7 College Dorm Room Decorating Ideas For Students

Last Updated on February 5, 2024 by Kimberly Crawford

Decorating the dorm room is one of the first things college students do on their return to campus. Even those resuming for the first time soon understand that they need to make their dorm room theirs, and they need the best decorating ideas to do this.

Living on campus with thousands of other people having the same kind of room and furniture isn’t bad, but they need to make your space unique to you by decorating it in your style and with your preferred features is understandable.

Beyond making your room feel homey and personal, it’s also a place to hang out with your friends and crash between classes. So there are more than enough reasons to own it further by decorating it. 

For fresh students just moving into their college room, the excitement of being in college and having a dorm room may overwhelm you so much that you don’t see the plainness of your room. Additionally, it has limited square footage, and you have to share it with someone else. It won’t take long before the initial excitement dies out and you find yourself scrambling for decorative ideas for your space. 

Irrespective of the stark appearance or tight space, your room is the backdrop for your entire college experience, and you don’t want to spend the next four years living dull. So while you may outsource your essays to professional college essay writers as part of your college experience, your college dorm room decoration is something you should take a DIY approach to. 

This article provides you with several tips and ideas to decorate and redecorate your dorm room to make it feel more personal, unique, lively, and homey. 

1. Add layers to your cozy bedding.

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Your bedding provides you with a practical way to improve comfort and add style to your room décor. Get a duvet set with a matching pillowcase and duvet cover to keep things simple.

However, you can add more style, texture, and color to the mix by adding a few throw pillows. To improve the coziness, color and comfort, ensure to add a throw blanket at the end of your bed. 

2. Set a nightstand

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A nightstand isn’t a common feature of dorm rooms, and this is perhaps one of the major reasons you should add it to your room. Not only does it add to the uniqueness and homey feeling of your room, but it’s also an essential piece of furniture.

Remember that you’ll need that extra space to place your phone, glasses, water glass and other things from the reach of your bed.

If this is out of your budget, there are several nightstand alternatives that you can consider, such as a utility cart or a stool. Also, remember to include a small lamp on your nightstand to help you read in bed. 

3. Add a temporary wallpaper.

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Of course, you have only a few years to spend in college, so you must make the most of it and have some fun.

Adding a temporary peel-and-stick wallpaper to your dorm room is an easy way of adding more life to your room. Something as little as a removable print can completely transform the smallest and plainest of spaces. 

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Another way to decorate your dorm room wall is by adding a DIY gallery wall. The housing director would most definitely not want to see you put holes in the wall.

So you should try something more dorm-friendly but cool. For instance, you can use an achromatic color scheme that looks cool with posters taped to the wall using black tape. 

5. Add some greenery

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Adding greenery by bringing in some plants to your room is one way to make your dorm room fresher and less basic. Apart from beautifying your room, houseplants also have their health benefits.

So ensure to settle for low-maintenance varieties to make things easier for you. Air plants may be your perfect pick. You can hang it from a hook or place your pots by the nightstand.

6. Add a mirror

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You won’t find a mirror in many dorm rooms, and this is, perhaps, a reason you should get one. Mirrors don’t exist solely to check your look. Instead, they add to the beauty of your room and make it appear bigger, especially if your room is tiny.  

7. Style the dresser top

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You may soon find that your dresser becomes the space where you toss your clothes, dump books, and just put them to waste till it becomes full of dust. However, it’s a perfect space to use to add more decoration to your room.

The surface space at the top of the dresser can be used to bring in a personal touch from home with books, art, and a lamp. If you use it properly, it’ll add more personality to your space. 

What do students need for dorm rooms?

Comfortable, versatile furniture that adapts to a student’s living and sleeping needs is an important purchase for any college student. For those who plan on spending four years in their dorm room, it’s really nice to be as happy as possible with their living space.

When you’re sharing such a small area with another person, bringing home a new roommate is a cringeworthy thought.

At the same time, it’s just as easy to realize you’ll be spending a lot of time in your dorm room alone when your roommate is either attending class or going out with friends.

How do girls decorate college dorms?

A lot of girls like to bring home cute decorations from their favorite stores and different places they’ve been. Those who care more about function than aesthetics will want to purchase items that can double as both decor and as storage, such as bookcases or shelving units that can store clothes and keep them wrinkle-free for the next day.

If you’re interested in adding a pop of color to your dorm, try painting the walls with fun colors like pink or green; it’s especially nice if you can get one wall painted your favorite color. Another idea is to hang up colorful tapestries and posters of things that make you happy. This will give the impression that you have a lot of personality, even if your actual dorm room is quite small.

