Wednesday, September 14, 2011

50 Clever Ikea Ideas for your Dorm Room

September 13th, 2011

Heading off to college comes with a lot of expenses, crazy tuition aside, and many students and their parents may find the budget a little strained trying to stock a dorm room with all the essentials. There are ways that students can save, however, and still have an incredibly stylish and enviable dorm room. Shopping at Ikea can score you some sweet furniture and decor deals with classic Swedish styling, but if you’re the kind of student who doesn’t want to end up with the same dorm room as the guy or gal down the hall, Ikea can still be a great choice. Why? Because there are thousands of different ways Ikea items can be re-purposed, retooled and personalized to fit better into your space and your lifestyle. We’ve collected many great ways to use Ikea in your dorm room here, but these are just a starting place. Come up with your own ideas, get clever, and transform a mass produced item into something unique and functional for your room this semester.


While you might not get much sleep between having fun and studying, you still need a bed for when you simply have to crash. Use these ideas to sleep in style.

  1. Put Expedit bookshelves under your bed for more storage
    and a lift

    Turn three expedit shelving units into a storage system that lets you triple your space and provides a place to sleep to boot.

  2. Or try Gorm shelves to get the same effect

    If you don’t like the look of the Expedit hack, try this Gorm look instead, complete with curtains to hide the underbed storage.

  3. Use your sewing skills to put together a foldable mattress

    Having guests come over when you live in a dorm can be a total pain. With this foldaway mattress, now you can give them a place to sleep without needing much storage space.

  4. Turn a cheap Lack table into a nightstand

    Lack tables are certainly budget-friendly, but they’re not sized for the bedside. A little elbow grease can change that and give you a cute bedside storage area.

  5. Modify a loft bed to create a sleep and work space

    Loft beds, if they’re allowed in your dorm, are a super awesome way to get more space. This version helps you turn the space under the bed into a functional workspace.

  6. Use two floating shelves to create a dressing table

    Need a place to get ready in the morning? If hanging things on the wall of your room isn’t a problem, this is a streamlined and practical solution.

  7. Transform a dresser into a bed frame

    Tired of the bookshelves as bed frame look? Try the dresser as bed frame one instead.

  8. Employ panel curtains as room dividers

    A few rails and panels can give you and your roomie some much needed privacy.

  9. Turn a boring nightstand into an art piece

    Off-the-shelf Ikea pieces can be functional, but they’re not always fashionable. Use this hack and others like it to turn your nightstand into something amazing.


As much as you might like to put it off, you’ll have to study sometime in college. These ideas will help make it more comfortable and practical to do it in your dorm room.

  1. Create a netbook stand from a picture frame

    A picture frame might not seem like the perfect way to build a stand for your laptop, but it does work.

  2. Keep your USB drive handy

    This idea will ensure that your USB drive is not only harder to lose but a whole lot more adorable.

  3. Build a desk out of a door

    Can’t afford a big desk but need one for drawing, computing or doing other projects? Use this hack to make your own out of a door.

  4. Don’t waste tiny pencils — re-purpose them

    It’s tempting to just toss out those tiny Ikea pencils — but don’t. Reuse them by making them into this cute pencil holder for your desk.

  5. Geek out by creating a stackable computer cabinet

    Need to keep multiple desktop units in your room for storage, gaming or just nerding out? This solution lets you conveniently store all your computers without leaving them out in the open.

  6. Magazine holders and rolling tables make great study storage

    Cobbling together some magazine holders and a rolling shelving unit, this idea creates an awesome space for storing all your books and papers.

  7. Tuck your desk into a row of bookcases

    Those Billy bookcases from Ikea aren’t just a great way to store books and personal items ea– they can also be modified to include a desk for the perfect study space.

  8. Showcase your iMac in a Lack shelving unit

    Apple devices are notable for the stylish design so they deserve to be stored in an equally stylish space. Employing a lack shelving unit and some ingenuity, this hack does just that.

  9. Fold away your desk area when you’re not using it

    Why keep your desk out when you’re not studying? This space-saving alternative lets you fold it away when you’re using your dorm room for things besides hitting the books.


Dorm rooms are small so they call for some creative storage solutions like these.

  1. Put together a cheap charging station

    Most modern students have a few electronic devices to say the least, so it’s nice to be able to keep all the chargers in one easily accessible place. This super cheap fix lets students do just that and is highly adaptable.

  2. Turn an Expedit shelf into a dresser

    Just because it’s a bookshelf doesn’t mean you have to use it that way. A few modified drawers turn this unit into a full functional storage system.

