Your Home Away From Home

When I moved into my dorm room freshman year, it was the first time I was living away from home. The room I moved into with 3 other new students was a blank slate filled with impersonal bunk beds and desks and dressers. By the time the year was over, the room felt like it was my home away from home, and I was sad to pack up all my things and leave the room behind. Living in my dorm room now, I know I'll feel the same way about leaving this room.

Having a room that I can come back to and feel comfortable and relaxed in has been a very important part of me being a successful student and having good mental health. So I thought I should share some advice on what I've done to create a space that is welcoming.

If you want to see photos of my room, and a little interview I did about living in Manzanita, you can check out this insta post on the L&C Instagram 

  • Lights 
    • Most dorm rooms just have fluorescent lights that aren't the most pleasant, so putting up your own christmas lights or rope lights can be a nice replacement. I personally really like having christmas lights strung criss-cross across the ceiling and then at night it feels like stars
  • Photos 
    • Especially in my first year of school, it was really comforting and made my room homier when I had photos of friends and family up. It also gives the room nice character, and whenever I have friends over they wind up asking question about the photos, and it's a nice feature to have in my room 
  • Posters and tapestries 
    • Coming into a dorm room with bare walls can be kind of sad, but coming into a space that has charming tapestries and posters that you like is can be really nice. If you want to go for a simpler look, tapestries can be great to add some color but not be too overwhelmingly busy. Add some posters for accents, and it's a complete look. Posters are also nice because it's easy for each roommate to have their unique wall decor, but you can coordinate it a little to give the room a consistent feel. 
  • Carpet
    • The carpet in the dorm rooms is pretty nice, but I've really enjoyed having a nice soft carpet to add to the room, it helps personalize the space a bit more. And when you want to give up on homework for a bit and flop down on the floor it gives you a soft place to lay. 
  • Command Hooks, Zip Ties, Duct Tape, and Cardboard 
    • Even if you're room is only temporarily your space, and you're not allowed to permanently modify it, there are still tons of ways to customize it temporarily. I've made lots of little additions or modifications to my dorm using only cardboard boxes held together with tape- like little nightstands and shelves, and if you throw some fabric on top, it actually turns out looking pretty good too. Zip ties and command hooks are also great for hanging things like lights, or even keeping extension cords and power strips out of the way or in convenient places 
  • Books and displaying usefull things
    • When you have a relatively small space, sometimes it's nice to embrace your useful things as decorations. Bookshelves filled with school books are always a nice accent in a room but don't feel afraid to display your dishes, your stickered up water bottles, your tea or coffee, or even your school supplies as pieces of your room too. Embrace the small space, as long as things are organized neatly, it will look pretty good.
  • Shelving 
    • I have two of my own little metal wire shelves that I've brought into my room for extra storage, and they've been really helpful for storing extra stuff like food, dishes, cleaning supplies, and things that I want to access regularly but that don't really work to put into drawers. I would recommend some shelved to help with organization and to give ou more flexibility
  • Organization 
    • Speaking of organization, the biggest thing that I've found is that as long as I try to keep things relatively tidy, I'll be happy in my room no matter what. 
Going off to college for most first years is the first time that you really get to come into a new space and personalize it as your own, and I have really enjoyed that aspect of college life. 

If you have any questions or want to chat about life at LC, please just email me a