How To Decorate A Space With Your Boyfriend Without Ruining The Relationship

by Mia Conti

What a time to be alive, am I right? You've found someone who likes you enough to actually live with you, like, all the time, every day. This is such an exciting time for you.

But, it's not all about you anymore, and there's a legally binding lease out there to prove it. With that being said, it's crucial to keep your partner in mind before you throw cash at 20 sequined pillows or hang a print of Marilyn Monroe's face over your breakfast nook. (Though, let the record show, I completely support this.)

Here are four ways to decorate your shared space with your significant other:

1. Think about the two of you, not just you.

Before making purchases on major statement pieces, consider sitting down with your SO and scrolling through Pinterest for some inspiration. Try finding visual examples of the style you want to replicate.

Show him snapshots that reflect how the piece would work in your space. You'd be surprised how convincing one of those strategically filtered photographs can be.

2. Maximize function and magnify style.

Men live for functionality when it comes to décor. They'll probably never understand the necessity of Buddha figurines and fake succulents on the coffee table. (OK, that could be an over-generalization, so I'm sorry to all those succulent and Buddha fanatic men out there.)

But, if you're moving in with that guy who considered his bottle-cap-covered coffee table "home décor," stay with me on this one. These are the type of men who don't want the extra fluff taking up their personal spaces. So, you need to seek out home décor pieces that "make sense" to your guy, while still making a statement.

Limited cabinet space? Dangle your #iwokeuplikethis and #flawless coffee cups from a mug tree on the counter. Your hot new roomie will be impressed with the space saving, and it offers you the perfect opportunity to display a little some of that Beyoncé flare. That's a win-win in my book.

3. Have a DIY date.

Creating spaces can be an exhilarating, but expensive adventure. I know you guys don't want to be secluded at home and forced to eat ramen from the aforementioned Beyoncé mugs every night because you threw thousands at a new piece for that fab breakfast nook of yours. Let's be frank here: Ramen and seclusion will bring resentment over time, and that's the last thing you need.

Keep your budget in check by taking advantage of your local flea markets for larger furniture pieces. You could even spend your afternoon date braving the possibility of getting murdered over a Craigslist listing for that dresser. Talk about exhilaration.

If you make it out alive, just look past the dust, roll up your sleeves and pop open a bottle of wine. With a little vision and elbow grease, you're guaranteed a one-of-a-kind final product that you both can be proud of. You might even have enough play money left over for a meal that you don't prepare in the microwave.

4. Prioritize what's personal to you.

Gone are the days when all you shared were old college T-shirts. Living with your significant other means sharing monthly rent, the bed covers and — when you're exceptionally unlucky — strep throat.

It also means learning to strategically sh*t while your partner is on his or her morning run. But that's a completely different article, isn't it? I digress.

Basically, what I'm trying to say is that with all this new intimacy, it's crucial that you each have a little space that is uniquely your own. Designate specific drawers in the dresser or separate shelves in the bathroom. He'll appreciate not having to rummage through your lotions and tampons for his nail clippers, I promise.