10 ways to make your shared space more personal

Sabrina Martinez

As if being away from home isn’t hard enough, living in a room with nothing but a bed and beige walls can make you feel pretty lonely. Plus, It’s hard to find personal space in a shared room.

Adding a couple of these items will spice up your home away from home and give your room — or at least your side — a unique feel. Enlist your roommate to help you create a cohesive look, it’s fun and will bring you closer. Be careful though, your comfy new place may turn you into a homebody.  

1. Create your own gallery

Printing out favorite photos of places or familiar faces not only covers up wall space but it also eases your homesickness. Photo centers such as Walgreens, CVS and Paraboo offer cheap ways to print the photos that you love. You can string them together or even frame them using washi tape to add more pizzazz.

2. From bare to bold

Cover most of your wall space with bigger pieces such as canvases, posters or tapestries. This adds flare to your room and makes the space feel less like a hospital or jail cell. Shop for art from your local vendors or from websites like Society6, Urban Outfitters or Amazon, there’s something for everyone! Be sure to check with your residence hall or apartment complex for rules and regulations on large wall art.

3. Restroom restoration 


Your Motel 6-looking dorm restroom doesn’t have to look so janky. Bold or warm colors will ease the pain of getting ready in the morning. Brighten up the compact fluorescent space with a new shower curtain, decorative towels or a colored bath mat. Your restroom will look go good you won’t want to leave.

4. Momento museum

Adding a couple of trinkets from home can make your space feel a little more you. Snow globes, picture frames, mugs, old concert tickets or any other small novelty pieces not only decorates your space but gives you a little piece of home to hold onto.

5. Anything but basic bedding

Bedding is actually a big deal. A good night’s sleep depends on your comfort level. When choosing bedding, it’s best to look for a duvet option. It is thinner in size but fits easier in the washer and dryer. Duvets come in many styles to match your personality and style. Adding a mattress topper to your plastic pad could help you fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.

6. Diffusers

Diffusers use water and scented essential oils and can improve your overall mood, stress level and smell of the room. Add some drops of lavender oil in a diffuser during hell week to stay relaxed. There are many scents to choose from each with its own benefits.

7. DIY Projects

If you are procrastinating, search pinterest for each DIY products that you can make for your dorm room. Anything from dream catchers to painted letters just make it your own! Anything and everything you find can be repurposed, just take it and make it your own. Art and crafting relieves stress and is a great way to showcase your personality. These pins can change the way you see storage and design.

8. Get some greenery

Succulents are easy to take care of and really bring a room to life. Plop some succulents by your window and don’t even worry about watering everyday. Succulents usually need to be watered once a week or once every two weeks. Flowers On The Fly drops by campus every thursday from 12 to 4 pm and various locations throughout Austin the rest of the week.

9. Colorful rugs

The bare flooring in rooms make the space feel empty. Opt in for a medium-sized colorful rug to bring more warmth to the room. Fluffy rugs add sitting space for guests or sleeping space for your casual drifter.

10. Mood Boards

Everyone could use a little inspiration in their room. Set fitness goals, find motivational sayings or use anything that speaks to you to create a mood board. Use pictures, magazines, drawings or anything else to find to create a one of a kind piece that you can change up every month or add to like a collage. Get inspo here.