Refresh your Room

Your room should be your sanctuary. There is no reason to be living in a space that you do not feel comfortable in. Right now, a lot of us are using our bedrooms as another place to study and take exams, making it more difficult to focus on what we need to be doing for a class in a cluttered or messy space. It is important to keep your space fresh and open. These are some tips that I use that help me to keep my room feeling comfortable and a calm place to relax and do work. 



empty desk near curtain Hutomo Abrianto

Keep it simple.

Sticking to a simple color scheme and choosing one accent color is a great way to start. With too many colors, your eye will be drawn to too many things. My current room uses just white, black, and gold as my decor, and my wall colors have an accent color of dark green. Since I am using a more basic color scheme, the touches of gold and green that I have serve as accents and do not make the room feel too busy in design. Dominantly I use white and black as the colors of most of my furniture pieces. Neutrals are great colors for using in a space you want to stay relaxed and cozy.

Use lighter colors to keep your space feeling large and open and darker colors to create zones in your room. For example, my desk, bookshelf, and desk chair are all black. This separates from the space where I have my bed, my white bedside table, and light-colored comforter and pillows. These separated zones are still cohesive but differ in purpose so I have them colored in such a way that reflects both sentiments. 

Blank space is your friend. Not every spot on your wall needs to have a photograph of your friends or a tapestry hanging from it. The more busy your walls are, the more cluttered your space will start to feel. For the most part, the decor you put on your walls will likely not change very often. It is important that you get things that you not only like, but that can be transitional for you. College does not last forever and you can save a lot of money by creating your own artwork to hang up and use as decor. I love painting or drawing and framing my own artwork to put into a simple gallery wall. When doing this, make sure you are sticking to your color scheme and plan your layout to fit your space.



aloe plants by window Photo by Aneta Pawlik from Unsplash

Consider your decor.

Tapestries can be a really fun addition to your room and they are typically large, so they fill up a lot of wall space. Some things to consider while you are shopping for a tapestry though are: "Do I have the space for this?", "Is this going to be right for my space?", "Does this tapestry match my color scheme?", "Will I like this tapestry three months from now?", and IIs this tapestry too busy with the other decor I am planning to put up?". If after all of those questions you are still in favor of getting a tapestry, be sure to know that your tapestry will likely serve as your statement decor piece. The size of a tapestry ensures that it will draw the eye, so it is important to have something that you really like, and that fits your space well. 

A house plant will give you something to take care of that is also a cute decor piece. You can use a neutral or colored pot to get your house plant to stay neutral as a piece in your room. House plants vary in the amount of light they need, but remembering that your plant is on your windowsill may help you to open your blinds and windows more often which allows for natural light and fresh air to sweep through your space. If real plants are not your thing, Ikea and Target have wide varieties of affordable faux plants that can still be cute for decor purposes. 

If you are considering a real plant though, a great plant for any beginner plant owner is an aloe plant. Aloe plants do not need much care or space and grow freely if you tend to them, but are easy plants to keep happy all year round. An Aloe plant can even be kept outside during the summer. With sunshine and just a bit of water, an Aloe plant can be an easy low-maintenance plant that anyone can grow.



Smoke and mirrors.

Not literal smoke, but maybe a few candles might be nice. Having a scent that you love in your space when you get home can be calming and welcoming. If you do not trust yourself with an open flame, try a wax melter or a wall plugin that will keep your room smelling fresh. It can also be fun to experiment with different scents for the holidays with anything from Evergreen to Apple Pie. My personal favorites are candles with lighter fall scents like Target's “Falling Leaves” candle which smells absolutely amazing. 

Mirrors are also essential. Beyond their practical purpose, to help you check your outfit or makeup on your way out, they also open up your space a ton. They will make your room feel bigger than it is. They can also serve as a very simple piece of wall decor to help you express yourself and make your room feel not so empty. Mirrors can be a great addition to a gallery wall because they are simple and come in a variety of different sizes to match any of your needs. I would say that in anyone’s room, a floor-length mirror is essential.



Courtesy of Wayfair

Tidy up.

Clutter stresses me out, and I find it incredibly difficult to be productive and focused on my studies when I am distracted by the stress of messy working space. I cannot imagine that I am alone in feeling this way. There are things that you have to have, the essentials, but that does not mean you necessarily have to look at them. Baskets, shelving, under bed storage, and a bedside table with drawers are my lifesavers this year when it comes to keeping my space neat and organized. Desk organizers are great to hold your pencils, textbooks, notebooks, and anything else you may need for class. Everything has a general place and goes back to it when I am done using it. 

Keep your floor clear. Put your clothes away in a way that works for you. If you know you are the kind of person to let your clean clothes live in a basket for a few days after drying, make sure you have a second basket reserved to throw your dirty clothes into at the end of the day. If you have an open closet, you can use a towel and a curtain rod to keep things hidden or out of plain view.



Create your space with your own peace and comfort in mind. You will never feel comfortable in a space that is not made right for you and these steps should help guide you in the direction towards having an open and cohesive room. Leave yourself some empty wall space and keep your room clean and tidy.