With the new four-week lockdown, you’ll be spending a lot more time in your student house or halls of residence than you normally might. Having a space (even a limited one) that you can feel comfortable in and is nice and homely can be an important contribution to your overall wellbeing. A few new items here and there can make such a difference. Plus, if everyone in your house or flat is on board, you can share the costs so it doesn’t pinch your pocket too much!
So, here are a few of our tips for cosy-ing up your student digs...
Disguise any old fashioned or boring pieces of furniture
Lots of student properties tend to have old, worn out or clunky pieces of furniture (sofas, tables, shelves etc.) Just covering an old dusty leather armchair with a funky throw and a few scatter cushions can instantly improve the aesthetic of a room. You could also look at covering tatty or worn out carpets with cheap rugs and hall runners from places like Dunelm, and a chipped kitchen table with patterned wipeable tables cloths.
Houseplants, lots of them
Plants are known to be one of the most effective ways to make a room feel more homely, and they’ll refresh the oxygen supply as well. It can also be quite soothing to have a living thing in your room that you’re working to keep alive, without going so far as buying a fish (which might require a bit too much commitment). Look into houseplants that are very hard to kill: cacti, spider plants, jade plants (and many other succulents) are all plants that don’t mind a bit of neglect or overwatering here and there.
Arrange everything on a house calendar
You could use the SU wall planner (or invest in your own) to create a communal calendar for everyone in your household. Add everyone’s birthdays, special occasions, bills information and jot down all your deadlines so that everyone is on the same page and working together.
De-clutter your designated study space
Generally, most people find clutter distracting when they’re trying to focus on things. Use an old jam jar to collect all your pens or get a metal tray to keep all your books and paper in to free up some space. Don’t eat and leave food wrappers at your desk and find time to clean your room once a week and figure out what you do and don’t need in your study area. That way, you’ll leave enough time for studying and won’t have to waste precious minutes cleaning day after day.
Make the bathroom look as pleasant as you can
Whether you’re lucky enough to have an en-suite or you just feel like jazzing up your shared bathroom, it’s important to be comfortable in your surroundings. Nobody can really enjoy a nice shower in a questionable looking bathroom. Look at investing in a cheap bath mat to add a splash of colour. Sharing a bathroom with others also means lots of different products, so having suitable storage can instantly de-clutter the environment. Houseplants often thrive in bathrooms too due to the steam and can make a window shelf instantly more appealing.
Some student accommodation will include bedside lights, but most won’t. And no room looks cosy under the glare of a 40-watt overhead bulb, which might have a plastic lampshade if you’re lucky, or might just be bare. If you invest in nothing else, buy yourself some better lighting for your student room to get away from that clinical feel.