If there was ever a great example of how to decorate an apartment on a college budget, and make it look fabulous, our daughter Abby's apartment is just that. She and a roommate live in a condo complex that was built in 1980. It's just a couple blocks off campus, close to almost all of their classes. Surprisingly, it's thousands less to live there than on campus, in a crummy dorm. Go figure. They were lucky to get a unit that had been updated, including pretty French doors to the patio, faux hardwoods, and granite and new tile in their bathroom. She worked tirelessly to make it home-like and comfortable, using a mix of Craigslist finds, thrift store treasures, and of course some of her favorites from Pier 1 (where she worked for two summers). I just love her boho-rustic style. Oh and it was her birthday, so we have party decorations, too :)
The fabulous red sofa was purchased from a sweet girl who had used it in her home yoga studio. It still smells deliciously like incense :) It's a sleeper, and gets used a LOT when family and friends come to visit. The cowhide rug was decided upon after a light bulb moment while we were shopping at Big Lots, of all places. She picked up a faux cowhide pillow, and we looked at each other and just KNEW. She found it on eBay, with free shipping, and it was a great bargain! This cute rustic coffee table was in my shop years ago, and has been waiting for her in the garage for a few (ahem, ten?twelve?) years. Green drapery panels were from the clearance bin at WalMart, and we found a sale drapery rod with an extra discount coupon at JoAnn Fabrics. I'm pretty sure that she's the only kid at UT who has actual draperies in her apartment.
This little shelf/table was a curbside find, and the retro lamp was a Goodwill score from a while back. I just knew my boho chic daughter would love it, so I hoarded saved it for several years, along with numerous other treasures. This basket was in our attic for a good decade, and I'm so glad I kept it! It's the perfect spot to pile her collection of vintage afghans. A couple more Pier 1 pillows sit on a cute $15 bamboo director's chair that we scored from the thrift. The Ikea TV stand was a Craigslist steal for only $30.
I have to hand it to my kiddo, she really had a vision for this old entertainment center. She texted me a photo of it from a thrift store one day, and I thought, really??? That's the same ugly thing that I couldn't wait to get rid of when I married her dad! I had suggested a sofa table for this spot, or a low bookcase. But she knew that they needed storage for their books, papers and office supplies, plus the printer and SoundDock, and this piece really works for them. The pretty Pier 1 lamp makes this piece seem like something completely different than an old TV stand. Bravo, Abby! The bamboo ottoman was a yard sale find ($5, I think?) that I recovered with some fabric from my stash.
One of the things that makes their apartment special is this dining area. They are nonexistent in the new college apartments. The cute dining set was a hand-me-down from her roommate's uncle, and I whipped up the valances with some trendy burlap. She brought the chandelier from her room at home, to give the space some low lighting (rather than using the pot lights). With the amount of entertaining she does, this room is a real lifesaver. (And we're not talking pizza, people, we're talking five course homemade holiday fun-fests. Further proof that yes, I did give birth to this child.) The room brings a lot of light into the apartment too, which she loves. They also have the bar to eat at, and we luckily found two bar-style stools at a yard sale one day, in great shape and only $15 for both!
My sister gave Abby this bookcase when she redid her office, and it's the perfect piece for this tight spot by the bar and between the rooms. Here it is still decorated from her birthday party :) Once again, I love how she repurposed this to make it fit their needs.
It makes me so happy that the girls have a lovely, comfortable, homey place to live during their college years. Everything was bought so frugally that it all can be handed down to another college friend, or re-donated when she is through using it and ready to move on. Our girl worked really, really hard to make her apartment her own, and we are both so proud. (Her roommate isn't into decorating at all, but now that she is living in such a nice apartment, we are hoping to inspire her!) I really think that all of her planning, painting, staining, and thrift shopping paid off, and I know she loves coming home every day to a place that's so cozy.
Thanks for visiting today! xoxo, Andrea
From the Farm Blog Hop.