10 Ways To Furnish Your First Apartment

Striking Out On Your Own

Leaving the nest is never easy, but eventually we all have to learn to fly. Discovering your style can be a fun and frustrating journey, especially if your big ideas don’t fit into your new space.

Fortunately, there’s plenty you can do to get your first new digs in order from furniture, to décor and accenting everything with the right pieces.

Liven Your Living Room

  1. Sofas, Sectionals & Futons – The first order of business for any new space is getting your seating squared away. Sofas and sectionals are a great start, but if you’re looking to save a few bucks, futons work just as well.
  2. Coffee Tables – For tabling, coffee tables work the best, but multiple end tables also work.
  3. Loveseats – If your budget allows, tossing a loveseat into the mix is always a good idea when entertaining guests.
Beckett Silver Sofa
Beckett Silver Sofa – $549

If you’re looking for a quick solution to fill your living room, check out our multi-piece living room packages.

Dining Party

  1. Fill your dining space with some slick dining table and chair sets. For more intimate spaces, a bar table and bar stools might be a better fit, but you’ll have to make that choice.
  2. If you want to buck tradition, turn your dining area into a reading/office nook for any and all projects with a recliner or rocker. It’s a good way to wind down after a long day of classes or the hustle and bustle of work.

Bedroom Build-outs

  1. Dressers – Keep your clothes, accessories, and other personal things organized while adding some character. Dressers are not necessary, but certainly don’t hurt.
  2. Beds & Bed Frames – The place your rest your head is important. Quality mattresses and bed frames are more affordable than you think at Art Van.
  3. Night Stand – Well, you’ll need somewhere to put your phone, book or glasses. A night stand is a great surface to keep convenience close and adds more personality to your space.
Brady Tufted Upholstered Queen Bed
Brady Tufted Upholstered Queen Bed – $199

Extras We Take For Granted

  1. Rugs – A little accessorizing goes a long way. Adding a rug or two is a great way to add pops of color to contrast with plain walls. You can also use rugs to create some pattern ambiance for all of your spaces.
  2. Floor Lighting – With all the décor and decorations you have going, it would be a shame if the right light couldn’t illuminate it. Floor lighting is a great idea to give an even balance of light to bring out colors and highlight angles that standard overhead apartment lighting may not do well.
Champagne Gold Table Lamp
Champagne Gold Table Lamp – Set of Two, $99
Moroccan Area Rug
Moroccan Area Rug – $149

There’s no need to break the bank to furnish your new apartment. You can find excellent sectionals, sofas and love-seats from Outlet plus coffee tables that fit tons of tastes. Art Van makes spreading your personality and personal flair throughout your place easy.

Take Your Indoor Vibes Outside

Comfort in your own backyard

Your living room and dining room can speak to what’s in your backyard. Translating your indoor style to your outdoor setup is easier than you think. With Art Van’s vast selection of choices and looks, you can completely fulfill your vision.

Imagination station

How exactly do you get your preferred style for a sunshine hangout? Well, you’ve got to first decide what set pieces you’re working with. Are you looking to spruce up a deck, backyard or patio? What are the major attractions (bonfire pit, pool, stone path etc.)? Once you figure out the basics, you can start getting your outdoor space together.

Let your style shine

When you’re ready to start filling out your outdoor space, don’t overthink it. Start off simple with a few pieces in your preferred style. Then you can get more ambitious if you want by adding another that complements your first style. The important part is that you feel good about the look.

A great way to get started is to select a large piece of outdoor furniture like an outdoor sectional, such as the Dockland Three Piece Sectional, dining set, or large coffee table then build around it. Don’t be afraid to mirror the focal point of your living setup for outdoor if that makes things easier. The goal is to have a reference point for making your outdoor space just as cozy as your living room.

Dockland Sectional
Dockland 3 Piece Brown Sectional

Bring it all together

With so much sunshine, it would be a shame not to enjoy it. Taking your indoor setup outside lets you get the best of both worlds and maybe even a nap in the shade. After getting a grasp on what you’ve got to work with outdoors, focus on that central furniture piece that’s going to influence your space. When everything is said and done, you just might spend more time lounging outdoors than indoors.

Nigel Barker On How to Define Your Personal Style

Celebrity photographer Nigel Barker is a style icon. His look is sophisticated and effortless, and we admire his eye for fashion and detail. We caught up with him and asked him about his personal style as well as his tips for others who want to find their own. Here’s what he said:

How would you describe your personal style?

Nigel Barker: I like to call my personal a “fashion mullet.” On America’s Next Top Model you’d often see me dressed in a smart shirt, tie and jacket with jeans and sneakers. When you put it together it’s business on top, party on the bottom. Fashion is like life; it’s not one tone. Sometimes you want to be elegant, other times you want color everywhere. Ultimately my own style is not one thing; I like to have fun and combine things.

 

What advice do you have for someone searching for their personal style?

