Now before anyone calls me a Scrooge…or the fall version of a Scrooge, whatever it may be…keep in mind that I love the holiday season and holiday decoration. From October 1st through the new year, this season is filled with fun events, classic traditions, and time with friends and family. Carving pumpkins, hanging Thanksgiving wreaths, changing bright-colored candles for muted burgundy and green ones, hanging holiday lights or decorating a tree…the opportunity for holiday decor is endless during this time.
But…do you REALLY need to go all-out with decorations in your first apartment? Let’s consider a few things before you decide what’s best for you.
- How important are holiday decorating traditions to me? To my roommates?
- How much money can I budget to spend on new items?
- What limitations has my landlord set on outdoor or indoor decor?
- How much floor or counter space do I have to place decorations on?
- How long will purchased decorations last or stay relevant?
- How much storage do I have in my apartment? Where?
- When am I planning to move next? Do I want to move boxes of decor from place to place?
Based on your thoughts about the above questions, you can fit into one of the below three categories of decorators…
The Decoration Connoisseur
The Decoration Connoisseur LOVES this time of year and likely has a history of decorating their home growing up, and couldn’t think of the season otherwise. This individual must be willing to spend some money to establish their stash of decorations (although if crafty, they can limit much of this cost), have some extra space in their apartment for both decoration and storage, and have a landlord that encourages the holiday spirit.
Tips: Consider how many new “things” you really need, and remember you will have to move all of them at some point! Try to only purchase or make items that you truly love.
The Minimalist may love the season, but is not interested in doing a blow-out of holiday decor for the season. They have a medium budget to spend on a few things here and there (i.e. pumpkins for carving on the porch or string lights) but don’t want to invest in large items that require storage and moving. For The Minimalist, practicality is more important that tradition or display.
Tips: Focus on getting more bang for your buck by visiting thrift stores or completing DIY projects. Also, find items that catch the eye without taking up much space in your place (i.e. small figurines, a wreath for your front door, etc.)
The Decoration No-Go
The opposite extreme from The Decoration Connoisseur, The Decoration No-Go limits holiday decorations as much as possible. Perhaps they travel during this season, don’t have the space or budget to splurge on decor, or aren’t interested in taking the time to gather and place new items. Focused on maximizing space and budget, The Decoration No-Go values practicality and financial management.
Tips: If you do see a holiday decoration that you love, splurge on it (or create a DIY imitation). If you’re budget-conscious throughout the year, you’re likely able to splurge on a few things you truly love.
In a small apartment, most of us are likely The Minimalist (me) or The Decoration No-Go, as we have limited space and are generally mobile every few years. However, think through the above questions and use our tips to enjoy this season!