Study up on your dorm room dec­o­rat­ing

The Palm Beach Post - Residences - - Front Page - Joseph Pu­bil­lones

I’ve got two years to go un­til my 16 year old is off to col­lege. Some­times I don’t know if I’m ac­tu­ally look­ing for­ward to those quiet days or if I will lan­guish in de­pres­sion like my puppies ev­ery time they see me pack a bag. Go­ing off to school is an ex­cit­ing time for most col­lege stu­dents. Part of the ex­cite­ment and ner­vous­ness is living on your own or with a room­mate for the first time in your life.

While dorm rooms are renown for their bare bones ap­proach to living, most stu­dents like to dec­o­rate their rooms. Some will stick to the generic posters, ban­ners and col­le­giate decor of beer bot­tle can­dle­hold­ers and a composition of mis­matched sheets and ran­dom pil­lows. Most col­lege-age in­di­vid­u­als are not able to rec­og­nize any ef­fort that goes into putting a “tem­po­rary home” to­gether, but be­lieve me, par­ents: the mo­ment you’ve said your good­byes and closed the doors, the long­ing for home will come call­ing. My sug­ges­tions may di­min­ish those pangs.

As we all come from dif­fer­ent back­grounds, ev­ery­one’s ideas of com­fort and home are dif­fer­ent. First and fore­most, it is ex­tremely im­por­tant to con­sult your room­mate about their likes and dis­likes. Tak­ing into ac­count your room­mates wishes will al­le­vi­ate fu­ture is­sues. Ask your room­mate for their opin­ion and whether they have pre-pur­chased any items for the room. If the an­swer is no, all the bet­ter — you can buy match­ing items for your room.

What­ever color your dorm room is painted, should be a point of de­par­ture for your decor scheme. In my opin­ion, it is safe to say whether your walls are a drab bat­tle­ship gray or mousy manila color, ac­ces­soriz­ing with white will be a knock­out com­bi­na­tion. I would also rec­om­mend adding an­other color as an ac­cent.

Stor­age in a small room is enor­mously im­por­tant. In a small space there is not enough room to have cloth­ing and other items thrown on the floor or about. Stor­age and or­ga­ni­za­tion go hand in hand in. Find space or bor­row space un­der beds, above chair sills and be­hind doors.

Cre­at­ing some sense of pri­vacy is tricky in a shared bed­room; my sug­ges­tion in tight­fit­ting spa­ces is to try and di­vide the space with some screen. This can be ac­com­plished by run­ning a floor to ceil­ing fab­ric panel down the mid­dle. This will give you the op­por­tu­nity to stay up and read while the other sleeps. If the room is large enough, I would also cre­ate canopies for each bed us­ing PVC pipes and king-sized sheets in a pat­tern. This will give the room a dec­o­rated feel, and again, these fab­ric pan­els can be closed to en­close the bed for pri­vacy.

Tak­ing pride of your space: as tem­po­rary as it may be, says a lot about the in­di­vid­ual oc­cu­py­ing it. Dec­o­rat­ing your dorm room can ex­press your sense of cre­ativ­ity and pri­vacy, and it should make you feel se­cure as if you were home.


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