A minimalist apartment isn't synonymous with "boring," despite what many may think. It means keeping things uncluttered and orderly, which is a huge trend right now. In fact, a survey found that people dislike clutter more than they hate dirt as clutter makes them feel more stressed.
Having a decluttered apartment can reduce stress because there's not too much going on. When a space is not so busy with lots to look at, it can soothingly put your mind at. Here's what you need to know to create a stress-free minimalist apartment for yourself.
Minimalist decor isn't really about what you need — it's more about what you don't need. The true motto of minimalism is "less is more," which means you'll be getting rid of most things deemed as "non-essential." No knick-knacks or bright colors and fewer pillows and pictures on the wall. The goal is to create a neat and orderly zone where your eyes aren't overwhelmed by their surroundings.
As the name implies, minimalism means having less — keeping belongings to a minimum. That might mean you need to clean things out or at least hide them out of sight in a closet or cabinet.
Simplicity is key in minimalist decor. Choosing furniture with clean lines and in simple shapes, like a plain square coffee table or an uncomplicated lamp, will keep your apartment orderly.
Having a little bit of natural green goes a long way, especially when it's replacing other pieces of decor and knick-knacks. Rather than placing vases and figurines on shelves and tables, put up a few houseplants. When choosing a pot for your plants, make sure you stick with the simple, clean lines of minimalism.
Although you're trying to avoid clutter, it doesn't mean your minimalist apartment needs to feel like an empty office building. To add variation, use different textures in your space. Try a fuzzy rug or a chunky knitted throw blanket. Even a single piece with a unique texture can change the way a room feels.
Bigger rooms typically feel cleaner, especially when there's less stuff in them, so make your apartment feel larger (and cleaner) by adding depth with a mirror.
You can either hang a mirror on the wall or use a standalone mirror. If hanging one, do it on a wall across from a window to bounce the light around more effectively. If you're using a standalone mirror, place it in a corner to give more light to a typically darker spot.
Minimalism is the opposite of eclectic, so you'll want to avoid using too many colors, specifically bright ones. Stick with neutral colors like gray, white, brown and black. It's okay to add a few colors in smaller places throughout your apartment, but avoid neons and opt for muted tones like dusty blues or sage greens.
If you're able, remove any hardware from cabinets and cupboards to give a smooth, clean look finish them. Remember, you're trying to get rid of things and, even though the hardware isn't necessarily cluttering, it is another item that draws attention. If you're not able to completely remove the hardware, you can switch it out with something plain. Try to find hardware in the same color as the cabinet to give the least amount of variation.
Negative space, white space or whatever you want to call the space that isn't used, is the most valuable piece of minimalism. There's no need to fill every open surface with decor or belongings. Having open, unused space makes your apartment feel larger and calmer, so just because you can put something in an open area doesn't mean you should.
The more light, the better! Whether you're able to harness the natural light coming in through windows or you add other lighting options throughout your apartment, have as much light as possible. Making things brighter will add a clean, crisp feeling and make your apartment not feel crowded.
Keep your floors toned down. Light, natural-looking wood floors are great or if you're using a rug, choose one that's a solid color or has a very simple design. You don't want to draw particular attention to the floor
When you're trying to save space and get rid of the unnecessary, it doesn't mean you need to give up functionality. Choose furniture with more than one function, like a coffee table that also has storage space or a set of nesting side tables.
Using a plain pendant light will add a little more style to your apartment without going overboard. A sleek pendant will keep lines clean in the room versus something like a complicated chandelier.
To keep your colors simple, try a monochromatic scheme. You'll still get some diversity with different shades being lighter and darker, but you won't have to worry about it being too complex with lots of colors.
While you're trying to keep things as simple as possible, it's okay to use patterns as long as they're not too crazy. Symmetric geometric patterns are perfect for this and can give character to any room while still providing balance and clean lines.
Having a natural finish on wood pieces will give more warmth than painted pieces. It displays the wood in its most basic form, further adding to the simplicity you're aiming for with minimalism.
You can have natural wood on almost any piece of furniture, from entire dressers and tables to chair legs or picture frames.
Picture frames change the look of the images they hold and entire rooms. For minimalist decor, you'll want to steer clear of elaborate, chunky frames and select thin, unembellished frames to maintain a modest look.
Having too much shiny metal in a room isn't ideal for a minimalist apartment. It's okay to have some gold or silver incorporated in smaller ways but avoid larger pieces that are mostly metallic, like a silver lamp or gold side table. Instead, use them sparingly and opt for more matte or satin finishes on furniture and decor.
Opaque fabrics look heavier than those that are sheer, which will play to your advantage when going for a minimalist vibe.
Light, airy textiles are often associated with bohemian or beachy decor, but using a heavier, opaque fabric for your drapes will bring a little more seriousness to your apartment.
When picking your couches, chairs, bedframe and coffee table, you'll want to stick with pieces that show the legs and are open underneath. These pieces look sleeker and don't give an illusion of hiding anything underneath, which will make your apartment look cleaner and larger.
There are plenty of different light fixtures and sources to choose from, just keep it straightforward — nothing intricate. Use modest lighting pieces, like basic lamps or track lights for overhead fixtures.
Minimalism is exactly what it seems — the minimum. Hopefully, with these tips, you're able to see that you can still have a minimalist apartment that is chic and homey. You don't have to give into bland and boring — just remember to keep things simple and clean!