3 Accessories that Instantly Update Your First Apartment

If you’re moving into your first apartment, you’re probably bringing accessories from your college dorm or childhood bedroom. And chances are those things don’t reflect your current style and future aspirations. While apartment accessories are best when they’re collected and curated over time, here are three items that instantly upgrade your new place from student hangout to adult space.



Apartment Lamps
The Cardamom Bronze Lamps are available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
Apartment Lamp
The Cody Table Lamp is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
Apartment Lamp
The LaMarque Chrome Table Lamp is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.

It’s time to ditch the clip-on light/fan combo that kept you cool and illuminated during final exam all-nighters in favor of something a little more mature. Lamps help set the tone for your décor, and you can find them in any style you wish. Go for something rich and chic, like the Cardamom Bronze Lamps; contemporary and sleek, like the Cody Table Lamp; or sophisticated and glitzy, such as the LaMarque Chrome Lamp.



Apartment Art
The Golden Meadow Canvas Art is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
Apartment Art
The Flamingo Canvas Art is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
Apartment Art
The Floral Dream Canvas Art is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.

Those posters that decorated your dorm walls were fun when you were dreaming of life after college, but your life is starting now and it’s time to use art to reflect your taste and style. Canvas art is the next step and you will find a variety of choices that fit your décor. Choose a striking contrast of colors, such as the Golden Meadow Canvas; something whimsical, like the Flamingo Canvas; or a tasteful floral work, such as the Floral Dream Canvas.

Toss Pillows

The Kettery Seafoam Pillow is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
Apartment Accessories
The Selena Fuchsia Pillow is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
Apartment Accessories
The Satin Gold Pillow is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.

Finally, accent your furniture by accessorizing with toss pillows. You can add a rich texture with the Kettery Seafoam Pillow; a pop of color with the Selena Fuchsia Pillow; or a contrasting finish with the Satin Gold Pillow. Toss pillows instantly update your sofa, accent chairs, bed or dining room chairs.


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Choose the Right Flooring for Your Living Room

Nothing in your home gets as much wear and tear as your flooring. You walk on it, stand on it, and sit on it. Your kids and pets might even run across it. And it’s where the dust settles and spills happen. While flooring is the structural foundation for your room, it’s also the foundation for your décor. Choosing the right materials combines personal taste with practicality. Art Van Flooring has several choices of living room flooring. Here are three options that are perfect for a family-friendly space:

Wood Floors

Wood floors are a timeless choice, offering natural beauty as well as versatile style. Durable and easy to maintain, wood floors are also a great long-term investment because they can be sanded and refinished. You’ll have a rainbow of options when it comes to finish; from light oak to deep walnut, the color of your wood will set the tone for the room.

You can also choose the size of the wood. Strip flooring is a narrower cut of woods – about 2 3/4 inches. Or choose plank flooring, which has a more informal look with wider boards up to about 7 inches. Rooms that might be exposed to moisture, such as a basement family room, should avoid wood as it can warp or bubble in humid conditions.


Today’s laminate floors offer the look of wood or stone at a fraction of the price, making them a good option for living room flooring. Like wood, laminate flooring is available in planks and strips. Traditionally, it is glued in place over your existing flooring, although manufacturers have recently introduced glueless and pre-glued formats that can be installed in half the time.

Unlike wood, laminate flooring cannot be stripped or refinished. However, it’s more resistant to dents and scratches, and offers a layer of cushioning that can be more comfortable than wood or tile.  Laminate is also a great option for a finished basement as it stands up to moist or humid conditions.


Finally, carpet is a popular living room flooring choice because it offers the highest level of comfort. Carpet is also one of the easiest ways to personalize an environment; its color can provide a neutral foundation or a more vibrant shade can become a focal point.

Unlike wood and laminate, carpet provides an added measure of warmth and insulation against extreme heat or cold. It’s available in a wide variety of fibers and textures, giving the room a casual or more formal feeling. Carpet also helps provide safety from slip and fall – an important consideration for families with young children. Many carpets have been treated for stain resistance, but they aren’t stain-proof. Regular maintenance, including vacuuming and professional cleaning will help protect and prolong the life of your investment.

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How To Buy Large Furniture Online

Online shopping is a convenient way to fill your closet, pantry, shelves and walls—but what about using the Internet to buy large furniture online, such as a sofa or bedroom set? For big items, size, quality and comfort are key. Successfully shop online by taking these things into consideration.

Buy a bed online
The Katherine Brown Queen Bed is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
Start With a Reputable Retailer

Learn about the company by reading its About Us page. A company with a long history has been in business for a reason—it cares about its customers! Also look for customer service policies and a satisfaction guarantee, as well as shipping rates and timelines. Your best bet is a store that also has a brick-and-mortar element; you can save time by browsing online and then see the piece in person before you make your purchase.

Buy furniture online
The Marie Buffet is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
Read the Product Description

Pay close attention to the materials and care instructions because pictures don’t always offer a complete story. You want to make sure the piece fits your lifestyle and décor by understanding the construction and materials.


Buy furniture online
The Floating Wall Unit is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
Check the Measurements

Compare the size of the piece to the size of your space. It can help to mark out dimensions on the floor with painter’s tape. Consider length and width as well as height. Look at the placement of your windows, doorways and halls. Also, think about how the furniture will get into your room. Will it fit around corners and through doorways?

Be Careful About Colors

Computer screens can distort colors, and certain finishes can look different in photographs. Darker wood, for example, tends to look lighter online. If you’re trying to match an existing color or finish, call and talk to the retailer’s customer service agent. Or, better yet, complete your purchase in person to be confident of the color.

