Moving into my first apartment…the independence, and most importantly, the decorating. I’d always longed for the day I’d finally be able to deck out a new space entirely from scratch and entirely according to my own personal taste, and my college apartment bedroom offered me my first opportunity to do so. But being a very poor full-time student, I had to get pretty creative to design the minimalist room of my dreams…
So here’s what I did to makeover my minimalist bedroom on a tight budget! Consider this post a little room tour; hopefully it provides you with some inspiration and resources to start DIYing your own minimalist retreat.
First off, my bed—the focal point of the room. Every aspiring minimalist covets the fluffy white comforter, but you don’t have to break the bank to get one. I bought this cheap, white duvet cover off Amazon for about $17.
But as much as I love a clean, white room, I didn’t want the space to look too “washed out.” (As a college student, it feels like I’m going insane as it is; the last thing I need is for my bedroom to look like a sanitarium!) So I kept the palette neutral, but mixed and matched tactile textures using subtle accessories to give the room some visual depth: Note the textures of the cream faux fur throw pillow (Amazon, $17), the faux driftwood laptop tray (Marshall’s, $16) and the beige afghan (just a throw blanket I happened to find in my linen closet, but I’ve linked to a relatively inexpensive dupe on Amazon for $25).
Also playing with texture here are the Bamboo Roman Shades. Never forget what a difference the right window dressing can make in a space! These shades are probably the room’s most unique and most frequently complimented fixtures, and surprisingly they were not all that expensive. The Home Depot has them for just over $10!
Rather than spend money on a headboard, I decided to wash and hang a cute area rug above my bed. This particular piece just happened to be lying around my parents’ house–I think it was a souvenir from a trip to Mexico many years ago. You do not, however, need to find an authentic Aztec rug weaver to accomplish this look. Any cheap tapestry will do; though I would personally recommend a rug, since they are a bit heavier and tend to hang better. I couldn’t be happier with how this looks; it’s so much more original than your average headboard, and it really adds character to the room!
My locker end table was actually a piece from my brother’s childhood bedroom. I sanded off its original red paint and sprayed it a matte white, keeping with the neutral palette.
On top I have an adorable, minimalist Edison bulb table lamp from Peter Harris (only $13!), a scented candle and an old-fashioned alarm clock from IKEA ($7).
TIP: I find the key to maintaining a minimalist room is to deck it with accessories that are as practical as they are decorative. Almost every item in your space should serve a specific purpose—if you find yourself surrounded by dust-collecting chachkies, its probably time to reevaluate what you own.
My reading nook is one of my favorite places. I was lucky enough to pick up this lovely armchair at an estate sale, and I just dressed it up with a small faux sheepskin pelt I picked up at Marshall’s ($10).
Next to my closet I have my white antique dresser, also purchased at an estate sale. I removed the original crystal and brass hardware and replaced it with these super trendy celestial sun knobs!
TIP: Changing up your hardware is a very easy and inexpensive way to transform an old piece of furniture, or breathe new life into kitchen or bathroom cabinets. There are tons of unique statement knobs and pull bars out there (I LOVE the hardware from Anthropologie), so get creative!
On top, I’ve got all my daily essentials close at hand—makeup brushes, perfumes, lotions, jewelry, etc. Here I re-purposed an old bamboo trivet from my kitchen to organize my cosmetics, just to add some more wood textures.
Lastly, my desk. This is where I spend most of my time, so it was very important that this space stay as organized and as uncluttered as possible. The desk itself was actually an item from my childhood bedroom set; all I had to do was spray paint the drawer heads to match my white locker end table. The desk chair was a lucky find during a Marshall’s run, costing my only $30. I really dig the industrial vibes in this desk set; I find the metals break up the monotony of the room’s brown and beige tones.
On the wall above my desk, I have my dry erase calendar and four cork squares. I love the minimalist, geometric look of these cork squares; they really add a subtle, aesthetic touch, more so than your average memo board might.
I couldn’t finish a room tour post without mentioning my favorite decor piece: my ceramic four-eyed monster pot. I sculpted him a few years ago in a high-school pottery class, and now he keeps me company on my desk, storing my hair ties inside his head.
TIP: Make your room your own! Too often, minimalist bedrooms look completely devoid of life (if you’ve ever searched for minimalist decor ideas on Pinterest, you know exactly what I mean). But it doesn’t have to be that way! Add small personal touches and decorate your space with items you’ve crafted, sculpted or painted. Or you could even frame a favorite vinyl album cover in a shadow box to fill empty wall space!