A Playfully Eclectic Rental Townhome Shows How to Decorate on a Budget

A Playfully Eclectic Rental Townhome Shows How to Decorate on a Budget

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Name: September Scott and Julep Rose (my new rescue dog)
Location: Austin, Texas
Size: 950 square feet
Type of Home: Townhome
Years Lived in: 2 years, renting

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My best friend found the perfect townhome for me in her neighborhood, and it also happens to be one of my favorite areas in Austin. The neighborhood is walking distance from Burnet Road near coffee shops, boutiques, and Ginny’s Little Longhorn Saloon. The townhome was built in the 1970s and recently renovated. Though it has little curb appeal, the inside is spacious with a great layout; there’s no wasted space. It even has a linen closet, large dining area, and fenced-in backyard. It’s actually the dining area that has brought the most joy. Pre-pandemic I would host a monthly dinner party with my incredible motley crew of friends. We would gather around the table and this is where we would celebrate life! Now you can find me at the table in the wee hours of the night crafting and creating magic. This has been a saving grace during this unique time. 

I’ve always been known to decorate on a dime. Since I was a kid I have been painting, repurposing, upcycling, and always on a treasure hunt looking for the next hidden gem. I love breathing new life into found objects, whether it’s from an estate sale, flea market, or a find on the side of the road. Treasures from the past tell a story and it’s more sustainable to recycle what’s already here. When I am not on a treasure hunt or decorating, I am spending my time with a very special little girl. For over 20 years I have worked with and mentored children. Recently, I published my first children’s book, “Sunshine Cake.” My passion to promote kindness in our world is the inspiration behind my book. It reminds children when you feel good on the inside, you shine bright on the outside.

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: My style is definitely playful! It’s eclectic mixed with modern and vintage. I’ve always loved incorporating old pieces with new and find that doing this adds much more personality and character to a space.

Inspiration: Most of my inspiration comes from my travels abroad, especially Europe. Lately, I’m finding more inspiration on Instagram. 

Favorite Element: My favorite elements in my home are the 64-key Melodigrand piano and the mid-century modern credenza. Both are statement pieces. I was searching for quite some time for a small piano that would fit perfectly in my space. This was a great purchase. It has been a true bringer of happiness. The mid-century modern credenza is also a real beauty and I use it to store books and special keepsakes. 

Biggest Challenge: When I found my place it had everything I wanted except for a bathtub. It was almost a dealbreaker. This townhome had been newly renovated with a nice walk-in shower so I decided to just go for it. Luckily, my best friend lives in the neighborhood and lets me take a bubble bath when I need it!

Proudest DIY: My proudest DIY is the elephant lamp I created. I found a jade green ceramic elephant and knew it would be a gorgeous gold lamp. With the help of D&W Lightning I was able to create the lamp of my dreams. And recently, I have been tie-dying and embroidering pillows and makeup bags. This has been a fun project.

Biggest Indulgence: Buying a lovely new grass green velvet sofa. Best pandemic purchase!

What are your favorite products and have you bought for your home and why? I find solace in nature, especially during this quarantine. It’s inspired me to add more plants to my decor. Candles have also been an essential product in my home; candles are calming and bring warmth to a room. My new favorite candles are from an eco-friendly company in California called Marty Marie. I feel much happier being surrounded by plants and candles. 

Please describe any helpful, inspiring, brilliant, or just plain useful small space maximizing and/ or organizing tips you have: I find floating shelves to be great for extra storage and displaying artwork and treasures. They are inexpensive, easy to install, and can hold quite a bit!

Finally, what’s your absolute best home secret or decorating advice? Only put things in your home that you love. You will wake up feeling more inspired. My decor enhances my mood daily. 



