1 Oct 2013

Brightening Up Rented Accommodation


the art of making your flat cosy, even if you aren't allowed to put stuff on the walls

This is a post for students and beyond! It bugged me all through my student days, through Halls and houses and, to my great dismay, hasn't gone away with the flat rentals of adulthood. Unless you're very lucky, most flats and houses that you rent short term won't like you hammering nails into their walls or redecorating them.
Sure, in your first couple of years of student-hood you ignore their warnings and blu-tack whatever the hell you want on your room walls, and just take the damage fine like a man. But then you move somewhere a bit nicer, or where you actually like the landlord, or - weirdest of all - you mature a little, and suddenly your idea of making your flat look nice and cosy is less 'wonky posters and snapfish photos' to compliment stacks of beer cans and dominos boxes, and a bit more 'Zara Home'. 
Plain white walls are catnip to loneliness, homesickness, and boredom. That's not how your home should be! So for those of us not even blessed with a picture-rail to break up that abyss of magnolia (picture rails as required by law would be my first act as prime minister, along with free Krispy Kremes and Bonfire Night as a national holiday) here are a couple of tips.

TIP #1: Hang EVERTHING up with Command Clips

 These bitches are great for hanging up stuff (as long as it's nothing too heavy, be sensible people) without damaging the paint. At all. I don't really understand the science, but basically they're adhesive clips (or pegs or whatever there are lots of varieties) which you take off by pulling the little tab thing and don't sue me if I'm wrong but, in my experience, they leave no trace on the paintwork when they're gone. I've hung a lil bit of bunting, and also a string of photos I made.

TIP #2: Lean On Me

The grown up way to do posters is in a frame, and call it an art print. The beautiful Southsea one above was a 21st birthday present off my housemates when I lived down there was from a local gallery. On the same theme I am all about mirrors. They make everything look fancy. But of course you can't hang any of these things up on nails, so find a stable surface (or the floor) and lean it.
Felt pads from the DIY shop are a must for not leaving any tell-tale lines on the paint.

TIP #3: Soft Furnishings To Snuggle Up In

It's all about reducing echo, especially if you've got hard floors. Grab a rug (the fluffier the better), billions of cushions (the tackier the better), a scattering of photo frames and maybe a little greenery if you think you can keep it alive (the herbs below are courtesy of my mother. I think of it as a pre-puppy suitability test).

How do you decorate a flat or house that isn't always gonna be yours? More tips always welcome! xoxo


  1. Such great tips, I wish I'd been a little more careful with my Uni room, but we won't mention that too much haha! Love the look of command clips/hooks, I've heard they're not so great with heavier things but they look perfect for light things - I love your bunting!

    Jennie xo | sailorjennie.com

  2. Aw everything looks amazing :) I have that pug cushion too, love it x