Affordable Items to Make Your Apartment Look Expensive

I, like many others during this time, have been itching to redecorate my apartment. Naturally, after 60-something days of staring at the same four walls, it’s easy to get bored of the same decor. But, I like many others during this time, do not have money to splurge on fancy furnishings.

That being said, I did some digging, and I’m here to present you with the best items and accessories to make your apartment look expensive *Erika Jayne voice* on a budget.

Wall Art

Not only does Society 6 have the cutest wall art, it’s always on sale. It’s affordable and you can find some hidden gems.

Simple staples are your friend here, because a lot of the “abstract” choices on these sites are interpretations of famous artist’s work. I recommend keeping it classy with a three-panel wall stack. My personal favorites from Society 6 are The New Yorker prints. Pair three classic covers with black frames and thank me later.

TheNew Yorker Art Print by Naveenart107, from $16.19

Coffee Table Books

Coffee table books are a super simple, affordable, yet impactful way to add some style to any table. Of course, my go-to here is my bffl, Target.

Whether or not you give a sh*t about fashion, I always recommend designer coffee table books because they’re just about the only affordable thing with a logo.

If you’ve got a marble, black, or white coffee table, grab Chanel, Collections and Creations by Danièle Bott, and if you’ve got a wooden table or want a pop of color, grab Chanel: The Making of a Collection by Laetitia Cenac.

Chanel: The Making of a Collection by Laetitia Cenac, $24.49

Accessories

Candles and mirrors and plants, oh my!

Before anything else, a theme is the most important way to tie in accessories and make them look flattering. The more cohesive a space is, the more sense it makes. The end goal is always to have someone walk in and believe that an interior designer spent a ton of money to make your spot perfect, when in reality you are said interior designer, and all the items are affordable.

I’m currently obsessed with Jonathan Adler candles—they’re cool, different, and… $90. BUT, they currently sell the candle holders for $28, and it’s items like these that we call “expensive on a budget”. You can even purchase the matching condiment bowl for a full ~lewk~. It will turn heads (literally).

Jonathan Adler Muse Votive Candle Holder, $28

Mirrors are hard because everyone has the same one, so you want to stand out. I found this cute mirror from Patten Wall Decor on AllModern, but it was $102 so I decided it was not going to fit into my “affordable” category. That is, until, I found the SAME mirror from Patten Wall Decor at Target for $42. My initial thoughts are wtf, but now that I’m over being mad at AllModern, I’m just happy to share it with you all. Throw this bad boy on an accent wall to double as an art piece.

Accent Mirror Gold – Patton Wall Decor, $42.49

I’m not going to mislead you with links to cute faux plants, because truth be told, they are not the same as the real deal. I DO recommend purchasing fresh plants and treating them with TLC and lots of light. I recommend a Fiddle Leaf, because they live for 25+ years when cared for properly, and that is super convenient when not wanting to spend money repetitively. You can purchase them at any local nursery, including Home Depot. Use your candles as a color guide to your pots, a subtle yet important way to tie things all together.

Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree, $25.23

Kitchen/Bathroom

With a full-size home, the possibilities are endless, but my fellow city livers (whether it be NYC or not) know the kitchen and bathroom struggle. Peel and stick contact paper for your countertops and wallpaper is your best friend here, if applied properly.

For the bathroom, I recommend a busy print, because 9/10 times the appliances will be all white, allowing for some pop. I love this Speckled Dot Paper from Opalhouse™, available at Target of course.

Opalhouse Speckled Dot Peel & Stick Wallpaper, $34.00

For the kitchen, go marble for the backsplash and counters for a subtle, pretty moment. Less is more here, so I opt for a more gentle print like Brewster Carrara’s Marble Peel & Stick Wallpaper.

Brewster Carrara Marble Peel & Stick Wallpaper, $35.99

Final Touches

I leave you with some final ways to accessorize and spruce your apartment that work in any space. We’re getting a little fancy shmancy here, but West Elm is having a major sale, so take advantage!!!

These Agate Bookends are striking and unique, whether they live in your living room or bedroom. They look expensive AF, but are currently on sale for $40, so that’s a win in my book.

Agate Bookends at West Elm, $42.70

These stackable Glass Shadow Boxes are also the perfect accessory to add in any room, whether it be jewelry and sunglasses, or statement accent pieces. They’re a pretty and easy way to make a regular item look luxurious, and that’s why we’re here!

Glass Shadow Box, $18.00

Floating shelves are a cute way to make handy wall decor, without having to purchase a bulky piece of furniture. I love the Shelfmate Collection at West Elm, because they are as aesthetically pleasing as they are practical.

