Since you can’t paint the walls or otherwise alter dorm room finishes, add swaths of color in other creative ways. Brightly colored, patterned bedding is a start, and a great area rug adds comfort underfoot while hiding humdrum flooring. You can also adorn built-in bulletin boards with colorful fabric or art paper, or create your own gallery-style backdrops by covering cork board or thick foam core cut to fit custom-painted frames.
Make room for visitors and extra gear with double-duty dorm accessories like small storage benches and ottomans. Oversize floor pillows are colorful, cushy seating options, and easily stow away in a corner or under a bed. You can also add ambience and utility with a slim, trim floor lamp that casts a glow to supplement standard dorm room light fixtures.