NB: I get asked this question a lot, and I always say I can tell you what I think will be best, but that’s just what I think is best. If you try a piece of chocolate you don’t need me to tell you that you like chocolate. You have to believe in yourself. It’s not so difficult. What do you like to eat? Do you like food that is plain? Exotic? Spicy? Do you like soft fabrics? Is your bed soft? When you go to films do you like romantic? Sci-fi? Action? Horror? What moves you? Start to write these things down; you’ll see there’s some sort of pattern. Style is the story you want to tell.

How would you describe your personal style? Tell us in the comments below!

How to Design A Bedroom For Better Sleep

design a bedroom for sleeping

The importance of sleep is well researched. It touches every aspect of your life, from your physical health to your mental wellbeing to your success and overall happiness. Creating the right atmosphere is key for better sleep. Your bedroom is the most important room in the house, and making sure it’s properly designed will enhance the quality of your life.

 

To get better sleep, consider taking these seven steps:

1. Reclaim its true purpose

TV viewing. Catching up on work. Studying. Exercising. If your bedroom is a major multi-tasking space, it’s having a negative impact on your quality of sleep. Your bedroom should serve a single purpose: R&R. That means you need to remove the television, desk and treadmill.

design a bedroom for sleeping

2. Get rid of clutter

Clutter overloads your senses and causes you to be stressed out and anxious. Clutter also makes it harder to clean your environment, creating a germ haven that aggravates allergies and asthma. All of this will have a negative impact on your quality of sleep. For better sleep, get rid of anything that doesn’t belong, or store items away in your closet or in under-bed storage.

3. Pay attention to light

The presence of light can alter your natural sleep patterns. Dim the lights one hour before bedtime. If daylight or streetlights shine in your bedroom window when you need to be sleeping, invest in blackout drapes that effectively block the light. This is especially important if you work a non-traditional shift. Remove electronics from your bedroom, which emit blue light that can interrupt sleep. And if you have a digital clock, turn it away from your bed so the light won’t shine in your face while you sleep.

4. Make sure you have the right mattress

Your mattress should be replaced every five to ten years, and sleeping on an old one causes unnecessary back pain and improper support, which will interrupt your sleep. The right mattress provides proper alignment to help eliminate morning aches and pains; provides pressure relief to foster deeper, healthier sleep; and creates a neutral position for your body so you wake up refreshed and ready for the day.

Choosing the right mattress is a science as well as an art. In just five minutes, the PureSleep system performs over 1,000 calculations to identify the perfect mattress for your body type, body density and preferred sleep position. Using this information, PureSleep Specialists will help you select the mattress that is right for your body and your budget.

design a bed for sleeping

5. Use the right pillow

If your pillow is older than a year, it needs to be replaced. Hair and body oils soak into its fabric and stuffing, making it a breeding ground for bacteria. While a pillow may seem like a small part of your sleep system, it actually plays a big role in giving you the best sleep possible. The right pillow provides 30% of your sleep benefits by maintaining correct spinal alignment, relieving pressure on your back and spine and promoting good circulation.

PureSleep Specialists will determine the perfect pillow for you by matching it to your body type and mattress. If you’ve never been fitted for a pillow, you’ll be amazed at the results; you’ll toss and turn less, and experience a deeper, more restorative sleep.

6. Choose calming colors

Color psychologists say the paint you choose can impact your emotions. You want to create a restful mood with your bedroom design and that can mean choosing soothing shades. Blue is known to be very calming. Or consider mellow, neutral hues inspired by nature. But be sure to avoid bright colors that can be energizing or busy patterns in wall paint or wallpaper, bed linens and floor coverings.

7. Adjust the thermostat

Keep your bedroom at a comfortable temperature at night with 60 to 67 degrees being optimal, according to the National Sleep Foundation. Also, swap out linens for the right season. In winter, select heavier bedding and swap that out for a light coverlet during the summer.

Choose Your Holiday Style

The holidays are the time to deck the halls. If you were to define your holiday decorating style, what would it be?

Our Creative Director Broc Clark said there are four hot trends when it comes to holiday décor. Take a peek and find the one that speaks to you!

holiday-accessories-casual-dining-group_2016

Opulent Luxe

Rich and luxurious, Opulent Luxe holiday style is a mood that combines plush surfaces with light shiny metallics and heavy embellishment. This style is reminiscent of a Silent Night filled with glitz and glitter.

melro_mcana_xmas_accessories

Wilderness

This winter wonderland draws its inspiration from the landscape of Northern Michigan. It brings the feeling of nature into your life through materials and shapes. The design includes colors of white, blue, dark green and red.

holiday-accessories-ssc-allis-group

Playful and Bright

This holiday style centers on a sense of whimsy with touches that are festive and fun. Unexpected Seuss-ified shapes catch the eye, and colors like apple red, emerald green and crisp white brighten the home.

holiday-accessories-sam-dynasty-group

Northern Escape

This look brings a sense of serenity to your home with a mood inspired by remote northern landscapes and the natural beauty of winter light. Your home becomes haven against the elements using artisanal touches combined with modern technology for contemporary yet natural mood.