Sep 072005
Authors: Danielle Yuthas

What decorations/items can you use to make yourself feel more at home in the residence halls?

– Textured and colorful fabrics

– Mirrors

– Pictures of family and friend

– Images that portray the college environment

– Pictures that show depth and perspective

One small residence hall room is all some students have to call "home."

However, the small space does not mean it has to be another sterile box. By decorating with pictures, color and texture, any plain room can be turned into a cozy space unique to each person.

A study conducted by the CSU interior design department, found students' living environments have an impact on the way they adapt to their surroundings.

The study shows students who decorate their rooms with pictures of family and friends from home are likely to visit home more often and acclimate to college more slowly.

Conversely, those students who decorate their rooms with images that portray school and their new environment are likely to adapt to college faster and enjoy college life more.

For decorating tips, Stephanie Clemons, associate professor of design and merchandising, recommends texture and color. She said texture is found in bed spreads, rugs and pillows or by draping the ceiling with fabric.

To make the small space seem larger, Clemons recommends hanging mirrors, which can not only decrease the time roommates spend getting ready in the morning, but also create the illusion of more room.

Another way to visually increase the size of a room is to hang pictures that show depth and perspective. Reducing clutter also helps create a spacious look.

"Storage is essential," Clemons said.

In terms of color, she indicates teals and oranges are en vogue. Other tips are to use incandescent lights instead of fluorescent lights and for a soothing effect, add a small fountain.

Projects such as fixing-up secondhand furniture or painting can be done inexpensively and can create a completely new look.

Clemons said people gravitate to rooms that feel comfortable.

"Physical spaces make a difference in how people feel and how they view themselves as individuals," she said.

Abby McDonald, a junior design student, said she finds designating places for schoolwork, relaxation and dining encourages focus and increases functionality.

"It is best to separate your space into areas," she said.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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