By Caitlyn Ralph and Ryan Paice
As New College settled in to its fourth week of classes, students simultaneously settled in to their dorms. While some were clever with rearrangements, others have been crafty with innovative ideas. However, all students successfully transformed their originally undecorated dorms into cool, fun and enjoyable places to live.
“It has certainly made it more homey,” first-year Precious Grear said. After being de-tripled into a double assignment, she and her roommate utilized the furniture left behind in the room. The extra bed was converted into a comfy couch, the extra closet was converted into a space for cleaning supplies and the extra desk was converted into a quasi-kitchenette. They completed the space with paintings on the walls and plants on the balcony.
“It’s whatever makes you comfortable, whatever reminds you of home, try to add a little touch to it,” Grear continued.
If rearrangement is not really a possibility, there are other cheap and easy ways to add that homey accent to a dorm’s decor. A simple mason jar, sold in various sizes at most craft stores, can be turned into a unique pencil cup or small vase with some paint. Boring pillow cases can be reimagined with iron-on transfers and the common metal wastebasket can be flipped upside-down to fashion a mini side table, perfect for a small lamp or books. Cover cork board, also available any craft store, with fabric and a little ribbon to create a one-of-a-kind bulletin board. To find some extra display space, position photos (or any other flat memorabilia such as concert tickets or cards) on top of a desk and cover them with a clear piece of plastic. The workspace is not disturbed, but more memories are out on display.
First-year Annie Rosenblum stumbled across the neat concept of repurposing old milk crates.
“You should be able to get them for free, you can grab them from your local grocery store, so they’re affordable and economical,” Rosenblum said. While she plans to put records in her milk crate, Rosenblum acknowledges that they can be used for a variety of things, such as shoes, books, or storage (stack them into a makeshift shelf).
“Better than a stupid $30 container from Target,” Rosenblum continued. “Also, it just looks cool.”
However, for those students who have the ability to make major changes to their room, there is always the possibility of moving around the furniture.
“Students can arrange their rooms however they like as long as they do not block exits, and that they return the room to its original configuration when they move out,” said Mark Stier, associate dean of student affairs.
Third court residents might note that their faux-wood flooring is easy to scratch up and damage, but a hand truck can make moving heavy and potentially floor-damaging piece of furniture a safe and easy process.
When looking to create some extra space in the often-cramped triples, one can consider moving the armoires into closet space – if available – or removing some standard furniture.
“We do not allow furniture to be removed from an assigned location without permission,” Stier said, when asked about the removal of standard room furniture. “If a student has a request they may see Meghan Walde, CLC for Operations and Facilities, and she will determine what is permitted.”