Dorm Hacks:

How to turn your drab, rectangular abode into a cozy place to live.

UW-Eau Claire
Feb 5, 2015 · 3 min read

By Nicole Lanzer

Dorm life is undeniably one of the greatest parts of the college experience. These four years make up the only time in our lives where we’ll have the opportunity to be surrounded by people, living in a community, and sharing a space — and perhaps a few other things — with one another. While this style of living is certainly both fun and unique, my roommate Elsa and I know there are certain factors that separate a good dorm from an AMAZING dorm. We’ve discovered that with these simple tips and tricks, any student can turn their drab, rectangular abode into a cozy, comfortable and welcoming place to live.

Beware of the bare floor:

Nothing is more uninviting than waking up from a pleasant slumber and stepping onto cold, hard tile. Purchasing a good carpet or area rug will create a space that’s warmer, comfier and more resembles a home away from home.

NEVER use the overhead lights:

Be sure to invest in a variety of lamps, string lights and other forms of illumination to avoid using the harsh overhead light (A.K.A. Hospital lights). These alternative light sources will completely transform the character of the room, creating ambiance and an atmosphere that is quite pleasing.

Avoid wall nakedness:

Nobody is attracted to plain white walls. Any dorm room will benefit from a combination of pictures, posters, drawings, and — for the ultra-crafty — creations devised from clothespins, twine, and burlap.

Evade the stench:

Living in a small, cramped space can often bring about a variety of undesirable odors. Since candles are not permitted in the residence halls, many choose to generate a pleasant-smelling environment with scented diffusion sticks, wax warmers and even powdered carpet deodorizers.

Leave the door open:

Dorm life means living with and around other people 24–7. The best way to get to know the other students who will be sharing the same bathroom as you and adhering to the same quiet hour policies is to be approachable and welcoming. Leaving the door open expresses excitement for living in community and encourages fellow floor mates to stop by for a chat.

See what else residence life at UW-Eau Claire has to offer you.

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    Why UW-Eau Claire?

    A collection of stories designed to make you fall in love with one of the best universities in the Midwest. Learn more about us at

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