A friend recently admitted to me that the bare walls of her home were not a continuation of her journey towards Minimalism, but due to the fact she was afraid to put hooks in the wall. Umm, what? “I’m renting,” she explained. “I’m not going to put hooks and holes in the walls because it'll cause problems when I leave.” But can’t you just patch them up? Her eyes widened and she looked painfully overwhelmed.
The University of YouTube
Over a cup of tea and some lessons from the university of YouTube (UYT), she realised that patching a hole in the wall is actually pretty easy. Not only that, it opens up tonnes of opportunities for stamping your style on your rental.
If UYT isn't your cup of tea, check out Bunnings' range of tutorials
The official line, of course, is that you should check with your rental agent that they're happy with the odd hook or bracket being added. If you go down that route, it helps if you assure them that all walls will be returned to their former, smooth glory prior to your exit. Also worth noting about the fix-it process, is that a certain amount of drying time for plaster is needed before paint can be applied. In other words, don’t leave the patch job until the last day of your lease. You could also hire a handyman to take care of the job for you (if you flunk out of UYT.)
But back to my minimalist friend... She has since added a floating credenza (I believe the DIY blog term is ‘fauxdenza’) as a TV and storage unit. It seems like the paring-back of her clutter extends to the legs of her furniture! And on the walls of her home, art work has appeared and the space shows much more personality. It now looks lived in!
Don’t be overwhelmed by the idea of making some changes to your rental property. As long as you’ve got the OK from the agent, the right tools and know-how, you can make some small additions and alterations without causing drama or losing your bond. The return on the investment of time and energy is well worth it, including having a stylish home that reflects who you are.
Check out our suggestions for the most useful tools to have in your interior design arsenal, particularly the hilariously named Stud Finder.
Once you’re tooled up and have the blessing of your landlord, select a project to try!
This easy shelving idea from Ikea Hackers will bring Boho Chic to any room and is a gentle introduction to DIY.
We also have a guide to a number of ways to use IKEA BESTA units as floating shelves, dressed up with Styl-Panels here.
There are a number of excellent examples of fauxdenzas here, all with clever tips on creating a high quality look and feel.
When it comes to wall hangings and art, 'Command' by 3M have an arsenal of picture hangers that claim to be removable. From personal experience, they have differing degrees of reliability depending on the surface and weight of the object.
Our personal favourite is the wire picture hanger, a thin wire that can be pushed through plasterboard by hand, no tools required. They’re super strong and reliable. When it comes to removal and repair, you simply pull the wire out of the wall. The hole is so small that it can sometimes be repaired with a dab of toothpaste. This 30-pack set of Monkey Hooks on Amazon Australia is good value. Buy here.
Landlord less than keen for you to be DIYing their property? Check out our simple design ideas that won't effect the walls, floors, ceilings or bond.