Shelfmate Collection, from $50

Last but not least (in fact, maybe the most important) we have the ever popular bar cart. A bar cart has never been more important, because if you’re like me, you’ve run out of room to stock the endless wine supply necessary to survive this quarantine. I love this Laurence Mid-Century Bar Cart from Wayfair, because the modern style shape and gold accent is the perfect touch of opulence but doesn’t break the bank.

Laurence Mid-Century Bar Cart, $102.99

If you’re scrolling through this list, there’s a 50% you’re thanking me, and a 50% chance you’re mad at me. Either way, most of, if not all of this is currently in your cart so at least your apartment will be looking good.

As always, feel free to DM me with your favorite sales and I’ll continue to provide you with mine.

Images: Cody Black / Unsplash; Society6.com; Target.com; JonathanAdler.com; AllModern.com, HomeDepot.com; Wayfair.com; WestElm.com
Betches may receive a portion of revenue if you click a link and purchase a product or service. The links are independently placed and do not influence editorial content.

12 Kitchen Gadgets To Make You A Better Quarantine Cook

Since we’re all going to be living indoors for the foreseeable future, it’s probably time you learned how to f*cking cook. Even though Sex and the City taught us that ovens are for storing sweaters and fridges are only really meant for alcohol, I think the ongoing nature of these trying times means we need to face facts and like, cook food.

But grabbing a few ingredients and creating a masterpiece with nothing but a pan and wooden spoon isn’t the case for, well, most of us. Even when I pretend Gordon Ramsay y is over my shoulder and calling me an idiot sandwich, I can’t quite muster the culinary prowess I know that he thinks I’m capable of.

Mean celebrity chefs aside, here are a few of our favorite kitchen gadgets and must-haves that’ll make your meals (or desserts) come together a bit easier.

A Slow Cooker

Crock-Pot SCCPVL610-S-A 6-Quart Cook & Carry Programmable Slow Cooker with Digital Timer

An oldie but a goodie. A slow cooker (specifically, a Crock-Pot) is the gadget to have in your cooking arsenal when:

a) you’re lazy
b) you don’t have time
c) you want something to taste like you babysat it all day

Many recipes created for the slow cooker will require you to simply get a nice golden brown on meat or veggies, then throw them into the slow cooker with spices and sauces. Other recipes literally require that you dump everything in, put the top on, and let that sh*t mingle for eight hours. Those kind are my favorite. Whatever the case, this is the go-to when you simply cannot even think about standing over a stove and creating something special. Plus, the aroma that will fill your home when something like slow cooker chicken chili verde or slow cooker barbacoa beef is cooking is worth every penny.

An Immersion Blender

Mueller Austria Ultra-Stick 500 Watt 9-Speed Immersion Multi-Purpose Hand Blender

If you’ve ever made a soup or sauce that requires several steps, and one of them happens to be “transfer two cups of the boiling hot liquid you’ve created to a blender”, then an immersion blender is the tool for you. I use this sh*t on the reg for sauces, stews, and things I create when I’m drunk. Basically, it’s a blender “wand” that you can stick into the pot of boiling liquid in front of you without having to transfer cups of it to an actual stand blender. It makes cleanup easier, it’s kind of fun, and you’ll feel like you’re cheating the system a little.

A Dutch Oven

Le Creuset LS2501-2659 Signature Enameled Cast-Iron Round French (Dutch) Oven

For going from the stovetop to the oven to the fridge, you need a Dutch oven. It’s the pot that can do it all, from boiling your sad pasta to creating a classic dish like boeuf bourguignon. We recommend Le Creuset, the be-all and end-all of Dutch ovens. The bottoms heat incredibly evenly, they come in an assortment of amazing colors, and they’re literally guaranteed for life.

A Food Processor

Cuisinart Elemental 8 Cup Food Processor

You know how you have a hankering for some homemade salsa but chopping six onions and five jalapeños and all those tomatoes just doesn’t seem worth it? Go get yourself a good food processor. On the days you don’t want to chop garlic or shred cheese—boom, food processor. Honestly, it seems like a one-trick kitchen tool, but having a decent food processor will go a long way in your prepping life. So, you’ll have more time for important sh*t like catching up on the absolute sh*tshow that is Outlander.

An Instant Pot

Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 

Full disclosure: I don’t have an Instant Pot, but I can see why you’d want one. Basically, the Instant Pot makes it possible to do all of the steps for one dish in one pot. So if a recipe calls for sautéing meat then braising it then saucing it, you can do it all in the same pot thanks to it having a million different settings.

