After being at home for years, the fresh challenges offered by campus living can be exhilarating. As well as an exciting time for making friends and exploring your new environment, it’s a good moment to create a fresh and personalised space in your student digs. Finally, you are free to express yourself in your own space, so don’t hold back – get yourself noticed with some smart moves.
Mark yourself out as an individual amongst the new intake by re-interpreting the standard take on student digs. The accommodation at educational institutions is often dreary, plain, cramped and uninspiring, but with a few easy, cheap and clever tricks, you can personalise the space to reflect your tastes and character.
Rule number one in the quest for super-student digs, is “Don’t bring all your clutter with you!” Be strict with yourself about minimising the amount of stuff you bring. Trust me, you will accumulate more clutter as the term progresses, and finding places to put it all will become a constant challenge. Most digs provide basics such as beds and drawers, but consider bringing along other furniture items that have dual uses such as a Sofa bed for when friends drop by or visitors stay. Useful storage stools that swallow clutter as well as expanding seating options change the room from a bedroom into a multi-purpose and sociable living space.
Most student accommodation will be decorated in neutral tones, aimed to appeal to all and offend few. Furnishing choices are made with durability and practicality in mind, so it is up to you to add your personal style into the mix. Splash a rainbow of colour to shake up the uninspiring palate. It’s a good idea to select one shade that dominates, pulling together a room’s look in a harmonious way. Choose bedding in your favourite tones and add pops of co-ordinating colour around the room with cushions, ceramics, wall art and textiles.
The personal flavours in a room are what make them interesting; so don’t hold back on family photographs and mementos that mean something special. Photo collages are a fun way of jazzing up blank wall spaces and guarantee friendly and familiar faces on hand for times of homesickness. Other well-loved pieces from home such as stamp collections, fridge magnets, favourite mugs or pot plants are all comforting reminders of special people and places and as a part of your story. As such, they deserve to be on display.
A good atmosphere and ambiance is all about good lighting. Take along a couple of really good lamps to light up your digs, making it feel warm and homey. Overhead task lighting is also worth considering, for those late nights studying at your desk. It is amazing what the flick of a light switch can do to change the dynamics of a room from cold and unwelcoming to warm, fun and inviting. Clever placement of mirrors elevates light levels in dark rooms and makes them feel more spacious.
For a few quid and a little effort, swapping a digs ‘dead-zone’ into an energised personal space can be achieved – all it takes is a little imagination and planning. So, are you ready to get up close and personalise?