Apartment Series 3: Quick ways to make your place your own

Here is the last post in the Apartment Series. This post is all about our three quick tips to make an apartment you're own.  You finally have the apartment you want, so here is how to transform it quickly. Comment below and let us know you're favorite part of the series! We may just even post some pictures of our decor and little accessories that we got to set our apartment apart from our friends!

First Three things to make it yours:

My Tips:

1. Make your bed. Now this may seem silly, but there is nothing that makes a place feel like home quite like laying down in clean sheets after moving all day.  It is also one of the quickest ways to make your room look put together!

2. Get out your décor.  Little touches like our pillows, candles and cool lamps transformed our place so fast.  Its really made it our own.  Of course things have moved already into a “better” spot, but still just getting things out makes the apartment feel a lot less empty.

3. Put things on the wall. Whether you have tan walls (hotel feel) or white (panic room), putting things on the walls makes everything feel so much more homey.  It makes it feel like you didn’t just move and really makes it your own. So I would come prepared with things you know you want to hang! This makes it much easier! Make sure you measure, level and plan it out or else you could have crooked paintings that look out of place!

Alix's Tips:

1. Hang up those pictures this isn’t a frat house. Coming from a family with an ex-photographer for a dad, pictures have always been a big thing in my life. I love taking and displaying them so I wanted a prominent gallery wall in my apartment. On one of the first days of living in my new apartment I decided what pictures I wanted and where and just did it. One of the huge pluses of a gallery wall is that it doesn’t have to be perfect. It made my blank walls feel less sterile and made this place feel like mine. Being able to walk in and see my family, friends, dogs, and places I’ve been on my walls made me happy and made it feel homey.

2. Organize that terrible mess of a closet. Every time you walk in there you see all of your clothes in a heap on the floor. It's not a pleasant sight. Just take an hour and organize it and it will make your place feel much more organized in no time. If the rest of your room is organized your closet will just sit there and haunt you every time you have to get dressed. Just do it and you can thank me later.

3. Invite your friends over. Nothing makes a new apartment feel like home quite like having your friends and family over. Show off your new domestic skills, or your ability to pick up the phone and call for pizza. Beginning to make memories in your new home is the best, and most fun way to really get used to living in your new place. Who knows, you may get a few bottles of wine out of the housewarming.

We hope you enjoyed this three part Apartment Series! If you missed the first two posts you can check them out here! If you'd like to see more posts like this let me know in the comments below or shoot me a quick note

Apartment Series 2: Tips for Moving into an Apartment

Welcome to post 2 of the Apartment Series! Here in post 2 you'll find our tips for the actual moving process our into your new place. We hope these tips are helpful and let us know in the comments what your tips are!

Top 3 tips for moving into an apartment:

My Tips:

1.  Last On First Off Box. My beautiful mother is the one who put this together for me; she’s amazing.  But after all our moving she's the one who knew about this. The Last On First Off Box is the box that is suppose to go on the truck last so it’s the first one that comes off.  This box contains things like cleaning supplies, scissors, paper towels, toilet paper, water cups.  Things that are needed when you are unpacking but that you forget about. Its super helpful and there are some sites that give you lists!

2.  Pack everything nice & organized.  This was such a pain.  Towards the end of packing I got lazy and sorta threw things in a box.  Which I deeply deeply regret.  It is so much easier to unpack when items that go together stay together and it’s easy to do one room at a time.  The more you throw in a box that doesn’t go together the harder it is to put away.

3. Go through your items before you move. This is an awesome tip because it really helps to purge everything so you aren’t moving unnecessary things. I still feel like after many Plato's Closet visits (which I barely made any money on) and Goodwill runs, I still wished I would have given away more.  I can write a post on tricks to purge your closet, office and kitchen supplies if you’d like!

Alix’s Tips:

1. Don’t kid yourself, take all the help you can get. I have moved both ways before, totally by myself and with the help of a team. TAKE THE TEAM. Moving in 6 suitcases of clothes and piles of kitchen equipment by yourself takes all day and completely sucks. Recruit everyone you can to help you and offer pizza and beer as an incentive. Much cheaper than movers and you will probably like them better too.

2. Keep it in the box. If you are moving into a new apartment you are bound to buy new things like bar stools or a microwave. When moving keep them in their boxes. I know you may want to save space in the U-Haul but worrying about if your brand new TV gets damaged in the move is not as fun as you may think.

3. Don’t buy too much stuff. You’ve been eyeing that glass canister set at Target for a month now but wait until you move in to buy it. It will be another thing you have to actually move and you may get to your new place and realize where you wanted to put the canisters is actually where your coffee maker needs to go. Buy as you go and it will save you in the long run.

Tips on being new to a city

Growing up I moved all around the country with my family, from New Hampshire, to Denver, to Ohio.  I feel like it really opened up a lot of possibilities for me when I was looking for a new job because I wasn't scared of starting somewhere new. Well thats not true I was scared but I have had plenty of experience being the new kid going to 5 different schools. I ended up moving back to Cincinnati, and I went to high school here for two years.  Which gave me a little bit of an advantage in knowing the city, compared to being completely new.  But if you know anything about Cincinnatians most of us actually live 30 minutes outside of the city and I could count on my hand the number of times I had been downtown in high school.  So it really was like I was starting from scratch as an adult.

I've learned a few things throughout my moves. I believe it has helped me transition a little bit more smoothly into a new city.

The most important thing I have learned when moving, or living somewhere new, is SAY YES TO EVERYTHING!  This is a really important lesson because when you are new somewhere, everything is really uncomfortable.  I'll be the first to admit it.  If you get asked to an event, everything is out of your comfort zone, the location, the people, the activity.  But the reason it is so important to say yes, even if you are tired, uncomfortable or just down right don't want to, is because people don't like rejection.  Most people who invite the new kid somewhere are extending themselves as well, and if you say no it lessens your chance of getting invited the next time around.  It's important to explore and try new things because this is how you learn, either you have a great time or you learn you know maybe this coworker should stay just that, a coworker.  And that's okay! But it's important to try everything once, and let everyone know you're open to hanging out.

I also believe it's important to join some type of club.  This is a really easy way to meet people and most of the people there don't know a ton of people either.  For example if there is a sports group at your work, join!  Two other suggestions are alumni groups from college or a group that relates to your career. An alumni club is really easy because you have two things in common, where you went to school and where you live now.  Which is actually a lot to talk about honestly.  A career group is also a great option.  This is great not only for networking but again because there is a common interest.

Make sure you're always exploring!  Even though I technically moved back to the city, I never realized the amount of good restaurants, coffee shops, bars and parks there are to go to.  I usually go on Instagram or search yelp looking at the pictures and try to go somewhere new every other week.  This way I'm really getting my bearings for the city and having fun while doing it!

My advice to someone new to a city, is have patience.  Moving and finding a good group of friends really takes time.  Being somewhere new is exhausting, it's hard to strike up conversations and put yourself out there but it's really important to say yes to hanging out and trying new things. It takes a lot of effort but you will thank yourself in a year.  If you have recently moved, or you're trying to make a city your own, hang in there and keep putting yourself out there!  It will pay off!

Do you have any tips on being new to a city? I'd love to hear them!