DIY Space In Big Cities?
Q: A year ago I became a Southern transplant to NYC. Gone are my days of garages, basements, decks, and driveways in and on which to do all the DIY projects my heart desires. Heck, I barely even have space to store power tools in the tiny apartment I share with roommates. My question is this: does anyone know of any shared spaces in NYC (preferably Manhattan) where similarly spatially challenged folks can go to work on their DIY projects?
Nov 29, 2015
Homemade Holiday Gift Idea: Make A Terrazzo Lazy Susan
Terrazzo floors and walls have been around for hundreds of years, and this lazy Susan is a good way to get the look on a smaller scale. We’ve traded traditional marble chunks with a confetti mix of colorful glass that feels both modern and timeless. It’s a great project that’s also a fun, festive and unexpected gift.
Nov 19, 2015
Before & After: A Mad Men Inspired Purchase
Did any of you make it through all seven seasons of Mad Men without thinking, “I should really get a bar cart?” I certainly didn’t. Erin turned her dreams into reality and DIY-d her way to a Joan Holloway worthy bar! From Erin: Mad Men I found this old bar cart on Offerup for $20 and with a little paint, it turned out amazing!!! Thank you, Erin!
Nov 18, 2015
Holiday Crafternoon: Make Easy Salt Dough Ornaments from Ingredients You Already Have on Hand
A beautiful and natural take on classic homemade dough recipes, these salt dough ornaments give off a more subtle, organic vibe than the ones you made as a kid. They’re also made with kitchen staples, so reach into your snack stash, grab some colorful seeds, and let your creativity run wild. We’re giving you two recipes: classic salt dough and a cornstarch version. While we love salt dough, we decided to test out a variation using corn starch and baking soda.
Nov 17, 2015
Want to Make Your Own Presents This Year? Here’s Our Homemade Holiday Gift Idea Exchange
All this holiday season, Apartment Therapy is featuring homemade gift ideas that you can easily make and give to family, co-workers and friends. Check out all the projects after the jump and learn how to make each one!
Nov 16, 2015
Before & After: A Tile Swap Breathes New Life Into A Fireplace
I recently remodeled my kitchen and had leftover subway tiles. I decided to use the remaining tiles to redo my fireplace which I had been wanting to refinish completely since I moved in four years ago. I also wanted to remove the tiles on the floor, but we didn’t think the hardwood carried through since other units who had redone their fireplace told us that theirs did not.
Nov 15, 2015
Crafty Centerpieces You Can Make in 10 Minutes for $10
The day of family, friends, and good food to be thankful for is just around the corner. If you’re hosting Thanksgiving this year and looking for a way to make your table extra-special without taking too much time away from your host duties, here are a pair of centerpiece ideas that you can make in around 10 minutes for $10 or so. It’s easy to get caught up in all the details of hosting Thanksgiving and become a little overwhelmed.
Nov 14, 2015
Before & After: A Roadside Find Goes Mid Century
This is one of my favorite furniture flip stories. I found this chrome mid-century modern chair left for dead on the roadside. It was covered with rust, mildew and grime. For a long time, it sat in my garage and just lingered. It took me a long while for inspiration to strike. I live in the country, and happen to have kind of a thing for cowhide. I had wanted a sleek, modern looking cowhide and chrome chairs for years. You know those kind of chairs?
Nov 13, 2015
Before & After: A Multi-Purpose Dining Room Gets Organized
I live in a one-bedroom apartment. Being an Interior Designer and pillow shop owner, I have a lot of different things to do on a daily basis. I sew everyday, sketch room designs, pull together fabrics for client projects and new pillow designs, and do various computer tasks for my business and blog. So, I was forced to use my dining room to store all my business stuff. There was clutter everywhere and no room for a large enough table to both sew and eat on.
Nov 9, 2015
7 Beautiful Projects You Can Easily Make Out of White Air Dry Clay
There’s something about white clay that feels both earthy and pure — resulting in projects that look both organic and modern, minimalist but substantial, and delicate yet sturdy. The air dry variety also comes with an ease of use that makes the process as simple and satisfying as the outcome. Above, the clay and rope combo is a massive texture party, all in this one bowl from Fall for DIY.
Nov 4, 2015
20+ Creative DIY Headboard Ideas
Make your headboard the main attraction of your bedroom.
