How do you change that dull apartment without painting or recarpeting?

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Answered by: Loraine, An Expert in the Decor Challenges Category
Most apartments are neutral colors so that they can interest a buyer of any demographic. The problem is, a lot of landlords like to keep it that way so that they don't have to make any changes when they are looking for their next buyer. So you have a beige carpet, dull walls, and no freedom to change it, right? No problem! Change that dull apartment! There are plenty of ways to spice up your apartment with splashes of color that won't anger your landlord. For example, pick a color theme for each room. (If the apartment is open concept, the entire apartment should have two or three stand-out accent colors).

Now, you can get crazy with your furniture colors if you want to...and if you don't quite have the guts to buy the bright orange sectional, then don't. Keep the furniture simple and neutral, that way it can be used for your next apartment no matter what the color patterns are. So go ahead with the oak, or black, or brown for all of your furniture. (Just make sure all the furniture matches!)

Here comes the fun part. Add that splash of color with your accessories. Pick something bright like a lime green, electric blue, hot pink, or sunset orange! Once you're set on a color, you'll be surprised how many things will stand out that are a perfect match. Search for little accents like pillows, place mats, curtains, candles, jars, and knick-knacks in the bright color you've chosen for the room. Just be careful you don't over-do it! With a bright color, less is more. You don't want to blind your house guests.

If you're having trouble deciding on an accent color, find some inspiration! Pick a color from a favorite painting, favorite piece of clothing, even go shopping around until something stands out to you. If your apartment is large and you're afraid that punches of hot pink just aren't going to do it, add another color--or even another shade! A hot pink and a soft pink, or maybe pink and yellow, for example. Now you can play with the idea of different colored place mats, pillows, etc.

So you've decorated the living room, bedroom, bathroom. No problem. You're stuck at the kitchen thinking 'what accents are in the kitchen?' If there are windows, sure, you can do curtains. And yes, there's space to put a little area rug with a pop of color. But you feel like it needs something else. Nowadays you can buy sets of pots and pans in different colors. Even electric mixers, tea kettles, and blenders are available in a wide array of color choices. So if you're in the market for new appliances, don't rule them out to be a part of your colorful kitchen!

The best part about adding color to your apartment with minor accents is, next year when you're tired of the bright blue... you don't have to get rid of the couch and the coffee table. Just replace the curtains and the candle with another color, and you've virtually changed the entire vibe of your apartment. So there you have it! You can change that dull apartment by simply adding several pops of color evenly throughout each room!

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