This post is brought to you by IKEA and Her Campus Media.
Fall semester is around the corner, and it means that it’s time to upgrade your apartment or a dorm room for the upcoming semester. I don’t know about you, but when it comes to home décor, I’m looking for Insta-friendly, playful accessories that will bring character to the room without making it too crowded. Another crucial moment is that I always try decorating on a budget, as there are plenty of affordable (and cute!) options available out there. Today I’m collaborating with IKEA and Her Campus to share some of the ideas on how to decorate your room for the upcoming college season, so your living space looks cute and inspires you to be a more diligent student.
But before we begin, let me tell you a few words about the concept that stands behind the room decor we created for the video below. The idea was to reflect my feminine style through the room decor that incorporates soft pastel shades and natural textures. There is an entire section of the IKEA website dedicated to Playful Pastels which contains affordable and chic furniture and home decor items that fit the idea of creating a “modern sophistication on the budget style.” As probably for many of you, the majority of the furniture in my house is already from IKEA, so it was great to explore the assortment of decor pieces by the brand that helps to turn a plain room into a creative and super inspiring space.
As you see in the video, it took just a few moments and a couple of decor pieces for turning a boring bed/lounge area into a cozy and stylish space. Below, I provide some of the tips that I learned while working on this project on how to turn any bed into your dream space — with the help of the newest décor items by IKEA!
Tip #1: Use Mood Boards for Inspiration
Start your decoration project from creating a mood board where you select a few dominant colors for your room and a few supporting shades. For instance, you could pick the black and white theme and choose pink and red shades for the accents. Or, just like we did in the video, you could choose pastels as your primary palette and make cobalt blue and white your supporting shades. Make sure to cut out a few images from your favorite design magazines or print out a few photos from Pinterest just to make sure that the colors you picked look great together. By investing a few extra minutes into creating a mood board, you ensure that all of the items in your room match, which helps to create a uniform and stylish look for the room.
Tip #2: Think About Adding Storage
Since we are talking about decorating a small space, it’s crucial to think about ways for adding extra storage to your room. Perhaps, the easiest way to do so is to pick a few sleek boxes to store some of your things — so these are out of your way. In my opinion, the best way to make your room look organized is to eliminate all the items from the surfaces that are not serving decorating purposes. For instance, it’s totally fine to leave your beautiful books and makeup brushes out, but such items as grocery receipts and keys make space look cluttered, so it’s better to hide them.
As you saw in the video, we used TJENA boxes from IKEA that go for under five bucks — these are such small investment pieces that will dramatically change the appearance of your room. Feel free to use these boxes with or without the lid — depending what type of items you are planning on storing in them. Either way, your room will look so much neater if you organize some of your goodies into boxes.
Tip #3: Make It Cozy
For the longest time, I didn’t have any rugs in my room as I felt that these just absorb dust and do nothing for the vibe of the room. Well, I can’t even explain how wrong I was! The moment I upgraded my beauty room with a cozy faux fur rug from IKEA, the vibe of the room has changed — from an office-like environment it turned into a cozy and welcoming space. As you see in the video, we used the same faux fur rug layered with a contrasting blue carpet to create a soft and multidimensional look. The best part about this trick is that you could use the carpet you already have in your room and simply combine it with some faux fur accent to create the similar look.
Tip #4: Mix and Match Textures
This next trick is all about your pillows that are, in case you didn’t know, the major focal point in any room. Prior to working on the IKEA video, I thought that pillows should be like a family — all in the same color range with a few variations. As it turned out, mixed and matched pillows look even cuter than your typical monochrome combo. Same goes for pillow textures — delicate pillows will look even softer if combined with fluffy ones. After shooting this video, I’m planning on rethinking the pillow situation in my house — with the cutest selection of IKEA pillows.
Tip #5: Become a DIYer
While at the shoot, I learned so many adorable and affordable ways to make your everyday home items stand out. All it takes is to use your imagination and think about incorporating more color into the design of your room.
For instance, one of the girls working with me on the set, Molly, came out with the idea of putting pink and blue polka dots onto faux palm leaves — it’s such an easy to repeat idea, but what a difference it makes to the appearance of the room!
Same goes for pineapples colored in pink — with the help of just one can of spray paint you could turn these fruits into real art objects. Don’t be afraid to experiment and try incorporating some do-it-yourself projects into your living space — as you see in the video, such approach really helps to make your room look so much more unique.
Tip #6: The Light Theory
Perhaps, the easiest way to make any room look a bit cozier is to incorporate light strings into your interior. Whether you pick to decorate your clothes rack with medium sized light bulbs, put on a delicate string of lights on some of the decor items (like in the case with our DIY pink pineapple), or use light clips to secure and illuminate mini photos — extra light will make your room feel more magical and fun.
Tip #7: Make It Personal
If you live far from home while in college, try bringing some of the family memories by incorporating nostalgic items into your room decor. Whether it’s a photo of your family in a cute photo frame or just souvenirs that make you think about some of your travels, find the way to display these items because they truly help any four walls feel like a real home.
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That was it for my tips on how to decorate your college dorm or a small apartment on a budget. I hope you were able to find some new creative ideas that would be helpful for making your home decor stand out. Just one last recommendation here: check out the Back to College Section on the IKEA website for inspiration — there are so many easy decor ideas out there.
I wonder how are you planning on decorating your room for the upcoming semester? Feel free to share your favorite room decor tips in the comments area below.