Darling Dorm Decor: How to Have a Chic Room on a Budget

The word “dorm” often conjures up images of drab walls, bare dressers and boring desks. But a dorm room isn’t just a place to sleep and study. It’s a place to make all yours, a place that can inspire you from morning until night. Check out these tips on how to (affordably) add some chicness to your dorm room so stepping through the door will feel just like coming home.

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A crucial element of any dorm room is photos of friends and family. Save desk space and add cuteness to the walls by ditching the picture frames and hanging photos on twine. You can find cute clothespins at any craft store for a detailed touch. Print out inspirational quotes from Pinterest for a daily dose of motivation, or gain major hipness points by using old-fashioned Polaroids. Tip: To make sure everything stays up, invest in some gummy adhesive tabs (a dorm essential) to put on the back of each photo so the thin twine isn’t supporting all the weight.

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You’ll definitely want to have some pens and pencils handy to jot down any reminders or homework assignments. Maximize desk space and have easy access to your writing utensils by putting them in a chic mini pail. (Definitely good for fashionistas on a budget—I found this polka dot pail in the dollar section of Target!)

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Don’t underestimate the style power of displaying everyday items. Having a stack of fashion-forward magazines on your bedside table not only looks chic, but you can flip through the pages anytime you’re desperate for some last-minute style inspiration.

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Craft stores are great for putting together some DIY decor (see the hanging clothesline photos, above), but party store goods can provide some much-needed pizazz to blank walls. Go monochrome, like with these black and white bursts, or add a pop of color. Use hooks to hang up wall decorations like these, and put some adhesive tabs on the back to ensure that your fashionable decor will stay up for the whole semester.

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Even with ample drawer space, it can be hard to decide where everything should go in a dorm. Display any memorable tokens (concert tickets, newspaper clippings, letters from friends and family) in a mason jar. Serious adorability coupled with sentimental value? Exactly what a dorm room needs.

Story and Photos By Libby Allnatt

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