As a now sophomore in college, I feel that I can authoritatively say I have learned a thing or two about what you do and don't want in your dorm room, your home away from home. You're going to be spending quite a bit of time in this place, so here are some fun and practical pro tips you might want to think about implementing when settling in for the fall semester.
Mini Fridge with Freezer
If you haven't bought your mini fridge yet, or you are looking for an upgrade, spend the extra cash and opt in for one with a separate freezer door. You will be the only one on the floor able to store ice cream and other frozen treats in your room, and your friends will love you for it. You will love you for it. This was one of my best decisions as an incoming freshman shopping for dorm supplies.
One of my other best decisions. This provides a much needed space for highly valued possessions able to be locked away, especially on vacation, as well as can serve as a tiny shelf when need be or even a junk bin for odds and ends with no place else to go.
Command Hook Totes
Many people, including myself, choose to get a heavy duty command hook to hang our backpacks on after class. This is a great strategy, but one that was even more helpful to me was to get a hook to hold a tote bag filled with things I might need just before bed or in the middle of the night, like a water bottle, journal, pen, tissue, warm socks, etc. See, my bed was lofted, which I loved, but what I didn't love was having to get down in the dark at 3 a.m. because I was thirsty. So I put my command hook tote against the wall behind my pillow, and I was set for most nighttime struggles.
This was a tip I saw on the Internet but couldn't utilize for lack of binder clips. I am all stocked up for this year though! I hated having to find my chargers for my computer and phone in the middle of doing homework that were, out of necessity, inconveniently located behind my desk. This way, those cords will stay nicely in reach, and won't trip anybody!
I just found this one about a week ago, and TOTALLY plan on making it happen. What a fantastic idea! Click the picture's link for a short video tutorial. All you have to do is fit a throw blanket on top of your old, college provided desk chair, and safety pin it together at the bottom of the seat cushion. The pillow is a cute touch, too. Speaking of which...
If this doesn't float your boat, find some other unnecessary decorative thing that makes you happy and rock it! You need your room to be a space you can be comfortable being you, even if it doesn't always have a purpose. I spent about $100 last year purchasing three throw pillows and covers that I found on Etsy against the advice of my parents, but I am so glad for it! They made me smile every time I walked in and saw them waiting on my bed, even though I would just throw them on the ground every night. I think they are a great addition to every room, especially if you end up investing in a couch!
They're cliche for a reason. Lighting is always a tough one in a college dorm room, and Christmas lights, or other types of stringed lighting, really brighten up the place, literally and figuratively. They're cheap, easy to set up, and a game changer in the mood of your room.
Just, trust me. Grocery bags are too big of a hassle for anyone to reasonably commit to all year, and you don't want to clean a sticky trash can at the end of the year. That is no fun, take my word for it.
Dry Erase Board
I didn't think I would need/want it, but by the time I realized my huge mistake I had to overpay in the school's supply store. Just run over to Dollar Tree or the 99 Cents Store before it is too late and you don't have a ride; you will thank me for it!
I hope these pro tips helped! If you have had failure or successes with any of these, or have other tips to share, I'd love to hear them in the comments. Happy college-ing!