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DON'T BRING A PIANO. AND YET... Of all the things I stored away during our recent two-year stint in Stanford student housing, I missed most my piano. Yet the cost and effort of hauling it across the country and installing it into such small quarters was unrealistic. Plus who wants to hear your thin-walled neighbor banging away at Beethoven at 9:30am? A nice alternative (and fun party prop for singing funny ballads) is a weighted keyboard, which takes up only a small portion of space but is sensitive to finger pressure like a piano.
DO BRING YOUR MATTRESS AND FABULOUS BEDDING. As simple as you choose to adorn the bedroom for your small dwelling, don't sell the place short with bedding. No matter how small or temporary your living conditions, settling into and rising from your finest linens and quality mattress can compensate for much of the place's faults. You can leave your irreplaceable head and baseboards in storage and go for a pillows-strewn-around Paris salon kind of feel, or create your own headboard, as shown here.
DO BRING A CHANDELIER. Speaking of lighting. Often you can easily install a chandelier or add it creatively into your space. Like rugs and wall art, this is a unique and nonintrusive way to add to your place.