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Around and About: Welcome to my Humble Abode

March 16, 2014

Tinni Bhattacharyya ’16

One of the reasons I have enjoyed living in a dorm at Oberlin is the experience of choosing a space to build a home in with my friends. Last semester I felt great about living with all my closest friends, so when over winter term one of my roommates moved out of our quad suddenly it felt like there was this hole in this home that I'd built with my friends. And that happens sometimes. You see, I was really lucky with my roommate freshman year because she turned out to be one of my closest friends who I see almost as a sister and still live with. So it took me a while to realize that living with someone isn't always easy, but just because you aren't great roommates doesn't mean that you can't still be great friends. But suddenly over winter term half of my room was emptied and it felt like I was living in a room that wasn't completely mine anymore. So I spent a lot of my winter term building a new world in my room that felt more like home.

Since I've had a lot of visiting prospies ask me about dorms and how they envision them being really cold and barren, I just wanted to share my little nest with all of you to show you how you can really make your room a warm and cozy place to grow in.

Photos are a great way to personalize your room. While I took a lot of photos first semester freshman year, I really missed having old photos to look back on. So when I went home over winter term last year, I brought back a lot of photos from my childhood of my family and friends, and it's nice to have them up and integrated into this new home of mine.

It's always nice to have a little corner where you can sit down with some tea and a book. Since I was too lazy (too broke) (too stingy) to buy a rug, I just put down an extra bed sheet that basically functions as a rug. My friends all make fun of me by calling this spot my "zen corner," but I just love sitting on the floor and I'm always a bit suspicious of the old carpets in East...

It's also a great idea to have some snacks stored in your room. I highly suggest stocking up on teas, instant oatmeal (the love of my life!), hot chocolate, and something that reminds you of home (my mom sent me all these yummy Indian snacks!).

Whenever people hear that I live in East, they make the "oh, I'm so sorry that sucks"-face which is totally uncalled for because I really love my quad. But I've found that it's useful to give your home a name sometimes, so I always tell people about how East isn't that bad because I have a wonderful "love nest" or "cuddle jungle." I feel like it just magical-izes my room so that whenever I walk into my cuddle jungle, I can enter my own little world in Oberlin. So while dorm rooms may seem dull and restrictive, they present you with four walls that you can play with and make your own! So if you would ever like a magical place to escape to, let me know and you can come over and visit my cuddle jungle!

Responses to this Entry

I love your room decorations! Love them! I also adore the zen corner. My roomie first year procured a beautiful batik that we used as a rug that covered most of our floor, and it stuck with me for the three years I lived in Harkness. (Make it your own, oh how we did!)

In my room junior year, Harris and I had an entire section of our shared dresserspace thing dedicated to mugs, tea cups, and our kettle, and there was a WHOLE drawer underneath it that held a bazillion types of tea. It was very important to us.

Also, a potentially strange question: where did you get that scarf rack? Because I'm almost 100% sure my friend had the same one here in Oberlin and I'm pretty sure he recently gave it to the free store for some awesome human to use instead.

Posted by: Ma'ayan on March 17, 2014 12:42 PM

Cuddle jungle! Eeee! I use a lot of the same strategies to make my room cozy (floor pillows; draping fabric everywhere; lights; blissfully overstocking on tea). I also do this thing where I have a certain amount of posters that I put up in sort of an aesthetic framework at the beginning of the year, and then I add things to my walls as they happen - posters for shows that I saw, a LOT of postcards, pictures, tickets, doodles, origami, whatever. Sophomore year, my roommate and I put up a person-sized piece of butcher paper and had everyone who visited us draw something, and then by the end of the year we had a lovely colorful guest book of sorts. :)

Posted by: Ida on March 17, 2014 1:35 PM

Tinni I totally dig your cuddle jungle (and the name also!)! My favorite part of your space is the photos-I'm sentimental about ways to integrate home and campus and photos is definitely the best way to do it. Also, your cuddle jungle is super cute too :)

Posted by: Alex on March 25, 2014 8:24 PM

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