Plan it. Buy it. Love it.
Turn a cookie-cutter campus room into a stylish home.
by Mary Margaret Giles / July 2018
The longer you live in a space the more it becomes a part of you, making you feel more at home.
Is it exam time? Need to send someone a little motivation? We love gift giving with a purpose. We love the idea of our Swig Chi Omega water bottle for both hot and cold liquids. For keeping their coffee or hot cocoa warm and toasty while studying. Add some sticky notes, pens, pencils, notepads and stickers and you have a great little study pick me up!
1Work with What You are Given. You can’t do anything about the furniture you are given in your dorm room which usually consists of a twin bed that can usually be lofted so you can use the space underneath the bed, a dresser for clothes, a desk and desk chair, sometimes a small bookshelf or bedside table is included. All of which is usually in a oaky brown color.
Think of your college room as a tiny house. Mentally create living zones in your room. Design is just as important as function in a small space. Just because your room is small doesn't mean it has to be short on cozy charm that is inviting. You living environment is an important part of setting yourself up for a successful semester. At first thought, you might think your dorm room is too small to have separate areas. However, without a purpose to the space it can lead to things looking messy. Which leads to our second tip... define your space, which is the first step in designing your new Chi Omega dorm room.
2Define Your Space. Break your small college room into zones for lounging, working and eating with open space to move around. Think ahead and create the space you need and want to be in. The area under your lofted bed do you want to use for storage or lounging? Could you or would you want to put your mini- fridge under your bed? Would your desk fit under your lofted bed? Would you want to study there? What about your dresser? Want more floor space will dresser fit under your bed?
Define Your Space
Creating a designated space for these categories will go a long way to creating a room that functions with ease and comfort.
- Getting Dressed
3Create Space. Raised furnishings are ideal for small rooms since they create the most desired thing in a dorm room.... MORE SPACE. So loft those beds!
Try to imagine the furniture in your space and it will be used throughout the day. Set priorities to what your really need and what is important to you and plan accordingly. Is the bed important will you be spending a great deal of time there sleeping, reading and studying. Or do you prefer to lounge in chair. Maybe a bean bag or a low profile gaming type chair under your lofted bed more important.
Rugs are a great way to create designated areas. Are you using the space under your bed for lounging? Besides adding a functional element it defines the space and gives you a clean area for lounging. You will appreciate a nice clean smelling throw rug after you see the condition of some of the carpets in the older dorm rooms.
4When Defining Your Space It is Important to Consider Hanging Cords and Plug-ins . Find a home for all your electronic devices. Try to find ways to hide the cords and yet still make them reachable. It makes your space look clean and tidy thus giving it a bigger appearance.
Your living environment is an important part of setting yourself up for a successful semester.
5A consistent color scheme and scaled accent pieces will make your dorm feel larger. Create a color palette. Use the same color, but different shades for an accent color. A neutral color that compliments your accent color.
The color palette of your dorm room is important. The right color palette will make your tiny living space look and feel larger with our smart design tricks from clever multifunctional accessories to room expanding color palettes. As a Chi Omega, creating a color palette is critical you want to have accessories and fabric that compliment your sorority's colors. Chi Omega's official colors are cardinal red and straw yellow. A consistent neutral anchor color is just as important to consider as the main theme color, when designing a cohesive look. Keep things light when choosing colors that will cover a large space in your room. Rich, dark colors have a tendency to draw attention and make spaces appear smaller to the eye, light shades open up a space. A good rule of thumb when choosing your color palette use three colors: two light, bright shades that decorate the majority of the space. Add one darker accent color to create visual interest.
Don't forget the walls. Have a plan... chic or bohemian? Chic Style: When adding framed art, it is important to use similar colors so the art or photos will read as a collection instead of a clutter. We recommend all white frames or all black which showcase your art or photo lends itself to a more expensive look. Use wall putty so you don’t leave holes. Bohemian Style: Create a gallery wall using all different color frames and objects in two or three colors. Anymore and you run the risk of it looking like clutter in a small space.
