Cute Dorm Room

The summer between high school and college is unlike any other time in your life. It is filled with a range of emotions: excitement, nostalgia, anticipation, nervousness, eagerness, etc.

A large portion of your summer will likely be spent at Target and Bed, Beth & Beyond in preparation to live on your own for the very first time. Dorm room shopping is one of the most fun aspects of getting ready for college.

Of course you will need a plethora of necessities like bedding, but the fun part is making it entirely your own. You can decorate your dorm room however you please and you will be happiest if you make it a reflection of your personality.

Although it may seem silly, your dorm room will reveal a lot about you to many potential new friends who visit. Your dorm room will be the setting of some of the craziest nights and as well as the closest thing to home in this new place where you can find comfort and solitude.

Coordinate

If you are in touch with your roommate before you get to college, it might be a good idea to coordinate with them so your dorm will be cohesive as a whole. You guys can decide on a theme or color palette that meshes your personalities and interests.

Your dorm room will feel homier if it is cohesive as opposed to being a haphazard compilation of colors and patterns. As far as rules of design go, having a randomly decorated room will result in feelings of edginess and uneasiness. People will be less likely to hang out in your room and more importantly you will be reluctant to hang out in your room.

Pick a common pattern to stick with.

Pick a common pattern to stick with.

Color coordinate to differentiate your belongings.

Color coordinate to differentiate your belongings.

Lighting

Your room may look more like a Hollister than a dorm with due to the monotonous lights provided when you move in. Lighting can be an essential part of a room in order to set the tone of the atmosphere and allow you to actually see things like people and your homework.

You can increase the light in your room by adding lamps. There are many cute colorful or patterned standing lamps that would add character to your room if you pick one that matches your bedding and other decorations.

A popular trend I have seen in dorms and apartments is putting Christmas lights around the room or over your bed. This trend could create various atmospheres depending on how you arrange the lights. If you choose large bulbs or colorful vibes it could make your room feel fun and playful. Otherwise if you get twinkly or duller lights it could give off a bohemian vibe.

Another less utilized way to make your dorm lighting unique would be to add colorful films to the existing lights. As long as you get removable ones this could be a fun way to switch things up in certain scenarios.

String lights along where you hang your photos.

String lights along where you hang your photos.

Colorful lights add character.

Colorful lights add character.

Wall Décor 

There are countless ways to decorate the walls in your dorm room to make it show your individuality. College dorm room walls are notoriously filled with posters. Posters are an easy way to spice up plain white walls and they are easily personalized by simply getting ones of things you love. You could also get a tapestry almost as big as your wall with a cool pattern on it that would instantly add some essence. I have also seen people put maps on their wall, which may be suitable if you love geography or traveling.

Some other must-have items on your walls would be a bulletin board or white board. Having a bulletin board is a great way to pin up pictures of loved ones from home and of you and your new friends. You could also hang letters and other meaningful memoirs as well as schedules and calendars.

Since you can't paint the walls, hang paint samples to add color.

Since you can’t paint the walls, hang paint samples to add color.

Posters, magazine cutouts and personal pictures make your room feel like home.

Posters, magazine cutouts and personal pictures make your room feel like home.

There are so many ways to make your dorm room appealing but the most important thing is to make it feel like home to you. If you are stuck on ideas Pinterest.com is full of DIY projects. You are the one who will have to live in your dorm so use this as a chance to express yourself and make it your own.

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Natalie Alexander

Natalie Alexander

Natalie Alexander is a sophomore at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo pursuing a degree in journalism with a concentration in public relations. In her free time she enjoys traveling, dancing, exploring, swimming, laughing, shopping, napping, writing and spending time with her family and friends.
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4 Responses to “Cute Dorm Room”

  • Kait Freeberg

    Kait Freeberg on February 2, 2013

    These are some great ideas to keep in mind when decorating your room, especially the lighting. I lived in a triple freshman year and they lighting near my crammed desk was awful. I ended up buying two desk lamps just for that side of the room. Great post!

  • Nina

    Nina on February 2, 2013

    You made some really great points with decoration ideas in dorm rooms! I loved the fact that you explored different ways you can decorate with one idea such as color coordinating with your roommate vs. keeping a consistent pattern with all your belongings or using white lights for photos vs using colored lights to set a mood. Really great detail! Loved it!

  • Elizabeth Benson

    Elizabeth Benson on February 3, 2013

    These are great ideas! Decorating my dorm was one of the most exciting parts of getting ready for college, and I went kind of crazy buying stuff for it. Just remember to not encroach on your roommate’s space, and make sure they’re good with the stuff you put up in common areas!

  • Amber Bray

    Amber Bray on February 3, 2013

    This is some great advice! My freshman year I lived in a triple and we all coordinated ahead of time on a color scheme and some lighting. It made our room look so much more comfortable and cohesive.

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