Dorm Tours

This Commuter Student Gave Her Childhood Bedroom a Grown-Up Glow Up for College

published Jul 6, 2023
Home Type
House (off-campus)
Las Positas College
Livermore, California
Square feet
Sq ft
Light filled dorm room with neatly made grey upholstered bed.
Credit: Raniya Fatteh

Sociology major Raniya Fatteh commutes to Las Positas College from her childhood home, where she has her own bedroom and en-suite bathroom that she updated to feel more grown-up.

Credit: Raniya Fatteh
Hipiwe Gold Perfume Tray, $20.99, at Amazon

Raniya’s Space

Tell us about where you live: I live with my family and have lived in this house my entire life; this is my childhood bedroom. I love how I was able to transform it into a functional and cozy space for studying, getting ready, sleeping, and reading, while still preserving the essence of my childhood by keeping trophies, baby pictures, and small knickknacks that I have had since I was born.

Credit: Raniya Fatteh
Freddie Mercury Live Wall Poster, $9.99, at Amazon; signed Wallows poster at Amoeba Music

Raniya’s Style

Define your personal decor style: Very creative, practical, and “me.” I have posters of some of my favorite bands and artists because I love listening to music. I put up plants and greenery because I love nature and flowers. I also have shelves filled with items that represent my childhood, like photo albums and gifts that I have received over the years. I also love to travel, so there are little souvenirs from different places I’ve traveled to. I’ve also been getting a lot of inspiration from TikTok lately.

Credit: Raniya Fatteh
Dresser at West Elm (similar option); Love-KANKEI Jewelry Tree Stand, $19.99, at Amazon; mirror at local boutique

What’s your favorite element of your space? My favorite element of my room is my photo wall, which takes up a whole wall of my room and basically represents my entire life in photos. I have pictures of friends, family, and vacations, as well as photos of my favorite artists, TV shows, movies, and quotes from some of my favorite songs. I created it out of boredom during the pandemic, but I continue to change up the pictures to make sure it’s constantly up to date and representative of my life at the moment.

What is your room best known for? My space is extremely versatile. Obviously, it’s where I sleep, get ready, and chill. But I also use it for studying, hanging with friends, and doing cozy movie nights in bed.

Credit: Raniya Fatteh

Raniya’s Budget

In an effort to remove the stigma associated with talking about money in college, we’re asking students to share how they plan and budget for their space.

Cost of housing per semester: $0, as I live with my family.

Credit: Raniya Fatteh
Barossa Design Fabric Shower Curtain, $13.99, at Amazon; acrylic tray at Target

Do you have anyone helping to fund your housing? My parents.

How much did it cost to decorate your space? I recently redecorated and it cost about $200.

Credit: Raniya Fatteh
Opalhouse Lidded Glass Jar Candle Crystal Flora, $10, at Target; nightstand at West Elm; white artificial flowers at Target; lamp at Target

What was your biggest splurge for this space and how much did it cost? My West Elm headboard, which was $600. (Here’s a similar option.)

What was your best budget find for this space, and how much did it cost? My fuzzy bench, which was about $100 when I got it.

Credit: Raniya Fatteh
Faux Fur Rectangle Bench, $189.99, at Target; cat pillow at Urban Outfitters

Raniya’s Advice

What’s your biggest challenge in your dorm room? Because I’ve had this bedroom since childhood, I found it difficult to distinguish what to keep in my room as an ode to my childhood, and what to replace with stuff that resonates with who I am today. For example, as I got older, I started getting into makeup and didn’t know how to create a space for that. I decided to add a makeup corner on my desk and made it an area of my room where I not only did school work, but also could get ready every day. Additionally, in order to keep special memorabilia from my childhood, I created a memory box that I could keep under my bed to store anything I didn’t want to take up space in my room but still wanted to hold onto.

Credit: Raniya Fatteh
White bookshelf at IKEA

What’s your best tip for college living? If you want to maintain an organized space, make sure every single item has a place. This way, your room will never truly get disorganized — and when it does get messy it will be much easier to put stuff away, as you know where everything goes.

Credit: Raniya Fatteh

This submission’s responses were edited for length and clarity.

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Raniya Fatteh


Raniya is a 19-year-old community college student living in the Bay Area. She is studying sociology and wants to use it to pursue digital marketing or data analytics. She hopes to transfer to a four-year school in 2024. She was on the color guard team in high school and was part of a competitive civics team called We the People. She also developed a passion for statistics during her first semester of college and now works as a statistics tutor. She loves to travel and has visited over 30 countries so far.

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SchoolLas Positas College '26
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