Doable Dorm Decorating Tips

For many college students, a new school year comes with new living arrangements. Whether it's your first time living away from home or you're returning to campus for another year, sharing a small space with another individual is an unavoidable reality of the higher education experience.

When you first walk into your new dorm room, you may feel discouraged by how small it is, but don't let the size of the room fool you. Even with limited space, designing a stylish room is still extremely doable.

There is no reason why your room has to stay as the standard, dull, whitewashed living space! With so many great ideas out there, it's so easy to bring color and personality to your room-and you can have fun while doing it.

And remember; think outside the small, white box.

Display Your Pictures

One of the easiest ways to decorate your dorm is by filling your walls with pictures of your family and friends. Having pictures of the people you care about most can be comforting to look at when you're swamped with schoolwork and need a little self-assurance.

"Being a Resident Assistant, business major, and balancing a job can get really overwhelming at times," said Gabriella Romagnuolo, a junior. "I've always liked to decorate my dorm with photos of friendly and familiar faces to look at when I need a little uplifting."

You can also hang up posters of what interests you, such as your favorite band, vintage photos, or your favorite piece of artwork. To make your wall collection look more cohesive, you can decorate around your photos and posters with Washi tape.

Washi tape feels like masking tape but is made out of paper, and it is almost as strong as duct tape. It is available in many different patterns, colors and designs and can be purchased at your local craft store or at

Get Crafty

An easy way to add color and convenience to your room is by turning a metal wastebasket into a side table. You can spray paint an inexpensive wastebasket in the color of your choice, flip it upside down, and use it as a bedside table. This DIY project can be found on

"When I decorated my dorm, I used websites like Pinterest to get ideas and even made a few projects along the way," said Lauren Fuhring, a junior. "Pinterest is a great website to use if you're really into crafting."

Stay Organized

As a college student, it is always important to be organized as much as possible. Keeping assignments and day-to-day activities in order is ideal while living in such a fast-paced environment.

Whether it be a new assignment, work, or a club meeting, it is absolutely necessary to keep track of these things to maintain a level head. Having a calendar or planner in your dorm room is essential.

"It's really important that I keep track of my daily assignments. I was tired of buying the plain, generic calendars at Staples, so I decided to switch it up this year and make my own," Erika Viggiano, a junior, said. "I found a tutorial to make your own dry-erase calendar board on Pinterest."

Viggiano bought a poster board frame from the craft store Michael's and put a piece of scrapbook paper of a calendar template inside of it. She left everything on the paper blank so she could write with a dry erase marker as the months changed. To make this, simply search "dry erase calendar" on Pinterest.

Taking the time to create a room that expresses your personality and comforts you can make or break your college living experience. Your room should be your sanctuary-you spend more time in there than you might think.

So take control over where you live. It can play a huge role in your college experience, academically and socially.