6Why we love adding black to a dorm rooms decor. Black has the power to add sophistication to your dorm room. We are not talking goth decorating but black accents done correctly can take a dorm room from high school bedroom look to sophisticated chic sorority room.
7What is the difference between a nice looking room and a designer room? DEPTH...Mixing patterns and textures. Layering is an important design element to include in your college dorm room. Small spaces typically lack depth because there only so much space for the eye to take in.
Add complexity and depth to your college space buy layering and mixing different patterns in different shades of your theme color from small to large. Your dorm room windows are a great place to start. Although your college room probably comes with blinds, if you can find a way to hang curtains it will go a long way to making your small space feel like home. Most college dorms only have one window. Natural light in a small space is very important. We have two tried and true tips for making your dorm room windows a show stopper... HIGH and WIDE. First, hang your curtains a close to the ceiling as possible to create the illusion of higher ceilings, drawing the eye up visually creates more space. Second, to create the illusion of wider windows hang a solid curtain in a bright fabric or fun print on the outside of edge of the window over about 10 inches on each side of the window. Now cover up those tired looking window blinds with light white airy curtains which will allow more natural light in making the space feel larger and more cheerful.
Magnetic Memo and Cork Boards
Create visual interest out of your college memories. Layer with notes, photos, theatre tickets, quotes, magnets, and other 3-3 objects such as back stage passes, photos pr to enjoy, sorority buttons and quotes. ,.
Add rugs to cover less than desirable college dorm carpeting. Think about using a rug with a pattern, or a shaggy feel to add depth. You are more likely to enjoy sitting and utilizing your floor space when you know it is clean.
While it is not a new concept, it does make a huge difference. Layer your bed with multiple blankets & throw pillows in different sizes and shapes. Add depth while staying warm & cozy.
Frames with depth
Use frames that have some depth when framing artwork and displaying pictures. Chunky frames and picture ledges can really add some much needed visual interest to flat boring dorm walls.
Add some depth to your window by hanging two colors of curtains. A color and a sheer white. The sheer curtains will cover the cheap window blinds creating depth but allowing the maximum natural light into the room.
5 TIPS FOR CREATING DEPTH IN YOUR COLLEGE DORM
8A full length mirror is a must have for every college girl! Invest in an inexpensive over the door mirror. Not only will it give you a mirror for getting dressed and applying makeup but it will make your room feel larger by reflecting light and creating visual depth. If possible place the mirror over a door that will give you pretty area in the reflection...NOT the trash can or laundry bin. Every square inch of a small space is important including the mirror hanging on the back of the door. Use the space wisely by attaching command hooks around the mirror's edges for scarves, hats, necklaces and other hanging nicknacks you might use when getting dressed.
3 TIPS FOR KEEPING YOUR COLLEGE DORM ROOM DE-CLUTTERED
Get rid of duplicates. Don’t forget duplicate clothing do you have several of one thing but typically only wear the one
Haven’t used it in a year? Chances are you not going to use it. The space that item is taking up in your room is more valuable than keeping it for someday. Nostalgic junk items? Take a photo of them. You have the memory but not the clutter. Can’t live without it? Box it up and ship it home.
Put it back. The easy way is to leave things lying around, but that is how messy clutter gets started. After you are done using something put it back where it belongs. Don’t procrastinate. Be organized. Make sure you have a home for everything.
When designing a small space like a college dorm room with only one closet, STORAGE is ESSENTIAL! It is important to think vertically and horizontally. You need places to keep all the things you need to live comfortable in your space hidden. All storage containers are not created equally. You need stackable storage and a way of labeling the storage in a cohesive neat manner. When deciding what to store and how many storage containers to purchase. Keep in mind that the MOST VALUABLE ITEM IN A SMALL SPACE IS EMPTY SPACE. Be selective in what you purchase and keep.
