rental house design trick

As we wait for the housing market to improve, many of us find renting to be a nice solution.  Like others in our neighborhood, we rent out our personal home during the peak vacation season.  While our home is being rented, we rent another home.  As a result, I’m always on the hunt for budget-friendly design ideas.

Here’s a simple design idea for adding some style to a rental home without having to make big, expensive changes.  I’ll start with the small room I’m using as my home office.

DESIGN DILEMMA:  Tiny room with a big depressing, blank wall.  The paint color is an off-white with an orange tint…not easy to work with.  Repainting is not allowed.

myoffice before

BUDGET-FRIENDLY SOLUTION:  In lieu of pricey artwork, I hung a series of inexpensive white plates.  The dramatic grouping adds visual interest and a warmer cream, and therefore distracts from the existing wall color.  All of the plates totaled $80.  I offset the monochromatic look with a pop of color – a fun blue side table found at a local second hand shop.  This is big impact design that is very easy to install and take down when you move.



Plates – Marshall’s and T.J. Maxx

Ghost Chair – Joss and Main details over here (love their products!)

Blue side table – Ava’s Attic Consignment shop 850.424.6767

Flowers – Bella Flora 850.267.1111

.     .     .     .

The beautiful flower arrangement is from new sponsor, Bella Flora.  I’m obsessed with everything in their shop!


Whenever I want pretty flowers, I just tell owner, Melanie to design whatever she wants…that’s the best way to get a beautiful arrangement.   She knows I love white and always takes care of me there ; )  This time she surprised me with her handmade, moss-covered container.  I never know what to expect from her designs, which makes it that much more exciting.


Happy Monday!

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  1. Allison A,
    Posted May 14, 2012 at 1:33 pm | Permalink | Edit

    That flower arrangement is gorgeous! So pretty on the turquoise table. Beautiful Seleta! Happy Monday to you!

  2. Posted May 14, 2012 at 4:18 pm | Permalink | Edit

    Just beautiful, Seleta! I would LOVE to see more of your renter-friendly decorating ideas.

  3. Aunt Pat
    Posted May 14, 2012 at 5:48 pm | Permalink | Edit

    great creativity and flexibility to go with the flow.

  4. Julie
    Posted May 14, 2012 at 7:04 pm | Permalink | Edit

    I appreciate that you explain why arrangements work. Love how the colorful piece below the white plates work together. So smart.

  5. Posted May 14, 2012 at 8:45 pm | Permalink | Edit

    The flower arrangement is beautiful! I did not realize that was your home in Southern Living! I remember reading that article ;-) Love that magazine…XoXo

  6. Debbi Beverage
    Posted May 14, 2012 at 9:17 pm | Permalink | Edit


    Great idea! I love white plates and they look so nice the way you have them arranged!

    I’m wondering…. you have four children, how does that work? Do you all pack up your personal items and move them to the rental? Sorry, hope I’m not getting to personal, but we live in a coastal area on the water, with 3 of our 4 children still living at home, and I am intrigued with that idea


  7. Posted May 14, 2012 at 10:32 pm | Permalink | Edit

    Debbi, We do a lot of purging and have a big storage unit, ha ha. It takes a lot of organizing, planning and patience. If you keep your belongings simple, it’s definitely doable…not exactly easy, but doable. Our family learns more and more each day how to simplify!


  8. Posted May 15, 2012 at 8:21 am | Permalink | Edit

    Beautiful, Seleta! I love plate walls and the ones you scored at TJ’s look like ironstone!

  9. Posted May 15, 2012 at 12:03 pm | Permalink | Edit


    I am wondering how to hang plates? I have been wanting to hang Anthrpologie plates in my kitchen for some time now but not sure how to secure them to the wall.

    Thank you!!!

  10. TSW
    Posted May 21, 2012 at 1:07 pm | Permalink | Edit

    Thank you so much for the Bella Flora recommendation. I just used them and told them you sent me.

  11. franky
    Posted May 25, 2012 at 11:38 am | Permalink | Edit

    its so simple but it makes such a great first impression, right when you open the door…love the floral arrangement such a great touch! we have a post about wall treatments….let us know what you think!

One Trackback

  1. […] As I was browsing Instagram one day, Seleta posted a pic that showed white plates and platters in the background of one of her images. I was completely in love with the look. Comes to find out she actually blogged about that little project here. […]

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    SeletaI‘m Seleta, a city girl living the beach life with my husband, fabulous four offspring, happy horses and frisky fur babies. A former TV personality turned Designer, I love to share the sparkly side of life. Read more here.
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