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Kristine & Hanks's Apartment Makeover

The Couple: Kristine and Hank
Their Place: A one-bedroom apartment in New York City
Their Style: Clean and modern

1. Pick a Color Palette

Think of two colors that make you feel at home, then pair them with neutral hues for balance. To suit Kristine and Hank’s contemporary taste, we went with an earthy olive and cool gray-blue (blue is Hank’s favorite color), complemented by cream and chocolate brown. 

2. Consider Scale

The couple’s large sectional was swallowing their teeny coffee table, so we switched out the small chest for a glasstop coffee table. The glass makes the table look bigger than it is, making it a good match for the couch. At almost $200, this pillow was definitely worth the splurge because it instantly livened up the living room.

3. Curb the Clutter

Group frames on a shelf, toss old mags, and invest in a few eye-catching accents, such as this flower pitcher and eco-friendly wood bowl. We replaced the existing lamp with a table lamp from Pottery Barn we got on sale for $99.

4. Perk Up Hand-Me-Downs

Hank’s grandmother painted this still life, so it had sentimental value. But how did they work it into their clean, eclectic look? By arranging short cut white roses (inspired by the art) in a modern square glass vase set in a modern rattan tray.

5. Bring in Botanicals

Plants are a cheap way to perk up a space, but the trick is to match the greenery to your style. We stayed away from anything too floral or feminine and stuck to big geometric-like leaves and organic shapes like this Money Tree.

6. Reclaim Bare Walls

You don’t have to blow your budget on a piece of modern art the size of a postcard. Hank and Kristine had a globe wine holder and a couple maps of France,  but they also discovered they had a number of rolled-up maps. We framed them and arranged them together on a bare wall (grouping always makes a stronger style statement).


Photo by Evan Sklar

7. Make Your Bedroom Bold

Kristine and Hank’s king-sized sleigh bed was beautiful, but it was covered up by a bland white comforter. Add one duvet bedding set plus one stylish accent pillow in a similar palette (a must for small spaces), and voilá! Instant style. Don’t be afraid to mix and match bed patterns for instant pop.

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-- Anja Winikka

See More: Cleaning & Organizing , Decor Tricks , Decor Trends , DIY , Makeovers