Interior Design: Dorm Decorating Ideas

How to make the most out of the two desks, two dressers, and two beds found in a dorm room.

Moving from home and into a dorm room and be both an exciting and an unsettling experience. Here are some ideas to make your dorm room feel more like home:

Bedding: If you are sharing a room with a roommate, you may want to meet them before you purchase the decorative bedding for your room. If you both have bold patterns on your beds that clash with each other, it will make the room look less cohesive. If you want to buy your bedding in advance, then you should choose a solid or neutral color. You can add pillows and throws to your bed later to jazz it up. If you can contact your roommate before move in, you can arrange to buy matching bedding.

Room organization: You need to be very organized in order to fit all of your necessities in a cramped room, especially if you have a roommate. To create extra storage spaces, purchase an under the bed box on rollers and a hutch shelf that will fit on top of your dresser or desk. You will also want to bring along a collapsible bookshelf to squeeze into a corner. Your luggage can also double as both storage and furnishings in your room. Your trunk can be your TV stand or coffee table, and can hide items that you do not use too often.



Wall: Make sure whatever you put on your walls is easily removable. There are more and more adhesive products added to the market every year. These items will hold your room décor on the wall and not peel off paint at the end of the year. You can use these items to line the walls with fabric, or pictures. You can also use fabric to make a room divider or to make a screen or canopy around your bed so you will not get disturbed if your roommate is working late. Do not forget that some of your clothes and accessories can double and wall décor. Shawls, throw blankets, jewelry, and traditional clothing can hang on the wall from dowels and hooks. You can take them down, wear them, and hang them back on the wall afterwards,

Furniture arrangement: There are two basic dorm room configurations, the bowling alley or the square.

You can take advantage of the bowling alley style dorm room by separating it into zones. Place the desks side by side at the far end of the room, in front of the windows. This will give you sunlight when you are working during the day. If available, place bookshelves facing the dressers so that the back of the shelves face out also place these shelves with one side against the wall. Use the back of your bookshelves as your headboards. You can cover them with fabric held on by pushpins and if the shelves are tall, you can hang a corkboard, which you can cover with fabric to coordinate with your bedding. Your beds will be against opposite walls, and if you pile them with bolster pillows and back cushions, they will resemble sofas facing each other. You can put your dressers at the foot of your bed near your fabric. This way as you enter your room you will pass through your dressing area, then your sleeping and seating area, and finally you will enter your sectioned off work area.

In a square room, you can create separate living quarters. One person's bed can be in one corner of the room, and the other person can put their bed in the far corner. In the center of the room, you can put your dressers and/or desks back to back. For additional privacy, you can add floor screens or curtain dividers.

For those people who can pay for a private room, or just luck out and don't get assigned a roommate, chances are you will have two of everything. You can use this furniture to turn your dorm room into an apartment. You can tuck one bed into the far corner to create a private sleeping area. Face the two dressers toward the bed to create a bedroom. Place a folding screen against the back of the dressers for added privacy. Turn the rest of the room into a studio apartment. Turn one desk into your work area, and the other into your kitchen table. Use the extra closet space to hide your mini fridge and microwave. Place the extra bed against the wall in a corner, and dress it like a day bed/sofa.

By looking at the room and its furnishings, and arranging it to the way you live, you will be able to create a room that you can call a home away from home.

© High Speed Ventures 2011