All in the Ds

shelf liners

Aching to personalize your abode? In a rental home, it can seem impossible to assert your style without overstepping bounds. Last month, I wrote about utilizing a statement piece to shape your décor theme. This month, it’s all about the details. Here are some ideas to make your place a little less boring, and a lot more you.

Are your light switch plates and outlet covers a sickening beige or a too-bright-white? Make a run to your local thrift shop or home improvement store, and pick up some cheap ones to personalize. Once you’ve found the ones that fit your outlets/switches, you might doodle with a sharpie or paint a unique design. I recommend drafting some ideas first before imparting your final brilliant artwork onto the coverings. If you’re more crafty than fine artsy, you can use a variety of media to make these mundane items “shock” some personality into your walls. Dig up some old scrapbook paper you love, or select a bit of fabric that suits your taste. You can even use wall paper with a pattern or hue that plays off of your other décor. Consider spray painting the screw heads for even more “oomph” in your design. When you (eventually) move, you can take your personalized covers with you.

One of my favorite unobtrusive ways to personalize a kitchen is to line the cabinets with the coolest contact paper known to humankind. You might also select some spunky vinyl placemats to line the shelves of your fridge. They’re easy to remove for cleaning, and provide some fun in a space you look at every day. If you want to extend the use of your contact paper purchase—especially if your taste is pricey—you can line the drawers, sides of shelves, or cabinet doors. You may opt to personalize your walls or appliances with magnets or removable wall decals (the key word being removable, folks).

Don’t limit yourself to within the walls of your place. Remember, even the tiniest of details can make a home uniquely yours. Personalize your keys when you get them cut or have duplicates made. Purchase some key covers to help decipher the three keys you need just to open your back door. You can add a sticker for some temporary appeal, but they usually wear off pretty quickly. Bedazzling my keys was a fun DIY project. I utilized my glittery nail polishes to discern which key is for which lock: hot pink, royal blue, and bright red.

Need more ideas? I’ve written for The Oak Parker about personalizing your space in other ways. Check out the blogs about shelving and picture frames, if you need a refresher. The artwork and other décor you choose for your space will give your apartment some flair as well. Keep in mind that whether your lease is one year or you plan to stay for longer, this is your home for now. Make it your own.

By Meridian Herman Lupu