Dorm Decorating Tips

3:33 PM

Ahh college. Your first time (probably) living on your own, in your own closet-sized room called a dorm. As a freshman, the thing I was most excited about was living in a dorm. I couldn’t wait to decorate my side of the room and buy new bedding, artwork, and lamps. I had pinned away on Pinterest, looked up ideas on Instagram, and looked up dorm room videos to see how people styled their side. If you’re about to move into a dorm on campus, here are some tips on how to decorate your dorm room and make it feel like home.


Since the dorms are quite small, it’s nice to have as much light as possible to make the room look bigger. Thankfully my university gave us big windows with nice natural light, but if you’re going to school where it’s often grey or raining, natural light might be limited. String lights (if they’re allowed, some schools say that they’re a fire hazard) can brighten up a room, as well as lamps or a light that clips onto your bed for studying at night. Try opting for a white lampshade to get the most light, or string lights all over your bed and wall.


Your bed is about to be where you spend the most time in your room (that sounds somewhat sexual so take it how you want to) so might it the focus point. People will always look at your bed first since it’s one of the few pieces of furniture in the room. Make sure to buy bedding that you really like. If you’re a minimalist and what the room to feel bigger, opt for a white duvet. If you’re more into fun colors, try a patterned bedspread. Or if you’re moody, go for a darker color. Additionally, add pillows to rest against when you’re studying, and a nice cozy blanket.


You know when you used to play Sims and how you had to add art all over the house to make your Sims happy? (If the answer is no, what were you doing with your childhood?) Well you’re going to need something on the wall, whether it’s art, a tapestry, pictures of family and friends, letters, really anything. Having stuff on the wall makes your room more personal and makes it feel like home. I loved having prints of my hometown on the wall, a nice mirror, postcards, and letters. If you have limited wall space, maybe try a bulletin board to maximize space. If you’re in need of some prints, try these websites: society6, evermade, and etsy.


Dorms come with very limited storage space. You have some drawers in your closet, but that won’t be enough for all your clothes or junk. Buy different sized bins to hold pencils, random things like nail polish or cords, extra clothes, bedding, etc. You can store these under your bed or in your closet to keep your room organized.

Coffee Station

There are going to be days when you don’t have time to go to the café before your 8am to get coffee, but yet you need coffee to survive the class. It’s really nice to have a Keurig or Nesspresso, machine, or an electric kettle to make tea, coffee, or oatmeal in the morning, or for a late study session at night. I prefer just having an electric kettle and making instant coffee, but to each their own.

I’m guessing your room will have very little to none extra space. That being said, it’s nice to have a place for friends to sit when they come over. Getting a bean bag or fold up butterfly chair that you can easily store is great for having company so they don’t have to sit on your bed or the floor.

What are your dorm essentials?

You Might Also Like


Current Book List

  • Pillow Thoughts
  • Milk & Honey
  • This Modern Love
  • The Perks of Being a Wallflower
  • Looking for Alaska
  • One Day
  • Me Before You


"Meeting you was like reading my favorite book for the first time."

Follow by Email