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Tips & Tricks For Decorating The Walls Of Your New Room

With a new school year starting afresh, you’ve likely just moved into a brand new room with walls that serve as a blank canvas. Those walls in the room you’re inhabiting for the next semester or year can be a great way to express yourself. If you’re anything like me, it’s a priority to have them absolutely covered in any kind of decoration. Need some tips or inspo? I’ve got you covered (maybe a pun intended).

Use postcards or greeting cards

How often do we get cute birthday or “thinking of you” cards that we then hide away in a box somewhere or even toss out? Hanging them on your walls can be a great way to have them displayed. You can do the same with postcards, even old, cool ones that might be available at your local thrift or antique shop! Here in Iowa City, Artifacts is a great place to find vintage postcards that would create a one-of-a-kind look.

Create a “wall”

This may seem vague, but the “wall” in my room last year was one of my favorite spots. All it takes is placing things like framed quotes, art prints, painted canvases, newspaper/magazine clippings, album covers, movie posters (or your cards!) at random on the largest wall space in your room. As a tip, make sure that you start your wall off with four central pieces that you work out from.

Place photos creatively

Photo credit Sarah Nelson

Surely you have prints of photos of your friends and family from the year and summer previous. If not, they’re super cheap to order from somewhere like Walgreens. When you have your prints, try to find a design you like most. I have found myself frequently stringing mine with cute clothespins on a piece of jute around the perimeter of my room. A friend in the past taped photos to her wall in the shape of a heart. There are so many directions to go in, the trick is finding one you’ll love.

Use your hats as artwork

I have done this for the past two years because previously I didn’t know how else to store my hats. I have mostly baseball caps but you can do this with sun or felt hats as well. Use thumbtacks or Command hooks in any shape or design you want for not only easy access but a cool way to display them.

Party decorations easily equal room decorations

Do you have a cool banner/garland or paper lanterns or streamers that you used for a twenty-first birthday bash and never took out again? Good news! Those are all things that can work as decorations all year round. And let’s be honest — I’ve definitely heard of stories where the party decorations are put up but then never taken down again until move-out. Why not start early?

Add a calendar

Both fun and functional, calendars can be a great addition to any wall. Whether it be a whiteboard one you can change as you please or a plain ol’ wall calendar, you can get cute and colorful all while staying organized and planning out your week!


String lights are a decoration I swear by. They can be hung over a door or window, around the perimeter of the room or even shaped in a cool design (like your initials or the school you attend)! They can alternate the mood of your room by making it much warmer than the harsh overhead light found in many a dorm room. You could even hang your pictures from them for a different look.

I hope my tips and tricks helped inspire you to create your cutest room look yet. Now get decorating!

Paige Netzel is a senior at the University of Iowa, studying English and Creative Writing with a Cinema minor. Coffee, creating playlists, and gratitude are essential to keeping her going. Check her out on Twitter for some hecka funny tweets or on Spotify for those dope playlists.
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