About the Author: Sarah is a long time member of the Dappered team, typically working behind the scenes editing posts, taking some photos, and keeping the books in good standing. Occasionally she’ll come out from behind the curtain to offer her two cents.
You did it. You graduated. You got the job. You got your own place. Problem is what you’ve decorated your place with are the hand-me-downs and college hold-overs. Sure, they get you by, but there’s something missing… style.
You often get compliments about how sharp you look, but you know your place would not garner those same accolades. It’s not hard to change that, and it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Sure, you might have to make a small investment of money and/or time, but creating a space you love which reflects the stylish guy you’ve become can enhance your well being.
Here’s 5 essentials to consider to get you started on that stylish decor journey.
#1. Upgraded Seating
- Target Callahan Mid Century Club Chair – $260
- Target Howell Upholstered Accent Chair with Wood Base – $340
- Lifestyle Solutions Lexington Armchair – $183
- Target Bianca Mid-Modern Walnut Distressed Faux Leather Sofa – $486
- West Elm Elia Sofa – $849
- Ashley Centiar Dining Chairs (set of 2) – $150
- Black Metal & Wood Dining chairs (set of 4) – $160
Upgraded seating goes for arm and accent chairs, sofas, and dining seating. Regarding dining seating, your chairs don’t have to match your table. They should compliment your table, but they most certainly do not have to match. And actually, it’s more on trend right now to have tables and chairs NOT match. Also, upgrading from hand me down or thrift store couches and chairs that you or your parents purchased just to get you by is a right of passage in creating your unique space.
#2. Cleaned Up Bedding
- AmHoo Pack of 2 18″ x 18″ Linen Throw Pillow Covers – $18
- Bespoke Post Ash & Fir Nook Pillow – $35
- Kirkland Signature 680 Thread Count Queen Sheet Set – $79.99
- Lands’ End Oxford Solid Queen Sheets – $175
- Alpaca and Sheep Queen Wool Blanket – $161
- Pendleton Eco-Wise Queen Wool Blanket – $239
A mish-mash of blankets and quilts and just the pillow you sleep with is… fine. Cheap sheets that you’ve been using for the past two years are… good enough. These things have utility and are still comfortable for sleep. But if you want your space to reflect your style, get it done in every room including your bedroom. This does not mean you have to get a matching bedding set from a high-end store. If you were challenged to assemble bedding that reflected your style, what would it look like? Here’s a formula to help: try to convert one of your favorite outfits into bedding. Not literally. Don’t get out the scissors. But instead, stylistically make that transition. We have a series that does just that, depending on the room. Love dark rinse jeans? Find a navy blanket for the foot of your bed. Is grey a staple in your wardrobe? Invest in a grey wool blanket the size of your bed. What’s your favorite pattern on a blazer or sweater? Find a couple throw pillows that reflect that. Do you often wear a standard OCBD in white or light blue? Let that guide you in your sheets choice. If it looks good on you, it’ll probably look in your space.
#3. Kitchen Counter Basics
- Threshold 5 Pack Kitchen Towels – $13
- SUSTEAS Stove Top Whistling Tea Kettle – $40
- BRUVVERS Kitchen Countertop Compost Bin – $55
- KitchenAid Toaster – $59.99
- Cuisinart Perfectemp Coffee Maker – $99
- J.A. Henckels 10-Piece Elan Series Knife Set – $125
You don’t have to get high-end tricked out appliances, but if you’re still working with a fifteen dollar coffee pot from Rite Aid and the toaster your parents got in the 90’s, it might be time to let those go. It’s easy to overlook aesthetics when it comes to utilitarian objects like small appliances, knife blocks, and towels, but these are the things we see everyday, and so do your guests. Leave the crappy basics that are usually purchased because they are disposable to the college kids, and upgrade your kitchen game with better stuff.
#4. Better Art
- Springs and Gears Letterpress Watch Movement Prints – $30 – $65
- 4″ x 6″ Framed Horizontal Rowboat in Water Hand Press – $18+
- Sandgrain Studio Old Fashioned Poster – $33
- Hanging Wood Planter – $24 to $34
- Geometric MDF Wood Wall Panel Black – $45
- wall26 – The Great Wave Off Kanagawa by Hokusai – $45
- Yamazaki Home Black Steel & Wood Wall Clock – $50
- Threshold 36″ x 36″ Moody Landscape – $85
- ProPrints – $10.95 and up (puts pictures you’ve taken to canvas)
Posters be gone. OR, posters be framed (depending on the poster). Tacking or taping paper posters on a wall is a great way to decorate as a child. As an adult? It looks sloppy. If you have some posters from your youth that would qualify as vintage and look great in a black frame, get it in that frame to help it grow up. If you’re not willing to frame the posters and prints you buy from here on out, switch to art on canvas or a medium other than paper. Also, don’t forget about sculptural items that can be hung on walls.
#5. Bathroom Decor
- Umbra Droplet Accessories – starting at $9
- Maxted Towel Hook – $15
- Company Cotton Spectrum Hand Towel – $20
- Threshold Memory Foam Bath Rug – $18
- Waffle Weave Shower Curtain – $21
- Meangood Floating Shelves (set of 2) – $25
Don’t let this be a throwaway room in your place. Bathrooms are easy to decorate because they’re smaller. You don’t have to get matchy matchy with your decor in a bathroom, but there should be some cohesiveness to it. Choose a theme, run with it, but remember that less is almost always more. If you like to stay hip to current trends, modern farmhouse makes a great bathroom look.
The Dappered Space is a series designed to help guys apply the sense of personal style they’ve developed to the space they inhabit. Watch for articles on furniture and decor sales & picks, advice on how to style a room or work space, and tackling creating a space that reflects your own (and perhaps a significant other’s) personal tastes. We’ll suggest items that can be sourced online, but always keep in mind that deals can be found at consignment and thrift stores, local stores with floor models, discount stores, and even yard sales.
Editor’s Note: The chair(s) at the very top of the post are the oft-mentioned Chesterfield from Amazon’s Stone and Beam. They dropped in price, absurdly so, in late 2022. Looks like that party is over. Very over. They’re back to full price.