Moving into a new place is hard, let alone when you’re doing it all alone in a place you don’t know. Dorm rooms have the basics but no frills: a bed-frame, an office chair and a desk are pretty much all you can rely on, and even then, there’s no guarantee as to their quality, (I’ve certainly had more than one creaky bed, cracked desk and warped mirror in my time). With that said, here are 6 ways to brighten your dorm room without breaking the bank.
Basic, I know, but essential. Pictures from home of friends, family especially pets, can make you feel so much less alone, in particular when you’re new. I like to arrange them around posters to create a calming and individual wall to look at. Also, if you don’t want to use blu-tack or tape, washi tape is made from paper and has cute patterns for extra *interest* and framing. Bonus: it is highly unlikely to leave marks on the wall, so stick away! For extra special photos, frame them and prop them up on your shelves, it can even work to hide the stuff that doesn’t fit your aesthetic look great like sanitary products, toiletries or alcohol.
2. Storage Boxes
But I don’t mean just cardboard ones. Buy ones that fit into your colour scheme or theme for the room and it helps to organise all of your stuff that otherwise just ends up lying around.
3. Soft Furnishings
Rugs, cushions, blankets and mattress toppers all help to make your room a soft haven. You think I’m crazy, but imagine this: it’s snowing outside. you’ve had class in an under-heated block all day, you worry whether or not you can save your feet from the frostbite they are inevitably enduring right now. Room A has standard issue carpet and a bare mattress with thin duvet and pillows. Room B has a faux fur sheepskin rug on the floor, a thick blanket on the down-duvet bed and a scattering of cushions to sink into with your hot chocolate and Netflix subscriptions. I know which I’d pick. If you’re worried your room might get stuffy, try getting some succulents and/or small potted plants, they can help to refresh the air naturally without synthetic air fresheners or diffusers (and also add a nice natural feel to the room).
4. Fairy Lights
I know this is beyond basic and that every college student has done this, but it really can brighten up your space and make everything feel more homely and welcoming. There are no limits to how many lights you can have and they’re far nicer than the strobe lights that are normally provided by the college or university.
5. Jewellery organizer
When you go on holiday you take a small sample of what accessories you want to take and lay it out or keep it in a bag. When you live somewhere, you take it all, and you really need somewhere to keep it. You really really don’t really want to lose it all in small spaces and have a mess of a room. You can buy jewellery organizers for under £5/$5. And it can transform your space and makes it look like you really have your life together.
You can buy them in so many styles to that it can fit your style, whether it’s metallic, pastel or monochrome, it can be done. And don’t stop there with the organizing: also go for shoe racks, colour-coded hangers and wash baskets which you can take to the bathroom with you so that you don’t drop everything. For the US, pick cheap ones up in Target, and for Europe, Flying Tiger Copenhagen is a fab place for cheap homeware.
6. Bathroom Caddy
This is especially great if you’re in a shared bathroom, as you can easily take all of your stuff to and from the bathroom without the risk of dropping all of it. Also, it’s an easy way to see if you’re running low on anything and need to top up.
So there are my 6 ways to brighten up your dorm room without breaking the bank! Do you have any other suggestions? Let us know down below!
Featured Image: https://www.pexels.com/photo/photo-of-a-bedroom-1834722/
Hi! My name is Ellie and I live in London. Currently in university studying journalism, I love all things writing and theatre and spend a lot of my time seeing shows on the West End.