Tag Archives | dorm room

Image by Jeff Sheldon, unsplash.com

Image by Jeff Sheldon, unsplash.com

Your things are moved in, your parents have left, and you and your roommate have claimed your spaces in your new dorm. Then it hits you: you’re stuck in this concrete box for the rest of the semester. Here are a few ways to make your dorm into a safe and well-organized home and have a happier college living experience.

Finding Space in Your Space

Maybe you have several bags full of clothes, or maybe you brought more books than you’ll have time to read. Fortunately, many dorms are laid out in easy-to-organize ways with lots of corners, ledges, and sometimes ample closet space.

Attaching caddies to existing dorm furniture is one way to find room to store school supplies. A little searching and cash can create storage space in closets and even off the side of a bed with shoe organizers, totes, and plastic storage stackers. If your dorm has bunkbeds, they can be used for shoes and clothes. It’s easy to find plastic boxes and caddies to keep track of your toiletries and make sure your roomie doesn’t walk off with your shampoo. If a bookshelf would take up too much space or you just don’t want to have to move one, you can create one using existing floor space or a part of your desk by lining up your books and using a bookend, which can be made from a box to hold your pens and other small supplies.

The Electronics Slide

It’s a common complaint: your dorm was built 30 years ago, and doesn’t have enough outlets for you and your roommate to charge all your devices. Americord power strips and extension cords are your friends, but make sure to use them safely. Don’t daisy-chain by plugging one power strip into another. It’s safest to plug your computer into a wall outlet rather than a power strip.

Along with your various cords, it’s good to invest in some Velcro strips to keep everything coiled neatly. This will also help distinguish your phone charger from your roommate’s or your friends’, who might need to charge their phones in your room. Keeping your cords neat will also prevent time-consuming tangles, and make sure you keep your external devices in order.

Dorm life can be rough. You and your roommate may part ways in sophomore year, and that class you thought would be easy may be the worst thing to happen to you. But with a few simple tweaks, your school-assigned lodgings can become a well-ordered sanctuary.

This article was contributed by guest author Brooke Chaplan.


Image by Daniel Borman on Flickr

Getting by in college can be a challenge, especially when you’re confronted with the small confines of a typical college dorm room. College is a time to concentrate and minimize your distractions so you have more options for work when you leave school. If you want to get a masters or doctoral degree at a school like Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions, you’ll find you need excellent study skills and a highly efficient workspace. Don’t leave decorating and space organization until halfway through the year. Make sure your dorm can accommodate you and all the studying you need to do.

Shelving Units

You don’t need to spend a lot of money on shelves, but you should certainly put something on those walls to make the best out of your space. There are very affordable stackable crates you can use for bookcases, or you can purchase some racks to help organize your papers. If you have a lot of papers and you live with another person, make sure to get folders to keep your papers from getting lost or shuffled around. Organize your shelves in a way that maximizes your study time, and promotes movement so you can go for longer lengths of time without breaks to find your materials.

Get a Mini Fridge

If you don’t yet have a mini-fridge, seriously consider one. You can put a printer, more shelves, and other items on top of the fridge, or it can double as a nightstand. It will provide you with a great deal of convenience you might not otherwise have. Keep coffee and snacks in the fridge to help power you through long study sessions, and you can even use the top as a plate warmer to keep your food warm while studying. Obviously, it won’t keep food extremely hot, but it can keep pizza and sandwiches warm enough to be enjoyable.

Set Up Tension Rods

Small tension rods can be placed almost anywhere. If you need a place to hang your coats, get a tension rod and place it between two walls. You can set up a makeshift closet in nearly any corner, and save space in the process. If you want to free up more space, attach used soda caps to the ends of coat hangers, and loop another coat hanger through the bottom hole of the cap. This way you can hang two items for every coat hanger, and save additional room in your closet. This leaves more room for storing other items like shoes, books, and study materials.

Get a Shoe Organizer

Unless you have tons of shoes, get a shoe organizer and use it to store snacks, pens, pencils, tools, and other school supplies. It’s much more organized than pushing things away in drawers, and the see-through plastic makes it easier to see everything inside. You can hang the organizer from your door and free up additional desk space that can be used for more important items you need immediate access to. Never lose your keys again by throwing them in the top organizer pocket as you walk through the door.

Organize Your Cords

If you’ve got a lot of electronics you often need to plug in when you get home and sit at your desk, consider using binder clips to keep the cords from falling behind the desk. Clip the binder clip to the edge of the table and loop power, usb, or other cords through the clip. When you’re done using the cable, it won’t slip down behind the desk. This can help save you time by not having to dig down behind the desk to get your cables.

Get creative and you’ll find that there are plenty of ways to organize your dorm to maximize your space. Having an organized dorm will help you to have a more productive study space and save you money and time. A more enjoyable and productive college experience is possible with these tips, and the time you save can be used building meaningful relationships with your friends.

This article was contributed by guest author Brooke Chaplan.

