Dorm life might not be quite so glamorous with ramen noodles and microwavable dinners, but as your not-so-little-one heads off to start the best four years of their life, you’ll want to make sure that Room B302 looks as cozy as your home living room. Although you can’t fit much, there are a lot of dorm must-haves that every freshman needs to make their sleep and study space the most comfortable it can be! Furniture Row has the essentials and more, so use this checklist to make sure your college kid’s got everything they need and read our fun tips on how to make any dorm look cool enough for school.
You can never have too much storage.
I think when I was in college I brought my entire seashell collection—which was like thirty shells. Did I need to bring the entire east coast with me? Of course not, but when a teen is leaving home for the first time, they’ll want to make sure everything they might miss is right there with them—even if it’s the Atlantic Ocean. So if there’s nothing they want to part with, make sure there’s room for it! Whether it’s a bin, basket, container, trunk, or cabinet, your college student can never have enough storage for all of their things. When a room is small, leaving things lying around can make it get smaller real fast, so make sure everything can be put away and organized for the next time it’s needed. For a stylish way to save closet space, add Furniture Row’s Galvanized Trolley (13) or Explorer Rectangle Coffee Table (11).
Less is more.
Since there’s not a lot of space to work with, make sure everything your incoming freshman brings is trendy yet practical. Instead of a bulky bookshelf, opt for under-bed storage. Instead of a couch, opt for a lighter futon. Depending on the space, you may have the opportunity to incorporate the sizable furniture you want, but make it a rational and functional alternative. The best dorm must-haves you can bring are multi-purpose. Pieces such as Furniture Row’s Stacking Stool (10) can be used as a seat, a mini-table, or a stepping stool and the Texter Office Chair (7) is so comfy it can be used for studying, eating, or lounging around with friends. And don’t forget the everyday staple items! For a late night of studying, the Tivoli Table Lamp (9) is perfect for a college student to use to study while his or her roommate sleeps or simply to brighten up the desk.
Soft and cozy goes a long way.
After a long day in a lecture hall or pulling an all-nighter, your student’s bed will be his or her new best friend, so make sure that awful dorm mattress has some extra fluff on it. Add dorm must-haves like Furniture Row’s Essentials Mattress Pad and Denver Mattress’ Slumber Fresh Pillow to soften up your teen’s slumber and make sure their bed is feeling fresh with a cozy comforter like the Teal Angles Comforter Set (5) that covers crisp sheets found in the Essentials Sheet Set. And while they’re lounging, make sure they have a blanket to keep them warm while they study for midterms. Add a throw blanket like the Cable Knit Throw (3) that’s great for snuggling up to watch Netflix or taking a much-needed afternoon nap.
Be prepared to have guests.
Parties are fun, but when your teen and his or her friends just want to order pizza in, make sure there’s room for them too! A light yet comfortable futon is every college student’s reliable go-to bed for visitors, so bring furniture like the Port Augusta Futon (2) that is space-saving and goes with anything! For a soft reading or lounging chair, a cute and practical accent chair is small enough to fit in tight corners and is light enough to easily maneuver around the room. Furniture Row’s Grayson Accent Chair (12) brings color and contemporary style to any dorm room so that all visitors will have somewhere to sit!
Let personality shine.
Last but not least, make sure your student has fun decorating his or her new room! After all, it will be their home away from home so make sure it feels like somewhere they feel comfortable. Bring some of their much-loved possessions from home, but add cute and colorful accents to help showcase their personality and be conversation starters. Wall art doesn’t take up any floor space and brightens a room, so incorporate cool prints like the Let’s Run Away Framed Print (6) or add pictures of friends and family in cool Vintage Wash Frames (4) to a desk. Bold and funky vases like the Tuka Vases (8) are also a great way to add decoration and are perfect for storing pens, pencils, and other office items that are needed. You can also take patterning fun to your furniture with accent pillows like the Honeycomb Pillow (1) that are a great way to mix and match the colors in the dorm room.
No matter what kind of dorm your new college kid has, there’s a way to make it feel like home. Their first college year is almost here, so it’s time to start packing all of their new dorm must-haves! Make sure they have everything they need, but be sure to have fun creating a brand new room. Don’t fear small spaces! Room B302 might seem drab at first, but you can still start the school year in style.
Enjoy the complete list of dorm must-haves with the following dorm room checklist: