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Coffee Table Couch Apartment Living Room Sunny
Coffee Table Couch Apartment Living Room Sunny
Anna Thetard / Her Campus
Style > Decor

Five Must Haves For Your First Apartment

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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at PSU chapter.

As a new school year begins, many people are moving into a new apartment for the very first time. It’s hard to know what you’ll need for a living space, kitchen, bathroom and bedroom if you’ve just come from a dorm. You don’t need to go overboard, but there are always some fun items that will make your first apartment feel like home.

A Good candle

Something that will easily transform an empty space into a cozy safe haven is a good candle. The smell and warmth will fill the room. It can calm you down at the end of the day or set an overall mood for your apartment.

A wood-wick candle adds to the ambiance of a crackle as it burns, which layers an extra level of comfort. It is also visually appealing to have a cute candle set out as easy decor on a coffee table, nightstand or any counter space.

One of my all-time favorite candle scents is peace + tranquility from Chesapeake Bay (sold at Target). This scent smells like vanilla, jasmine, linen and warmth. It’s a cozy scent for all-year-round enjoyment.

A Cute plant

Having a plant in any room automatically brightens the space. It adds a nice visual aspect — a cute pot can add a fun pop of color to any space. Plants come in so many different shapes and sizes, so no matter where you need to fill an empty space, there’s a plant for you.

You might be worried about keeping said plant alive, but don’t be. There are so many plants out there that need little to no maintenance and little sunlight in case you weren’t blessed with a big window. Some of my favorite low-maintenance plants are cactuses, string of pearls, aloe vera (which also provides some homegrown aloe gel), snake plant and parlor palm.

My favorite place to decorate with plants is the bathroom as it adds happy living elements to a room that seems the hardest to bring to life.

A desk lamp

I know this sounds pretty self-explanatory, but trust me, it’s small things like this that will slip your mind.

Coming into my first apartment I had a desk provided for me. It’s not like your average dorm desk with a built-in overhead shelf that has a little light underneath to illuminate your space. So, since I never purchased a desk lamp before, I didn’t think I’d need one now.

I was naive to think the overhead bedroom lighting and one lamp on my bedside table would be enough to light my whole room and workspace sufficiently. If you find a cute desk lamp, not only will it give you enough light to work comfortably, but it can also be a cute statement piece.

A Rug that screams “you”

This is probably my biggest tip for making a new space yours.

A nice statement rug can do wonders when you’re decorating. You might be looking to decorate a room that has carpeting, which is fine if you want to leave it at that, but laying a rug over it just adds so much value to a room. And to be honest, if you’re renting the carpet, it may not be as nice and clean as you’d like it to be.

Rugs have so many different colors and patterns it’s practically impossible to not be able to find a rug that fits your space. It can pull in so many patterns and textures which can help the overall atmosphere and vibes in the room. If you know you’re going to be getting a rug, might as well make it fun.

Adding simple items to your new apartment will make it feel furnished and homey in no time. Don’t worry about the cost of stuff either! You don’t need an expensive piece because, let’s be honest, no one will know the price by looking at it whether it’s cheap or expensive.

Stick to your personal college budget and have fun.

Caroline is a third-year student at Penn State studying digital and print journalism with a minor in digital media trends and analytics. When she is not doing school work or writing for HER Campus @ PSU, she is at the gym, watching YouTube, cooking/ baking, or hanging out with friends.