Image by Great Beyond, Flickr

Image by Great Beyond, Flickr

So, it’s about that time of the year again. Finals, counting down until summer vacation and of course MOVE OUT. Before you can live out your fantasy of lounging in the sun on a raft in the pool with an ice cold lemonade in your hand, you have to pack up all of your stuff.

Normally this is considered a chore and even a burden during the rush of the end of the year, but what if packing up and moving out of your dorm, apartment or house could be simple? Well, it can be.

Here are a few tips on how to get your dorm ready for move out:

  1. Make a Plan – Just like everything in life, it’s better to lay out a guide for yourself so you don’t forget to pack anything or run out of time.
    • Get Prepared: Make sure you set things like breakables aside so that you have time to pack them at the end. Give yourself enough time (with maybe an extra hour or two) so you can study before your last final instead of worrying about those last three boxes.
    • Supply Yourself: Check to see that you have everything you need. Boxes? Packing tape? Bubble wrap? Newspaper? Suitcases? Make a thorough list for these items and make sure you have them all before starting. You don’t want to make four runs to the store while everyone is saying goodbyes with a pizza party (yum!)
    • Decide what to do: If you’re shipping your items home, storing with a company, friend or at a self-storage locker, make a decision and do it quick! You don’t want to be the one asking a friend to lend you their truck last minute or wind up paying inflated pick up prices with movers.
  2. Deal with the big items – If you live in an off campus apartment or house, this could be pretty common. You’ll want to assess your items and figure out what you’ll do with them – shipping, storing or moving? Protection for furniture is key for all instances.
    • For mattresses, make sure you box or cover them with plastic to keep dust and bed bugs out.
    • TVs are always best in boxes or packing blankets, and be sure to keep your remote somewhere safe!
    • Dressers and desks should be covered with plastic or cardboard to prevent scratches or other damage. Don’t forget to empty your items and secure all of the drawers and shelves so they don’t open or separate during the move.
  3. Stay Calm and Pack On – Even though this probably seems like a super stressful time of the year, remember that summer is just around the corner and that it’s not the end of the world if you have one box left to pack after your final. You’re there for school, and exams are still your number one priority. Here are a few more tips to keep you organized:
    • If you’re storing your items, don’t forget to set aside the stuff you want to take home this summer (hint hint: shorts, bathing suits, flip flops, passport etc.)
    • Driving home? Make a plan for which route you’re going to take and have your playlist ready to rock! (Don’t forget to fill the tank)
    • During your exam study breaks, pack a little. It gets you moving and you’ll get work done while you’re on your break. (Packing playlist anyone?)
  4. For more info on packing and some awesome tips for packing up specific items, check out our FAQ.

    This article was contributed by our friends at Dorm Room Movers.

Image by Peter Alfred Hess, Flickr

Image by Peter Alfred Hess, Flickr

For the next 8 months, your dorm room becomes your home. Sadly, most schools prohibit painting dorm walls, making it a little more difficult for you to truly make the room yours. However, your uninspired space can be spiced up in ways other than just changing the paint colour. Check out these tips on how to decorate it, without breaking any rules:

  • Posters/artwork: Get posters of your favourite movies and bands to show your personality through your space. Show your artsy side with artwork that speaks to you. Looking for more of a design piece? Choose a theme and get posters of different sizes and complementary colours to create a stunning effect. Instead of just taping them onto your walls, consider putting them into picture frames to add a bit of dimension to the room.
  • Wall decals: If you’re more of a minimalist and cringe at the thought of huge pieces of paper hanging on your wall, wall decals are an excellent alternative. You can get anything from inspiring quotes to unique designs. They’re like tattoos for your wall that can easily be peeled off at the end of the year (or if you regret them after a week).
  • Wall tapestries: If you have a huge blank space that’s just begging for an eye-popping piece, consider wall tapestries. Urban Outfitters sells some excellent tapestries, posters, and decals that are sure to make a statement.
  • Wall collage: Instead of buying something, make it! Take old posters, photographs, postcards, typography, or anything else you have lying around that you think will work well together and layer them on top of each other. This is a great way to bring a piece (or pieces) of home with you to college. Karen Kavett (aka xperpetualmotion on Youtube) has made several hip and trendy wall collages. Check her out to get some inspiration for your next dorm room renovation!
  • Peel and stick chalkboards: Super cool in any space, they’re excellent for the artist inside you – and are great alternatives to writing things down on your hand. Combine several of them to make a chalkboard wall that you and your dorm mates can doodle on. They are easy to remove and won’t harm most surfaces.
  • Washi Tape: Easily described as decorative masking tapes, washi tape comes in different sizes and designs, is extremely versatile and can be used anywhere from adding pop to your door to transforming your plain side table. HGTV came up with 10 amazing ways to use washi tape in your room.
  • Rugs: Don’t forget about your feet! A good rug can make your room a lot cozier and homely. Who can forget what The Dude repeatedly said in The Big Lebowski… “That rug really tied the room together!”