So, this past week I had the pleasure of decorating an apartment. Super-short time crunch, and a budget of $500 or less (yikes!). But with a lot of thrifting, re-purposing and creativity, I was able to make a major dent to this rental. While we are not one-hundred-percent to where I'd like to end up - we are far closer than an empty apartment with a borrowed couch.
Client knew he wanted a bar. Period. Between his love for whiskey and his spontaneous house-guests, we knew that was a priority. Grabbed the old cabinet from the bathroom and a few accessories from the flea market, dollar store and Goodwill.
This bar tray was actually an old soda crate found at the Rose Bowl Flea market for under $30. The glass hurricane (Goodwill find for $3) was a perfect place to store his collection of belts (vintage and ones in current rotation). The apartment was a compromise for this client, with its small square-footage but perfect location to walk to everything.
Having grown up in California, beach culture was well within this clients' design aesthetic. A vintage Endless Summer poster created a great splash of color, while also punctuating the design scheme with a laidback, kid-at-heart reference. The desk was a magical Craigslist find; stored Crate&Barrel desk (of my dreams, really) that we snagged for $100. The entire thing slides open to reveal a workspace without disrupting the shelves or drawers underneath.
(more photos after the jump)
Remembering this was a rental, we had to come up with creative ways to add color, while not adding hours of work to undo upon moving out. Large-scale patterned fabrics were chosen to frame under glass to add texture, color and interest to the otherwise uninterrupted main wall in the living room.
Small personal trinkets and objects were grouped throughout the apartment to add interest and conversation, making sure the owner was aesthetically present in each area. And nothing beats old baby photos of family members.
The couch is not ideal, as the owner and I agreed. But, with the budget and timeline in mind, there were no other solutions we could come up with. So, we made sure to keep the living room neutral - but heavily textured - so nearly any style couch could take its place in the future. Rug was a great find on Craigslist; gently used West Elm rug for only $50.
The most masculine potpourri I've ever come across, but staged in a way that wasn't overly tribal or bachelor-pad-like.
Vintage cheese tray (Goodwill for $5) with a hand-made pinecone from thumbtacks (dollar store craft...swear I will give tutorial later).
The perfect lamp (another Goodwill $9 find), that magically still worked! All we needed was the perfect lamp shade, picked up a few days later at Target for under $12.
I think this set our grand total at just under $350. I was pretty impressed. I'll be sure to show other rooms as they get cleaned, organized and photographed. Hope this gave you guys some great inspiration.