Despite living on my own for a few years now, when I moved a couple weeks ago I was surprised to find that I still didn't have a lot of my own stuff. Somehow, I've managed to get by for about 1,000 days by inheriting things like furniture, utensils, and even TVs from roommates. Heck, even the beds I've slept on have been passed down.
Well, that was enough of that. Before I moved into my new apartment, I made it my mission to save up and deck out my room exactly how I've always wanted it. It's a pretty big investment, but one I was happy to make. Now I have everything more or less exactly like I want it.
Without further ado, here are my essentials for moving into a new place—ripped straight from my Amazon orders page.
1. A new bed set for a great night's sleep
Ever since my first day at college as a bright-eyed teen I've had a twin bed. Not by choice mind you, but it always turned out to be the most affordable option for someone like me. Well, with my new apartment, it was time to ditch that twin bed and upgrade to something a little more luxurious. While buying a new bed with all of the necessary pieces is quite costly, in the end, having a comfortable—and spacious!—bed was key to a restful night.
New Smart Home Bedding pillows on Amazon for $24.99.
Adoric Queen pillowcases (set of two) on Amazon for $9.99.
Get a new Essential Home comforter set on Amazon for $62.75.
The Zinus 7.5-inch Smart Box Spring on Amazon for $109.99.
The Zinus 8-inch Gel-Infused Green Tea Memory Foam Mattress.
2. These smart light bulbs to brighten up your room
I recently tested most of the major smart bulbs on the market to find the best smart bulbs and while the Philips Hue won by a proverbial landslide, I opted for the much more affordable TP-Link bulbs instead. Other than costing a fraction of the price of the Philips Hue, I didn't need a specialized hub connected to my router to get them to work. And thanks to my tricky internet situation (more on that soon) this was by far the most appealing and practical solution.
3. A new home entertainment setup for top-notch movie nights
Whether it's watching a moving late at night or joining my friends online for some video game action, a TV was an important upgrade I knew I wanted to save up for. For the longest time I'd been using a 32-inch 720p TV that I was frankly embarrassed about anyone seeing. Now, though? I picked up the TCL 55P607, a 4K and HDR-compatible TV that looks gorgeous. If you don't trust me, take a look at what our resident TV expert had to say about it in his TCL P-Series review.
4. A stylish bookcase that is easy to assemble
There are few things I love more in this world than my books. As an avid reader and writer, I need to be able to proudly display my collection. But, I also need to able to do that on a budget. This particular bookcase from South Shore had plenty of good Amazon reviews and when it came was a cinch to put together. It might not be the hand-made wooden bookcase of my dreams, but it'll do for now.
Oh! And if you don't like my pick, I'd recommend taking a look at our roundup of the best ready-to-assemble bookcases.
5. These powerline adapters to strengthen your weak WiFi connection
Like I mentioned above, the WiFi in my area of the house isn't the greatest. I'm one floor and many walls away from our router and so we had to get a little creative when it came down to making sure I could play games or browse the internet. Our solution? These powerline adapters that work through what I can only describe as wizardry to send our internet signal through the wiring in our house to deliver flawless internet to my room with an ethernet cable.
6. A cast iron skillet to step up your cooking game
If you've had a nonstick skillet for a few years, it's probably time for a replacement and cast iron is the way to go. There's just something extra special about cooking everything in one pan on the stovetop then sticking the whole thing in the oven for a nice crispy finish. Don't believe me? We asked a professional chef to tell us all about why she loves cast iron pans.
7. These damage-free hooks and hangers that will save your walls
I'm still a humble renter so part of the process of me moving in and making a space my own is making sure I don't cause any damage to the room by hammering in nails or using thumbtacks. Instead, I opted to get some of these adhesive hooks that are easily removable. Now, I can easily hang my bathrobe, my backpack, and jacket without resorting to just tossing them on the ground or over the back of my couch.
8. A meal-kit subscription service because you deserve to treat yourself
I love to cook. While plenty of people I know finish a long day of work and dread the thought of standing in a kitchen and cooking, I cherish that time I can spend making a delicious meal. Unfortunately, I don't exactly live in a convenient location when it comes to nearby grocery stores so I've been forced to get a little creative. I've tried a bunch of different meal-kit subscription services in the past, and Hello Fresh is my personal favorite. Plenty of delicious options with a variety that's great for beginners and seasoned home chefs alike.
You don't have to take my suggestion, though. There are plenty of options out there and we've already taken a look at the best meal-kit delivery services available.
9. This game-changing cutting board that is easy to clean
For the longest time, I swore by my plastic cutting boards. I knew they were slowly getting scratched and gouged, but they were so easy to clean and I got like five in a single pack. Well, thanks to my colleague's love letter to the Epicurean cutting board I finally have a replacement I feel confident using. I'll echo his thoughts here, it really is the best cutting board.
10. This set of food storage containers that will keep your precious leftovers fresh and tasty
I don't know who or what made off with all the lids to my Tupperware, but I'm in serious need of a new set so I can stop eating out at lunch. Luckily, my coworkers already found the best food storage containers on Amazon so I know exactly which set to get.