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Apartment Bedroom Design

Apartment Bedroom Design Olivia Quinlan Blog

Apartment Bedroom Design Olivia Quinlan Blog

Well, now that it’s been almost a year of living in my Rochester apartment, I think it’s about time to share the details on how we have made it our own! I’m going to start with my apartment bedroom design because it’s the space that has taken the longest but finally feels the most complete. It was also the room that I had to be most creative with because storage in apartments is never easy– especially if you love clothes, shoes, and all the girly unnecessary beauty products and tools (me).


The Carriage House Apartment

I suppose I’ll give a little background about our apartment since I haven’t shared too many personal details this past year. When I decided to make the move back to Rochester it happened to be perfect timing as my sister, Sydney, was ending her lease. Who better to live with than someone you can fight with and move on within 10 minutes, throw things at, borrow clothes from, and not feel guilty about eating their leftovers??

Sydney and I are both head-strong, and she is a professional commercial interior designer, and you all know my passion and particular taste in interiors too. So, when we started to look for our new place in August we were surprisingly relieved that we had enough of the same taste and eye to make it work. Every place we looked at went like: “we could do this to that” and “let’s change that” …without even having to specify what “this” and “that” were. It also brought to light that even though we are renting, we needed to find a place where the landlord would allow us to make it our own.

We found our secluded, perfect carriage house by simply deciding to go off of a craigslist ad with no pictures and simple description. The only thing it showed was the main house. Side note, if you aren’t aware of what a carriage house is, it is quite literally the “garage” structure behind mansions that housed the carriages. They were often built before 1890, at least. We both love history and character and just the fact that it was a carriage house caught our attention.

Upon meeting our lovely landlords we knew immediately we wanted it. It had everything and it was so unique. They loved the fact that we were designers and would spruce it up a bit. In fact, they specifically said, “oh you can paint it a nice lighter color! Cover up this puke green? Maybe grey or beige?!”

At the same time, Sydney and I responded, “we will be painting it all white.”

And we did.


Apartment Bedroom Design Inspiration

I realized in the past few years I truly love light, airy, “breathable” spaces. I’m almost always up with the sun and I’m all about tackling the day, staying productive, and staying active. However, I knew my apartment bedroom design had to be a curated space that slowed me down, allowed me to relax, all the while keeping my “vibe.” So, a modern boho bedroom is what I went for. I talked a lot about my process of tackling the style in this post.

Over the past few months, I slowly worked on finding what I wanted to make it the space it is now. Because it is not some grandeur master bedroom, implementing storage was key, splurging wasn’t necessary, and DIY’s would come in handy.


Apartment Bedroom Design Olivia Quinlan Blog

Apartment Bedroom Design Olivia Quinlan Blog

Apartment Bedroom Design Olivia Quinlan Blog

The Basics


I ordered my bed first thing, knowing I needed a place to sleep other than a mattress on the floor. It was inexpensive, neutral and the platform was a good height to use a boxspring if you wanted (which I did). Unfortunately, my exact one is sold out everywhere but I linked a few similar options at different price-points below!


My dresser was also an Ikea Facebook Marketplace find! Since we don’t have access to an Ikea here without crossing the border I always search for Ikea on Facebook Marketplace and have such great luck. I love the minimal Scandinavian look of their furniture.


This shag rug had caught my eye a while back. It was too feminine for the house in Buffalo so when it came time to be able to just do my own thing I knew I wanted it. Plus it really brings out that “boho” side of this apartment bedroom design.

Wall Sconce

They say it’s imperative that you have a bedside lamp or some sort of softer light that you should utilize before going to bed. It is more calming to the senses than the bright ceiling lights. I found this white and gold wall sconce on (where else) Amazon and decided I wanted to play off the non-symmetrical bedsides with only having one. Since it has a plug-in cord and requires no hard wiring, it was perfect for my apartment bedroom design. The height in which I hung it casts the perfect light for reading before sleep too.


