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Biology & MBA
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Decorating your Dorm Room!

Kahle Toothill on Sunday, 29 July 2007. Posted in Residence Life

Almost exactly four years ago I found myself extremely anxious.  Anxious about leaving home, meeting new friends, my major and moving into a dorm.  If you were like me, you would be worrying about how to decorate your dorm.  A lot of you are probably scurrying around right now shopping like crazy and getting ready to move into a dorm for the first time.  The first step to decorating the room is to get an idea of how big it is. Here is the layout of a typical dorm room at RIT:

Double rooms in the residence halls come in two basic shapes:

  • Rectangular, measuring approximately 18' long by 10' wide. These rooms are generally located in the high-rise sections of the residence halls.
  • Square, approximately 12' long by 14' wide. These rooms are generally located in the low-rise sections.

emptyroom.gif layout.jpg
The second step is to know what to bring and what to leave at home. For example, when they say you can bring a “mini” fridge, they mean “mini”. Oh, and no pets - only fish.

Third, talk to your roomate and collaborate with him/her.  Chances are you won't need two refridgerators or two extra chairs.  Sometimes it is a lot easier (and less expensive) to share the burden of all the necessities with your roomie. 

Now that you have an idea of what the dorm will look like it's time to decorate. My advice on decorating is to pick a color, or even better – a color theme that you want to go with. Try to get staple items that will match the theme and go from there. Don’t be afraid to mix patterns and shades of colors – it’s college – you’re allowed to do this kind of stuff! Make it fun… but don’t overwhelm your space. You do have to study there and you don’t want al the way cool stuff you just bought to distract you.

There are plenty of stores in the Henrietta area where you can shop to purchase pretty decent dorm accessories. My favorites are Target and Pier1 , which are essentially across the street from one another. If you want to travel a little further and get classy, there is a Pottery Barn about 15 miles away from campus. Here is a short list of some stores nearby that I can think of off the top of my head:

Circuit City
Bed Bath and Beyond
Linens and Things
JC Penny
Pier 1
Wegman’s (they stock more than groceries!)

Here are some pictures of decorated dorms rooms I found online that I really like to give you an idea of possible color themes and items that you may find useful:

Here are some more pages you may find helpful:
Cheap Dorm Room Decorating
Choosing a Color Scheme
Dorm Living Checklist
HGTV's solution to a Cramped Dorm Room

Get creative. Have fun. Don’t get more than you need at first; get settled in and go from there. If you have any questions about the dorm rooms or decorating them, let me know – I’ve lived in the dorms for 2 years and the on-campus apartments for 2 years also. Happy decorating!

Comments (34)

  • Guest User

    Guest User

    09 December 2007 at 10:27 |
    Does the dorm come with a "wardrobe" or a closet?
  • Kahle Toothill

    Kahle Toothill

    13 December 2007 at 09:06 |
    Dorm rooms come with 2 closets (one for you and one for your roomie). They have shelves built in and also a rod so you can hang things as well. They're pretty nice! Some students also like to buy extra storage solutions like shoe racks to put in them too.
  • Guest User

    Guest User

    09 July 2008 at 14:42 |
    [color=#FF00FF][/color]I heard that we might not be allowed to bring in standing lamps as they may fall and cause a fire. Is this true? Or did they change the rule?
  • Guest User

    Guest User

    09 July 2008 at 14:52 |
    I read the Appliances and other information section of this site and i didn't see that they allowed irons? Are they allowed and they forgot to mention it?
  • Irina (Romanian student)

    Irina (Romanian student)

    23 July 2008 at 19:15 |
    As far as I know, irons are allowed in every dorm.
  • Megan


    17 March 2009 at 11:04 |
    Do we even need dishes? Or is the eating done in the cafes and such?
  • cleek


    26 March 2009 at 14:45 |
    you should bring some dishes. your appetite probably won't follow the same hours that the dining halls do.
  • liz


    21 April 2009 at 22:56 |
    I was wondering if coffee makers without exposed heating elements are allowed. I understand I can't bring my parents 1990-something oldie because it has a hot plate, but I know they do sell coffee markers without hot plates.
  • Nicolette


    23 June 2009 at 17:33 |
    Dorm room design is really like designing your living quarter. See if you can get a night stand in there. It will really be handy. Bean bags, cushions, lamps are also great decors that can come in handy as well!

