A lot of you are heading back to school this month, and I remember very clearly what that’s like. My first year at UCLA I shared a triple with two girls names Jen. Jen#1 loved all things plastered with that yellow happy face emoji, and Jen#2 had those ‘romantic’ posters with details highlighted in red and pink, like these, you know? Ya, well, our room was eclectic to put it mildly. Mix those two flavors with my style, which, even back then was crazy colorful, boho and textile-rich, and what you got was a hot mess, a tiny hot mess because the room was about the size of a shoe box.
Well if I could go back in time I’d do things a little differently. I’d employ a few tips and tricks to maximize space and style and to minimize on kissing children posters mixed with happy faces and Indonesian batik. So today I’ve partnered with Del Mar (a family-owned online company that specializes in lighting and fans) to share some ideas of what I’d do to my dorm room if I could hop in a time machine back to my college dorm years.
1. Neutral Furniture
Starting off with a neutral foundation of classic, modern furniture will help to avoid overall visual chaos. Pick a color for the big pieces and stick to it. Bring in color through accents and smaller pieces.
2. Small Pieces that Last
I feel like often times people have this mentality like you have to buy cheap crap for dorms or studios and then you invest in ‘real’ stuff when you move into a larger space. Well enough with the disposable culture! There are many items, (like especially good lighting) that are super important to a space and can be brought with you when moving on to the next spot. A beautiful wall sconce or elegant floor lamp won’t show much wear and tear and can easily travel along with you as you (and your space) grow.
3. Multi Functional Pieces
Multi functional pieces will help with storage and space issues. Take, for example, the floor lamp pictured in the mood board above. It can be placed between a bed and a desk (or between two anythings, really) to provide lighting for two separate areas. Storage ottomans, storage benches and beds with storage underneath are also good examples of multi-functional pieces that will help to save space in your tiny abode.
4. Fresh Air
Having fresh air circulate around the room is paramount–especially in small spaces. Lots of plants, wide open windows and fans can help to ensure that the space doesn’t get stuffy.
5. Build up
Use the walls wisely. Hang shelves on walls to maximize storage. Also use wall lights for mood lighting but also to save on surface space. Hang mirrors on the walls to help to make the space seem larger than it actually is.
6. Pieces that Can Tie the Whole Room Together
Including two pieces that ‘relate’ to one another on different sides of a room can help to visually pull a room together. For example, if you use the above beaded chandelier in the center of the room, adding the beaded sconce in a strategic spot can help to make the room look cohesive. Now it’s important not to get too matchy-matchy, but a few pieces that relate to one-another can do wonders to a space.
*This post was created in partnership with Del Mar.