Picture this; you’re moving into university halls, struggling back and forth laden with boxes. You get to your room, set them all down and look around. You’re stood on a tiny island surrounded by carboard cubes, suitcases and the overwhelming feeling that you might have packed a little bit too much for your less than spacious room.
Okay, so maybe that’s a pessimistic take on the whole moving into uni experience. It won’t be that bad for everyone and I can assure you that not all the rooms are as tiny and dingy as people will lead you to believe.
(Some will be, though, and our thoughts and prayers go out to you because £3500 for a jail cell adjacent room is definitely a bit steep.)
But we’re here to tell you that you don’t need to stress or overpack. Whatever university you’re going to, and regardless of what halls of residence you’ve picked, we have a simple guide on how to pack only the essentials, but still have a comfy, homely, halls experience that suits your aesthetic.
Disclaimer: if you love clutter and mess, this isn’t the guide for you. This is about taking what you need, leaving things behind and moving forward. New Uni, New You.
Step 1: The first, and most important thing to remember when packing for university is that all of the things you leave behind aren’t things you lose. They’re still yours, just in a different area of the country.
Step 2: The second thing to remember is that these are only guidelines. They worked for me but they might not work for everyone. But, there’s no harm in trying and if you find it helpful it’s a useful trick to apply to a lot of things in your life.
Step 3: Pick a starting place. Whether it’s makeup, CD’s or trinkets, pick one thing to start with and focus on that first. Then go through each category using the same rules. (And be sure to check your uni residences guide on what you can bring. If it says no fairy lights then no fairy lights!
Step 4: Empty your chosen category onto the floor/ table/ bed/ surface. Spread it all out and have boxes on either side. You’ll need one box for Taking and one for Leaving.
Step 5: Pick up each item and think to yourself – Have I used this in the last 90 days and will I use it in the next 60? If the answer is no, leave it behind, or consider donating it. If it isn’t something necessary or something that gets much use, drop it like it’s …lukewarm. If it is something you’ve used then take it with you, since it’s likely helpful and you’re probably going to get more use from it.
Step 6: Commit. Commit, to not taking everything. If you aren’t sure, leave it behind.
Step 7: Repeat for CD’s/vinyls, posters, books, mini decorations.
Step 8: Pack everything away with newspaper and bubblewrap and be prepared to live your new minimalist lifestyle at university!
And no, I didn’t forget about clothes. Deciding what to take to university when it comes to fashion is never easy. Wardrobe staples, a few all-weather outfits and whatever you feel comfortable in are my basic words of advice. But this is a new place, so if you want to experiment with bold style, you do you!
For a different style here are a couple of asethtically pleasing Instagram accounts I like (see how there’s a theme with the colours and content? a e s t h e t i c )
And lastly, look out for a style mood-board coming your way with our 10 top tips for fashion basics.