Culture uncategorized

Bedroom Culture

Image: Shaniece O'Keeffe

As students, we use our bedroom as an opportunity to express exactly what want to say about our personalities. It is also about creating another piece of home to take with us as we embark on this journey to a young adult in the working world. We are still far from normality, so our space is more important now than ever before. We have gathered 4 students and a discussion on specific objects that they love which showcases their personal identity, in exactly how they want it be.

words by: Zahra Nadeem Ahmed

After having been at Cardiff for nearly three years now and moving in and out of three different houses, I know that my uni home is not going to be a permanent area of residence. However, after three years of intense room decorating and Pinterest searching I have found my niche that allows my uni space to feel a little bit more like my own: PLANTS. I know there is often a brown, dried and mouldy cactus beside each student bed in Cardiff, but that’s not what I am referring to. My plants provide me with a sense of real adulthood that I didn’t really have before. If I know I can (mostly) look after three pot plants it gives me the assurance to some degree that I can also look after myself. With my parents’ home being filled with all varieties of shrubbery, having these three green guys in my room reminds me of home more than any photo or poster ever could.

This was my latest purchase and was acquired through a late night of scrolling through my Instagram explore page. Controversially, it was bought online but so far it seems to be doing well!

I felt that having made a mandatory house trip to Ikea a Hanging Ivy was a necessity in my room décor. I am still getting to grips with the care of this plant. Hopefully, through my perseverance it will make it to the end of the year.

Finally, there is my beauty station plant which was bought after a trip to Eartha. It was a very spontaneous purchase but has provided an excellent backdrop to my morning makeup routine.

words by: Shaniece O’Keeffe

Students will be now spending most of their time in their bedrooms as lectures are all online as well as seminars for many courses with a few exceptions. So returning to university under the current circumstances required a lot of rethinking for how I wanted to decorate my bedroom. For me it was about having a clear study space, this was vital for my studies. I am not one of those students who can turn up to lectures in bed having woken up 5 minutes before, I like to replicate what I would have done before the pandemic minus the 20 minute walk to lectures. The space around me needs to be tidy and my desk clear so that I have a clear head and ready for the day. My studying space is important to me, but equally, how I decorated my room to make it represent myself. Books, plants and music was how I styled my room and showed my personality off. Music and reading are such a big part of my life, as I destress listening to my vinyls or reading a book before bed, which has a positive effect on my mental health. Along with posters I bought from small independent businesses the small touches really make my student accommodation feel like my own space and somewhere I wouldn’t mind spending my time, making it feel like home.

I stare deep into my cup of coffee each morning as the Welsh rain trickles itself across the windowpane, thinking to myself; how did we end up here? It certainly is an understatement to say that we are all living in such unpredictable times, however that is not to say that we haven’t had the perfect opportunity to self-educate and create, even if that is from the comfort of our bedrooms. The bedroom has become much more than a place where we sleep and more of a blank vessel where we can project our personalities further. Personally, it has been my abundance of wall posters that have served as a second oxygen during these difficult times. The personal company I receive from David Bowie, Uma Thurman, and Bjork (just to name a few) provide such reassurance that today is going to be a good day, even when I am my most unoptimistic. The atmosphere I have curated has further aided me in excelling further with regards to my education. I find myself to be a more organised individual with a new approach to notetaking, where the use of bright colours and the physicality of writing by hand have fuelled my critical perspective and broadened the attitude I project towards my studies. In an obscure way, the sheltered lifestyle we have all adapted has revealed much about our attitudes to everything existing in the outside world. Though I am still longing for those gates to be reopened, and we can be free.  

words by: Rowan Davies

If I was in first year and found out I had to do a year of online learning I would have immediately dropped out, no word of a lie. My first year room was not the one – it was small, got no natural light and I used it as somewhere to sleep and nothing more, instead spending all of my time in the shared kitchen. Luckily, two years down the line I’m living in a nice flat with bigger rooms and I’m no longer scared of sticking things to the walls with bluetack (shout out to my landlord, sorry dude).

I’m now living up to all sorts of uni room stereotypes that I never really met in first year – I’ve got stacks of books that I’ll never get a chance to read alongside my course readings (cries) and a houseplant that I’ve miraculously managed to keep alive for over a year. I never use my desk and instead use my bed as a workspace (catch me attending every lecture this year in my pyjamas), and I never use my overhead light and instead, would’ve opted for a variety of lamps around the room (I’m yet to buy myself a set of fairy lights but I’m sure I’ll get there). To top it off I’ve got a string of homemade bunting to make my zoom background that little bit more interesting; at this rate who needs Pinterest?

words by: Maya Deane