How to turn your dorm into your new home
A new school year always brings so many changes, it can be a lot to take in on its own but when you add the fact that you’re also getting settled into a new country, a shared space with peers from all over the world, and the prospect of speaking a different language than you did at home, it’s a lot of change all at once.
So whether you’re feeling a bit homesick or just want to feel more centered in your new space, here are some effective ways to make your dorm room feel more like home.
You’re probably used to the harsh overhead lighting that fills spaces like classrooms and offices, but you don’t have to stick with it in your dorm room. If you want your space to feel more like home, you’ve got to find the right ambiance. The best way to do that is to add soft lighting so your space feels peaceful and ready for you to kick back and relax after a long day of studying.
When you’re far away from your friends or family, having photos of them around can help you cheer up when you’re feeling homesick. Having photos of loved ones or favorite places can help make your dorm feel a little more familiar and comfortable.
Choose comfortable bedding
Living in a dorm requires you to make the most of what’s available to you. You don’t get to choose the frame or the mattress, so you might need some time to adjust and find what makes it most comfortable for you. There are plenty of things you can add to make your space feel cozier like a nice comforter and plenty of soft pillows. If you’d like your bed to be softer, you can always invest in a thick memory foam topper or a fluffy body pillow.
Add elements of home
While the purpose of studying abroad is to make yourself cozy in a new space, having a few elements from your home country can help balance things out and make your space feel more like your own. Add a few things from home that make you feel happy and keep you connected. Whether it’s a few of your favorite books or an article that reminds you of your favorite place from your neighborhood, it helps to keep familiar little trinkets around.
Select a soundtrack
A new space can be made infinitely better by selecting the right background noise. Few things change the tone of a room like music, so it’s worth investing in a way to keep the jams playing – whether it’s your laptop, a portable speaker, or a proper stereo system. If you have a roommate, create some playlists of your favorite music together. It’ll make you both feel at home and it gives you the chance to bond over any shared music interests.
Carpets and tapestries
Most dorm rooms start off looking the same – plain white walls, simple flooring, overhead lighting. You’re not able to change the paint color or add wallpaper but you can always add texture and color with some other details. A great way to add some dimension to an otherwise dull wall is with a tapestry, especially when there’s some variety in the design. You can play off of these elements with a nice rug or curtains that add another element of interest to the decor.