12 Stylish Dorm Room Decor Ideas You Can Diy

Transform Your Dorm with These Budget-friendly Ideas

One of the most exciting things about going to college is finally having a space of your own. Your little home-away-from-home may not be much, but it’s yours; and with a little creativity and a touch of DIY know-how, you can easily turn your standard-issue dorm room into a stylish and comfortable study haven! 

Looking for some chic, budget-friendly ideas? Make the most of your space with these DIY dorm room decor projects. 

  • 01 of 12
    DIY dorm room headboard
    Photo via The Old Post Road.

    Dorm furnishings often leave much to be desired in the way of design. If your new “bed” amounts to little more than a mattress and box spring, an upholstered headboard can make a huge difference, giving the room a rich, fully furnished feel.

    Stuck with an unattractive frame? Why not mount a comfortably padded panel across the length of the bed? Add a few throw pillows and your beautiful new bed easily doubles as a comfy couch for entertaining friends.

    DIY Upholstered Dorm Headboard by The Old Post...MORE Road.

  • 02 of 12
    IKEA Lack table hack: DIY ottoman
    Photo via Turned to Design.

    Need some extra seating? This simple hack transforms an $8 IKEA LACK table into a beautifully upholstered ottoman. Set a large tray across the top for use as an impromptu coffee table. Genius!

    IKEA Lack Tables Turned Ottomans by Turned to Design.

  • 03 of 12
    DIY hemp pendant lamps
    Photo via Craftynest.

    Nothing brings warmth to a drab, sterile dorm room like some soft overhead lighting. Lose that harsh fluorescent glow, and string up a few of these stunning DIY pendant lamps.

    Made using only hemp string, glue and an inexpensive lamp kit, these lightweight lamps can be hung using wall-safe adhesive hooks. Use a large hook to hang your lamp from the center of the room, draping the rest of the cord over a series of small ceiling hooks before running it down the wall and into the outlet.

    Hemp Pendant...MORE Lamps by Crafty Nest.

  • 04 of 12

    Limited living space leaves little room for hidden storage, making stylish storage containers a must for any college bound co-ed.

    Instead of blowing half your budget on an attractive home for your socks, why not indulge in a little DIY? Use inexpensive fabric to transform cheap plastic bins into swanky new storage baskets. No sewing required! Just grab a pair of scissors and a can of spray adhesive, and follow the directions in this detailed tutorial.

    DIY Storage Bins by Tales from a Cottage.

    Continue to 5 of 12 below.
  • 05 of 12

    Stylish DIY Bulletin Board With Nail-Head Trim

    DIY dorm room decor: Fabric-covered Bulletin Board With Nail-Head Trim
    Photo by Newly Wife via Pinterest.

    This sophisticated take on a traditional dorm room staple uses bright and cheery fabric to introduce color and pattern to an all-beige space. An elegant, nail-head border, created using easy-press, nail-head upholstery pins, gives this quick and easy project a professionally finished look.

    Using spray adhesive and working in sections, carefully attach your fabric to the cork board, taking care to keep the frame free of glue. Once the fabric has dried, gently press pins along the inside of the...MORE frame. Then wrap the remaining fabric around the frame, and secure with a staple gun.

    Nailhead Bulletin Board via Pinterest

  • 06 of 12
    DIY dorm room decor: Fabric magnet board
    Photo via Simply This & That.

    For another fun twist on a traditional bulletin board, try covering a cheap cookie sheet with cute fabric. Glue magnets to the back of your makeup or office supplies for easy organization at an arm’s reach, or create your own eclectic set of magnets using bottle caps and vintage buttons. Drill a couple of holes near the top, and hang using pretty ribbon.

    DIY Fabric Magnet Board by Simply This & That.

  • 07 of 12
    Photo via Kitty Lascurain.

    Not much of an artist? If you can use a paper-punch tool, then your own paper-punch, dorm-wall masterpiece is just a few clicks away. All you need is a paper-punch tool in a shape of your choice, self-adhesive foam squares, a selection of colorful paper and a box frame.

    Using card stock, paint sample chips, or paper salvaged from magazines, punch a number of shapes. Mount each shape onto its own foam square, separating it from the base and creating a 3-D effect. Arrange your shapes to your liking...MORE and fix to base. Frame. You can find the full tutorial here.

    For a similar project, check out this felt craft wall art project.

  • 08 of 12

    Framed Sheet Music

    Sheet music makes for wonderful, inexpensive wall art. Order the sheet music to your favorite tune, and frame the entire song in a collection of coordinating picture frames. Mount on attractive card stock for an added pop of color.

    Spotted on Project Nursery.

    Continue to 9 of 12 below.
  • 09 of 12
    DIY dorm art: Yarn-wrapped letters
    Photo via Catch My Party.

    Personalize your space with these simple, yarn-wrapped letters. Cut each letter out of cardboard or foam core. Using craft glue and tightly spun yarn, wrap a few inches at a time, applying glue to the back as you go. Finish with a few pretty embellishments for the perfect touch.

    Spotted on Catch My Party.

  • 10 of 12

    Fabric Hoop Frame Up

    Looking for an easy and inexpensive way to add a little color to your dorm walls? Try this easy, no-sew, wall art project.

    Choose a selection of colorful fabric scraps. (Each piece need only be a few inches wider than the hoop you plan to frame it in.) Place the fabric in the embroidery hoop, pulling it taut. Place a small amount of glue around the inside edge of the hoop, pressing down the fabric as you go. Trim any excess.

    Spotted at The Sweetest Occasion.

  • 11 of 12

    Fan Flair

    DIY Washi Tape Ceiling Fan Flair
    Photo via Design Sponge.

    Want to make your dorm room feel a little less sterile? Try replacing a dull ceiling fan or light fixture with something a little more stylish. Electrical work not your thing? No worries! With a little patience - and a decent amount of washi tape - you can easily transform a dull, unattractive fixture into a bright and colorful accessory. Use a pencil to make guide marks and get sticking!

    Spotted on Design Sponge.

  • 12 of 12

    Sharpie Chic Accessories

    DIY Sharpie Doodle lamp idea
    Photo via bhg.com.

    Have a doodling problem? Save those notebooks for class, and get your doodle on in your dorm! A Sharpie and a steady hand is all it takes to turn a cheap, ceramic accessory, like this ceramic lamp base, into an original piece of art. Starting at the top and working your way down, draw stripes or polka dots. You can even create patterns using dots, spirals and interlocking paisley.

    Since permanent marker is usually, well, permanent, go slow and try to avoid any mishaps. If you do make a mistake, a...MORE little baking-soda toothpaste may do the trick.

    Spotted on BHG.com.

10 Ways to Banish Bare Dorm Walls

Need a little color in your life? Dress up those drab dorm walls with these clever, dorm-friendly decorating solutions!