Nov 4, 2015
Before & After: A Quick Rental Floor Fix, For Under $200
Jess and Ryan moved into their apartment six years ago, drawn to the multi-floor layout that allowed them to create two defined areas: one for entertaining and lounging, the other for sleeping and working. While they were in love with the apartment itself, the floors throughout the kitchen, dining, and living rooms left a bit to be desired. The old, yellowed, scratched linoleum caused the downstairs to feel cold and uninviting.
Nov 4, 2015
Before & After: From Drab Desk to Painted Vanity
I was “gifted” this really simple, but classic desk from my boyfriend to use as a makeup table/vanity. While I loved the character, the desk was pretty beat up. There were imprints and scratches on the top and the knobs mismatched. I decided to take on my first larger project in my new apartment and paint the desk an awesome shade of teal gray.
Nov 3, 2015
Amazing Dog & Cat Halloween Costumes from Instagram
Lick or treat! Pet owners nailed it this year, with dog and cat costumes touching upon politics, the 1980s, and pop culture. And all the dogs are, of course, thrilled to be there and wearing masks, fake ears, wigs, and who knows what else. Enjoy the pet parade! Above, Oliver the Golden Doodle channels a certain 80s sitcom. “It’s your world. Let’s paint some happy little trees!” courtesy of brookesphynx. Ace Ventura, Pet Detective! Costume and hairstyling by k9_closet.
Oct 29, 2015
10 DIY Makeup Organizer Ideas
No matter how clean it may be, a cluttered bathroom always looks messy. Whip it into shape and put everything in its place with one of these easy DIY makeup organizers. 1. DIY Skateboard Makeup Shelf by a pair & a spare Kick-push your makeup into the right space with this fine-looking recycled skateboard shelf. 2. Leather Makeup Brush Holder by hello natural Having a hard time keeping your brushes close? DIY this easy, chic holder in leather—or your favorite heavy duty fabric. 3.
Oct 28, 2015
10 Uses for Cheesecloth This Halloween
Whether you’re planning a chic Halloween soirée or a tricked-out kitschy celebration, we’ve rounded up some fun ways to incorporate cheesecloth into your decor. Stop by the craft store and pick up a few yards, because this textured, airy fabric is sure to add just the right amount of drama to any party! 1. Design Love Fest This gorgeous table is draped with just the right amount of drama. Corpse Bride?
Oct 21, 2015
Layer In Lots of Pattern & Texture
Today’s topicSee all the lessons! Pattern and texture (along with color) are the life and spark of a room. Without them, spaces feel flat and lifeless and, really, what’s the point of that? You can banish blah with different fabric, rugs, curtains and wallpaper that all work together in interesting ways and become part of a space that you love to look at — and more importantly, love to live in.
Oct 15, 2015
Create a Floorplan That Flows
Today’s topicSee all the lessons! Every room is different, and comes with its own particular shape and features. Some are long and narrow, some have funky nooks, and others are perfect squares. A successful layout allows you to move easily through that space, and will look and feel right too. Once you’ve got a plan in place, you’ll be able to narrow down your purchases, since you’ll know how much furniture you need, and what elements will fit in the space.
Oct 15, 2015
What’s Your Style Profile?
We at Apartment Therapy use these eight design styles to sum up different looks and attitudes towards interiors. Here’s what each represent. And then when you’re ready, click back to the original post, and see what it all means! Update: Here’s the link to a Pinterest board with all the sources for the items, if anyone wants product information. A. New Traditional: You gravitate towards classic formal design, but are relaxed and updated given how we actually live today.
Oct 13, 2015
Answer One Simple Question and Identify Your Style Profile
Today’s topicSee all the lessons! By now you’ve gone out into the world and gained a fresh look. The next step to creating a room you’re happy with is to identify what types of things you love, and and which style(s) speak to you most. Like a horoscope, you can take this with a grain of salt — it’s simply a way to start thinking in general terms and there are ABSOLUTELY NO WRONG ANSWERS here.
Oct 13, 2015
Simple Solutions: Painted Headboard
If you think the secret to a making a grand statement in your bedroom is buying an expensive, clunky headboard that takes up too much space and time to assemble, we have good news for you. There’s a seriously easy and chic way to transform your bedroom in a single weekend. The simple solution? Paint your headboard.
Sep 24, 2015
Simple Solutions: Half-Painted Wall
It seems like we’re always looking for an easy way to add a little color and contrast into our homes without sacrificing too much money or time. But finding the one color that is the right one for your room can sometimes take more energy than the job itself. The simple solution? Half-painted walls. We’re loving this super easy, personalized, and colorful way to change your home in 24 hours. Still split in two as to how to get started?
