Even in some of our most luxuriously spacious Buffalo apartments, finding the right storage to keep all your things in neat order is an important task. You might have a lot of free space around your place now, but unless you find a good way to organize the little things, your space can get cluttered and out of control fast. So, to give you some inspiration to get creative with your storage, we’ve put together some cool ideas that will help you save space and also keep your apartment looking great.
Under the Bed
No, we’re not talking about just shoving all the clutter on the floor of your room right under your bed. We’re talking about real, under-the-bed storage space. Getting a bed that comes with drawer storage underneath is a great way to maximize space in your room. These beds can be expensive, but if you can’t afford it, don’t let that hold you back. It can be easy and fun to take on a new DIY project, and building a platform for your bed that includes lots of space for storage will pay for itself when you aren’t tripping over things on your floor. If you need some guidance, the internet is an endless expanse of helpful tips, so get out there and explore.
There’s nothing worse than having to store your bike right in the middle of your living room or bedroom and having to step around it as you walk through your apartment. Since a lot of our apartments for rent are nestled deep in Buffalo biking territory, plenty of our tenants are probably faced with this problem. The answer might be simpler than you think. Go to your local hardware store and check out the shelving and hooks they have available. Building a wall-mount for your bike is probably easier than you think, and you’ll love the extra space you’ll have after you get your bike off the floor. Your solution doesn’t have to be destructive to the wall either. Try getting some Command strips and hanging your hooks with a solution that won’t leave damage to the wall when you’re done.
Shelving and Boxes
Storage shelves and dressers don’t have to be big and expensive to get the job done. There are plenty of cool ways to arrange pre-built or custom-made shelving around your place to maximize space and give you plenty of room to store things. Check out this great asymmetrical shelving unit that was built using wooden boxes and a ratchet strap – all easily attainable items.
So if you’re struggling to find enough storage for everything in your apartment, give these ideas a try and get creative. And if you really can’t fit all your stuff into your living space, maybe it’s time for an upgrade! Check out our apartments for rent in Buffalo and find the perfect floor plan for you.
In this week’s Three Things Thursday, we want to give you some inspiration for a better workspace in your home office. Some of you might not even have a home office in your apartment, but working from your bed or your dining room table are probably not the most productive alternatives, and most people work more efficiently when they have a dedicated place set aside for work. If you work in the same place you relax, your mind will have a hard time staying focused on the task at hand, and you could end up getting distracted by your TV while you work, or worse, getting distracted by work while watching TV.
Here are three different kinds of desks you could consider adding to your apartment for better productivity.
The Simple Table
Just because you’re looking for a dedicated surface to work on, you don’t have to silo yourself into a big complicated desk. Some people work better with a nice simple setup without a lot of drawers and clutter surrounding them. If this sounds like you, try getting yourself a simple table to work on. They’re usually modest in both price and size, so you won’t have to break the bank buying one, and it won’t take up your whole room either.
For people who need a lot of surface area to work on but still need to make efficient use of space, the L desk is perfect. Take that empty corner of your apartment and make it a productive work station. L-shaped desks come in all shapes and sizes too, so find one that fits your needs. If you’re already using the space for a desk, you might as well get one with drawers and cabinets to add some more storage space. And if space isn’t an issue, just find something that fits the personality of your pad.
The Standing Desk
The standing desk is a style that has really caught on in offices of late. Sitting for long periods of time can be both uncomfortable and unhealthy. If you’re trying to burn more calories while you work, or if sitting for long periods of time is ergonomically a problem for you, the standing desk is the way to go. Recent studies have also shown that people working at standing desks can be more productive, but it’s mostly a personal preference. If standing up for too long tires you out, you’ll probably start to lose focus on your work, so be sure to know what you’re getting into before you commit to standing all the time. You can always look for a tall chair or bar stool to sit on, or get a desk with adjustable height.
If we’ve inspired you to go out and get another piece of furniture for your apartment, why not look right here in Buffalo for your perfect find? Some great local stores like Ro and Room are good alternatives to the same old places like Ikea.com or Office Max. So get out there and get productive.
Unless you’re going for the most minimalist feel possible, you’ll probably want to find something to hang on the walls in your apartment to spice things up a bit. You may have missed the Allentown Art Festival this year, but with mass distribution of art made easier through the internet, there are still plenty of sources out there for you to find some picture-perfect decor to bring your walls to life. Here are some great things to keep in mind while you decorate:
Your Living Space Has Personality
From the colors you’ve chosen to highlight your apartment with to the style of your furniture, everything in your space builds up to a personality. What you hang on the walls is a big part of this. When you’re shopping around for the best new artistic pieces, remember the look and feel you’re going for. A piece that contrasts intensely with the other colors in your apartment will jump out and be more visually aggressive for you and your guests, while something that fits with your color palette will blend in and create a measured, calming environment. Whatever you’re going for, keep the personality of your space in mind.
