The First Apartment Book: Cool Designs for Small Spaces by Kyle Schuneman is a visual treat of design possibilities for apartment dwellers. Good books for apartment decor- especially ones that focus on realistic budgets- are few and far between, but this one is a must-have for any apartment dweller looking to make their pad a home, rather than a temporary space to live.

The First Apartment Book does a great job of showcasing various types of apartments and apartment-dwellers. Schuneman made it his goal to make their space a reflection of their interests, personality and passions. He does this with originality and lots and lots and lots of color.

The book is kept interactive and helpful by including 2-4 project tutorials per chapter, like how to make your own gallery wall, how to dip-dye curtains (so awesome) and how to make a headboard slipcover.

I also appreciate that the apartment dwellers ranged in lifestyles: the roommates, the bohemian, the rebel, the prep, the collector and others. I especially appreciate the fact that Schuneman added his own personal space into the book as well.

I was a little bummed to see so many of the projects involved painting the walls, as I’ve never had a landlord that would even consider that. And painting the walls argyle?! A very dramatic statement that works well, but I would never consider doing something so dramatic in an apartment, especially when a person might only be there for a year or two. I was hoping for a few more solutions for adding color to your walls that didn’t include paint buckets and brushes.

All in all, this is a colourful and fun resource for apartment dwellers needing some inspiration for their space.


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Jillianne Hamilton is an author and graphic designer. She is the author of Molly Miranda: Thief for Hire, its two sequels, and The Lazy Historian's Guide to the Wives of Henry VIII. Learn more.

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Hi, I'm Jill! I'm an author, a graphic designer, a Lazy Historian and a bookworm. Learn more.

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