Accommodation at my college in Cambridge has its advantages and disadvantages. For me, the biggest advantage is that all of the accommodation is owned by the college, so I don’t have to worry about finding a house and negotiating contracts. Other perks include that all my energy bills and internet are included as well, as well as daily cleaning, so again less to worry about! At my college, you can either get a room in a ‘court’ – essentially a pretty building with lots of ‘staircases’, which tend to have around 10 rooms which all share a kitchen. All of the rooms are en suite within college, which is great if you have to make lots of midnight trips to the loo like me! It’s also really nice to be able to keep all of your shower stuff in the bathroom as well, because it makes it feel more like home. Before you arrive for first year freshers are randomly allocated a room within college.
For second and third year (and 4th-6th if you’re doing medicine), you have the option to either live within a college staircase, or in an external house owned by the college, which tend to be really close by to the college itself. I personally chose to live within college, as the rooms in houses don’t have en suites and the kitchens are more outdated, and you could potentially end up living in a basement! It also takes me less time to get to supervisions (which are held in rooms in college), caff (where you can get catered food) and the JCR (a set of rooms with tvs, a pool table and sofas where people go to chill out).
There are disadvantages to choosing a room within the college grounds though – because my college is very pretty, and the standard of the rooms is very good, the rooms are rented out over the holidays for business conferences, so I have to move all of my stuff out at the end of every term! For that reason, I don’t tend to pin too much stuff up on my pin board (which covers a whole wall in my current room!), as I’d just have to take it down again in 8 weeks! Saying that, some of my friends do have incredible collages of photos of their friends and families. There are, however, some things that I swear by to help my room feel a little bit more homely though:
I always have fresh flowers on my coffee table, it makes me feel more grown up, and brings a touch of life into my room! I tend to get a bunch of chrysanthemums or sweetheart roses from Sainsbury’s when I do my food shop, as they’re fairly cheap and last for ages. I keep them in this vase from Oliver Bonas, which I think is technically a carafe, but I love a touch of copper and it works well for flowers too.
I’m also addicted to candles, and have at least twenty around my room. My favourites are the wild mint candle from The White Company, the christmas candles from Diptyque, or any candle from Jo Malone. Although they are more expensive, I think they’re much better value for money in terms of scent pay off – I don’t even need to light them for them to scent the room!
My last tip that will quickly make any room feel more personal, and look put together, it to put lots of cushions, and a throw on the bed. I went for a mix of textures with a fairly neutral colour scheme so they’d work with some of the really bizarre wall colour choices I’ve had in my room so far. Cushions are also great for turning your bed into a sofa if you decide to host a movie night!
I think that’s all for now, sorry I was absent over the weekend, I had three essays due in and was completely drowning in work! I’d love to hear any tips you guys have for making your room feel more cosy?