Tongs

Hotec Stainless Steel Kitchen Tongs

Sounds weird, but hear me out. You’ll notice on like, every cooking show, that chefs and chef-wannabes use those cool metal tongs for everything. It’s because they can easily turn over pieces of meat, grab sh*t out of the oven, be used on or around a grill (or open flame), and are really hard to damage.

A Stand Mixer

KitchenAid Artisan Tilt-Head Stand Mixer with Pouring Shield

Everyone is making f*cking bread in quarantine, and, as someone who watched her husband struggle-bus through making baguettes (LOL), I can tell you that having a heavy KitchenAid stand mixer came in especially handy. Even if you aren’t attempting something like bread and are more of the “let’s make cookies” mentality, having a stand mixer do the work for you so that you don’t have to stand and beat eggs for 10 minutes is extremely helpful.

A Good Chef’s Knife

Mercer Culinary Genesis Forged Short Bolster Forged Chef’s Knife, 8 Inch

There’s literally nothing more dangerous in the kitchen than a shitty, dull knife. Well, maybe like, a grease fire or your mother-in-law’s judgment, but you get the idea. Having a good, sharp, and dependable knife will make your life so much easier. When you’re taking edges off meat or chopping an apple or anything else, get a good, sharp knife.

A Cast Iron Skillet

Amazon: Lodge Cast Iron Skillet

You grandmother definitely had five of these, and for good reason. A cast iron skillet results in amazing caramelization on meat and veggies, lasts literally forever, and can be used for everything from steak to giant skillet chocolate chip cookies. There are a few tips and tricks to taking care of one, like never using soap on it, cleaning with salt and oil (yes, really), and occasionally “seasoning” it in the oven, but, all that aside, this is definitely one of the top kitchen “gadgets” that will stand the test of time and result in some truly delicious sh*t.

An Air Fryer

Ninja Air Fryer

Do you f*cking love fried food but f*cking hate calories? Grab an air fryer and get to work. The circulation of very little oil plus air results in the crispy, slightly crunchy/greasy taste you love without you having to actually deep fry anything or eating 1,000 calories in one sitting. Sure, you may not use it all the time, but being able to easily, quickly, and safely make French fries without ordering takeout or trying to properly heat an actual vat of oil seems worth it.

An Egg Poacher

Joseph Joseph Poach-Pro™ Egg Poachers

Normally, I’d say something like an egg poacher is a f*cking waste of money. HOWEVER, upon actually trying to poach an egg (all as part of bettering myself during quarantine), I can tell you that, for a beginner, it’s kind of hard. For $7 and change, you can grab this little egg poacher helper thing-a-ma-do. I don’t know why it works, but it makes having Eggs Benedict as part of virtual brunch a lot easier.

A Steamer Basket

Joseph Joseph Bloom Folding Steamer Basket

Maybe you’re one of those annoying people who’s taking advantage of the quarantimes to readjust your life and eating habits. Like, jazz snaps for you. And, if that’s the case, you def need a good steamer basket so you can get the perfect consistency for your broccoli or green beans or chicken breast without drying sh*t out or making it very wet and sad (like when I send my dog outside to pee in the rain). The Bloom Folding Steamer Basket fits in pretty much any pan, is nonstick, and self-adjusts in terms of size. At $10, there’s really no excuse NOT to have one.

Regardless of how you’re living your best quarantine life, now is definitely the time to explore your kitchen and culinary skills, gadgets or not. If nothing else, call your mom, dad, or grandmother and ask about what they can’t live without in the kitchen.

Images: Alyson McPhee / Unsplash; Giphy (1); Amazon (10); Joseph Joseph (2)

Betches may receive a portion of revenue if you click a link and purchase a product or service. The links are independently placed and do not influence editorial content.

Mother’s Day Gift Guide: Gifts For The Regular Mom, The Cool Mom & Everyone In Between

What greater holiday is there than a day that celebrates the strong, beautiful women who raised us? Go ahead, try to think of one, I’ll wait. 4th of July you say? Okay. Anyway, Mother’s Day really does serve as a reminder that we should be really really nice to all the moms in our lives because we too may be mothers some day and we don’t want a bitchy daughter who doesn’t appreciate us.  So it’s good karma to get them a gift, right?  A betch’s mom is the most important lady in her life. She’s given us endless words of wisdom on fuckboys, she’s reluctantly allowed us to borrow steal her clothes, and she always picked us up from school when we were feeling “sick”.  She’s molded us into the betch we are today, and for that we are forever grateful.  To show her how much you love her, we’re giving you a list of all our favorite brands/gift ideas that are perfect for every type of mom in your life. Welcome to the Betches Mother’s Day Gift Guide 2017.

