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Design Tips for your Student Room

Most student rooms are inspired by little more than a concrete shoebox, so when you move to university finding a way to add a personal touch to your space is so important. After all it’s where you’ll spend a lot of time, and you’re going to want to feel at home during those long days spent studying sleeping off hangovers.

Here are some cheap and easy design tips that will make your student room instantly better (without annoying your landlord!)

Print Your Memories

University is all about fresh starts and new experiences, but that doesn’t mean you can’t bring a bit of the old with you.  Print a selection of your favourite photos (they're not just for Instagram you know) and display them on your wall to add a personal touch to your room. Most photo print services like Snapfish  and SnappySnap let you upload your photos from your phone or social media accounts and have offers for first-time users, so it's such a cheap and easy way to make your new room more homely.

Decorative Lighting

Lighting will go a long way in transforming your student room from dull dungeon to boudoir chic. Fairy lights or string lights are an obvious port of call and add a really cosy touch when wrapped around the bed frame. For something a little different, a nice desk or floor lamp like this Cinema Light Box will also light up your room with a homely touch.

Shop Decorative Lighting at Utility 

Hang Photos From Your Lighting

If you’ve taken the plunge and gone for fairy lights, why not hang some photos off the strings? All you need is clips or pegs (the ones off your Mum will do- washing will be a rare occasion) to create a personal wall display that will light up the room.

Sunday feels ? #UOHome #UOGoals

A photo posted by H a y l e y ? (@hwil9598) on

Home Fragrance

Nothing says cosy like a scented candle, but in most student halls they’re actually considered a fire hazard. A few alternatives for infusing a lovely fragrance into your room are diffusers, room spray or incense sticks (if allowed). Even some simple air freshener will do the trick.

Shop Scented Candles & Diffusers at Utility

R o ?✨ G o d a f t e n ?

A photo posted by Louise Torp (@homebyise) on

Invest in Good Bed Linen

If there’s one thing you should use your student loan to splash out on it's bed linen. Your bed is the easiest way to add colour to a room, especially because in most accommodation it takes up the most space. Your bed is also where you'll spend a lot of your time so you need to feel comfortable. If you can, invest in a cotton-rich set, as cotton is by nature more soft and breathable than polyester. Anything with a thread count of about 200 will feel great against the skin.

Check out The Independent's 2016 Guide to The Best Single Bedding for Students- starting at under £10.00!

We'll just be here until further notice. ☁️ #UOonCampus

A photo posted by Urban Outfitters (@urbanoutfitters) on


Stock up on Pillows

Your bed is practically your sofa in Halls, so pile it up with cushions for chaise-lounge vibes. By making it less like a bed and more like a couch, you'll create a comfy and inviting space to relax in when you're not sleeping- perfect for when you just want to chill or have friends over.

Extent of resume: made Buzzfeed's top trending post about 14 best dorm rooms ✨

A photo posted by Caroline Neupauer (@cneups) on

Wall Decor 

Walls are one of the easiest places to put your own spin on a room- they're like a blank canvas for your creativity. Luckily there are loads of ways you can spruce up your walls without leaving any marks or dents. Tapestry, posters, confetti dots and wall decals are just some ways to add character to dull walls.

Shop Wall Decor at Utility

Washi Tape 

Landlords don't have the best of reputations- especially when it comes to returning your deposit. Washi Tape is therefore a God-send when trying to put your own spin on a room without causing any marks/damage. Washi Tape is reusable, repositionable and doesn't damage paint, so it's great for decorating shelves, accessories or sticking up prints- there's so much you can do with this simple, cheap accessory.

Shop Washi Tape at Utility

Recycle Old Bottles

Wine isn’t just for drinking. Turn empty glass bottles into vases, candle holders, light jars or decorative pieces for your desk. These DIY projects from BuzzFeed are a good place to start.

Wardrobe Storage

Don't underestimate how small your wardrobe might be. Your parents will tell you to take less clothes, but why do that when there's so many cheap solutions for enhancing your storage space? Depending on how much stuff you have you'll find that things like a shoe rack, over the door hooks, scarf/accessory organisers, storage hangers and maybe even a small clothes rail will come in handy.

Shop Wardrobe Storage at Utility 

Sprucing ma room up. ?? #clothesrail #suchfun #ace #roomdecor

A photo posted by Sam Marshall (@samjx.m) on

Storage Boxes

You may also find that your room is not equipped with as many shelves and drawers and you'd like. Over the door storage is a great way of saving space, but otherwise you'll probably need a few storage boxes for under your bed or in the corners of your room. Try and get ones that fold or are small enough to transport as this will come in handy if you move into housing in second year.

The Muuto Restore Storage Basket featured below is available at Utility. Buy now.

Home Accessories

Luckily your student room will be  furnished with everything you need- the only problem is that it's furnished exactly the same as every other room in the building.  Home accessories like plant pots, pen pots, ceramics, candles, mirrors, desk tidies, and other little pieces are a great way to show off your individuality in your room- and it's the small details that make a difference anyway!

Shop Home Accessories at Utility 

Good Morning Sunday ? #mywestwingstyle @westwingde

A photo posted by I N T E R I O R D E S I G N (@lifetimepieces) on

Tidy Desk, Tidy Mind

Despite its reputation, first year isn't just for drinking and sleeping. You will have work to do, and you'll want a nice desk to do it on. Investing in some nice stationery and desk accessories will come in handy when you get round to doing those essays and studying for exams.

Feeling inspired? Check out our top 10 home accessories for your student room 

Shop Student Living at Utility 

How's your student room looking? We'd love to see on Facebook or Twitter 

Time for more? Decorating With White | Office Styling For The Harvey Spector Look 

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