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Heading off to college this autumn? Here’s our top tips on what to take with you, from bedding to cutlery

Your list of essentials for university

Heading off to university is an exciting time in a student’s life. Apart from the academic aspects, there are a whole host of other challenges to think about - living away from home for the first time, meeting new people and making friends - not to mention learning how to look after yourself and doing your own laundry and cooking. Having the right kit is essential, so we’ve gathered together everything we think should be on your list.

First stop is bedding. You’ll need to take everything with you from pillows and duvets to sheets and duvet covers - we also suggest a mattress protector and topper so the bed is as comfortable as the one you have at home! It’s also a good idea to take two sets of bed linen in case the washing machine is being used when you need it. Towels are another must, pack two bath and two hand towels, plus a bathmat if you’re lucky enough to have an ensuite.

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Kitchen items for university

Having at least the basic kitchen essentials will make cooking much more enjoyable; two or three saucepans plus a set of utensils is the bare minimum you’ll need. A tin opener, sharp knife, grater and a sieve are also must-haves. Plates, mugs and cutlery should also be on your list - and you can never have enough glasses for when people come to yours for pre-drinks!

You won’t have much space, so make sure that everything you pack for university is an essential item that will be used regularly. Don’t take elaborate gadgets such as a food processor – you’ll probably use it twice before packing it up and leaving it to gather dust under the bed. No first-year student has time to be cleaning this kind of gadget between lectures and nights out. A cafetiere could be useful, however, for saving on takeaway coffees.

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Your room décor at university

Make your room more homely by stringing up photographs of friends and family on fairy lights. A diffuser with a calming scent that reminds you of home and lots of soft throws and cushions will help your room feel more cosy and comfortable, too. It’s best to choose cushions that have removable, washable covers just in case the worst happens! It’s also a good idea to have an airbed for when friends visit.

Another thing to think about is where everything will go. Storage in halls is usually quite tight, you’ll normally have one chest of drawers and a small wardrobe, so any hacks you can use, like stashing boxes under the bed or using in-wardrobe shoe hangers, will help you squeeze in everything you need in an organised way.

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Duvet cover with graphic print
Pick a printed duvet to add personality
Set of three non-stick saucepans
Stock up on kitchen essentials 
£20 for set of 3
White dinner set. Shop now
This great-value set is hard to beat 
£15 for 12-piece set
White linen diffuser. Shop now
Invest in a diffuser for a homely, welcoming aroma

Words: Sarah Lafarge