Sep 22, 2015
Before and After: A Kitchen Drawer Dilemma Solved Once and For All
Some days it’s like the internet gods are smiling and for me, that day is today. Just last night I was complaining for the hundredth time about how all the loose odds and ends in my kitchen drawers would never stay in place (despite the several types of dividers I tried —they all slid around too!) and today I came across this amazing tutorial from the blog I Heart Organizing for a cheap and easy DIY solution that doesn’t harm the drawer (so it’s rental friendly).
Sep 11, 2015
IKEA + Contact Paper = DIY Magic
There are so many ways to customize your IKEA furniture, but here’s one that’s really, really easy: contact paper. And lest you were convinced that contact paper is weird and tacky and always looks terrible, these ten projects are here to prove you wrong. Above: Blogger Jonathan Lo, of Happy Mundane, bought his IKEA desk in a birch finish, but wanted something a little darker that would match his vintage midcentury furniture.
Sep 10, 2015
Before & After: Accent Wall Goes from Yawn to Yarn
Inspired by string art, Ryan took this blank wall in his loft and transformed it into what looks like a wireframed wood of birch trees: What a great use of a little wall! Here it is up close: From Ryan: A quick look on the internet showed my friend’s cute little Ohio-shaped project was all over Pinterest. I wanted to take mine to the next level and create something that was fresh, beautiful, and had never been done before.
Jun 20, 2015
This Weekend: Upgrade a Room’s View
There are a lot of things you can do in your home to change the look, feel and moods of your rooms. One thing you might think you don’t have control over is the view from your rooms. While it’s true you can’t always choose what your rooms’ windows overlook, there are things you can do to improve a view (even if just a little). This weekend, choose a view you don’t love and see if you can make it a little more lovely!
Jun 6, 2015
Before & After: IKEA KALLAX to Modular Credenza
IKEA’s KALLAX storage is so versatile as is, that it just makes hacks all that more wonderful. Astral wanted closed storage for her craft room and office, but also needed it to be modular in case her space requirements changed. The after adds a little height and a lot of personality: From Astral: The plan was to make a modular credenza for storage.
May 25, 2015
100+ DIY Project Ideas & Activities for Memorial Day Weekend
It’s a 3-day weekend, which means there’s both time to relax and get some stuff done around your home. Whether you’d like to do something artsy-craftsy, or knock off some household chores from your to-do list, here are tons of DIY projects, activities and decorating ideas to choose from. Dig deep and have a great holiday!
May 22, 2015
Temporary Decorating Ideas Every Renter Should Know
Just because you're only in your place for a year or two doesn't mean you can't make it a home.
May 17, 2015
Do You (Can You?) Sleep In A Twin Bed?
While we were discussing mattresses the other day, my partner offhandedly remarked (not about us, just in general), “Since when are adults incapable of sleeping in twin beds?” My ineloquent response included the words “starfish,” “too short” and “fall out!
May 16, 2015
10 Ways to Upgrade Common Thrift Store Finds
I love to browse the thrift shops in my neighborhood, but sometimes find myself stuck on the creative possibilities of an item. I know it has potential but am equally aware that if I don’t have a clear cut idea that I want to execute, it will likely end up in a pile in the back 0f my closet. With this in mind, I rounded up a few DIY upgrades for items I come across frequently. 1.
May 7, 2015
Before & After: A Closet Makeover with Lofty Results
Noticing there was a lot of unnecessary stuff (and wasted space) in her son’s closet, Ashley decided to clear out the clutter and add some fun. This just might be the coolest closet ever! I spent a lot of time reading in my closet as a child, and if it had looked like this, I’d never have left! From Ashley: The closet in my son’s room wasn’t useful or well organized.
Apr 3, 2015
Before & After: A Plain Dining Set Pops
Meghan inherited a hand-me-down dining set for her new home. While the table got a classic twist, the chairs now bring the wow factor: From Meghan: Having bought a new house, money was on the tighter side when it came to buying brand new furniture. My mother-in-law was nice enough to give my husband and I her old kitchen table. When I saw it, I knew I wanted to paint the chairs and redo the table. To start my makeover, I sanded and stained the top of the table in a walnut finish.
Mar 28, 2015
Before & After: From Beige Box to Crazy Curb Appeal
This house might be perfectly nice on the inside but it was tough to get past the beige and boring outside, so these homeowners used some super-smart ideas to jazz up the exterior of their home and give it acres of appeal. You can copy these! So much better! So what exactly happened here? The bare windows got a dose of interest with added white molding, which really makes them stand out. More molding separates the first and second floor (kinda like a chair rail in a room!
