After you move into your new pad, the white walls and dull decor may have you immediately thinking about apartment decorating to make your space more warm and welcoming. But it’s likely that you aren’t going to be allowed to actually paint the walls– without losing your security deposit. Have no fear! You can add a vibrant color palette to your new space without slapping a new hue on the walls.

Pillows and Throws

What’s apartment decorating without some colorful pillows? An easy way to brighten up your living room or bedroom is adding some decorative pillows and throws.

Unfortunately, these fluffy and cozy accents can get a bit pricey, so you may want to consider making your own if you’re on a budget. Not keen on a sewing machine? Learn how to make DIY throw pillows that are inexpensive and easy to change anytime. 


We’re guessing you either have beige carpet or tiled floor. An area rug is a great way to add a pop of color to your apartment decor without losing your security deposit.

Rugs can get expensive–especially as you increase the size–but it’s an investment that can make a huge statement. You can also make a DIY rug if you’re feeling crafty!

Accent Furniture

Modern decor is all about turquoise, salmon, yellow, and orange, giving you the perfect opportunity to add pops of color throughout your apartment. Furnish with matching side tables in your living room and a coffee table in a different hue that matches your piece of inspiration.

You may also want to add a backsplash to an old bookcase using fabric or scrapbook paper, and swap out old knobs, pulls and hooks for ones with a bit more of a colorful punch. You can also add a lamp with a colorful base or shade

Knick Knacks

Shelving is a great way to add a homey feel to a rental unit without doing damage. Add a bookshelf of your choice, whether sleek and modern, offbeat and industrial or rustic and country, and decorate with colorful pieces.

Think vases, candles, antique artifacts, old wine bottles, tins–and books, of course.  

Cover the Walls Without Paint

We get it–even with all of these pops of color, your walls are still stark white. When it comes to covering walls without paint, there are actually a lot of options! Try using colorful DIY art pieces or removable wall decals.

Wall decal stickers are easy to apply, fairly inexpensive and limitless choices– you can find anything from words and inspirational quotes to objects and designs.

If wall decals aren’t for you, try removable wallpaper, a large piece of art (purchase or DIY), or a gallery wall.