Plenty of Options
Local art shows are great places to check out possible decor for your space, but don’t forget to check online, too. There are plenty of websites like Etsy.com that have huge varieties of artwork to choose from, and the prices are usually reasonable. Don’t settle for something that you don’t think is perfect for your apartment, because you’ll probably have to look at it for a long time.
Create Something Yourself
If you can’t find something that really speaks to your personality as well as the feel of your apartment, why not try making something yourself? Photo collages or large-sized photo prints are great ways to take a memory or a favorite photo and bring it to life in your living space. You don’t have to be a professional artist to create something of your own to decorate your apartment, and once you’re done, you can show it off and create easy conversation when you have company over. Don’t be afraid to get creative!
Whatever you decide to decorate your space with, the important part is that you like it. If you surround yourself with positive emotions, your living situation will be a lot better.
Photo Credit: 1, 2
While minimalism might sound easy, it might be one of the hardest interior looks to pull of. Yes, you have fewer things to find or placement, but because of that you must make the most of what you have.
Symmetry can add a lot to a minimalist space, but it is by no means necessary.
Lighting will be especially important in a space that lacks a lot of stuff. Use light to accentuate the furniture, and take advantage of the open space.
You’ll notice, in most minimalist spaces, that neutral tones lay heavily on the color palette. Wish splashes of color and strategically-placed plant life, you will have a nice, clean and relaxing space.
A new addition to the Kissling Blog, our “Three Things Thursday” concept is simple: list three things in any given category for your inspiration. This week – iconic chairs.
I would like to say that every apartment or loft should have the following chairs. Sadly, these are not necessarily “consumer” chairs, but more of luxury modernist design statements. That being said, why let the outlandish prices stop you from inspiration or a used chair search? Keep an eye out, you never know if you will find one of these iconic pieces on Ebay, Craig’s List or elsewhere…
Out of the hundreds of iconic chairs from the modern age, I think that the following three work best with multiple styles of interior design than most others:
1 – The Eames Chair
You might recognize this particular model from a certain grumpy doctor’s office on TV a few years back (House, MD).
A true embodiment of modern aesthetics and function, this is certainly the most luxurious and comfortable of almost any chair in existence. With a rather high sticker price, you definitely get what you pay for in beautiful hard wood, plush leather and pure comfort.
2 – The Wassily Chair (B3 Model)
Don’t be fooled by the Wassily chair’s clunky, robotic look – it is incredibly comfortable. If you don’t believe me, check out Ró on Elmwood – last time I checked they had several of these on the floor. Comfy, cool looking (if a bit quirky) and definitely the more reasonably priced chair of the three in this post.
3 – Three-Legged Shell Chair
Created by the late, highly-regarded furniture designer Hans Wegner, this piece features no synthetic materials (assuming that you don’t go with a knock-off model). A very pleasant addition to a small space, you’ll be sure to either impress guests or enjoy some solo time with a book in this chair.
Whether or not you are an avid reader, you’ll want bookshelves in your apartment. You have photo frames, artwork, knick knacks and other random items that need somewhere to go. Many of these things work much better on display than they do hidden in boxes or closets.
Of course, depending on your space, different shelving systems might work, while others might not. Consider these common solutions for your apartment:
These shelves can work in almost any space and offer the most freedom as to location, size and even look. Keep in mind that, if you do not find wall studs for installation, you will need to utilize anchors (which will usually indicate a weight capacity for load bearing).
Freestanding bookshelves are probably the most common, as they are easy to use and typically have a greater capacity for storage. Keep in mind that you can easily put together a DIY bookshelf using reclaimed equipment like ladders, especially if the look would suit your particular style.
Some apartments might feature little corner nooks or recessed walls. In this case, you might be able to install floating shelves into the recess with a “built-in” look to them. This way, you avoid the need for bookends and make for a clever use in an otherwise difficult to utilize corner (keep in mind that you’ll want to make these easily removable, since you are in a rented space).
Let’s be honest – window treatments are boring. But, a room that lacks window treatments is also boring. They might not be flashy or fun to talk about, but window treatments really add a lot to a room, especially in apartments. You often don’t have the option to paint or install various customizations to an apartment space. But, with window treatments, you can add a lot of personality with very little effort on your part.
