Home Sweet Dorm

Home—one small, four letter word with a huge meaning. While at university, you’ll find that your dorm and/or rental room will become a home from which you can escape the madness that accompanies university life, which is why it’s important to decorate and personalize your space. Your room is a reflection of yourself. Taking the time to decorate your new (if admittedly shoebox-sized) room and make it cozy will help ease the waves of homesickness. Without further explanation, the following are what I believe to be some of the most useful decorating tips and necessary items for your home away from home.

  1. 1. Bedding and pillows that you love

    Comfortable and cozy bedding not only livens up a room, but also serves two purposes. First, of course, is that a put together bed makes the room seem cozy and inviting. Secondly, when you lock yourself in your room to binge watch Harry Potter, chances are that you won’t be sitting at your desk for hours. Spending a little extra money on your bedding will definitely pay off since you’ll likely be spending a lot of time sitting on it. Tip: while relaxing or studying on your bed, remember that it’s easy to spill coffee, food or highlighter ink on your comforter. Choose either a darker colour for your quilt or lay a blanket down to prevent stains. 

  2. 2. Pictures of the people who’ve made you who you are, and the places you’ve seen

    Photos are a great way to fill up wall or shelf space. Bring photos depicting moments and places that matter to you, and the people you miss the most. Not only will the pictures force you to randomly reflect and remember the days they were photographed, but they’ll also serve as a reminder, on days when you feel helpless and homesick, that you are not alone. Catching a glimpse of a picture that makes you happy can brighten any day, even if you’re about to go write a midterm.

  3. 3. More lighting

    The fluorescent white light bulbs that come with most dorm rooms aren’t great. Invest in some faerie lights and yellow light bulbs to make your room cozier, while also creating a cool vibe. Try to optimize natural sunlight as much as possible, and when you leave your room, open your blinds/curtains.

  4. 4. Cute storage bins

    This is probably one of the most underrated dorm room essentials. Storage bins are both practical and helpful at disguising your room as well-organised. Wicker baskets or trunks allow you to store everything from health and beauty products to dishes and cutlery while also minimizing the clutter in your room and looking aesthetically pleasing.

  5. 5. Colourful walls

    The neutral colours that dorm rooms and rentals are painted are perfect because they go with everything; however, if left barren, they can easily drown out a room. Pin posters or hang up a tapestry in order to add some colour to the room while also adding to its décor. 

Speaking from experience, your room will be the place you cry in after difficult days, as well as a space to house many laughs, random 2 a.m. friends and floormate gatherings. Show off your likes and interests through your décor. Being able to go to sleep in a room you love and feel at home in will improve your mood on days when you feel so far away from the place you lived before university.