As much as I aspire to achieve a minimalist lifestyle and aesthetic, while I’m in college, I don’t want to wake up to bare white walls and generic wooden furniture every morning. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize this until my senior year. Fortunately, it’s never too late to decorate your room in hip and easy ways to create a space you can enjoy living (and studying) in.
1. Wooden Letter(s) on Your Door
Personalize your space before you even walk in: hang a wooden letter from any craft store on your door, personalized with paint, stickers, rhinestones, or anything else you can think to put on it. My own ‘A’ has diagonal black stripes, and my roommates have tiny pink paw prints on a black ‘S’ (cat-lover) and a cool blue gradient on an ‘S’ (beach-lover). Some letters may have a hook already attached and you can hang that off a command hook on your door. If there’s no hook, someone on your floor may have a hot glue gun to attach some string. Otherwise, there’s nothing shameful about resorting to duct tape.
A word of warning: Only hang decorations on your door if you’re sure your floormates or any passers-by won’t steal or damage it. I have an apartment, so our letters are on our individual doors, and not on the main door, vulnerable to vandalism or theft.
2. Hang Anything
I love the whimsical look of things hanging in 3D space. Cutting letters out of magazines or newspaper and taping an inspirational word to your wall is classic, but hanging inspiration provides that ‘hip’ vibe. I have the phrase ‘MIND YOUR VIBE’ in bright orange cardstock I had lying around hanging, tiered in the corner above my bed. I’m a paper crane-folding fiend, so I plan on hanging a couple from my ceiling soon.
My phrase is inspirational and motivational, but make hanging decorations your own. For fraternity brothers and sorority sisters: hang your letters across the window to show the shadows to students walking outside your dorm at night. For pizza lovers: make a garland of mini paper pizzas to hang in front of your desk to motivate you towards a post-exam pizza party.
Post-Its are an easy tool to [literally] brighten up your dorm. I personally write motivational or inspirational reminders (“What matters most is how well you walk through the fire.” and “Obstacles are neutral events.”) in different fonts to keep it interesting, and I cluster them in different areas of my room. If inspiration isn’t your thing, simply arranging Post-Its on your wall in cool or random patterns can be. Try to make a picture or word out of them, if you have enough wall space. Don’t underestimate the utility and creativity of simple sheets of sticky paper.
You know those fashion and beauty YouTubers that always have an industrial rack of clothes in the background of their videos? You can be like them, kind of. If you a certain piece of clothing that you love to wear, show off, or talk about, put it on display. Hang it from a hanger on a command hook on your wall or on top of the outside of your closet door. If you have a thin, flowy scarf with a design, hang it on the wall as a mini-tapestry, or over your window as a light curtain. Put your favorite pair of heels on your window-sill. Clothing should be fashionable and functional, both on and off your body.
5. Study Materials
I am a huge fan of aesthetic academic organization, thanks to having discovered the studyblr community on Tumblr. I took on the idea to make a collage of all my finals week mind-maps on my wall, and it’s both visually appealing and motivational. Every time I look at it, I’m reminded that I made it through finals ‘aesthetically’ with my mind-map studying. Putting mind-maps, notes, or papers up for you to see on a regular basis can serve as a reminder of your current goals to study hard and that you’ve done it before so you can do it again.