Mar 17, 2015
Before & After: IKEA BEKVAM Cart Gets a Makeover
After not finding the island kitchen cart she wanted, Meg spotted an abandoned IKEA BEKVAM cart in her garage. It served as a little island in her first home, and was now covered with paint, but otherwise was in great shape and a good size for her new space. After dragging it in the house, Meg decided to give it a makeover and new look. From Meg: [The cart is] now sporting 2 coats of General Finishes Queenstown Gray with Miss Mustard Seed furniture wax topcoat.
Mar 16, 2015
Before & After: Mismatched IKEA Table Gets a Concrete Makeover
Aimee’s twin toddlers had done a number on her dining set, but she was hesitant to shell out for something new while they still have an appetite for destruction. Inspired by kitchen counter DIYs, this IKEA table gets a tough new top: From Aimee: I was the sad owner of an even sadder, hodgepodge dining set – Ikea table and chairs, Target bench. The tabletop had taken quite the beating, thanks to the 2-year-old-twins who eat at it 37 times a day.
Mar 9, 2015
IKEA Hack: The Best BILLY Built-Ins of All Time
Transforming IKEA furniture — and especially the BILLY bookshelf — has been done before. But when I saw this hack, I was truly impressed. Prepare to have a bunch of superlatives spewed your way, because it’s really that good… Gwen from The Makerista recently redecorated her friend Laura’s living room and, as part of the project, brought someone in to create these remarkable “custom” library shelves, using the IKEA Billy as the base.
Feb 25, 2015
Top Romantic Chairs: Tantra, Adela, Esse & Five More
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Allow me to present our favorite Apartment Therapy Valentine’s Day tradition, the sex chair roundup. Introduced in 2001, the Tantra Chair is the best of breed (and I’ve put it below the fold this year), and has the most convincing argument that this thing is truly romantic. Its stated purpose: “The Tantra Chair is a modern chaise designed to enhance the advanced sexual positions of the Kama Sutra.
Feb 5, 2015
Before & After: IKEA Cabinet Turned West Elm-Inspired Buffet
Aniko’s white IKEA wall unit worked fine in the dining room. But the second she saw West Elm’s reclaimed wood buffet, she knew she could refresh this basic piece into a showstopper—and save over $1,100 in the process. Aniko got the wood for free from a local business, and spent $17 on stain and lacquer. That’s a pretty hefty savings! Check out her blog, A Place of My Taste, for more photos and a tutorial on how she made the oversized art that hangs above her new buffet.
Feb 1, 2015
10 Ultra Easy DIY Table Project Tutorials Anyone Can Tackle
Tables: They’re not just handy and convenient, they’re nice to look at occasionally, too! And you know what makes a table even more awesome? When you get to beam with pride every time you look at it because you were the one who made it. If you don’t have a ton of DIY skills (or even if you do) this small collection of table tutorials will give you the pride and joy of creating with your own hands — and give you a useful furniture object when you’re done!
Jan 9, 2015
Cozy Nooks, Comfy Chairs, & Fluffy Beds: Just-Right Spots To Get Your Reading On
I get the sense that we have some avid readers here on Apartment Therapy. The discarding, collection, and hoarding of books are always contentious topics, and many of our house tours feature cozy areas designed for reading. So if you’re a reader, where do you do most of your reading? Curled up in an armchair, nestled into a nook, tucked into bed? Or not at home at all? (Maybe you’re a commute- or coffee-shop-only reader.
Jan 6, 2015
Before & After: A Screaming Plaid Sofa Gets a Makeunder
Minni was looking to replace her old sofa with something a little more streamlined. She loved the lines of this retro yellow sofa but it didn’t exactly scream “low key.” For €30, she took a chance. From Minni: I wanted to challenge myself with an upholstery project that I had never tried before. I found lovely gray upholstery fabric for a bargain of €13 /yard which I think is the perfect color and texture for this sofa.
Nov 20, 2014
Before & After: A Super Cheap IKEA Shelf Goes Incognito
Soffia took a look at the $14.99 HYLLIS shelf at IKEA and thought she could give it an upgrade. A MAJOR upgrade. Check it out. From Soffia: I wanted a Restoration Hardware/Pottery Barn-ish industrial looking shelves for the living room. We used four Hyllis that we cut down to size and spray painted and some plywood that I treated. We got this and we love it 🙂 See more at Skyeytum Hus. Thank you Soffia! Re-edited from a post originally published 11.7.
