10 Things to Help You Feel at Home in Student Accommodation23/09/2016
We know it can be really daunting when you first arrive at your halls of residence. You’re far away from home, nothing is familiar and you miss your old bedroom.
Here at Downing, we strive to make our rooms as comfortable and cosy as possible so as to help our residents settle right in. However, if you could use a little extra help, take a look at these 10 things that’ll help you feel at home in your student accommodation.
1. Familiar music
Whether it’s your sacred collection of vinyls, a bunch of CDs or all digitalised and hidden away, having your favourite music with you will be a lifesaver at a time like this.
Even if it’s not on display, your music will provide you with a sense of comfort and belonging in your new surroundings. And if it does happen to be out there in physical form, it’ll be a great talking point when flatmates stop by.
2. Photos from home
Bringing photos of family and friends from home will remind you of the great people you already have in your life. As you gaze back at memories past, you’ll feel comforted and get excited about the memories you are yet to make.
Choose some interesting frames to add personality to your room, or better yet – custom-made montages that you or your friends might have made.
3. Non-study books
It’s a good idea to fill your room not just with course textbooks, but with non-study related books too. These could be your favourite novels, non-fiction books about topics you are interested in or books that hold sentimental value.
Having these around will help to reinforce your identity in a rapidly changing environment and keep your feet on the ground. They also make great talking points!
4. Traditional items from home
Having items around that remind you of your family or home town can be especially beneficial, particularly if you’re an international student. These can be ornaments, pictures, food or practical objects that say something about your roots and make you feel happy and comforted when you see or use them.
Again, these items make lovely talking points when hanging out with new flatmates and before you know it, they’ll all be begging you to bring them one back next semester!
5. Comfortable bedding
This is an obvious one, but making your bed feel as comfortable as possible is crucial, as it’s where you’ll be spending a lot of your time! Ensure you’ve got a cosy duvet and enough pillows that’ll help you get a good night’s sleep at night. A beautiful, colourful bedspread will also really brighten up the room and make jumping into bed all the more inviting.
6. Cushions and/or throws
Pad out your room with different colours and textures to give it character and make it feel welcoming. Cushions, throws and comforters can be bought rather cheaply from Primark, Argos and even supermarkets like Tesco and Asda, and will make a huge difference to your room.
7. Lamps/extra lighting
Brighten up any dull or shadowy corners with some colourful lamps, which are available in varying shapes and sizes from Ikea or Argos. These will help even the smallest spaces feel larger and can add a pleasant, warming glow to your room. Choose to match your desk lamp with your nightlight, or switch it up with an assorted collection. There are so many different types of lamps to choose from, from classic to funky to futuristic! Use it as an opportunity to add personality to your room.
8. A plant/some flowers
Having a small potted plant or vase of fresh flowers will give a lovely natural lift to your room – and your mood. Plants are known to encourage the oxygen flow in the room, boosting concentration and helping with focus, creativity, energy levels and your physical health.
Some pleasant fluffy rugs for both your bathroom and bedroom will help to soften those hard floors and add some warmth to your room. Again these can either be matching or eclectic, depending on your taste. Like a lot of other things on this list, these are friendly to the student budget yet make a big difference to your comfort and well-being.
10. Something that smells of ‘home’
Smell and scents have a powerful ability to connect us with strong memories. Have something in your room that will give you a pleasant reminder of home any time you need it – a jumper; throw; cushion; some pot-pourri or even a spray scent, soap or perfume will all work. You could even keep some fresh herb or spice plants in your kitchen which remind you of you your favourite home dish! Whatever it is, you’ll enjoy the feeling of comfort and nostalgia you’ll get every time you catch a whiff.