FOR THE MOM WHO STILL GRABS CANDY FOR HERSELF AT THE CHECKOUT COUNTER

Hats off to this mom, she still answers to her sugar cravings and DGAF. Elevate her candy standards with Sugarfina’s Sweetest Mom Candy Bento Box and watch it disappear within 20 minutes of her opening it. If she’s into the juicing craze like any betchy mom, feel free to gift her a bottle of Pressed Juicery x Sugarfina’s green juice gummy bears. It’s the perfect candy she can eat while convincing herself that she’s healthy AF. These are the chicest and yummiest candies ever, and I’m sure this mom won’t mind if you steal a few for yourself…maybe…

 

FOR THE ZEN AF MOM YOU CAN ALWAYS VENT TO

This mom is amazing because she has the patience to listen to us talk shit about irrelevant shit for hours and somehow make us feel 10 times better in the end. Philosophy is a fave brand of ours, not just because of their amazing products, but also because of their values. It’s the wellness brand version of the mom who always sends you inspirational articles and makes sure you never leave the house without food in your stomach. To reward this woman for putting up with your crazy ass, give her the Moments of Grace box—the perfect set of shower, fragrance, and moisturizing products.

FOR THE MOM WHO KNOWS HOW TO MAKE A HOUSE A HOME (AND WON’T LET YOU EAT ON THE COUCH)

This mom might have come off as a little strict and slightly neurotic due to her strict house rules you lived under as a young betch, but you now understand it was all worth it for the image of a perfect home. She’s classy, she’s elegant, and she’s not afraid to tell you to fuck off when you deserve it. Giving her a Venus Et Fleur box is not just giving her cliché flowers for Mother’s Day, it’s giving her a centerpiece for her precious home. These are the most beautiful flowers and they last for an entire year. There are several colors to choose from so you can def find one to match the living room couch. PS, they’re having a pop-up shop at Saks specifically for Mother’s Day, so go with your siblings and get her the most Instagrammable flowers ever.

FOR THE MOM WHO WANTS TO BE INA GARTEN’S BEST FRIEND

This mom spends half her life watching the Food Network and the other half begging her husband to agree to redoing the kitchen. As such, she takes great pride in all her kitchen essentials, and each time you come home there’s a new blender or toaster. Although you have barely any space for a wooden spoon in your apartment’s kitchen and deem it acceptable to microwave water for your tea, this mom would rather be caught dead than without at least 25 different spatula options. Cuisinart is the perfect place to find the best and newest kitchen products that this mom will die over, like the QuicKettle and the PrepExpress. If you get her any of their products, I foresee massive amounts of free food in your future.

FOR THE MOM WHO’S NOT AFRAID TO BLACK OUT AT FAMILY DINNERS

This mom is always invited to hang with you and your friends whenever she’s in town. As a betch who can single-handedly create a party out of thin air, her Mother’s Day gift needs to suit her hostess needs. Kim Crawford Wine is the perfect bottle to whip out on any given occasion, and with summer around the corner, it is officially rosé season. Their website has tons of amazing recipes, including frosé, so…this mom will def exploit a bottle of Kim Crawford rosé for all it’s worth. If she also happens to be an Insta whore, we’re sorry in advance.

FOR THE MOM WHO GIFTED YOU YOUR WITTY SENSE OF HUMOR

This mom has passed on her good genes of having no filter and always has the entire family in tears at Thanksgiving dinner (like, the good kind). We were always afraid of what kind of backhanded bitchy comment she might make at our frenemies when we were younger, but we loved her anyway and secretly enjoyed it. If she’s begging you not to get her anything this year, at least get her the perfect card from Shop Betches.

FOR THE MOM WHO’S PUTTING OFF BOTOX FOR AS LONG AS POSSIBLE

This mom has had perfect skin her entire life and is now in overdrive doing everything she can to keep it that way.  Washing her face isn’t just something she does a couple times a day, it’s now an insane obsession. To make sure this mom is getting the most out of her incessant face cleansing, get her the Soniclear brush from Michael Todd Beauty. The antimicrobial brush stays cleaner and fresher for longer, and cleans deep into your pores.  Let’s be real, you’re probs going to get one for yourself as well. Also, since she’s probs big into blending, you should get her the Sonicblend brush to apply her makeup flawlessly.

