By Katherine Wright
I’ve got to hand it to Dolores Umbridge. Most professors at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry — especially temporary professors — barely put an ounce of energy into decorating their offices.
Remus Lupin had a tank filled with random magical creatures, Gilderoy Lockhart had a bunch of framed photographs of his own face and Quirinus Quirrell brought Lord Voldemort with him wherever he went. But none decorated like Umbridge.
Picture this: images of moving kittens on every visible surface, ornate pink plates, plush pink chairs, a pink rug, doilies, frills and gold detailing. It’s not exactly the most traditional office, or even remotely desirable, but you’ve got to respect the effort.
And in a world with caged creatures, filled suitcases, framed self-portraits and the constant presence of Lord Voldemort, I would argue that Umbridge really steals the show.
Similarly, decorating college dorms or apartments can really take a lot of planning, thought and effort. If you don’t finish decorating or organizing in the few days before the semester starts, it’s often unlikely you ever will. There are still corners of my room filled with unopened shoe boxes and random framed photographs, begging to be incorporated into the final room design.
Considering the temporary living situation we have as college students, especially with the fluctuating status of COVID-19, it feels all the more difficult to find the motivation to decorate.
Maybe Umbridge would have opted for less furniture and minimal wall decals had she known she would be carried off by centaurs at the end of the year. I’m guessing she didn’t get much use out of her office after that.
Despite the time-consuming and tedious nature of decorating, it can actually be quite fun. Shopping for random items, picking out a color scheme and looking at Pinterest boards can be endlessly entertaining and an especially engaging activity during free moments throughout the semester.
Now that we spend more time in our rooms than ever, we also gain more opportunities and motivation to make the most of our living spaces.
I can’t help but be impressed with Umbridge’s home-y and put-together — although creepy — decor, filled to the brim with personal flair and style. She has a distinct color scheme, a clean sense of style and clearly organizes all of her belongings, including her torture pen that uses the blood of the beholder for ink.
It’s respectable, admirable and something to strive for. Pinterest-level room decoration goals.
So thank you, Umbridge, for the inspiration. Time to whip out the pink lace and eerie cat portraits and get to work.