Living in an apartment definitely has its challenges when it comes to decorating. Here's a quick project we did a while ago that added some height and interest to the dining room (with a slightly scary before photo, I was in the process of moving in).
We measured the space and looked around online for some floating shelf options. Ikea turned out to be the clear winner price wise, with 3 1/2 ft shelves for only $19.99 each. So we made the trip down. The only catch? The color we wanted (Black-Brown) was sold out, and we were told all Lack shelves were being discontinued in that size as well (we actually went around and asked 3 different people about that since we couldn't believe our ears). Not wanting to miss out on a great deal, we purchased 3 shelves in Walnut and went home (actually I had to be dragged out of the store, there are too many fun accessories there!)
Once we got home we were debating how to darken the shelves to go with the tv console we were using as a sideboard, at which point we received an awesome tip from my boyfriend's sister about faux painting. She mentioned how she'd put paint on a sponge and wiped it onto a piece of wood and it darkened it without covering it completely, and the sponge gave a nice wood grain effect. So with a cheap tube of black acrylic craft paint, I got to work.
Note: Our shelves have actually been up for a month or so now, and I just went and checked back at Ikea again and it appears they DO have the Lack shelves in the same size and in black-brown. *Sigh* Well at least you're in luck if you want to purchase those shelves, and at least I learned a cool painting technique in the process. Perhaps it'll help you out someday too!