  • alex


    10 August 2009 at 20:44 |
    are microwaves allowed in the dorm rooms?
  • Emily Okey

    Emily Okey

    11 August 2009 at 10:33 |
    Microwaves are not allowed in the dorm rooms, however, every floor has a lounge with a microwave so you can use that.
  • deshay hoskins

    deshay hoskins

    14 November 2009 at 23:43 |
    umm if you don't mind i need a new dorm will you tell me were i could find one....thanks:)hahahaaha i know i need this dorm im rich so i can get whatever you have
  • Alyssa Haskin

    Alyssa Haskin

    09 May 2010 at 16:50 |
    I was wondering if a Keurig single cup coffeemaker would be allowed in a dorm room? It doesn't have any exposed burners or hot surfaces.
  • ashley


    26 May 2010 at 02:39 |
    Oh please tell me where you got that picture that says love kills slowly with the skull on it. I want 1 so bad!!
  • road


    19 June 2010 at 16:29 |
    so, do i need a blackout curtain, and if so, do the dorm rooms come with curtain rods etc.?
  • HJJ


    20 October 2010 at 19:39 |
    Oh please tell me where you got that picture that says love kills slowly with the skull on it. I want 1 so bad!! [url]true religion[/url]
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    27 February 2011 at 04:30 |
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  • Maia


    16 June 2015 at 22:58 |
    Are the rit custom linens really necessary or will any fitted twin sheet work?
  • Emma


    13 October 2015 at 06:19 |
    Hi Kahle, nice to see your home decor blog post. It really help us for decorating any living rooms area. Looking forward to read more!
  • John


    09 November 2015 at 10:16 |
    Kahle you did a great job for sharing this home decorating post. I like it.

    Here you can find window covering solutions for living room.
  • Jenne


    12 November 2015 at 08:53 |
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  • acelinefenton


    12 April 2016 at 08:24 |
    Room furniture plays an important role in decoration of your rooms.You did a great job above for your room.Find some beautiful furniture @
  • kdtrieuan


    22 April 2016 at 08:59 |
    Room furniture plays an important role in decoration of your rooms.You did a great job above for your room.Find some beautiful furniture
  • H&H Jewellery Stores

    H&H Jewellery Stores

    07 June 2016 at 05:45 |
    You can use some fashionable Wall Watches to make your room stylish and trendy.
  • Brandi J. Dingus

    Brandi J. Dingus

    06 July 2016 at 07:37 |
    I decorate my dorm room perfectly and beautiful to follow this steps of your post.It really helps me.
  • farnush


    24 July 2016 at 16:09 |
    great advises! I think it is important not to make the room full of all sorts of decoration, but using bright joyous colors with help a lot.colors must be of a same shade but you can use one or two complementary colors as well.
  • Bany


    17 September 2016 at 17:48 |
    Thanks for sharing these steps. It will help me to decorate my dorm room perfectly.
  • Pauline


    04 October 2016 at 06:29 |
    A lot of dorm rooms are dark and small, so be sure to bring a good lamp or two and pops of color - a pillow, a blanket, anything that's bright and cheerful. If you've got the room for it, bring along one of these bean bag chairs
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  • کریو


    26 March 2017 at 10:39 |
    very good tnx dear admin so nice...
  • magento explorer

    magento explorer

    02 April 2017 at 19:48 |
    I decorate my dorm room perfectly and beautiful to follow this steps of your post.It really helps me.

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