Decorating Your Small Space, Isabelle Kaplan, Uncategorized

How to Decorate Your SF Student Housing: Using Everyday Objects to Bring Your Decor to the Next Level

It can be hard to get settled in your new home, especially when you are living in a shoebox. As a college student, I struggled with homesickness in my first few years living in San Francisco student housing. I missed the comforts of living in a ‘real’ home – most notably, the thoughtfully decorated interior that made the space so much more than just a building. Here at Urbanests, we want to help you find San Francisco room rentals that are both affordable, functional, and that feel like a real home. Therefore, in this new blog series, I am going to talk about a few tips and tricks that I use to make my small dorm room in San Francisco feel like a real home! These decorating tips are easy, affordable, and help make your temporary housing feel as cozy as possible, on a dime.

Today’s Small Space Decorating Tip: Using Everyday Objects to Bring Your Decor to the Next Level

This week, I want to talk about a few unorthodox things I did to decorate my dorm room in San Francisco for very, very cheap. I used everyday objects to create a beautiful and unique interior, and it cost me near to nothing! Here are a few ideas:

• Using Your Clothes as Statement Pieces:

You spend hours picking out the pieces that go in your wardrobe, and when you put on that special shirt or dress, it makes you feel like the best version of yourself. So why can’t that same concept apply for your room? Putting one of your more intricate pieces on display by hanging it in a windowsill can be an easy and affective way to make your single room in San Francisco feel like the lounge at your favorite boutique. I would opt for something light colored and breezy, and hang in in a windowsill so that the light can stream through it just so.


• Using Your Jewelry as Statement Pieces:

For jewelry, the same concept applies. In my myriad of small dorm rooms and shared housing over the years, I have found that you have to maximize on space with your decorations. You need to put your jewelry somewhere, why not put it on display. Then you can let those sparkling trinkets adorn your walls and have an organized place to put them! One of my favorite ways to display my jewelry is by nailing a few nails into a large piece of driftwood, hanging it on my wall, and arranging my necklaces and bracelets so that they hang down. The wood gives the room a very earthy feel, and as I mentioned in my last blog post, bringing nature indoors is one of the best ways to open up a space.

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•Creative use of mirrors:

If you go to the dollar store, you can purchase small, flat geometric mirrors for just $1. Mirrors are the best way to open up a space, since they reflect light and give the illusion that the space is much larger than it actually is. You can hang the mirrors on the wall, place them in a mosaic on the ceiling, or put them under candles or flowers to add that extra flair. I use my small mirror as a tray to place my little bottles on, and they make my vanity area look very fancy!


• DIY a Poloroid Wall (Without a Polaroid Camera):

Nothing is cuter than a wall full of polaroid pictures, but we can’t all afford a polaroid camera or the very expensive film. But luckily, you can edit photographs to have a polaroid effect very easily! Use an editing app or a free editing service online, and up the brightness, use a ‘fade’  effect or decrease the contrast, and increase the saturation and the black point just a smidge. Crop the photograph into a square shape, and take your phone of a flash drive to your nearest drug store – You can print a ton of photos for a very low price. Once printed, purchase a few thick creamy pieces of paper, and cut them out in short rectangular shapes. Glue the photographs on top, and voila! You have polaroid pictures! You can hang them on some twine with clothespins, or on fairy lights to add a little pizazz. Just like that, you have a whole wall beautifully decorated, and you barely spent $20.

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• Plants

We covered this extensively last week, so check out this post to read about all of the ways you can use plants to beautify your San Francisco housing!


Tune in the next few weeks for another post on how to freshen up your small space!

Don’t have a San Francisco room rental to decorate yet? Check out our open San Francisco room rentals here.

Want to know more small space decorating tips? Check out our other blog posts here!

Post made by contributor Isabelle Kaplan.

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