Recommendations for a Budget Apartment
Do you ever struggle to make decisions? Is it hard for you to choose which item you want? There are so many choices. You find yourself overwhelmed.
This is often the case for me. Now that my family has chosen our home, I must work toward making some difficult decisions. Do I want that duvet or this duvet? What knives should I get? Would I prefer black sheets or white?
I often prefer to make some of these decisions using Amazon. Amazon Prime just had a couple of days worth of big sales and I was sure to take advantage of them. Without being inside my new apartment, I can't make all my decisions (after all, I don't know what containers and baskets I need just yet!). Still, there are some decisions that are best made now, before I move in and am left without a duvet at all!
So what do I get first?
I have been able to track down plenty of second-hand furniture. You can check out my blog post on how to buy second-hand furniture from a couple of weeks ago. I now have items such as a set of drawers, a standing closet, some bookshelves, and a dining table and chairs. Most (if not all) of the items will be updated with some sanding, coats of paint and/or stain, and some new hardware, projects I can't start on until I have moved in. Still, having the furniture means ticking it off the list and knowing that I'll have the items in the first few weeks/months after moving in.
But there are other items I will need right away. I have bought myself a mattress but also need to find myself a duvet set, sheet set, towels, and more. Slowly, I am moving towards buying the items I need for my bedroom and kitchen in particular.
So what have I come to choose after much deliberation? Here are a few items I would recommend for your apartment. Click on the links below to find my evaluation of each item and a link to buy them.
Duvet Set: Janzaa 3-Piece White Comforter Set
This comforter set is just stunning. My color scheme is largely black and white with plenty of green as well (check out my color scheme in my apartment planning post). When it came to a comforter, I wasn't sure which way I wanted to go. Do I choose a patterned green and pair it with a white throw? A blank white comforter with a patterned green throw? Something else entirely?
When I saw this comforter set and the price it was listed for, I was sold. The white comforter is patterned with botanical designs and comes with two pillowcases for only $47! Most queen comforter sets cost upward of $80 or even more. The comforter is nice and fluffy and will pair well with a plain green throw and my black sheet set.
Knife Set: Henckels 12-Piece Knife Block Set
Henckels is one of the best brands for knives. A number of years ago, a set like this was gifted to my family and we still use them to this day. The knives are super sharp and super useful. I particularly like the two serrated blades that come with the set. The blades are excellent for slicing tomatoes and bread (items best cut with a serrated knife). The flat-edged knives made by Henckel are also extraordinary. This set is pricy if you are on a budget (about $100) but I highly suggest going for it anyway. It is better to have an excellent set of knives that lasts you for years than a few crappy knives you have to replace. Though I wouldn't recommend ever placing these expensive knives in the dishwasher, they are great for just about anything else.
Towel Set: American Soft Linen 6-Piece Set in Sage
I had a lot of internal debate over what color to go with for my towels. Black is incredibly dark, especially for a basement apartment with no windows in the bathroom. White stains incredibly easily (especially in the bathroom). I ended up deciding that green towels would work best for my aesthetic. But I couldn't find any in the in-person stores I visited! Don't stores sell green towels?
Thankfully, these towels were priced at about $40 during the Prime Days event (though full-price they are more like $75). The set comes in a variety of colors but I chose the sage green towels for my apartment. Included in the set is two of each: bath towels, washcloths, and hand towels. They are fluffy and are 600 GSM which means they are higher. on the scale of softness (and quality). I am very happy with this particular purchase and encourage you to check out the set.
Sheet Set: Amazon Basics Lightweight Sheet Set
One can't have a duvet without sheets! Just like I debated colors for the towels, I struggled with the sheets as well. White will stain (and fast) but I wasn't sure whether I wanted black and was unable to find a green set for the right price (and with the right color!). After I decided on my duvet set, however, things became easier. I felt that the white comforter would offset the darkness of black sheets and be easier to work with when it came to choosing a throw. This amazon basic set was just what I needed with a flat sheet, fitted sheet, and two pillowcases. The set also boasts 14-inch deep pockets for those who need that.
Hot Plate: Elite Gourmet Double Countertop Burner
My basement apartment in the new home has a lovely kitchen but it lacks an oven/stovetop. No problem! Most of the dishes I might cook are made on the stove or in my slow cooker. To ensure I could still make the stovetop dishes, I had to purchase a hot plate. With this, I can make anything from pasta to skillets to toasted sandwiches. The double burner plate is handy. With two burners, I can boil pasta while cooking meat sauce to top it or complete any other pair of tasks at the same time. This particular hot plate was $30 though it sells for $50 full price. The hot plate has a temperature control for each burner and boasts 1500 watts. It is nice and compact so I'll be able to store it in my cupboards when it isn't in use and the flat surface of the burners will make for easy cleaning.
Soap Dispensers: Amolliar Mason Jar Soap Dispensers
I have two problems when it comes to decorating my bathroom. First of all, the bathroom is not complete. Currently, the bathroom has only a toilet and sink though we plan to put in a shower soon enough. This makes choosing items for the bathroom a little more complicated. I am also incredibly clumsy and have broken many soap dispensers and other porcelain bathroom items in my day. So do I buy something fragile but pretty or ugly and impossible to break?
What about something in between? These soap dispenser lids captured my heart the moment I saw them. I love how clever the idea is: soap dispenser lids that can be screwed onto any normal-sized mason jar. That makes life easier for me: break the jar and I can replace it without having to buy an entirely new soap dispenser. This pack comes with two soap dispensers for less than $10 meaning I can have one for my kitchen sink as well. The brand also sells other lids like the toothbrush dispenser shown in the photo.
Organization Items: Firsting Silicone Stretch Lids, 18-Pack
I have a problem with glad wrap. Something about the stuff makes me cringe and turn up my nose. I hate it. In contrast, I love these lids. They work for cans, for containers, and even for half-eaten fruit (like watermelon or pineapple). What does that mean for me? It means not using a container for opened cans (pineapple, diced tomatoes, olives, etc.). It means not worrying if I can't find the lid to a container. It means I could cover a bowl of salad, coleslaw, or rice without finding a container for it. And it means covering pineapple, watermelon, or other fruit in something other than plastic wrap. These lids are super handy and work in the microwave, fridge, and dishwasher. The pack I bought comes with 18 lids in six different sizes for less than $10 perfect for covering just about anything.