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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at St Olaf chapter.

Welcome back to the Hill, Oles! I hope everyone is starting to settle into their crazy college routine. With all of the focus on classes, meetings, jobs and weekend outings, everyone could use a place to come home to. Since a dorm room is hardly comparable to “home sweet home,” here are 7 tips and tricks on how to make your dorm room comfortable, cozy, and inviting. 

1. Ditch that florescent lighting!

The overhead lighting in a dorm room can be harsh and unflattering.  Give your room a more warm and cozy feel with string lights, shaded lamps, and by all means, keep your curtains open for some natural light! 

2. Freshen up

Air fresheners, candles, or room spray can give your room a fresh smell (that isn’t burnt popcorn, Malt-o-meal, or cow manure), and give the space a more inviting feel. 

3. Frame it 

Frame some of your favorite photos of friends, family, and pets. You could even decorate the frames with ribbon, rhinestones, or sharpies to add a homemade feel! 

4. Create an inspiration wall

Choose an empty space on your wall, or buy a bulletin board. Post anything on this wall that inspires you or makes you happy. Anything is game: A quote that got you through the day, a funny meme, a paper or test that you’re super proud of, a text from your mom. Put it down a Post-It note and let it motivate you through late nights and tough times! 

5. Celebrate

Don’t stop celebrating your favorite holidays just because you aren’t at home! Get a mini Christmas tree, carve pumpkins, make cut-out snowflakes; ‘tis the season! 

6. Have an Ole Art Night!  

This picture speaks louder than words. Who wouldn’t want to personalize their room with some homemade art? Paint, glitter, and canvas is really all you need.  

7. Add knick knacks (a.k.a. tasteful clutter)  

Fill the empty space on your desk with a candy bowl, a change jar, or a vase for Friday flowers. Corny fridge magnets, cat figurines, or desk paper weights are a great way to fill space and make your room look “lived-in.” (P.S. all of the things I just named are in my room!)

When in doubt, keep calm and get creative! Have fun revamping your room.

Photos: String LightsCandlesPicturesInspiration WallChristmas TreeDesk

Photos and Artwork by Natalie Lovdal