Dorm decor tips from four students who nailed it

Dorm Decor Tips

As you think about your first year at college, where you’ll live is likely at the top of your mind. You also might be thinking about how to make your room a comfortable place — and how to do it on a budget.

Creating an inviting space can definitely feel like a challenge, but it doesn’t have to. With a lot of planning and a little creativity, you’ll make your room shine.

Here’s how four of our first-year students made dorm decor work for them.

Ashlyn, Academic Village Suite-Style


A local student from the Denver area, once Ashlyn chose CSU she knew that family and friends would be visiting her often. She wanted to make enough room for a futon to house overnight guests without sacrificing space for storage. Both her and her roommate lofted their beds to make it work.

Here’s how she made her room in Academic Village a home away from home — for both her and her guests.

TIP  #1:  Pick out your colors before you start buying.

Ashlyn's Tip: Pick your color scheme first.

TIP #2: Start shopping around early to get good deals — it gets expensive fast.

Ashlyn's tip: Start shopping early for good deals.

TIP #3: Print out photos and cover them with plexiglass for a cheap and easy desk upgrade.

Ashlyn's tip: desk upgrade.

TIP #4: If you’re hanging up string lights, buy battery operated. They’ll be less hassle to turn on and off.

Ashlyn's tip: Buy battery-operated string lights.

Ree, Pinon Hall Single Room in a Quad


An out-of-state student moving cross-country to attend CSU, Ree had to think a lot about space. What would fit into the car? How could she plan for furnishing her room without seeing it in person?

Here are her tips for those students who may not have a chance to tour their residence hall ahead of time.

TIP #1: Be strategic with where you place your furniture and consider lofting your bed.

Ree's tip: loft your bed

TIP #2: Look up 3D room plans online to get exact measurements before you start buying.

Ree's tip: Look up floor plan and measure before buying.

TIP #3: Don’t buy a hanging mirror — it won’t hang on the doors.

Ree's tip: Mirrors won't hang on doors.

Christina and Shelby, Academic Village Suite-Style

Shelby and Christina

Both out-of-state students with few CSU connections, Christina and Shelby joined our online admitted student community Schools App to meet other future Rams.

They quickly formed a close bond online and decided to room together in the Academic Village Engineering Hall. In order to make their room work for both of their needs, they texted and FaceTimed to hammer out the details.

Here are their tips on how to team up with a roommate to make your space sync up.

TIP #1: Communicate early on and decide who’s bringing what.

Roommate tips: coordinate ahead of time

TIP #2: Save money by making things yourself.

TIP #3: Find creative ways to organize and store your things.

Get more budget-friendly ideas

Watch as current student Julia shows how she decorated her room for less than $100.