Heading to college is an exciting new chapter in your life. There’s a lot to think about as you choose a major, plan your class schedule, and get to know your roommate. One of the most important things to think about is your dorm. It will become your home away from home and your sanctuary.
It should be a comfortable space that reflects who you are. This can be tough, though, when all dorm rooms tend to look the same with plain walls, linoleum floors, and standardized furniture.
From the wall decor to the bed, this guide will show you how to make your dorm room the place to be on the hall.
Cover the Walls
The walls in your dorm are going to be plain white. For many dorms, it's a painted concrete block. This is dull, lifeless, and a bit industrial-looking. You won’t be able to paint, but that doesn’t mean you have to live with the plain white walls.
Try hanging a large tapestry. This is a piece of fabric that you hang to cover a large portion of the wall. Another option is to add decals. You can find them in any design, from polka dots to birds and florals. If you want to cover the entire wall, use peel and stick removable wallpaper. It’s easy to apply and won’t damage the wall when you remove it at the end of the year.
Hanging artwork is also an option. Frame your favorite pieces and photos and create a gallery wall. If you love to take candid photos, string several rows of fishing line or wire across the wall and use clothespins to hang your photos. Weave twinkle lights through the lines for a soothing and cozy effect.
Add a Plant
The air in your dorm can feel a bit stagnant. Adding a plant or two helps freshen the air in your dorm room while also adding natural color and texture. You’ll want to choose a plant that will thrive in the room without requiring a ton of maintenance.
Succulents and air plants are virtually maintenance-free. They’re also small so that they won’t take up too much room. If you have a bit more room and want more greenery, try a snake plant, lucky bamboo, devil’s ivy, or a bromeliad.
Add Layers of Light
Most dorm rooms come with one or two overhead lights. They are large and fluorescent, which is effective at illuminating the room. However, they also make your dorm feel like an office. Fluorescent lighting is proven to reduce productivity, negatively impact your mood, and increase physical and mental fatigue.
Change the mood in your dorm by following the advice of interior designers. Create three layers of light, ambient, task, and accent. A floor lamp will create plenty of ambient light. Plug-in wall sconces and a desk lamp create task lighting. Fairy lights or LED light strips add accent lighting. Be sure to bring plenty of power strips to power your lights and electronics.
Improve the Bed
College dorm mattresses aren’t the best. They are a disappointing blend of being too firm and unsupportive. You need a bed that you can get a full night of restful sleep on so that you’re ready for learning.
Create the ultimately comfortable space by outfitting your dorm bed with a mattress topper, soft sheets, a supportive pillow, and a breathable comforter. Then make it look like home by adding a faux headboard and a few decorative throw pillows.
Viscosoft Select High Density Mattress Topper
Look for a mattress topper that suits your sleeping habits and build. The Viscosoft high density mattress topper features three inches of 3.5-pound density gel memory foam. This is slow-moving memory foam, making it perfect for maintaining the alignment of your head, neck, spine, and hips. It also reduces motion transfer and unwanted bounce, giving you more sound sleep.
Covering the memory foam is a removable, machine-washable slip-resistant bamboo-rayon cover. It’s soft and breathable, helping to regulate your body temperature. Securing the mattress topper are adjustable straps for a custom fit to your dorm's twin xl mattress.
Adding multiple textures to your dorm will help it to feel more like home. Start at the bottom and layer them as you move up through the room. Spread an area rug on the floor. A darker color will hide dirt and stains while also grounding the space for lighter colors up higher.
If you have seating, place a throw pillow and blanket on it. Add an ottoman with hidden storage for a multi-functional piece.
Hang curtains over the window. Adding more than one set will give you the most functionality. A light or sheer set will provide you with privacy while filtering in plenty of light. A heavier light-blocking set will keep the room dark for when you want to sleep in.
Think vertically when arranging your dorm. The floor space is limited, so you’ll want to maximize it by keeping the footprint of your furniture small. Create additional storage with a pocketed hanger that hooks to the backside of the door. You can use them for organizing shoes, toiletries, accessories, or even office supplies.
A multi-level rolling tower is also useful. You can roll it out of the way when not needed and bring it out when you do. This works well for bathroom essentials and hair care products. A tall and skinny bookshelf is also perfect for creating more storage. Look for one that has adjustable shelves so that you can use it for more than just books.
Purchase bed risers and lift your bed to create more storage underneath it. Some dorms let you loft the bed. This gives you a usable space under the bed for a sofa or desk.
Start Planning the Perfect Dorm Room
The best strategy is to start early to give yourself plenty of time to find everything you need for your dorm room. If you have a roommate, coordinate with them so you can work together to create a room that will feel like home for both of you.
Creating a coordinated color scheme using a lighter color palette will keep the room feeling light and bright. This will help your dorm to feel welcoming to friends, new and old. Adding textures and custom lighting will help your dorm to feel warm and cozy.Start planning your dorm room by purchasing the best mattress topper for your sleeping needs.