How to Spruce Up a Dorm Room

– When students first walk into a new dorm room, they are greeted with a dull, barren space. In a way, it is a blank canvas ready to be painted with their personality and style. Since furniture is provided in dorms and on-campus apartments, it can be a challenge for students to branch out and find versatile and useful decorations for their space.

– Dorm rooms aren’t huge, and since students end up moving in and out of them, it’s good to minimize how many decorations they buy so they have less to store when they’re not living in the dorm.

From posters to potted plants to Christmas lights, the decorations in a dorm room reflect the creativity and style of the student living there. Not only do decorations make for a great-looking room, they can also make the room more comfortable for students adjusting to living away from home.

– Some of the best and cheapest places to buy such deocrations are right here in Richmond. Target offers all kinds of decor every summer made just for dorm rooms, with useful items at low prices. Thrift stores and used bookstores are spread all throughout Richmond and often have posters, calendars, small night stands and kitschy knick knacks of all styles.

– No matter how students decide to decorate their space, the items  listed here are tried and true dorm essentials that will help reflect their style and make them truly feel at home.

– Dorms can be drab and boring when students first arrive, but with a few quick decoration fixes, anyone can turn it into their own space.

1) First things first: It’s important to have posters. What better way to express individuality and passion than to plaster it all over the walls? Anything from band posters to work from local artists to campy movie posters — it all depends on what you like. A great place to go is the Richmond Book Shop on 808 W Broad St. There are many vintage posters and cool knick knacks there to put in a room, and at very low prices.

2) Getting a string of lights to hang in the room adds a little bit of fun. There’s Christmas lights, star lights, flamingo lights, paper lanterns or other themed lights. Lights can really make a room look snazzy.

3) Putting a few potted plants by the windowsill really breathes life into a room, and students can really have fun with what they use as a vase or planter. Goodwill or any other local thrift shop is likely to carry some sort of nifty object to place plants in. Just remember to water them and give them some sunlight because there is nothing more dreary than sad, wilting plants.

4) Another thing that makes a dorm room complete is either a dry erase board or a chalkboard to write down daily reminders, motivational quotes, or just funny doodles. It’s great for staying organized — especially with several colors of markers or chalk.

5) Although most furniture in a dorm room is provided, it’s a good idea to buy small, easily stored pieces like a night table or an organizer with cubbies. These can be found for cheap at Target or Walmart, and often come in several colors and styles. Cubbies help students stay organized and can be a great addition to the drabness of dorm furniture.

6) Some of the best-decorated dorm rooms have tapestries in addition to posters. Tapestries can add some much-needed color, but students should be careful about hanging them. Having them near lights, vents or smoke detectors can be a fire hazard and should be avoided.

7) Curtains are one thing dorms don’t provide that can also spice up a room. Having curtains gives students an extra amount of privacy and pizzaz that hides the unflattering venetian blinds the dorms have.

8) A small rug or carpet can add necessary comfort to a dorm floor, and small ones can usually be found for cheap at Target.

9) An important part of dorm decorating that most students forget is decorating the door. A whiteboard or chalkboard is great for other people to leave notes when no one is home.

10) One thing almost everyone comes to college with is photos. One way to add a bit of individuality to the walls is to decorate them with those photos. You can find frames that hold multiple pictures, or you can use a clothesline with clothespins to hang photos in a more offbeat way.

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