Dorm Decorating 101

I am officially a college junior (eek!).  Now that I’m all moved into my dorm, the closest thing I have to a kitchen is a mini-fridge and a drawer full of peanut butter crackers—not exactly conducive to cookie making!  With the change, I have decided to add a more personal touch to this little blog!  And what better place to start than with some dorm decorating?  So, here we go!

Opening the door to a brand new dorm room is a bittersweet moment; on the one hand, the space is full of excitement and potential.  On the other hand, the drab white walls and  heavy school-issued furniture pose a decorating challenge.  And if you’re anything like me, you’re thinking “Shoot, I really wish the window was on the other wall” or “Uh-oh…maybe three cars full of boxes was too many.”  So how can you turn the shabby space chic?  It’s simple: planning, a good eye, and ALOT of 3M mounting tape.

You should know that there’s nothing I love more than decorating a new room.  Even when I was little and moved with my family, I found great excitement in replacing books onto their shelves and poring over paint samples.  To this end, I have spent each summer of my college career perusing Pottery Barn catalogs and Etsy shops to piece together the perfect dorm room.  However, having spent these past summer months as an illustrious but unpaid intern, I vowed to recycle my previous dorm-ware for my junior year.  But as July approached and the catalogs arrived, I just couldn’t help myself.  I began my annual summertime search for the perfect bedding, wall decor, and accessories.  With the exception of my chevron duvet cover, most of my pieces came from talented crafters at various Etsy shops.  My current obsession with metallic gold, and long-standing love affair with polka dots, made it easy to choose a theme.  Always a die-hard DIY-er, I bought out Party City’s tissue paper supply and created a tassel garland to frame the look!

dorm room livin 3

A well-laid plan will work wonders when decorating a dorm room.  However, when dealing with forty-year old buildings, sometimes you have to get creative.  I’m lucky to have built in shelving in my room, but the ugly brown wood had to go.  So I used a large roll of white paper to cover the shelves, updating the whole look.  This was a super easy way make my dorm modern and chic!

before and after shelves

I still have a little ways to go here in room 204, but I’m getting there! Thank you for following along as I continue to explore cookies, crafting, and college!

Gold Dot Decals

Graphic Prints/ Gold Dotted Mats/ Striped Canvases

 Gold Dotted Sheets

Personalized Pillows



  1. Carol Herrmann says:

    Wow – you’ve got so many of my favorites – anchors, monograms, polka dots and garlands! So cute. The baskets below your closet doors are a nice touch, and your papered shelves look so good I thought you had painted them! Love everything. UConn should have a cute dorm contest!

  2. Loving all the decorations! The gold accents are so lovely with the chevron print!

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