How to Have the Cutest Room on Your Hall (Aka Dorm Room Decor 101)

*This post is in affiliation with Briercrest College & Seminary. I did a “Dorm Room Makeover for Less than $150” video with them that you can view here .

7 months ago when I launched my blog one of the first posts that I published was on decorating my dorm room. I moved into school residences halfway through the year so I had my own room and I took full advantage of my blank canvas of a room.

Photos have been removed from that post, but you can still read my tips here.

This year I was determined to have the cutest room possible! Not to brag, but I think I’ve done a great job… for cheap! Here are my tips.

  1. Get a white duvet. I’m a lover of white duvets and here is why: in a dorm room the main focal point is probably your bed, a white duvet cover brightens the space and allows you to implement colour/pattern other places. Likely, you’re dorm room isn’t huge, so you don’t want to overwhelm a space. Also, they’re so easy to maintain, just toss some bleach in with your duvet cover/sheets and you’re golden. (My duvet retails at Ikea for $29.)
  2. Accessorize with pillows + blankets. When you have a white duvet you can literally do whatever you want with it. Every throw pillow/blanket will go with it. So you can use your creative liberty to build on that canvas however you like!Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset
  3. Use wrapping paper to cover bulletin boards! My room has baby blue bulletin boards, and they just weren’t cutting it for me. I covered on in a black and white striped paper, and the other in a cactus designed paper. (For the cutest wrapping paper, check out Crocus and Ivy! They have adorable paper for just $12.)Processed with VSCO with hb2 presetProcessed with VSCO with hb2 preset
  4. This point is a bit vague, but design should be functional. Design is currated organization. So make your dorm room functional. Lots of my “decor” is my bowls, my mugs, my clothes!
  5. Use letters + words. I love words and sayings. As cheesey as they are, they also do offer encouragement, and an awesome opportunity for design to come into play. Sometimes I get teased about my “R’s” that I have displayed in my room, but I think they’re cool. One of my “R’s” is from Spruce Collective in Abbotsford, it’s a both a memory and a decorative piece. Also, I managed to get a letter board from my old work place for just $5 and I absolutely love it. It’s really trendy right now, but it’s also a fun way to add in personality to a space.Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset
  6. Wall decals. Okay, so bear with me here. I’m not talking about the “Live Laugh Love” decals you can buy from Dollarama, I’m talking about wall decals on a bigger scale. The show stopper in my room this year is for sure my polka dot wall. For just $15 I completely transformed the bare walls of my dorm room, while still keeping things classy.
  7. Strategically use photos. I was inspired by my sister-in-law, Hillary, who had photos printed by a website that will print your square Instagram photos. I ordered some for my dorm room, and ended up fashioning them on the outside of my door. Opposed to your generic photos, these are an elevated style choice. Last year, I didn’t have these, but instead what I did was I did a monochromatic colorscheme, aka black and white, and I liked that that allowed for some congruency throughout my room. (I got 24 printed for approx $15 + had to pay $13 in duties= $28)
  8. Accents. I have a pretty specific look that I like to go for in my spaces. I like the base of everything to be either black/white/or grey. Then I usually accent with baby pink and gold. Accent pieces can actually cost you an arm and a leg. If you are like me and you like to update your room frequently, you’ll end up paying a lot to decorate your space. There are corners that you can cut without losing any effect, for instance I have all gold picture frames in my room, I bought them for $1 at the dollar store. As a college student, I say you should opt for the cheaper option 9/10. At this stage we aren’t looking to buy investment pieces, we just need it to last a year or two!Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset
  9. Candy. Talk about functional decor! Candy is a good way to add an element of fun in your room. I have Dubble Bubble displayed in a pineapple dish on my desk, which brings me a lot of visitors + also looks cute.Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset
  10. Keep it clean. My Mom is probably laughing at this one because at home I don’t keep my room very clean. However, at the dorm, I try to keep it clean all the time. In my mind, when living in community it’s a service to keep your space clean. You can have the cutest room, but if it’s not clean, it won’t be reaching it’s full potential. That’s why I always have lysol wipes, clean floors, and a bed that’s made. It’s that simple!Processed with VSCO with hb2 presetProcessed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Those are my update dorm decor tips! I hope you enjoyed this post. Don’t forget to watch the video I did with Briercrest!

Until next time ❤

XOX Rach

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Rachel From grew up in a small town on the prairies of Canada. Her small town roots cultivated a love of story, and her big city ambitions cultivated a love of style. Rachel has a history of acting, both on stage and on screen and this dramatic flare gives her writing lots of personality. While in college working towards a Humanities Degree she blogs about her favourite things: life, style, and story. She loves coffee more than the average person, and would do next to anything for pizza.

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