Nov 6, 2014
Soundproof Your Rental Bedroom in Under 10 Minutes for $40
If you’re in a rental apartment, the last thing you want to do is pay a lot of money to make it livable. Perhaps the only thing worse is pissing off your roommate(s) while you’re having loud — ahem — relations, or blasting Gregorian chants from your bedroom on Sunday mornings. Which means you need to find an easy, reversible and affordable solution for privacy, while respecting thy neighbors.
Oct 29, 2014
Before & After: Well-Loved IKEA Stool Gets a Fresh Look
The omnipresent IKEA BEKVÄM step can quickly add a touch of Scandi style to any home. But what happens when it’s been loved too much, used in too many ways, and become more eye-sore than icon? The clean design and crisp untreated wood can make an impact immediately after you’ve assembled the flat pack wonder step. But after a few years of being used a night stand, dining chair, stepladder, painting stool, saw horse and door stop, it was time for a refresh.
Oct 20, 2014
Before & After: A “Business on the Outside, Party on the Inside” Roll-Top Desk Makeover
You might remember Lauren’s style from her bedroom before and after; she turned a kind of boring bedroom into an exciting nautical and rustic-themed retreat. Well she’s back on a smaller scale, infusing some serious fun into an inherited desk from the in-laws. From Lauren: This past summer, I made over a roll-top desk we inherited from my in-laws…and it’s my new favorite project!
Oct 19, 2014
Before & After: A Sofa Named Jocelyn
Lynn tells us that everyone thought she was crazy to purchase this gold velvet sofa. Lucky for her (and us!) she could see a diamond in the rough. From Lynn: First we cleaned up the arms, all is took was a little elbow grease and some touch up paint and the wood and resin arms look fantastic. Next, upholstery….I decided to use a hardy linen-looking cotton blend in oatmeal. A busy fabric would take away from the overall elegance of the arms and the lines of the sofa!
Oct 15, 2014
Before & After: A Childhood Dresser Turns into a Modern Media Stand
You know we’re big fans of furniture transformations that look totally different after getting a DIY makeover. This old dresser turned modern media stand is a great example of how a few small changes can make a big impact on the way a furniture piece looks! From Kala: My parents bought me this dresser as part of a bedroom set when I was 15 and I’ve held onto it because of its solid make (its gone through eight+ moves with me!).
Sep 28, 2014
Before & After: An Unbelievable (& Adorable) Sofa Save
This sofa has seen better days. Honestly, it takes a lot of vision to think it’s got any potential! Tinca took this sofa home and changed it for the better — plus made it ultra functional for a home that happens to house pretty cute pets. From Tinca: Maybe we found this old sofa on a curb and then dragged it inside or maybe we didn’t. 🙂 But we did decide to give it a complete overhaul. Originally this was a sofa bed you could stretch out.
Sep 27, 2014
Before & After: A Cheap, Quick DIY Wall Treatment Idea for Renters
Are you a renter looking for something to add uniqueness, personality and texture to a wall without damaging your home (so you can get your security deposit back)? We love the idea Alicia and her husband tried out in their bedroom — and it’s something any renter could do in a few hours on the weekend! From Alicia: We bought pre-painted white wood, made a few cuts with the miter saw and actually used hot glue to make the diamonds!
Sep 20, 2014
Before & After: From Crumbling to Crisp Curb Appeal, All For $125
The paint on Jen’s house was peeling in patches, and even non-existent in certain spots. Jen definitely felt her house looked dilapidated and unloved, and wanted to increase its curb appeal. Although she was daunted by the prospect, she and her parents stepped up one weekend, and used a little elbow grease. See what they were able to do for only $125…. In addition to the new paint job, Jen swapped out the door handle, and changed the mailbox.
Sep 11, 2014
Before & After: Kerry’s Colorful & Quick Rental Kitchen Makeover
When you’re faced with a bland, beige rental kitchen in an apartment you otherwise love, what do you do? If you’re Kerry, who has a gorgeous New Orleans apartment, you infuse your rental kitchen with some color! From Kerry: I’ve lived in my 800 square foot French Quarter apartment in New Orleans for five years now. I have the perfect combination of low rent and a hands-off landlord. This summer I decided to make some big changes.
