I'm currently in the midst of moving out of my room in halls (how did that happen?!) and trying to find a way to cart back all the utter shit I brought with me in September. For me at least, uni was a complete unknown, and there was a really strong urge to bring everything I owned 'just in case'.
What you feel you need is obviously completely personal, but I thought I'd come up with a list of items that were absolute lifesavers (and things that are collecting dust under my bed) in my first year at uni:
I didn't bring my camera, so enjoy this beaut stock photo.
What you might need:
Even if you're always up for a night out and the last one to bed, there's going to be a point where you feel like you'll snap if you don't get a good night's rest. A pair of earplugs or headphones will be a saviour when your flatmates decide to play snap or perfect their rendition of High School Musical outside your door at 3am.
Seriously, I don't know where this stuff goes - well, I do - but see if you can bulk buy before you arrive. You might look a bit stupid carrying a 64-pack of Andrex into your room, but you'll be getting the last laugh when your precious money isn't (literally) going down the drain.
This isn't exactly a must-have, since printers don't come cheap, but I found mine to be SO helpful. I could definitely have lived without it, but trekking it down to the library when you want a page of seminar notes isn't the best use of time.
Bits for your room
I'm sure no-one needs an excuse to go out and buy home bits, but you'll be spending a LOT of time in your room and making it homely does wonders for your mood, especially in the first few weeks. You don't need to go mad - just a few cushions and postcards are fine!
Try to pick fairly unoffensive colours if you haven't seen your halls yet, because the cute rose-gold setup you've planned for months might not go so well with your surprise mustard walls and green carpet. (I was lucky enough to love my room, but I've seen some truly grim colour schemes).
What you definitely don't need:
My lovely mum insisted on buying me a set of wine glasses for all the soirees I'd inevitably be having at uni. While I appreciate her kindness, there are much more logical things to drink wine out of. Like saucepans. Or the bottle.
All that fancy dress for fresher's week
Okay, so Wednesday night's superheroes, Thursday night's jungle-themed, and Friday's back to school? Just get yourself a few all-purpose accessories and some face paints and you're good to go. I know I felt a lot of pressure to be prepared for any fresher's fancy-dress night, but in all honesty most people I know didn't really bother - except for Halloween, everyone loves that shit.
Unless you've just accepted an offer to the University of Barbados, bringing your bikini really isn't going to be worth it. I know there's that overwhelming fear of 'what if', but you'll likely be going home regularly, and you probably won't need that floaty dress between moving-in day and October.
Fancy going-out clothes
In my teeny little hometown, going out was a full dresses-and-heels affair. The thought of hitting the club in normal clothes was akin to those dreams about turning up to school naked (just me?) but, at least where I am, it's so much more laid-back. You might have a ball or something around Christmas, so bring something nice just in case, but (at least in my experience) raiding the formal section of ASOS really isn't worth it.
I'm hoping to write a few more posts about uni, so if there's anything you think I should cover please give me a shout!