Most people love to decorate their living space to make it feel like their own, and most people also want to avoid paying large fees for wall damage that may occur when decorating walls. Decorating often feels like it is at ends with incurring damage costs, particularly with the fragile walls, but it does not have to be like that!
Here is our guide on how to decorate a Japanese apartment, focusing on apartment friendly décor for walls.
Decorating walls can be difficult with apartments in Japan since the walls are so delicate. Generally, the walls are surprisingly thin and can easily be torn, stained, and the wallpaper can easily peel.
Most landlords do not allow or advise against hanging heavy objects on walls, so when you are thinking about how to decorate a Japanese apartment, big picture frames are not an option.
One piece of apartment friendly decor that tends to work for most rental apartments in other countries is sticky adhesive hooks. They do not work for most apartment walls in Japan since they can easily rip odd wallpaper and cause even more damage than nails and thumbtacks. Instead, there are wall hooks available that have various small pins attached to the back of the hook. Although these pin hooks still pierce the wall, the needles do not cause damage, so they work well for decorating walls.
100-Yen Store DIY Décor
100-Yen stores like Daiso and Seria are some of the most popular places to purchase materials for DIY décor. So, it is no surprise that they offer plenty of materials for DIY décor for decorating walls. Using cork boards or grid wire boards is one of the easiest approaches how to decorate a Japanese apartment. These can be purchased at 100-yen stores and allow anyone to decorate their apartment to their own taste.
Combining a few grid wire boards and assembling them will create a caging that may even be able to hold the weight of a photo frame if big enough. For a larger caging, you may want to secure it against the wall – which would cause some damage, but less than if you were hanging a load of bits directly onto the wall!
Washi tape, a stationary favorite in Japan, can be a colorful form of apartment friendly décor for walls. It can be used to hang up pictures and photos on the walls or can be used by itself to add a pop of color. Test out a small bit of washi tape first to double-check that it does not damage the walls of your apartment since they can vary.
Another piece of DIY décor that can be found in 100-yen stores is removable wallpaper and wall decals. Removable wallpaper comes in a variety of different prints at these stores suitable for decorating walls to suit all tastes. If the removable wallpaper does not work for you but you would still like wallpaper, why not try purchasing thin pieces of plywood for the 100-yen stores and pasting wallpaper onto these. You can lean the decorated plywood against the wall.
One alternative to removable wallpaper is using a lightweight colorful throw blanket to create an accent wall and to make your apartment feel more homely whilst still maintaining a minimalist feel and avoiding clutter.
Open Shelving Unit
One tip on how to decorate a Japanese apartment is by using open shelves. Not only are open shelves a way to display accent pieces and décor items without causing damage, but they are also a convenient storage solution. In a country where beautiful ceramics are so readily available and easily affordable, why not buy nice plates, bowls, mugs, and glasses that would also double as some very apartment friendly décor.
Open shelves and bookcases can be used to display houseplants, hold books, display photo frames, and display some other DIY décor too. Using a bookcase is an effortless way to decorate an empty blank wall, without having to interfere with the wall itself, it can be a wonderful alternative to décor that damages fragile walls. To make further use of a bookshelf, wrap fairy lights around it to create a warm and cosy environment.
Lighting can be quite harsh in apartments in Japan as the main lights are usually energy-saving bright white LED lights. Putting string lights up around the apartment will provide a great mood-lighting for the evenings when you may want to rest your eyes. Make use of any beams and wooden structures around the walls for sticking up lights with tape because the wooden beams are much less likely to rip with adhesive.
Things can go wrong when you are trying out DIY décor, and what you thought was apartment friendly décor might not actually be the case. In these situations, it is always good to have a stain remover at hand, although stain remover for Japanese walls might not be what you think it is!
Since the walls are usually made with Satori Japanese plaster, they are prone to water damage, so avoiding getting any liquid on them is particularly important! Magic sponges work well as a stain remover on the walls, especially when combined with a little bit of water and light scrubbing – with caution! Another stain remover solution is a wall stain eraser available at 100-yen stores, as well as wall cleaning wipes.
If you would like more tips on how to clean walls in Japanese apartments, please check out our article!
We hope this helps you figure out how to decorate a Japanese apartment without causing damage to the fragile walls. Head out to 100-yen stores and furniture stores to look for creative solutions to apartment friendly décor and you will likely find various other options to suit your desires!