Monday 5 August 2019

How to Transform your Student Room on a Budget

How to turn your university student room college dorm into a beautiful home from home, featuring storage tips, decoration ideas and tips on how to personalise a room

If you’re off to university or college this September, or even just moving away for the first time, there's enough to stress over before you even think about your new home - your student room. Most university dorms leave a lot to be desired for, especially if you're used to having your own beautiful space at home. However, there’s a few simple tricks which can transform the look of your student bedroom, and turn it from plain, boring box into cosy home from home.

These tips are a great way of transforming any bedroom using just accessories – so if you’re struggling with styling your house share, a rental property, or even your bedroom at your parents place, read on for budget ways to put your own stamp on your new place.

Five ways to transform your student bedroom:

Student bedroom trick no.1: Add plants

Adding some houseplants will work wonders in any room, and is the number one trick I use to transform the look of a space without any redecoration at all. Not only that but plants purify the air, so grab a couple of peace lillies (super easy to keep alive!) and they’ll help to clear your head the morning after a long night studying.

If, like me, you're not great at keeping plants alive then why not go faux instead? You can pick up some great looking artificial ones for bargain prices, which will still add a touch of colour to your room, and there’s no worry about killing anything off that way.

Student bedroom trick no.2: Use clever storage

Most college or university dorms will provide you with a wardrobe or chest of drawers (or both if you're lucky), however if storage is going to be limited it's probably a good idea to have a serious clear-out of any old clothes/belongings before you go. There's nothing less welcoming than a 'floordrobe' of clothes that don't fit anywhere else (trust me - I know this from experience!). I've shared my nine top decluttering tips here, but be brutal - do you really need to take everything you own with you?!

Once you’re there, and you’ve only taken the essentials you’ll probably need to get clever with storage. Maximise all space – under the bed, on top of the wardrobe and in/on your bedside table. Make sure every last inch of your storage is used up. The more you can get hidden away, the less you’ll have on show, meaning your room will feel less cluttered and spacious.

Student bedroom trick no.3: Double up your desk

This will probably be where you'll probably spend a huge amount of time, so should be somewhere that reflects your personality and you feel comfortable. Bringing your favourite cushion from home can spice up a boring desk chair, and using pretty folders and storage boxes to store your notes will brighten up any shelf.

Whilst some stylish stationary can often set you back, why not try transforming old boxes and folders by covering them with wrapping paper or wallpaper scraps?

If you’re short on space, making your desk work doubly hard is a good idea too. Why not use it as a dressing table when you’re not studying? Pop all your beauty bits in a storage box underneath meaning you can whip your make-up out and switch everything over when needed.

Student bedroom trick no.4: Dress your walls

Bare walls can often be a bit of a problem in student rooms, mine looked like a prison cell, not very welcoming when you’ve just waved your family off. So getting some decoration on the wall will make a huge difference. If the standard student posters isn’t your thing, how about adding some photos of your nearest and dearest? I’ve got some printed in polaroid form and slotted into a memo board, or you could string some up to drape across a wall.

Fairy lights are a great way of adding some warmth to a room, as well as creating a cosy atmosphere, or you could even make your own bunting to string up – my DIY no-sew tutorial is here.

Tip: Command strips are a great way damage-free way of fixing things to the wall if you’re not permitted to use anything else. 

Student bedroom trick no.5: Mirrors 

A mirror will create the feeling of having more space and bounce light around if positioned cleverly - perfect for small, poorly lit bedrooms. Place your mirror opposite a window to maximise light, and if fixing one to a wall is a no-go, why not prop one up on your desk or chest of drawers?

The mirror in my lounge is positioned directly opposite a window to allow as much light as possible into a small room

What are you tips for decorating a university dorm, and creating a home from home?

Thanks for reading,
Sam Xx


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