As a student, it can be difficult to find the money to make what can often be a shabby-around-the-edges room into something homely and comfortable. I absolutely love my room now, but at the beginning, it looked bare and cold. Here are a few tips to bring cosiness to student accommodation (or any room on a budget).
Not particularly mind-blowing, but photos don’t have to be in frames. I got these photos from Snapfish, when they were offering 100 free prints if you ordered 50: much cheaper than going into a photo shop and much less tedious than watching my average printer struggle on expensive glossy paper. Last year I arranged them in a haphazard way, this year in my new room I’ve gone for some funky geometric shapes, and a cheeky Z just in case I forget what an awkward letter my name begins with.
I absolutely love having a noticeboard close by just to stick anything up that I think I might need later, and I have a few scattered around my room. This little one has a few pretty things on, including a gorgeous ‘Le Petit Prince’ envelope which my Mum hand-painted and posted to me in first year. My large one is mostly for ticket stubs of theatre shows I’ve seen this year, as well as a few cinema tickets and other places I’ve visited. Plain corkboard can get a bit boring though, and I don’t have any paint at uni, so I decided instead to take a visit to Homebase, and pensively browse the wallpapers (i.e. tear off samples of the very prettiest ones and leave having bought nothing).
And the piece de resistance is a gorgeous ribbon board my fantastic Mum made to cover up the rather unsightly fireplace (and to help plug the draft). She used a piece of wood, some wadding, matching ribbon and some attractive fabric, and attached with a staple gun, making sure to keep the tension in the ribbon. Add a few buttons, and you’re done!
Displayed on this lovely piece I’ve got cards people have sent me, a portrait of me drawn by my lovely boyfriend and a couple of important bits and bobs.
I am so excited by the prospect of washi tape getting bigger in the UK. My housemates see me as almost synonymous with the stuff as I just have so many rolls, but it’s so versatile! The great thing about it is, just like masking tape, it doesn’t leave any marks, which means no scrubbing blutac marks at the end of the year. And it’s so much prettier than both blutac and masking tape, adding a little ‘je ne sais quoi’ to my walls.
Perhaps where my slightly more expensive taste comes in, but candles go a long way to making a room homely. I have a fair few Yankee ones, which aren’t the cheapest choice, but they do last for absolutely ages, wiping the floor with cheaper copies. Having said that, the red one in the middle is an Ikea number, costing only a quid I think, and it’s doing alright! Under my big candle is a cute vintage doily.