Sep 6, 2014
Before & After: A Graphic IKEA Throw Gets Some Surprising Style
You know we love a good IKEA hack, but Kristi really blew our minds with this one. She started with this black and white IKEA throw, and transformed it into something we were not expecting. Kristi says, “I transformed an IKEA throw into a chic maxi skirt. It’s super simple, and this lil’ piece has become my new favorite thing in my closet.” See more (including instructions for this DIY) at Kristi Murphy. Thank you Kristi! Re-edited from a post originally published 9.3.
Sep 3, 2014
Before & After: A Boring Office Chair Blooms With Bold Fabric
These office chairs were functional — but certainly not very motivating with their boring upholstery color and bland gray frame color. It’s hard to imagine how these could be made more interesting, but Vicky had plans. And the result is a much more beautiful and productive result! From Vicky: Sometimes you have to buy a used office chair for $20 so you can get working in your new home office. Eventually, the drab fabric with questionable stains on it starts to wear on you.
Aug 24, 2014
Before & After: A Creative Solution for a No-Closet Bedroom
When you don’t have a closet, it might make sense to fill your bedroom with big furniture so you can pack away your clothes and accessories, hiding your apparel as a method to cut down on clutter. But what if those big, bulky and dark furniture pieces are doing more harm than good? Christina did away with her furniture, instead replacing it with a DIY clothes organizing solution that might be inspiration for folks with small spaces and little storage.
Aug 23, 2014
Before & After: A Living Room Gets Lighter, Brighter (& Now Looks) Bigger!
Anna and her fiancé were like many couples who are just starting out: their first home was full of mismatched hand-me-downs. Even though there’s a big front window, the room never felt like it got a lot of natural light. And it was just small and cramped. Their goal: Make their living room lighter, brighter and look bigger! Here’s how they did it.
Aug 17, 2014
Before & After: An IKEA Desk to Compact Console for Under $60
Alyssa needed a console table, but the one she had her eye on to buy was too big and too expensive So when she came across this simple, dark IKEA laptop table, she realized for a little bit of money and only a few steps she could transform it into a cute, compact console perfect for her home. From Alyssa: A few years ago I stupidly sold a killer acrylic console table in a fit of re-decorating mania and I’ve regretted it ever since. So, I was on the hunt for a replacement.
Aug 16, 2014
Before & After: A Porch Gets a $15 Painted, Patterned Facelift
Want to make a more pleasant impression with your porch? You might find inspiration in this subtle but effective porch makeover, involving some bright paint and new pattern! Read More: → 7 Steps to a Fantastic Front Porch (Inspired by Real-Life Makeovers) From Neena: I had been thinking about stenciling our veranda floor for the past three years but never got around to doing it till now.
Aug 9, 2014
Before & After: From Dated Dining Room to Bright Delight
Dark, dated wood paneling on the walls. Beige builder’s carpet on the floor. Even the curtains in this room were old news. Cara could have given up when tasked with turning this space into a dining room, but she persevered. And the result is a bright delight! From Cara: There is no question that it took a bit of vision and a large leap of faith to see the potential in our dining room. Paneling, old carpet, dated light fixtures.
Aug 2, 2014
13 Temporary & Removable Adhesive Products All Renters Should Know About
Because renters like nice things too!
Jul 21, 2014
How To Make My New Mail Slot Burglar Proof?
Q: Hi, Apartment Therapy! My soon-to-be husband and I are moving into a new (rented) rowhouse in Baltimore next month. About a week after we move in, we’re leaving for three weeks for our wedding and honeymoon, and I’m nervous about keeping the new place secure while we’re gone. I’m really not pleased with the mail slot halfway up our front door. I can easily see someone reaching in with some tool and unlocking the door. Replacing the door is not an option.
Jul 17, 2014
DIY Faux Card Catalog Cabinet
Do you love the look of card catalog cabinets but hate how impractical the storage is? So did Michelle and her husband Nate of the blog Decor and the Dog (dog Ike pictured above!). So they designed a cabinet that would offer more storage flexibility but give the look of a faux card catalog cabinet. And they’ve shared the instructions on how to make your own!
Jun 28, 2014
Before & After: Rita’s Really (Really!) Amazing Closet Transformation
Rita wanted to update her boring, brown closet doors and, being blessed with incredible vision, she managed to make them unrecognizably wonderful. Get ready to pick your jaw up off the floor. Let’s all chorus: Whoa. Great job, Rita. From Rita: I used a miter saw to make the cuts. The pieces measure 14.5″ x 18″. Rather than using a nail gun to affix the pieces to the doors, I decided to caulk them. This method worked beautifully and I’m really happy with the results.
Jun 16, 2014