A-dormable: college design on a budget

Morgan Ewald

Are those plain, white walls in your residence hall driving you nuts? Many of us cover our walls, but if you just can’t come up with something cute to try, here are a few ways you can make your room a-dormable while adhering to a tight college budget. Most of these options will stay in the range of $20-$25, leaving money in your pocket for the weekend.

1.    Put up some lights. They are cheap, especially if you get them right after Christmas when everything is on sale. And if you’re ambitious, you can buy even more colorful options, like purple after Halloween, when those items are on sale. For application, purchase some Command hooks and hang the lights around the top of your room, or wherever you want them to be. It’ll bring new light to the room, giving option if you don’t want the harsh fluorescent light. This project should stay under $20 if you get the lights on sale.
2.    Create your own artwork. There are tons of options here. You could purchase a small canvas and some acrylic paint to create your own image. Other options include making a collage from old magazines, huge coloring pages and/or taking crayons and melting them on canvas. Hanging these pieces of art can be easy and cheap, too. A few Command strips and you’re done! Check out sites such as Pinterest for more crafty ideas.
3.    Go to the poster sale at the beginning of the year! The poster sale comes around once a year toward the beginning of each new school year. The sale has many different sizes of posters for many different prices. Most of the posters are under $20. The sale has a lot of different options for posters, from lots of different genres to choose from. For application, Command strips are a good option as well.
4.    A storage option that is cute as well as practical is milk crates. Milk crates can be spray painted or left the way they are, and can be a college-chic way to store schoolbooks, food and other items. The crates stack, so they are space-saving as well. Sometimes stores throw out the crates or give them away, making them super cheap.
5.    Use curtains! Since we can’t use curtains on windows in the residence halls due to fire hazards, you can use your curtains to hang from the side of your bed or closet to create a hide-away for things that don’t need to be seen, like hampers or storage tubs. Simply tuck the edges of the curtain between your mattress and bed frame to create this trick. If you don’t have a curtain or don’t want to use one, any type of fabric will work. Just pick whatever you like!

These are my tips for making your res hall room cute, while staying inside a budget of a college student. Twenty dollars is usually a good amount to spend on room decorations. Make sure to plan for next year!