In June 2021, Emily Rhodes, a 24-year-old graphic designer living in New Orleans, decided to take a break and turn on the k-drama My Love From Another Star. As she watched the story of Do Min-joon and Cheon Song Yi’s neighborhood romance unfold on screen, Emily suddenly felt the urge to recreate the room of the main character in her own space. It would serve as an effort to get out of the slump that she’d been experiencing. “As someone who struggles with anxiety and depression, I just wanted to bring to life these warm fuzzy feelings associated with the designs I’ve watched all my life,” she recalls. “So, I got online, googled a few things, and DIY’d the rest.”
Emily has redesigned her room multiple times since then, with her current watchlist as the recurring theme for inspiration. Of course, Emily isn’t the only one. When Stacey Adams and Ruma Hadels decided to do this to their apartments, they shared the entire creative process on TikTok with the hopes of inspiring other K-drama fans.
Ruma’s first video has 23,000 views, which motivated her to dedicate the entire page to making home decor videos. Stacey’s initial video, which shows how she made good use of the available storage space and filled up the room with light pink posters of her favorite items, accrued over 6,000 views and a barrage of questions in the comments, like “How do I recreate this? Where did you get the items? And what K-drama did you use for inspiration?”
“What you should keep in mind while decorating is to mildly infuse these items,” Ruma advises. “I already had neutral colors on my curtains as well as printed wallpapers so I decided to mix those with bright-colored furniture and colored light fixtures to even things out.”
The homes in K-dramas are usually minimalistic, which provides viewers the space to explore characterizations and fully immerse themselves in the story. The interiors are recognizable and often include compact spaces with open floors and multifunctional furniture. The ultrachic and cozy designs also create an illusion of partition. One essential feature they all have is the inclusion of each character’s hobbies along with sentimental heirlooms and colorful wallpaper.