I am a college student. I'm renting a large house with 4 other roommates. We need help with decorating ideas.
We're on a budget but I was wondering where I can find cheap decorating websites or decorating idea websites that would be suitable for college students. Nothing immature but nothing too serious either. Thanks!
- Try HGTV.com, and if you have cable watch HGTV. Some of their landscaping shows are a bore, but you can get good ideas from the decorating ideas sometimes. Also, check out Ikea, great affordable furniture, and a lot of it is modern.
- One thing that made a huge difference and a homier feel to my room was lights. I took stringed lights- like white Christmas ones- and wrapped vine flowers around them. The vines I actually found in a dollar store, but you can find them in the craft section of stores like WalMart. Because I couldn't nail hooks into the wall, I used 3M hooks you can stick to the wall without peeling paint off when you take them down. That can be found in the hardware section of the store where regular hooks, nails, ect are found. It made a huge difference and made my room look so pretty :)
- Watch TV. Also you could buy a few magazines to get some ideas. Not sure of any websites but definitely try HGTV and also the learning channel has some home improvement shows as well.
- Get in a car and head out on a nice day to neighborhoods in your town where there are garage sales. Also, keep attuned to local church rummage sales. Find a friend who can be counted on to come with a pickup truck on short notice to get a sofa, chairs or tables. You will find absolutely anything to furnish your house with at yard sales and rummage sales. I counted at least 6 large sofas one summer day when I was cruising yard sales.They ranged from average size to jumbo. Even if you don't like the color, you can usually just throw some Indian sheets or something colorful over the sofa. Thow a lot of them on the sofa and it has the added advantage of being very easy to clean up when someone spills something. You can check the sofas out by sitting on them - to see if they are comfortable and sturdy.
Estate sales are great too. If you see an estate sale, go early and go late. At a sale, usually the later you go, the lower the prices.
I could furnish a whole house with yard sale stuff. Dressers, lamps, you name it. The only thing you can't find are mattresses - buy those new. But definitely look for beds.
- I don't know of any websites, but knowing other students on campus might trigger something as you see what they have adapted to.
Small spaces with big bang for the buck is this.
Use small short filing cabinets to use as a desk. Place on left and on right next to a wall the distance you need. Place an old door on top and get a sheet of Lexan (or something plastic) you get at the hardware store to put over the door to give a smooth surface.
Not only can you study on it, you can use the drawers to keep personal belongings locked up, home work filed, etc.
The desk can be cleared and used for a party center for snacks & drinks. End of semester you have 2 filing cabinets you can use anywhere and a door to leave for someone else or give to.
Create spaces of information like bulletin boards message center for all to keep in touch or leave messages from home.
Old doors just standing up against a wall with towel hooks for each of you to utilize if you share the same bathroom. Put your own plaques or write your personal signature over your hook.
Make good organizers for under the bed with old chest of drawers place under your bed for socks, shoes, stuff. Just pull out and push back.
Plastic shoe organizers work like magic for competing spaces. Use them as organizers for makeup, hair irons, dryers, bandaids, shampoos, lotions, tissues, etc., anything you can imagine. They hang on the back of a door which keeps them hidden and very accessible.
Create your own special space and make it yours only. Magazines and thrift stores furniture can add whimsey and charm on a budget. Check out a yard sale one weekend and see what treasures you can find. Cheap! Good luck!
- Buy a bunch of decorating magazine, pop some popcorn and start ripping out pictures you like! Then go back through your piles and see if you can discern a pattern.
Paint and fabric are easy to change (some landlords will let you paint if you are willing to repaint it when you leave). Ribbon is versatile.
Check Ikea, HGTV, Trading Spaces, Moving up and those kind of shows/websites. Better Homes and Gardens and Martha Stewart.
Almost anything can be done for cheap! Thrift shops, Antique stores and Yard Sales would be fun to scour together and come up with a style for your common areas as well as your individual rooms! Remember to keep an eye out for items that can be painted, reupholstered or used for different things than they were intended.
Check your campus library or the off campus one for decorating books. It's worth the extra time to come up with something you all love rather than just throwing it up there. Decorating Dreams on a Budget is a fun little book, Creating a Sensesational Home, and Nate Burkus' Home Rules are all great to get your creative juices flowing and give good hints.