Decorative storage boxes in neutral colors. Invest in the inexpensive boxes but look for ones that have the label inserts. No need to write on the box so if you change your mind on what you need it for. It is easy peasy to change. Keep clutter hidden discreetly but at hand. Remember the key to design is creating depth and interest through mixing patterns and textures. Mix up your storage containers. We recommended mixing in some of M&D Sorority Gift's metal Chi Omega buckets or canvas bins with your cheap storage containers. We love the canvas storage boxes available from the container store.
Chi Omega Bucket
from M&D Sorority Gifts
Size: approximately 6.5 inches tall, 6.5 inches top opening, 4.25 base. So many uses… Use in the closet on a shelf, super cute stuffed with socks, scarves and other small items. Use on the dresser, perfect for clearing up the clutter. Use in the bathroom, perfect for brushes, hair supplies and more. Also, cute with hand towels rolled up, an affordable decorative sorority look. Use on the desk. Stay organized in sorority style!
Canvas Storage Boxes
from Container Store
ideal for storing sweaters, sweatshirts, accessories or linens. Strong and durable. Coordinates with any décor. Label holders and snug-fitting lid complete the details. They are designed to fit standard 12" and 16" shelf depths.
9When to buy neutrals and when to buy colorful accent pieces, get the most for your college budget by thinking ahead.. Ask yourself what are the chances of me using this again?
Storage containers and ottomans are needed and used year after year. They can easily transition from college dorm to college apartment. Think neutral. Invest in a nice, heavy duty, neutral small storage ottoman. If you only buy one item for your room this is it! Double-Duty Storage and seating. Keep clutter hidden discreetly but at hand. Store under loft bed and use of propping up your laptop for watching movie or add a clipboard on top for sturdiness and use as a coffee table for setting your drink on. Use as step stool for getting into a lofted bed. Use as a seat for putting on your shoes or an extra chair for when you have visitors.
10Lighting. A nice floor lamp in a neutral color can easily transition form college dorm to college apartment. Think neutral and functionality.
Avoid using the harsh florescent overhead lighting found in many dorms. If you have light fixtures, change the lightbulbs to soft lightbulbs. Keep the old ones to put back in when you move out. Have the ugly, buzzing long florescent lights? Invest in a couple of floor lamps. They don’t take up room on any table top service you might be lucky enough to have, including your desk area. You can adjust the light to just where you want it and not disturb your dorm-mate. Be sure floor lamp shade is not plastic! They are not allowed in college housing because of the fire hazard. Studying long hours can be frustrating on the eyes and body. Just as having different spaces in your room to sit, stand or lay down while studying will give your body a break. Using different lighting will also give your eyes a break.
Chi Omega Decorative PillowsShop Pillow Collection
Dorm Decorating Tip #1
Throw pillows add color and visual interest to a dorm room. The key to decorating with pillows select a color palette and stick to it for the most impact select pillows in the same shade or in a complimentary shades. Layer pillows. A single pillow is a lonely pillow.
Chi Omega BlanketsShop Blanket Collection
Dorm Decorating Tip #2
Throw blankets can add comfort, style and texture to a dorm room. Fold neatly and hang over the edge of your bed or chair. Throws are great at camouflaging an ugly dorm desk chair.
Chi Omega Picture FramesShop Picture Frame Collection
Dorm Decorating Tip #3
Pictures while displaying memories add interest to a dorm room. Use glass picture frames on dressers and desks. One of my favorite ways to display a picture frames is in a row of books with a couple lying down and a picture frame sitting on top.
Chi Omega Canvas SignsShop Canvas Collection
Dorm Decorating Tip #4
Since Coco Chanel unveiled the first version of the little black dress in Vogue magazine in the 1920s, the color black never goes out of style whether in your closet or your home… BLACK is in! In cooperating black into a dorm room can add an element of chic style usually lacking in dorm decor. Hang black canvas above your bedside table or dresser. Can’t put holes in the wall hang with Velcro strips, lean up against the wall or lean against your favorite books.
