More than a mere bedroom, a dorm room is a college student's home, sanctuary, and study center. Living in a borrowed space doesn't mean you can't put your own stamp on it! Here are some dorm decorating tips to help a student feel at home, maximize every inch, and live comfortably.
A few budget-friendly pieces can create a big effect. An area rug is a must-have item for a fast and effective transformation. It sets the style and performs the important service of protecting feet from cold floors or hiding drab carpeting. Curtains, too, bring instant color, pattern, and privacy. Let them hang all the way to the floor to emphasize vertical space. You don't need to install elaborate hardware - a tension rod and hooks will do the trick.
Institutional overhead lighting is notoriously unflattering and probably inadequate. Bring along a lamp or two for warmer, more welcoming illumination. A lamp with a great shape and color makes a nice accent too!
Surround yourself with images that inspire you! Hang your favorite posters and photos high to give the impression of more height. Use safe adhesives that won't damage the wall.
To avoid the "dorm furniture" look, forget using stacked crates. A tall narrow set of shelves or storage drawers will look classier and capitalize on vertical space. A storage ottoman is a top choice multi-functional piece, providing a place to put your feet up, hidden storage, additional seating, and an extra tabletop surface.
Make a nest
It's the relaxation zone, reading nook, guest seating...and place to sleep. The bed is the focal point of the room, so dress it up with a comforter that expresses your style and can stand up to wear and tear. Remember to take a mattress protector, and maybe a layer of memory foam in case that dorm-issued mattress isn't as soft as you're used to. Plenty of pillows will keep you propped up comfortably for late study sessions. In the daytime, toss a few accent pillows against the wall for a sofa effect. Raise the bed a few inches on risers, and slide a couple of accessible storage bins underneath.
Keeping organized means less clutter and a more spacious feel. A student's workspace can easily become overwhelmed, so bins, baskets, or files may bring order to the chaos. A message board is a handy tool for notes to yourself and your roommate. Hang a dry-erase board on the back of the door, or customize a bulletin board surface with a fun piece of fabric.
Your college may have storage for some of the furniture that came with the room. If you can swap out their desk chair for your own, do it! Good support is important for long hours at the computer, and your chair may add style or color - or at least be less ordinary than your neighbors'.
Make a few changes, express yourself, and yours will be the hottest room on the floor.