The One Thing I Always Do When I Move Into a New Rental

updated May 3, 2019
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(Image credit: Adrienne Breaux)

Earlier this week, we published an article that shared six stylish solutions for those (kind of awful) vertical blinds you so often see in rental apartments. Of course, they are incredibly practical, and if you’re all about privacy and so-so about aesthetics, then keep on keepin’ on I suppose.

But me? I can’t stand them. They look so… institutional and devoid of any personality. I’ve been a renter for as long as I’ve lived on my own (eight years), and I just always sucked up vertical blinds as an occupational hazard of not owning a home. That is until I figured out how to make them essentially disappear. No, I don’t mean bringing out my tools and taking them down completely. While I’ve certainly thought about it, I never wanted to deal with what to do with them once they were off my windows. My solution was so easy it was basically a total “duh” moment, and, in case you haven’t thought of it for yourself, I thought I’d share with you today.

(Image credit: Lula Poggi)

The answer: just push them all the way to one side, as if you were letting in light, and then add layered draperies to cover them up. Ta-da, no more visible vertical blinds! Of course, you are still left with the blinds mechanism over your sliding glass doors or windows, but I find that, after a few days, I barely noticed.

Because I like a bit of privacy but prefer my house to be awash with whatever sunlight makes it through the big trees close to my windows, I use a combination of sheers and drapes. The sheers are always drawn, while the panels decorate both sides of my sliding doors until night falls (I then close them at that point because no one needs to see me dancing around in my kitchen while making tacos).

Double curtain hardware can be a bit pricey, but I find that adding an adjustable add-on rod to a single rod fits the bill for a little more than $10 (I have and recommend this one from Bed Bath & Beyond).

The key here is to make sure you install your curtain rods a few inches wider than your window to cover up the cluster of blinds (two to three inches is all you really need).

So there you have it. Like I said, it sounds totally simple (and it is!) but I think it’s often an overlooked solution that has worked in my own home in the past. Give it a whirl, and chime in in the comments if you have any other great ideas to make a rental feel more like a permanent home!