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August 24, 2016
Starting The Process

how to begin furnishing an apartment

I teased an update last night on Instagram, but the new apartment is coming along! We’re really excited to have finally purchased a few pieces of furniture and are making some decisions on the next pieces. I have so much to share with you guys and can’t wait for you to see!

Starting the process of decorating and furnishing an empty apartment can be extremely daunting. Personally, I find decorating and buying furniture to be a bit intimidating because I just don’t have a ton of experience with it. Thankfully we asked a lot of friends and family for advice beforehand and had a decently long runway before we needed to start making some decisions.

Here are a few quick tips that we employed (without even knowing) that ended up making the furniture hunt a bit less daunting!

1. Seek inspiration first and discuss colors and your overall decor scheme

I’m a complete Pinterest addict and keep a board purely for home inspiration. I looked back at pins that I loved the most and any patterns that stuck out to me of what my eyes were drawn to (neutrals, textures, and rooms with a light and airy feel) and sat down with MG and asked him what he liked. We didn’t take too long because guys aren’t as whimsically interested in looking at photos of spaces all day, but it really helped me get a sense of where we might be able to start. I literally just showed him 3-4 different types of color schemes and vibes and he quickly nixed the ones with too much color or that were too bohemian. We were able to quickly figure out our overall style and move forward with colors. I also created a mini-inspiration board for the pieces that we were looking for initially.

2. Get a copy of your floorplan

We snagged one of these before we moved in and walked around the entire apartment doing the measurements. I can’t begin to tell you how incredibly helpful it is to have a copy of this scanned on my computer when we were looking at couches, dressers, tables, and other larger pieces of furniture. I’d also recommend taking a version of your floorplan and penciling in the pieces that you’re looking at to see if they might fit. This helped us make a couple of quick decisions around our media stand and bookshelf in the same night! I have a friend that actually did their furniture layout in an excel doc and she said it worked wonders for them. You can be creative with how you try to lay things out or seek an online tool.

3. Take a furniture shopping day without intending to buy

Before you have to make any concrete decisions and once you have an idea of what you’re looking for based on your inspiration, take a day and go furniture shopping without having any intentions of buying. Just looking at different pieces and the way they’re laid out in showrooms can be such a huge help! In just a few hours we were able to see some couch dimensions in person to get a better idea of what the size we needed was like, the dining table we were interested in, found a rug, and realized that we liked the idea of sconce lighting in our room. It was such a worthwhile trip and we were able to use that as a baseline for getting down to the nitty gritty in terms of buying pieces.

4. Choose a starting point

Although we started looking at furniture even before we moved, it wasn’t until we were moved in that we started making any first purchase decisions. When you’re looking at doing an entire place it can be overwhelming. I remember there were several nights where I kept going back and forth between living room and bedroom furniture and all it was doing was making me more anxious. Start with the pieces that you need to function everyday. For us, we really wanted to get a dresser in our room and get a ton of things off of the floor and allow us to move some things out of the kitchen counter area. Next was nixing the boxes that we have left by finding a bookshelf and a media stand. We’re saving the bigger decisions – couch and coffee table and the last decor and lighting for last.

Starting early and having an organized approach to furnishing a new place will make the whole process feel less erratic and give you more sense of peace as you pick everything out. After all, it’s supposed to be the fun part once you’re moved in!

What are your tips for getting started in a new place?

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