Chi Omega Bins & BucketsShop Bins & Buckets
Dorm Decorating Tip #5
The Top of the Closet is the Most UNDER-UTILIZED Area of the Closet. Canvas bins and buckets can bring order to an overpacked closet. Use to collect odds and ends such as tote bags, purses, scarves, work-out clothes, and out of season Chi Omega clothes and shoes. Canvas bin folds flat and stores easily when not in use. College friendly. Decorative metal Chi Omega buckets are great for organizing a messy dresser or desk.
Chi Omega PillowcasesShop Pillowcases
Dorm Decorating Tip #7
Pillowcases not only add a style element to your bed but can also play a part in acne breakouts. Dermatologists recommend changing your pillowcase at least once a week but if you are experiencing breakouts every two to three days might be beneficial. Contributing factors can be the oils in the hair, hair products, dead skin cells, and dust mites which can build up causing breakouts. Read More.
Chi Omega TowelsShop Bath Towels
Dorm Decorating Tip #8
Decorating with towels not only adds some sorority spirit to the bathroom but you will also always know which towels are yours. How many towels do your need at college? We recommend having at least three bath towels on hand. One for the wash, one for using and one for back up if you don't get to the laundry.
The Chi Omega Bedroom
Go simple with a white comforter. Add lots & lots of pillows for depth of design, style and personality. Pillows in a variety of sizes and shapes are important because your bed may double as the main seating area in your room.Add sorority blankets to your bedding to create design depth.
Invest a little money in a a quality mattress pad or feather top. You will rest better. "The amount of sleep that a college student gets is one of the strongest predictors of academic success. Sleep plays a key role in helping students fix and consolidate memories, plus prevent decay of memories. Without sleep, people work harder and but don’t do as well." -- studentlife.umich.edu
The Chi Omega Bathroom
Sorority towels add some sorority style & you know easily which towel is yours. Sorority Bath towels have at least three on hand. One for the wash, One for using and one for back up if you don't get to laundry. Sorority towel wrap makes dressing a breeze without worrying about towel slippage. Cosmetic bags go from bathroom to backpack with ease.
Most Out of
Your Study Time
Master final exams - Understand versus memorize – When you truly understand a concept, memorization naturally follows. Try to understand the core of what you’re learning and build upon that, versus memorizing for each test and forgetting afterwards.
The Chi Omega study area
Studying long hours can be frustrating on the eyes and body. Having different spaces in your room to sit, stand or lay down while studying will give your body a break. Using different lighting will also give your eyes a break.
Plus, if you have multiple places to study in your room, then you have room for a study partner!
Memo Boards, Magnetic Boards and Dry Erase boards are great way to blend functionality, sorority style and design depth. Layer with notes, photos, theatre tickets, quotes, magnets, and other 3-D objects such as your favorite necklace, sorority buttons, etc.
Shop the Chi Omega Store at M&D Sorority Gifts for all of these great Chi Omega study supplies and decorative boards. Only a few of the great products for your study area are featured below..
Study Area shopping guide
Plan it. Buy it. Love it.
- Chi Omega Dry Erase / Magnetic / Metal Memo Board
- Chi Omega Magnetic Stand
- Chi Omega Laptop Decals
- Chi Omega notepads
- Chi Omega Sticky Notes
- Chi Omega Pens & Pencils
- Chi Omega Stickers for Notepads & Laptops
- Chi Omega Pillow for Desk Chair
- Chi Omega Throw for Covering up Ugly Desk Chair & Keeping Warm while Studying
Chi Omega merchandise I STYLE TIPS and DECORATING IDEAS
// M&D Sorority Gifts Blog
Sorority Look #22: Long sleeve hoodie pullover shirt with Greek Letters + IS The Life For Me, sorority fleece jogger...Read more
Sorority Look #21: Long sleeve hoodie shirt with Greek Letters on front kangaroo pocket, sorority leggings and sterling silver Greek...Read more
What makes our Chi Omega Boutique Collection the best for Chi Omega apparel and gifts? Fast turnaround times - most items ships within 3-5 business days! We are a Greek licensed manufacturer for Chi Omega with unique exclusive designs only available at m&d Sorority Gifts