  • Eggshell by PPG


  • The MAGIC IS IN YOU linen banner — Secret Holiday
  • Black metal tea cart — Estate sale 
  • Crosley Record Player — Urban Outfitters 
  • Pee-wee Herman doll — eBay


  • Sven grass green velvet Sofa — Article 
  • White Mongolian fur pillow — Z Gallerie
  • Moroccan silver sequin pillow — Purchased on a trip to Marrakech
  • Nazar Eye Blanket — Superstitchous
  • Gold Elephant Lamp — My creation
  • Pink vintage velvet chair — Ambrose Upholstery Co. 
  • Cheetah pillow — Society6
  • Leopard velvet chair — Family heirloom
  • Gold velvet chair — Estate sale
  • Pink velvet pillow — Ambrose Upholstery Co. 
  • Black Melodigrand Piano — @thetravelingpianist
  • Brass tiger/rabbit — Round Top Antique Show
  • Brass Candelabras — Estate sale
  • Clear Ghost Chair — Instyle Modern
  • Jute rug — Urban Outfitters 
  • Mid-century modern glass table — Round Top Antique Show
  • Large Brass Deer — Estate sale
  • Quartz rock — Round Top Antique Show
  • Mid-century modern credenza — Austin Antique Mall
  • Pastel Watercolor Dancers painting — The Compound at Round Top Antique Show @sheilalynchantiques
  • Modern Head Vase — HomeGoods
  • Brass Hamsa — Jaffa Flea Market, Tel Aviv
  • Brass pineapple lamp — Antique shop
  • Mid-century turned wood leg planter — West Elm 
  • Wooden ibex head — Roost


  • Tambourine players oil painting — Round Top Antique Show
  • Oscuro black dining table — Article
  • Hand-shaped chair — Etsy
  • Black metal chairs — Ambrose Upholstery Co.
  • White Chateau d’Ax French Louis XV-style Italian chair — Estate sale 
  • White linen curtains — Pottery Barn
  • Pink taper candles — Anthropologie
  • Crystal candle holders — Estate sale 
  • Disco ball planter — Etsy
  • Abstract Wallpaper — DecoratorsBest
  • Mid-century modern chandelier — D&W Lighting 
  • Small brass planter — World Market
  • Vintage gold frog planter — Round Top Antique Show
  • Brass hanging planter — Succulent Native 




  • Queen velvet headboard — Horchow
  • White linen bedding — Pottery Barn
  • Pink silk pillowcases — Wildflower Organics 
  • Blue velvet pillows — Leftovers Antiques 
  • Antique ceramic dog lamp — D&W Lighting 
  • Lawyer’s bookcase w/ two doors — Goodwill
  • White Chateau d/ Ax French Louis XV-style Italian chair — Estate sale
  • Pink tie-dye pillow — My creation
  • Antique wooden dresser with brass pulls — Estate sale
  • Small chandelier lamp — Estate sale
  • Amythest Geode — Bead It
  • Matisse poster print — Society6
  • Pink ceramic planter — Anthropologie
  • Pink rose quartz — Sedona rock shop
  • Brass Unicorn — Rose Bowl Flea Market
  • Gold brocade chair — Dumpster find; had chair re-covered
  • Marcel Vertès girl with bird original sketch — Estate sale
  • Macramé plant hanger — World Market
  • Black Hollywood regency dresser — Estate sale
  • Brass chandelier lamp — Citywide Garage Sale
  • Gold Buddha statue — Take Heart 


  • Grey sofa bed — World Market
  • Nicole Miller pink rug — Home Goods
  • White floating shelves — IKEA
  • White desk — IKEA
  • Gold unicorn lamp — Target (added a nicer shade and finial from D&W Lightning) 
  • Acrylic Ghost Arm Chair — Instyle Modern
  • Set of porcelain tobacco leaf lamps — Estate sale
  • Rainbow pillow — Kip&Co
  • Small gold side table — Estate sale
  • Gold metal turtle — Round Top Antique Show
  • Recycled Metal Face — Artist John Henry Mason 
  • Be Kind Mr. Roger’s print — Society6
  • Abstract Painting — Kiah Denson
  • Sunshine Cake original painting — Simone Scholes
  • Neon Heart — Target
  • Brass Snail — Etsy
  • Mid-century white hand — Round Top Antique Show
  • Gold cust — Round Top Antique Show


  • Heart print — Society6
  • Sweet As A Peach Heart Rug — Urban Outfitters 
  • Vintage record sleeve framed — Estate sale
  • Gold Italian Tray — Estate sale

Thanks September !

*Correction: I accidentally left out the photo of September! It’s been added in.