Dorm room decorating made easy on a budget | WBNS-10TV Columbus, Ohio

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (10TV) — College-bound students move onto central Ohio campuses including Ohio State this upcoming weekend. Some students prepare to not only unpack, but also spruce up their new homes.

“I’m going to do everything I can to make my dorm look cute without spending more than $150,” said incoming OSU freshman Julie Parker.

Top advice for budget decorating includes choosing furniture and storage options that have dual purposes, such as shopping for discontinued fridges and appliances and using photos from home as wall art. Columbus’s Crimson Design Group offered a list of recommendations for people moving into a college dorm or house:

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  • Use Pinterest and Instagram – Photos can help choose your style, color and patterns.
  • Focus on Your Bed – It takes up the majority of your room, so go all out on your bed. Use mattress toppers to add padding and a welcoming aesthetic to your bed. Don’t be afraid to pick bold sheets, comforters and pillows. Layer colors and patterns.
  • Cover the Naked Walls – Using the design of your bed as a framework, cover white walls. Consider using a removable wallpaper from Target or West Elm or make a gallery wall of your own pictures. Use adhesives like 3M Command Strips to prevent any damage to the walls.
  • Hide the Floor – Use rugs to hide unattractive floors and add style.
  • Organize – Find furniture that doubles as storage to keep rooms from becoming cluttered.
  • Accessorize – Adding lamps, plants, and books can add color and create a relaxing mood.
  • Invest in Aroma – Essential oil diffusers or wax-warmer can create a homey feeling. To save money, remove the wax from your favorite used candle instead of using wax cubes in your wax warmer.

Options found within local secondhand stores can help with decorating on a budget, as can shopping in the discontinued section of stores for small appliances like mini-fridges or microwaves. Some students save money on gas, too. Overloaded cars making the trip to campus may be a thing of the past as more stores move to free shipping of their merchandise to store locations nearest to the intended campus.

“Students can have a long or short list of items shipped right to them, to their local Walmart or to where they’re going to be living,” said west Columbus Walmart Store Manager Chris Wood. “That way you don’t have to pack up and haul everything. And all of those items bought here were at everyday low prices, so it makes it possible to save.”

Many retailers have in-store display corners with a concept dorm room put together with lower-priced items. Some stores also offer an additional online college grouping of supplies and decor, like Target and Bed, Bath and Beyond. But design experts say it can be a savvy move to start in the clearance section and never overlook hand-me-downs that can be refreshed with a new lamp shade or coat of paint.

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