Apartment Bedroom Design Olivia Quinlan Blog

Apartment Bedroom Design Olivia Quinlan Blog



We were very fortunate to find an apartment where the closets where equal size (to avoid arguing over who gets what room) and that they were actually pretty big. I’ve always loved hanging most of my clothes and I’ve used these Closetmaid Shoe Shelves for years to store and display my nicer shoes. I also used them above to organize my sweaters and purses.

Cube Storage

Soon after moving in, I found the Ikea 4-cube storage shelf in the light wood for one side of the bed. This was another Facebook Marketplace find, and when I went to purchase another for the other side realized it was sold out. So, I used it for the interim until I came up with a plan for the other nightstand.

As I was working through my ideas by creating the above mock-up I realized I could avoid that cookie-cutter, symmetrical look by going with a white storage unit on the other side. I talk a little more about how I made it work with the wood one through styling in the small details section below.

DIY Wall Shelves

Oh my gosh, I can’t even begin to explain how many different directions I was thinking for my make-up/vanity area. Do I just go with a desk/mirror/chair situation? Or, do I just do storage and not display anything? Finally, for my apartment bedroom design, I landed on the shelves supported by brackets but also with a mirror so it was a functional space to do my makeup and hair. I knew I wanted them simple, and to tie in the rest of the space, so I decided on white shelves with wood brackets both from Amazon. The brackets from Amazon came in a bit too dark for my liking so I quickly whitewashed them before the install. It just gave them more of that subtle, pinewood look I prefer.


Apartment Bedroom Design Olivia Quinlan Blog

Apartment Bedroom Design Olivia Quinlan Blog

Apartment Bedroom Design Olivia Quinlan Blog

Apartment Bedroom Design Olivia Quinlan Blog

The Rest of the Details


M&Meagle 3 Pieces White Duvet Cover Set – Amazon
Utopia Bedding Comforter Duvet Insert – Amazon
Mellanni Bed Sheet Set – Amazon
Queen & King Pillows – Target
Beaded Throw Pillows – Old from TJ Maxx (Similar Linked above)
Cream Fringe Lumbar Pillow – Target
Knitted Fleece Yarn Blanket – Made by my Sister (DM for details)

Window Treatments

AmazonBasics Room Darkening Blackout Window Curtains – Amazon
Curtain Rod Faceted Pyramid White – Target
Ivilon Drapery Curtain Clip Rings – Amazon

Nightstand Styling

Sunglasses Display

CY craft Wall Mounted Acrylic Floating Shelf – Amazon

Wall Hooks

HomeDo 3 Pack Wooden Coat Hooks – Amazon

DIY Wall Art

Using some paint, construction glue, and elements from Lowe’s I put together a little unique art piece for above the bedside table. I wanted to tie in the wood from the other side and when I couldn’t find anything I loved, I decided to make it myself!


Apartment Bedroom Design Olivia Quinlan Blog

Phew, I know there are quite a lot of unique parts to my bedroom and not everything is entirely linkable but you guys know I love sourcing and styling so if you need help finding something don’t hesitate to reach out! I’m obsessed with getting the details right, but I also want it to come off like I didn’t try to hard (LIES) so sometimes you have to just run with an idea and hope it works.

I would love to hear what you guys think about posts like these?! I plan to keep sharing our apartment but are there any topics where I can do some inspiration or ideas? Let me know– email me, DM me on Instagram, whatever!! It feels good to be back baby!!

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  1. Anne Meisenzahl wrote:

    Olivia, you are so talented! I love your writing (very funny comments about your decision to live with our dear Sydney) and your photos and bedroom design are gorgeous! I love that your clothes match your room LOL! I look forward to more. Love, Auntie Annie 🙂

    Posted 7.1.20 Reply
    • Thank you Aunt Anne!! I can always count on your support xoxox

      Posted 7.2.20 Reply