Tres chic: Back-to-school in style

Well it’s that time of year again…. Back-to-school.

You may be heading off for your first year university or you could be starting another year of high school. Either way, you’ll need some decorating advice for that tiny dorm or apartment, and study space.

So here they are: My tips for settling into the new school year.

Are you starting university and dreading the tiny room you will soon call home?

“Oh, this isn’t too small,” you think as you walk into your new home …. Then you start unpacking and realize your space looks more like a cluttered closet than a bedroom. I have three words for this scenario: two-in-one. Probably the greatest combination of words you will ever hear while decorating. Buy furniture items that serve more than one purpose, such as an ottoman that can act as a nightstand or storage. These come in many shapes, sizes, colors and patterns, so your creative flair for decor isn’t limited. Have company and limited sitting space? These ottomans can act as an extra chair with the plush top.

Have you got a shopping problem like me? I swear I am the Rebecca Bloomwood of Calgary, or at least I was during my university days in Los Angeles. The closet in my dorm couldn’t even hold even a quarter of my items.  So how do you solve this issue? Hang a closet rod and instantly double the capacity of storage space. Put pants (guys and girls) skirts and dresses on the bottom and add ultra slim pant and suit hangers to maximize the number of items that can fit in the space.

Still need more room? Don’t forget to use the space under your bed instead of just letting it collect dust. A typical dorm bed takes up almost seven feet of space, but when you add bed risers to the feet you gain five inches of space…. Ta-Da…Extra storage. Even better: Bed risers now have outlets and USB chargers attached to them so you don’t need to use an ugly power bar or extension cord. To keep this area tidy, buy some plastic storage containers with pull-out drawers so they are easily accessible.

This is your home for an entire year, so own it. Add twinkle lights on your wall for extra light or to add a romantic ambiance. Include pops of color in your bedding, throws and pillows. You might not be able to paint your wall another color but you can always hang pictures in funky frames of your choice. Have fun with it!

Just in need of a homework space of your own? All you’ll need is a desk, accessories and some art.

I remember being in school and despising the mountains of homework I had to do after already spending seven hours in class. Not having a good space to work only adds to the feeling.

As Carrie Bradshaw put it, “having the right desk will get your mind flowing.” Desks come in many different styles so choose one that best suits you. Even if that means buying a plain white desk from Ikea, you can always spruce it up with a bold chair or use some coulourful and fun accessories. Rather than spending the money you can also freshen up an old desk with a little paint; one coat is all it takes to change that old wood desk into a trendy, bright new piece.

Don’t forget to accessorize your new space with school supplies. Pick up some pencil holders for your desk in a colour or pattern of your choice. Remember less is often more so avoid try to avoid too much clutter. Magazine folders work wonders for organization. Put books in them or use them to hide items you don’t want seen. A few of these along the side of your desk should do the trick.

Finally, add some inspiration with posters or pictures. Grab some pin boards and attach them to the wall above your desk. You can pin your homework or school schedule on it along with photos of friends and family. If you make the area enjoyable, chances are you won’t fell so resentful when homework time comes around.

Until next time,



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