If you like a more bohemian look, you can get really creative with your windows. The look above could easily be accomplished through some eclectic DIY.
Of course, if you like a classic appeal, you can try out vintage or antique treatments. How easy these are to find could vary, but you might find some really neat pieces in consignment, antique or good will stores.
On the flip side – clean cut and straight lines make for good accents in a modern or industrial space.
It’s 4th of July weekend, so it’s time to blow stuff up!
If you want to know where to catch fireworks around WNY, here’s a complete list (most of these begin around dusk. None earlier than 9pm):
Tonight (July 3rd)
Allegany State Park, Quaker area
BPO Coca-Cola Field, Buffalo (after Bison’s game)
Cattaraugus Co. Fairgrounds (after stock car races)
Dwyer Stadium, Batavia
George Borrello Park, Silver Creek
Newstead Park, Akron
Olcott Beach, Olcott
Russell Diethrick Park, Jamestown (after Jammers game)
Veterans’ Memorial Kenney Field, Tonawanda
Woodlawn Beach, Hamburg
UB North, Amherst
Town Park behind the Town Hall, Boston
Cheektowaga Town Park
Clarence Town Park
Concord Community Park
Boys and Girls Club, Girdle Road, Elma
Martin’s Fantasy Island, Grand Island
Hartley Park, Lakewood
Aurora Street, Lancaster
Cattaraugus County Fairgrounds, Little Valley
Outwater Park, Lockport
Lyndonville High School
Lakeside Park, Mayville
Hyde Park, Niagara Falls
Niagara Falls State Park, Prospect Park
Gateway Harbor, North Tonawanda
Bradner Stadium, Olean
Orchard Park Middle School Pavilion
Pendleton Town Park
Royalton Ravine Park
Seneca Allegany Casino, Salamanca
Village Park, Warsaw
Oppenheim Park, Wheatfield
Holiday Valley, Ellicottville
Seneca Niagara Casino, Niagara Falls
Jam in the Valley, Varysburg
Woodlawn Beach, Hamburg
Niagara Falls State Park
The foyer will be the first thing that your guests see in your apartment, so you’ll want to make a good impression. Depending on your space’s layout, you will have more or less to work with. However, the same principles apply to both a utilitarian and beautiful foyer:
A Welcome Mat
The welcome mat’s main purpose is to get dirt off of shoes. So, it does not need to say “welcome” on it, but it should make it easier to avoid tracking mud, snow or grass through your apartment.
Coat Rack or Wall Hooks
Some apartments have a closet adjacent to the door that you could utilize for coats. If your apartment lacks a coat closet, you’ll want to invest in wall hooks or a coat rack. Wall hooks can double to hold keys, but a coat rack can make for a nice accent to the foyer.
A small side table with a drawer can make your entryway a lot more useful for you. You will have a place to drop your keys, wallet, etc. Below, or to the side, you might consider a shoe rack to organize the area a bit better.
Without ample lighting in your foyer, entering your own apartment can be a bit of a hassle. Make sure that you can easily see after getting in so that both you and your guests can feel comfortable from the start.
Plants or Artwork
A small plant, a bit of wall art or a nice vase make for an additional aesthetic touch to your foyer. Again, it’s good to feel happy, comfortable and relaxed upon entering an apartment, so the visual touches really help.
Dining rooms can be a bit tricky, especially in apartments. In lofts, you might have some more space to be creative, but sometimes in apartments you are just working with what you have.
However, if you take some simple considerations into account, your apartment dining area can be stylish and useful.
Before doing anything, assess the space in your dining area. Do you have an entire room or do you need to fit your dining table into a kitchen or other room? How large of a table can your space afford? How many chairs do you need and how many chairs can you actually have. Noting all of this will make it easier as you get to work.
Will your dining area end up making for a good home office? If so, you may want to choose a table and chairs with ergonomics to accommodate longer durations of sitting, typing, writing and so on.
You’ll want to have good ambient lighting in your dining area, but you’ll also want to make sure that you have brighter lights available, in case ambient lighting isn’t enough.
Based on the space, your family and frequency of having guests, you will end up choosing more or less chairs. Keep in mind that you can always store extra chairs elsewhere in the case of additional diners.
When you have the logistics figured out, then you can decide on a style. If you have a small space, a utilitarian style, such as industrial or modern might suit you well, as it will make it easier to save space and suit several purposes.