FOR THE MOM WHO WON’T LET YOU ANYWHERE NEAR HER KITCHEN

This mom has a panic attack whenever there’s too many people in the kitchen (which for the most part means if there’s anyone in there besides her). She’s a firm believer in “a place for everything and everything in its place”, which as a betch you can only relate to on the level of your apartment’s bar cart.  Joseph Joseph has the perfect modern organizational kitchen shit that will perfectly encourage this mom’s obsessive compulsive habits, but at least the kitchen will look sleek AF so who cares. We love their Nesting Bowl Sets and their super chic Worktop Savers.

FOR THE MOM WHO ALWAYS FALLS ASLEEP WITH HER IPAD ON HER FACE

This mom can’t get enough of her Facebook feed and loves to send you videos of dogs at all hours of the night. She probably thinks she’s squinting at all her screens because she’s old, but really it’s because no one’s eyes should not be staring at this shit all day. Felix Gray glasses are v trendy-looking and protect your eyes from the blue light emitted from all our electronics’ screens, so mom won’t have to fight through the headaches to continue scrolling through Insta anymore. Our office’s fan favorites are the Turing and Nash frames.

FOR THE MOM WHO JUICED BEFORE IT WAS COOL

This mom has been a juice drinking yoga freak since before you were born, and she’s always looking for new ways to show the world that she’s healthier and has more of her shit together than anyone else. Daily Harvest delivers fresh soups, smoothies, chia parfaits and overnight oats to your door on your schedule. This way, mom can get her fav smoothies delivered at 3pm just in time for her to consume before her 5pm spin class. If you didn’t think eating healthy could be convenient, neither did we, but here we are.

FOR THE MOM WHO HAS EVERYTHING YOU NEVER KNEW YOU NEEDED

This mom may seem like a hoarder, but in reality she’s just a collector of random shit that will impress people. Totally different. Also, we are not ones to talk about hoarding as evidenced by our closets. Anyway, Tovolo is the perfect place to shop for this mom because while it’s super fun for us to look through all the fun kitchen gadgets they have, it will be that much more fun for her because she’ll know exactly what to do with whatever you get her. “OMG, skull ice molds?! This will be perfect for Debbie’s divorce party!”  We love their Clear Ice System and Stainless Steel Cocktail Shaker.

FOR THE MOM WHO ALWAYS LOSES SHIT

As a young mom, this one relied on her children to remind her of her dentist appointments or whenever she accidentally left the stove on. Though she’s the most scatter-brained person you know, she’s so lovable you’ve never (really) faulted her for it. Plus, her lack of having her shit together taught you how to be a proactive, multitasking betch. To make this mom’s life a little easier as her brain is only getting worse with age (sorry but it’s true), get her Tile for Mother’s Day so you never have to get another phone call about her missing keys again. All she has to do is attach the little Tile to whatever it is she loses every day and connect it to her phone through Bluetooth and voilà, when she needs to find either thing she can make ‘em ring (I did not do that on purpose but I apologize).

FOR THE MOM WHO REALLY WANTS TO LOSE 3 POUNDS BUT HATES THE GYM

This mom might sound very familiar because she is all of us. She would much rather spend an hour at book club talking shit than hitting the gym, but the thought of showing up to Southampton for the summer in her current state is freaking her out. Do her a favor and buy her HUM Nutrition’s Skinny Bird, a natural weight loss supplement. If you’re feeling really generous, they also have a “Turn Back Time” supplement that helps with skin cell protection. Time to pop some pills!

FOR THE BRAND NEW MOM

This mom has been MIA because she is now with child and a real human and also struggling to get more than 4 hours of sleep at night. Brighten up her day by getting her little Betch In Training a baby onesie from Shop Betches.

FOR THE MOM WHO IS ALWAYS ON THE GO

This mom has always been your business betch inspiration, as you’ve admired her for balancing her work and home life so well. Despite being super important at her company, she somehow found the time to proofread all your high school papers and prepped you for every job interview you’ve ever had.  Soap & Glory is the perfect cheeky and empowering cosmetic brand that this mom absolutely NEEDS in her life. Since she’s always running from mandatory family breakfast to business meeting, get her some of our favorites like their Rushower Dry Shampoo and their Hand Food hydrating hand cream.

FOR THE MOM WHO ALWAYS KEEPS IT SIMPLE

This mom is a woman of few words, but always knows what to say. You can find her in the yoga studio in the morning and hosting a charity dinner party by night. She’s the one who taught you that doing things for others is like, important. Not one for flashy things but a lover of the arts, this mom would love a piece from Adam Marc Jewelry. Our favorite pieces are the Kim Star Choker and the Rafaeli 14k Gold Bar Necklace. Use code BETCHES20 for 20% off—your mom will never have to know you didn’t pay full price.