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How to style a rental home in Otrobanda

jenpen.studio - April 21, 2021 - 0 comments

Did you check out the intro trailer about this new home tours series, City Life Island Style?
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This downtown, located in Otrobanda, house is shared by Shemeycka and her family of four. They managed to create a home in a rental house that is a monument. Wanted to give the city life of the island a try, they embarked on their City Life, Island Style journey in September of 2019.

As a flight attendant, she surely brought her travel inspirations into her home. Let’s take a closer look with my interior designer eye.


The house has 3 bedrooms, one bathroom and 3 open spaces. The open spaces are designed for the kitchen, living area, dining room and chill/work area. It also has a spacious front porch and a backyard.  The rooms are not huge, but they are spacious. There’s room to walk around without you bumping your body into something.

When you move into a new home, before you start styling, think about the function for every room. How can you utilize every square of that home correctly? Think about these:

  • Do I like to have people over to entertain?
  • Would I like a TV in my space?
  • Can I combine a living room and dining room together?
To answer the questions above:
  • Of course, it’s your house and you’re not styling with others in mind. But if you love to have friends and family over, then you’ll need more seating available. If you live in a small space, think about stackable chairs, that you can store in closet or hang on the wall when there are no visitors.
  • It’s hard to believe, but I don’t have a TV in my home. But for the majority that has a TV, you have to think where to put/hang it. Nowadays, you can think about the TV without it being the center of attention. In the case of Shemeycka, the TV is part of the function of the space. While in the kitchen they can watch the TV and entertain their selves. But if a TV is not your thing, you can always use a smaller one in the room needed or just go with a tablet. Same function, just on a very small screen.
  • Yes, combining a living room and dining room is totally possible, especially if you have an open concept. But think wisely about the size of your furniture otherwise you’ll have a crowed place with the wrong turnout.



One thing I’ve noticed over the years doing interior design consultation at people homes, are that they are afraid to use color. It sounds weird, but people tent to hold on to what feels safe.  But here you are greeted with beautiful color palette that works great together.

Here are three tips how to use color:
  • One thing to always think about is to reuse the colors in the rest of the rooms, if you’re working with an open concept. As you can see here, the soft pink-peachy color goes all the way to the back of the house, and that is one way of connecting the colors together.
  • Because it’s a rental, you’re might be stuck with some vast element, like the floor tiles. When you choose a color palette, try to pick a shade that comes in your floor and go with that for on the walls.
  • Let the wall colors also come into the décor and furniture. You’ll create a more cohesive atmosphere in your home.


We noticed here that she make good use of her walls to expose her beautiful artworks or with just painting one with a color.

Here’s how you can make your walls shine:
  • If you have large walls, instead of hanging small frames or art, hang a large piece of art. Like we see she did with the world map above the sofa. Balance it out on the wall.
  • Do you have a corridor? You can also think about doing a gallery wall. But if the width of your corridor is small, try to use a more neutral palette gallery wall. This will take away the feeling of a crowded hall way. In the case of Shemeycka, she used a large painting facing a large mirror. This will create more depth in the corridor.
  • A smaller wall can be a statement wall by painting it or wallpaper it. If you’re in a rental and you are not allowed to paint then wallpaper is an option.


So, that was the first City Life, Island Style home tour.  And I hope that beside you getting the intake of the homeowner, you’ll also get my point of view and how you can take some of their ideas and implement it in your own interior.

Subscribe to the YOUTUBE channel, so you know when the next episode will drop.

And if you need some extra help with your interior (home or office), please don’t hesitate and contact me. I’ll be happy to help you out.

Photography by: Hubertienne Decaster, JenPen.Shots

Videography + editing by: Tittle Tattle Team

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