The Pia Chesterfield Sofa is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
Look for Comfort Clues

While it’s hard to know how something will feel when you’re looking at it online, you can get some clues by looking at the depth of the piece. Deeper sofas, for example, often offer a lot of comfort and are great for lounging. Also pay attention to the fill. Down is very soft and relaxed, while poly-fill, such as Dacron, will provide a higher level of support as well as comfort.

The Lancaster Dining Table is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.

Know the return policy. Before you place your order, be sure you understand what you can do if the piece isn’t right. If your retailer has brick-and-mortar locations, returns might be easier if they allow you to return the piece in person instead of having to arrange return shipping. Pay attention to time limits, and return the item promptly for best satisfaction.

Note: If you like items in this post, they all ship to your doorstep for free!

5 Essentials: Furniture For Your First Apartment

The average American moves 12 times, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. That means the furniture you purchase for your first apartment needs to work in 12 different floor plans. While some furnishings will need to be replaced over the years, there are pieces that can move and grow along with you, serving a variety of purposes. Here are five pieces of furniture for your first apartment that are versatile in scale, classic in design and timeless in appeal.

Apartment Loveseat
The Natalie Tufted Loveseat is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
A Loveseat

If your apartment living room is small on space, choose a loveseat or settee instead of a sofa, and combine it with accent chairs. Loveseats are highly versatile, and can later be used at the foot of your bed or in a quaint kitchen nook. Choose a neutral color and shapely design to bring a sense of drama to your décor.


Apartment Chair
The Lourdes Khaki Accent Chair is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
A Pair of Chairs

A pair of accent chairs looks sleek and provides more seating for guests without taking up too much floor space in your living room. They’re the perfect furniture for your first apartment, and later you can use them together or separate in a master suite, foyer or dining room. Choose a design with a timeless shape, such as Mid-Century Modern chairs.

Apartment Rug
The Claremont Links Grey Rug is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
A Rug

Rugs are like artwork for your floor, anchoring a room and setting the tone. Add a rug to your apartment living room, and choose a timeless design that will grow with you. You can later use it to add pattern in the foyer, dining room or bedroom.


Apartment Chest
The Silverton Overlay Drawer Chest is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
A Chest of Drawers

A small dresser is a great solution for a small apartment bedroom, and it can be useful later in virtually any room of your home. Use one as a bedside table, a tabletop in a foyer, or as a dining room buffet. Choosing a classic color, such as white, helps it blend with any décor and a unique design adds personality to its purpose.


Burst Mirror
The Empire Burst Mirror is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.
A Statement Mirror

Mirrors are the perfect piece of art for your living room. Not only are they beautiful; they add a reflective quality to your small space. Later move the mirror to a foyer, bedroom or dining room. A mirror looks great in every room in your home.

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How To Choose the Right Size Mattress

Choosing a mattress size seems like an easy decision. Children get a twin, teens move to a full, and adults and couples decide between a queen and king. Right? While it sounds straightforward, mattresses aren’t a one-size-fits-all purchase, and there are several factors to consider for choosing the right one. Who will be sleeping in the bed? What are their sleeping habits? How big is the room? What other furniture will you need to accommodate? By planning ahead, you can design a bedroom that meets all of your needs and looks great, too. Here are the seven standard size mattresses, and what you need to know about each one so you can choose the right size mattress for your room.

how to choose the right size mattress
The Twin Panel Bed is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.

A twin measures 39?W x 75?L. This is a great size for rooms that are at least 7’ x 10’ to allow enough space to move around the bed. It’s a good option for kids’ bedrooms as it allows more floor space for their toys and games. A twin is also a good choice for a guest bedroom. If your room is large enough (at least 10’ x 10’), you can use two to accommodate two guests, or a couple could move them together to create the width of a king-sized bed.

Twin XL

A twin XL is 39?W x 80?L, and provides a good option for spaces at least 7’ x 10’ that need to accommodate an adult. This size mattress offers more legroom or enough space if you have a pet that sleeps at the foot of the bed. Twin XL mattresses are also the size used in most dorm rooms.

Full Mattress
The Full Panel Bed is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.

A full mattress is 54?W x 75?L—a good size for a single person who likes a little more space. It offers just enough room to accommodate a partner if both people are smaller. A full is a good choice for a child, as well, allowing them to grow into a bigger mattress and giving parents space to curl up and read a book together at bedtime. It works best in a bedroom that’s at least 10’ x 12’.

Full XL

A full XL measures 54” W x 79” L, and provides more length than a traditional full. It’s good for two taller adults who share a small room, at least 10’ x 12’. The full XL gives you more foot room, or space for a pet to sleep at the foot of the bed.

Queen Mattress
The Breeze White Queen Panel Bed is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.

A queen is 60?W x 80?L, offering six more inches of width than a full. It’s the most common mattress size, and is good for couples or individuals who want more space to spread out. It’s also a good size if your bedroom that is at least 10’ x 14’, creating a more eye-pleasing proportion. A queen mattress also works well in a guest room, as it’s versatile enough to accommodate an individual or a couple.

King Mattress
The Canfield King Upholstered Bed is available now. Shop the look at artvan.com.

A king bed is 76?W x 80?L, and offers the maximum width of any mattress size. It’s a good choice for couples that want more room. It’s also a good size for parents whose children like to spend mornings cuddling before getting ready for the day. The king mattress will work in a room that measures at least 10’ x 12’, but it’s perfect for an oversized master suite that is 13’ x 13’ or larger.

California King

At 72?W x 84?L, a California king isn’t as wide as a king, but it’s four inches longer, accommodating tall individuals. In fact, it’s the longest size mattress you can get. This size is a good choice for a couple that wants to make room on their bed for a pet to curl up. It’s works well in a room that’s at least 14’ x 12’.