Your France Student Flat: Decorating on a Budget
The difficult part is over. You have carefully searched, screened and secured your student housing in France. Now it’s time to turn the rental into your own unique living space. But, like most students studying abroad in France, you are probably on a tight budget, and your place, be it a single bedroom or an entire apartment is likely to have some limitations as to size and space. However, with some patience and a little ingenuity, your France student flat can have you shouting, "j'aime ça! c'est très beau!"
The first thing to keep in mind when decorating on a student’s budget is that it will be a process to get your space to a final point of completion. Secondly, make sure to have measurements handy at all times in order to double check that whatever you are eyeing will actual fit well where you have in mind to put it. Finally, do not limit yourself to one particular store for shopping or feel like you have to buy a complete set of items. For example, you may really like a kitchen table, but you aren’t crazy about the chairs. Mixing and matching items creates a more interesting, eclectic look that shows off your own unique personality and will make your France student flat distinctly your own.
Vintage Choices for Bargains and Style
Flea markets (called marchés aux puces in France) can be your best friend when decorating your student housing in France. Once you are in full treasure hunting mode, you will be amazed as to how many signs and ads for flea markets you will discover. From ads in local newspapers to handwritten signs posted on bulletin boards or on the side of roads, there will be no shortage of ways to locate these buying opportunities. A good tip is to show up as early as possible in order to get first dibs. Also, don’t be afraid to barter!
Thrift shops are also great places to find used home décor items that are often times better made and more durable than new items you find in regular stores. In addition, many thrift shops hold sales on a regular basis, providing you with a further way to save money.
Once you get in the groove of shopping at flea markets and thrift shops do not be too quick to reject furnishings that catch your eye but may look too dated for your taste. Remember that polishing, sanding, staining, and painting can do wonders to many items which at first glance may look unsuitable.
Don’t forget as well about low budget France retailers such as Carrefour, Conforama and Bricorama. These are great places to find cheap but cheerful finds to furnish and accessorize your France student flat.
In summary, decorating your student housing in France can be an exciting way to express your unique personality while also allowing you numerous opportunities to mingle with the locals in everyday situations. Remember to have fun, use your French, and practice smart finances while bringing to life your perfect student pied-à-terre.