  3. Use plate racks to organize your materials

    Plate racks can be a great way for students to organize papers and other flat materials on a bookshelf.

  4. Decoupage a wardrobe to add style to your space

    Need some extra clothing storage space? A wardrobe is one way to get it, and with this hack you’ll have yours looking super stylish in no time.

  5. Turn a Gorm shelf into a bench and bookshelf

    Gorm is such an adaptable series from Ikea, but this use is especially great for dorms. It provides extra seating and extra storage in one fell swoop.

  6. Keep your room organized with this cheap coat rack

    You don’t have to shell out big bucks to keep your cold-weather gear organized. All you need is a simple rail and a few screws.

  7. Transform a room divider into an accessories organizer

    This bamboo room divider gets new life when you hang it on your closet to keep earrings, necklaces and scarves neat.

  8. Build your own jewelry dresser

    If you’re an accessories addict, you can store your stuff in a cute, DIY dresser, with the help of the instructions found here.

  9. Create a catch-all shelf

    One magazine holder becomes a place to dump your keys, mail and other stuff when you come in the door.

  10. Turn storage units into something special with decoupage

    Decoupage can turn just about any storage solution into something more personal and more fun.


All work and no play is no fun at all. Use these ideas to have fun on a budget.

  1. Put together awesome speakers from salad bowls

    Tired of your boring old speakers? This idea is super cheap and looks amazing sitting on a table.

  2. Use spare parts to create a headphone stand

    Random Ikea parts go together to create a novel way to keep your headphones stored neatly when you’re not using them.

  3. Impress your friends with a video game chair

    Guys will love this amazing video game chair that can even be adapted to include a built-in wheel for racing games.

  4. Create the ultimate music storage station

    Store your records, CDs and audio equipment in this modified shelving unit that has some serious mid-century style.

  5. Build your own iPad stand

    No matter what you need to set your iPad up for, this picture frame stand makes it pretty simple to do it and has a much friendlier price tag than many custom stands.

  6. Create a laptop riser for watching movies in bed

    Let your laptop breathe and avoid burning you with this simple project.

  7. Turn a lamp into a media projector

    An old Ikea lamp can help turn your room into the ultimate movie lover’s paradise.

  8. Store your magazines in style

    Don’t simply stick with those bland magazine holders– spice them up a little.

  9. Integrate amps into your Billy bookcase

    So long as your neighbors don’t mind a little noise you might be OK with this streamlined way to incorporate amps into an existing bookcase.

  10. Equip your room with an epic DVD shelf

    If you’re a movie nerd with an impressive collection, keep it displayed and organized with this simple mod for Ikea items.


Make your bland dorm room a space that is a home away from home with these budget-friendly ideas for decor.

  1. Create a personalized space with Ikea’s YouTube tool

    Don’t know where to start when it comes to designing the dorm of your dreams? This online tool can help even the most design-impaired create a great room.

  2. Turn your desk lamp into R2D2

    Star Wars fans will love this simple hack that turns a desk lamp into the cute and sassy robot from the movies.

  3. Build your own pendant chandelier.

    Need a statement piece for your room? This hack might just do the trick. You can always tone it down if it’s too much for your small room.

  4. Hang up a cool corkboard

    Turn simple corkboard trivets into a functional and cute corkboard for your room with some glue and a frame.

  5. Customize your Gronos lamp

    There are a million and one ways to modify this lamp to your tastes. Find some inspiration here, or come up with your own idea.

  6. Give blinds a new purpose by turning them into a photo board

    Who knew wooden blinds would make the perfect place for storing pictures and postcards?

  7. Turn a $1.99 clock into a masterpiece

    This cheap clock from Ikea is easily customizable. This example covers it with maps, but you could do it with just about anything you like.

  8. Turn a piece of fabric into a work of art

    Fabric at Ikea is fairly cheap, and for a yard and some stretchers to hang it, you could have a very stylish but cheap work of art for your room.

  9. Spice up some stools with record details

    Need some place for guests to sit in your room? These stools are a pretty cool way to do it, blending Ikea stools with old-school vinyl.

  10. Pretty up some paper lanterns

    The basic paper lantern from Ikea is cute, but these modifications make them simply amazing.

  11. Customize those ubiquitous Lack tables

    Who says Lack has to be lacking in style? There are many ways to make the Lack series better fit your decor.

  12. Don’t be afraid of a little paint

    There isn’t much in the Ikea store that can’t be painted. A little paint can totally change how an item looks, making it sleek, colorful or comforting– whatever you heart desires.

Taken From Online Colleges

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