I have now lived in three dorm rooms since starting college, but this summer is the first time I’ve been in a single room on my own. I put up all my room decorations that first day when I moved myself in, and it’s been fun to see how the decor I’ve accumulated since freshman year fits into one room rather than in complement with a roommate’s decor style. I did a little photo shoot of the room to show off some of the random decorations I’ve collected, and to maybe provide some inspiration for your own living space design.
Use Unusual/Unappreciated Spaces
This cute little hedgehog was a gift from a friend. If you have few little knick-knacks, think of using the seemingly overlooked spaces to add a little extra touch. You’ll appreciate these little sentimental mementos when you get to see them each day rather than keeping then in a desk drawer. Just make sure you don’t have too many of these little pieces to avoid excessive clutter. [Also, shout out to the paper canes mobile thing I made myself.]
I just like art so this is an obvious choice for me. But if you’re not sold on this one just for the art, think of these as poster/wallpaper hybrids. Add some color to your walls while still looking (more) sophisticated.
Don’t Forget the Door
What is it? Who are you, what do you want? … My god you’ve gotten fat! Come in! Come, come!
– Edna Mode
Door decor is a treat for me when I’m coming home at the end of the day, and it gives you brownie points with the neighbors.
Use the Ceiling
I re-purposed these hanging bird mobiles from like middle school. They’ll spin lightly on their own and it’s super fun. Dorm room pet maybe?
Add Some Texture
Had some scrap paper. Used a stapler. Literally took just a few minutes to make. Now I’ve got non-flat wall decor.
Desk Space or Vanity Table?
Not gonna lie, this might be my proudest college dorm room creation of all time. I’ve always had a problem with not using the jewelry I own, and a problem with saving every card I receive. Voila, a solution to both problems. It’s super easy to arrange your thumbtacks as jewelry hooks.
Windows + Mirrors
My roommate forgot to pack her gel decorations so now I’m using them. The gel things work well, but the rule is really just to make sure you pick something that comes off easily when you’re moving out at the end of the year.
Cut Paper Skyline
My freshman year roommate picked up this cutout of the Chicago skyline for me on her trip to the Art Institute in Chicago, and it’s made its home on the light above the sink ever since.
I happen to have a pretty good stationary collection. Unfortunately, I really don’t write letters as much as I should. So it was great to realize I could buy some sticky putty and put those extra postcard sets to good use as wall decor. I’ve seen some other postcard sets in stores that I’ve been tempted to buy just for their decor potential. There are so many different postcards set themes out there, and you end up having a lot more control with how you set them up on the wall since you’re dealing with a lot of smaller pictures rather than one big poster.
Party Supplies and Printed Photos
I feel like printed personal photos are the staple of dorm room decorating. I had fun picking photos that were a bit more “unstaged.” I prefer the more spontaneous and natural reminders of different memories.
Aren’t the pinwheels cute? Hint: They were originally birthday decorations from Target.
How have you decorated your dorm room?