How do boys decorate college dorms?

Boys can use their wall space as an added decoration by pinning up posters and photos from friends or family members. Those who care more about function than aesthetics might want to purchase items that can double as both decor and storage, such as bookcases or shelving units that can store clothes and keep them wrinkle-free for the next day.

If you’ve got a small budget but like the idea of making your room colorful, another great option is to buy yourself some acrylic paint and make your own murals. Go online and find some pictures of things that really make you happy, and then print them out in the sizes you want.

Use masking tape to tape off where your plain white walls end and where you want to paint, and then projects an outline onto your wall using your printed images so it’s easier for you to see what the final product will look like. Once you’ve got an outline, paint it in using acrylic paints and leave it to dry overnight.

What does a freshman dorm needs?

College freshmen are often focused on preparing themselves for their courses, making friends and fitting in with the new environment. Bringing home everything they need to make their college dorm room as comfortable as possible is not a priority until later on.

When students start feeling settled in and more confident about where they’re living, it’s a good time to start shopping for the things they really need to make their dorm room feel like home.

Typically, this includes bringing home a mattress or futon, which can double as both seating and sleeping space depending on who your roommate is. Freshmen are also often concerned about having enough storage space, so it’s important to bring home dressers that fit into the empty space under your bed or in your closet.

It might be helpful to ask your parents and grandparents if they have any old furniture that fits these criteria; many people end up donating things like dressers, night stands and even chairs after their kids leave home. If you’re interested in bringing home a small TV, make sure to measure the space you have to work with before making that purchase.

What are some ideas for college dorm organization?

You’ll want to start thinking about organization as soon as you move in because it can be difficult if not impossible to access certain areas of your dorm room, like the area underneath your bed or inside your closet. Whether you’re using hanging racks or shelves, it’s a good idea to use your dorm room organizational system as a way of keeping yourself organized, too.

For example, one great way to stay organized is by storing undergarments and socks inside drawers with dividers. This will make them easier to find when the time comes to wear them.

You might also want to purchase plastic storage bins or boxes in several different sizes for when you need extra space, like during the move-in process. These are especially useful when it’s time to go home and you need somewhere to store your dirty clothes while they’re not in use.

What makes a good dorm room?

The best college dorm rooms are the ones that reflect the personalities of their residents. Whether you’re into sports, music or drawing, it’s always a good idea to decorate your walls with posters and photos from your hobbies and interests.

If you’re one of those people who loves to read in bed before going to sleep, the best dorm room décor will be framed prints of your favorite books.

What are some ways for students to save money on dorm-room supplies?

There are actually a number of different ways that students can save money on the supplies they need to decorate their dorm rooms, starting with what’s available through their school.

Most colleges have stores on campus where students can purchase textbooks, dorm room supplies and even supplies for campus clubs. If your college doesn’t have a store that offers all of these things in one place, there are dozens of online retailers that will offer you discounts when you order in bulk.

Most college bookstores also have sales throughout the year when they offer steep discounts on particular items. It can be worth your time to check in with your campus store at the beginning of each semester, especially if you’re about to purchase something that’s expensive like a futon or bed frame.

What are some dorm room accessories?

A: Decorative wall hangings like tapestries and tapestry curtains can add a sense of warmth to your college dorm room. This is especially true when they’re hung on the back of your door, where they’ll create an accent wall effect. Another great idea for college wall décor are posters or framed prints with motivational sayings or famous quotes about life, love and new beginnings.

What are some dorm room essentials?

Your dorm room essentials will be different if you’re taking public transportation to school than they will be if you’re driving.

If you live close enough to walk or bike, then your list of must-haves may contain items like a small pot or pan for cooking simple meals in your microwave, plates and silverware.

If you’re commuting to class, then a trunk organiser is a great way to keep your personal belongings organized and easy to access.

What are some dorm room supplies that students may forget about?

A lot of people who go off to college end up forgetting about the many different ways they can use cheap storage containers, including the ones they use to store their socks and underwear.

If you become a college student, there’s a good chance you’ll need at least six of these kinds of containers in different sizes.

What are some dorm room supplies that students should skip?

Some dorm room supplies that you may want to avoid buying include bed risers and power strips.

While these items can be useful, they’re not practical for college students who don’t have the space to store large furniture pieces like bunk beds and dressers underneath their beds.

Power strips are also considered a fire hazard in most dorms, so it’s best to skip them altogether.


Like getting the Best Essay Tips from the best homework services as a college student, these are also some of the best tips to decorate your dorm room and add more life to it. This makes your four-year stay more enjoyable.