Let’s be blunt: college dorms are awesome. They’re where you’ll be spending hours of your freshman year and where you’ll make some of your best life-long friends. Your clothing selection has become enormous, and with all the girls wardrobes in the hall, you’ll be sharing your best tips and tricks with your new besties. You’ll also realize sharing a bathroom with what feels like a billion people makes for some pretty hilarious stories down the road. Living in such communal spaces, however, can create a big challenge when it comes to personalizing your living area. Don’t worry though, we’ve all been there! Here are three quick tips for decorating your new abode:
Your Bed is A Big Deal:
More than likely, your bed is one of the biggest pieces of furniture in your dorm, so think of it as one big canvas onto which you can paint your personality! Choose a solid-colored bedspread and get creative with textured pillows of all different shapes, sizes, patterns and prints. You want your bed to be inviting and cozy since it may be one of the only seating options for visitors and you, too, will be spending a lot of time on it. One thing that some girls forget, however, is that you’re in college now and while it may be cute to have an old stuffed animal on your bed for nostalgic reasons, do everyone a favor and keep it hidden behind a pillow so that you don’t look like a lost third grader. Your roommate will be grateful. That old quilt from your attic, however, may just be vintage enough to be cool again.
Add Pizazz to White Walls:
Most dorm walls are pretty bland looking and first impressions are difficult to shake. My advice is to make the walls a little less sterile with something besides the predictable posters of hotties and album covers. Check out sites like pinterest for alternatives to traditional college wall art and then choose what I call a “statement wall” and make that the focus of your expression. Consider hanging funky tapestries for a non-permanent wallpaper effect or use a bunch of colorful cork boards for photos and assignments to make your walls a practical patchwork. Use your best judgment to keep things from looking too chaotic but whatever you do, don’t leave those walls barren; you’ll depress yourself.
Light Up Your Life:
Your dorm room is going to be your sleeping sanctuary, your study hall, your movie theatre, and so much more. You’re going to want different lighting settings for each circumstance but, at the same time, you won’t want to clutter your room with lamps and you most likely will have limited outlets. This is where the multi-bulbed light fixture comes into play. Shop at a place like Target or Bed, Bath and Beyond for a cool lamp with several light settings and adjustable directional lighting. That way, you can create the mood you’re looking for at whatever time you’re looking to create it. In addition, a colorful desk lamp with built in organizational dishes will never fail you, holiday lights hung from the ceiling are always going to make a room more fun, and the rest should be taken care of by windows and overhead lighting already in the room when you first arrive.
The key to making your dorm look its best is to communicate with your roommate ahead of move-in day about these three elements so that you can compliment one an other's styles. Just because your roommate doesn’t love pink doesn’t mean that you two can’t work out a pretty-in-pink/rocker-chic combo that suits you both perfectly. It might be hard to appreciate living in a dorm at first, but follow the above tips...you’ll come to love your new home!