Moving to college can be a bittersweet thing. For students going into their first year it’s exciting and scary, and it’s usually the first time they’re moving away from home. On-campus residence is a great way to make the leap because everyone is in the same situation. We’re excited for this new chapter in our lives, but inside we are on the verge of tears (or if you’re like me, you’re sitting on the front step literally crying like a baby).
Now I’m in third year, and I’ve found that one of the best ways to cope with moving to school is to organize your dorm room and to decorate it with items that help make it feel like home.
Step 1: Bin Organizers
Bringing bins with you not only is an easy way to pack all of your stuff, but they are also great for keeping things separate, organized and easy to find in your room.
In the wicker basket I keep lotions and toiletries that I use every day and need easy access to. In the black and white bin I keep my snacks (yes, I have a lot of snacks) and extra pantry items. Currently the small blue/beige bin is empty, and the large blue container has extra extension cords and extra paper, supplies and toiletries. In the drawers I have dresser organizing bins from Ikea to keep everything in its own place. I keep my laundry bin under my bed, and have a three-drawer plastic container with my printer sitting on top, which I use for keeping school-related things.
Step 2: Lamps
The lighting in residence buildings can be pretty ugly, and when I first moved in, I hated my room. I added a lamp to my desk, a night table and lamp beside my bed, and a Scentsy light on the window sill. It’s made a HUGE difference. Now my room feels warm and cozy at night, and I actually enjoy being in my room.
Plus, since residences don’t allow candles, the Scentsy provides a great substitute.
Step 3: Decor
Bringing the essentials makes for an easier move-in process, but in reality, you’ll be living in that room for 8 months. Packing some decorations will help your room to feel more homey rather than just a place to sleep.
Step 4: Pillows and Throws
In total I have six pillows in my room. Maybe it’s overboard, but I find it really comforting. Four of them are on my bed, and make for a really comfortable nest when I’m sleeping. One is my reading pillow which makes reading or watching TV in bed way more comfortable, and the last is a London themed pillow that I use on my desk chair because it helps me sit forward and upright while I’m working, but it is also really comfortable to sit back in. As for the throw, it’s just super nice to snuggle in to.
So, as you’ve probably noticed, none of these items are essential to bring with you! But they have really helped me feel happy and at home in residence. So in that sense, they are essential to me. Now all I have to do is add some pictures to the wall!
To everyone who has just finished their first weeks at school, have a fantastic year. I hope some of these tips will help you as much as they’ve helped me.