College dorm rooms can be intimidating- not because they are big, but because they are so small! That still isn’t the case for most students. So, how do we make the most out of the tiny space that you or your child will be spending an entire year in? Here are some tips!




1. Space Planning

When you first walk into your dorm room, you’ll see that they have already placed furniture a certain way. Remember that they are merely a suggestion; you can stay with the given layout or move things around.

An easy way to gain some floor space is to elevate your bed if possible. Placing a desk underneath the elevated bed along with a small bookshelf or cubbies for storage can visually expand your square footage quite a bit. If you can place your desk elsewhere, creating a cozy seating area under the lofted bed is also an option to consider. In case you don’t have an option to raise the bed enough, raising it a little bit by placing feet underneath the legs would create a space for storage bins!

Dorm Room Decor and Design
Image Source: Roomadness

Another layout option to consider is how to blend your space planning idea with that of your roommate’s. The easiest way in small spaces like a dorm room, of course, is to mirror and create a symmetrical layout on either side of the room. The nice thing about mirroring is that you can gain an open space in the middle of the room as a shared space. Depending on how big your room is, you could even place a TV and a bean bag or two in the middle of the room! Check out this stylish dorm room below!

dorm room design and decor
Image Source: Roomadness
Dorm Room Decor and Design
Image Source: Roomadness

















2. Shared Space

You will inevitably have to share something with your roommate, most likely the “kitchenette” space. A good way to design the small kitchenette space is to make it into a hospitality/amenities area for you, your roommate, and your friends who’ll visit your room! Often times this area becomes a dead space with a mini-fridge collecting dust. Place a Keurig (for the much-needed caffeine) and a small box or a basket with treats, granola bars in addition to your mini-fridge and you’ve got yourself a private gourmet amenities area! Skinny stacked baskets or a slender bar cart could be a nice addition to the kitchenette space if you don’t already have shelvings or a cabinet.

College Dorm Room Organization and Decor
Image Source: The Container Store

3. Go Vertical

Since most dorm rooms will have a limited floor space, it’s smart to go vertical

with your storage, wall decorations, and other functional items. Going vertical will not only help you to organize more easily but also visually expand the room to make it look taller. A few functional items you would want to consider are floating wall shelves, chalkboard wall decals to be used as a calendar/reminder list (or an actual calendar works too), and a decorative clock.

Dorm Room Decorating
Image Source: Bellezaroom


4. Textures and Colors

When you first walk into a dorm room, it will look bland and boring. A couple of dormitories I’ve visited simply have exposed pipes in the ceiling and painted cinder block walls that make the room feel institutional, cold, and uninviting. If you’re worried about how to cozy up the room, one of the best ways to make the room more inviting is with textures and colors.

An easy way to add texture is with pillows and throws on your bed. There are a plethora of textures you can choose from; faux-fur, burlap-textured (probably not the best texture to add, but it’s an option), thick cable-knit, and velvet to just name a few. Check out these cozy items below!

soft and cozy throw pillows and throws
Image Source: Urban Outfitters

Whether you are excited about starting college or not, I think we can all agree that decorating your dorm room is quite exciting. Hopefully, these tips helped you to think about dorm room decorations and organizations in a different way than you have been! And remember, always have fun with decorating!