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Decorating Your College Dorm

Decorating Your College Dorm

By Autumn Cockroft

Living in the dorm is one of the main components of the college experience, and one of the most exciting parts is getting to decorate your dorm room. A dorm is a blank canvas for you to be creative and turn plain, beige cinderblocks into a space that is unique and representative of you. For a lot of college students, money is tight. Luckily, there are many budget-friendly options available to personalize your dorm room and transform it into a space that you will look forward to coming home to. Here are 3 top tips for redefining your space:

Hidden Storage

The unique part about living in the dorm is that it is so small, and for most people, shared. Space is limited, so it is crucial to capitalize on the space you do have. Hidden storage will allow you to make the most of your small room. Standard dorm beds are adjustable in height. Lifting your dorm bed high enough to slide storage underneath creates space for storage without taking away floor space, which will keep the room feeling as big as possible. The options for storage are flexible as they will be hidden under the bed.

The key is disguising the storage. By using a bed skirt, all the miscellaneous items and clutter translates as put together. Bed skirts can be purchased on Amazon for under twenty dollars, or they can be made at home with any leftover fabric or flat sheet by simply putting the fabric under the mattress and hanging it far enough off the frame to cover the storage.


Any interior designer will tell you adding plants is one of the easiest ways to spruce up a room and give it some life. It is no secret that college can be draining, and the research shows that plants make people healthier and happier. House plants can reduce anxiety and stress, sharpen attention, and strengthen productivity (Haupt, 2023). One study even found that college students worked 12% faster when plants were placed in their classrooms.

If you have never taken care of a plant before, don’t worry. Succulents are a low maintenance option for beginners, and they can be purchased for under ten dollars at a local plant store. Next, unique pots of every shape and size can be found in every thrift store. If you are into crafts, you could even DIY paint a pot.

Wall Art

Adding some décor to the walls is a must for making the dorm feel cozy and personal to you. There are a variety of different options for what to hang on the wall. Five Below has new, trending posters that can be purchased at a low price to display your favorite artist, art, etc. Pictures can be printed off at CVS or Walgreens for under fifty cents. Thrift stores typically have an abundance of low-price frames to choose from to create a unique gallery wall. Whatever wall art you choose, be sure to mount it in a manner that won’t damage the wall when it's time to move out.

Regardless of how you may choose to decorate your dorm, it is important to make it a space that brings you joy. College is exciting, unfamiliar, and sometimes chaotic, but the one thing you can control is your space. During a time of change, creating a home base that you feel safe will keep you grounded.

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