The Dorm Bedding Essentials That You Need for College + Easy Decorating Ideas

Learn how to make your dorm bed a more comfortable place that reflects your style and makes your room look amazing.

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This post is about dorm room bedding essentials that can make your dorm bed more comfortable and design ideas to help make your dorm room the best place to be.

Your dorm bed should be a relaxing sanctuary. It is the place where you can take a break from the hassles of life.

It is for this reason, among others, that your dorm bed can be one of the most essential things in your room.

Decorating your dorm bed gives you a way to express yourself and add personality to your dorm room. The dorm bed is one of the defining style elements of your college dorm room.

Choosing how to decorate your dorm bed can be overwhelming when there are many styles and colors to choose from. This post will show you a few different styles and how to get the look.

The Basics

First, start with the basics. Your dorm bed probably won’t have the most comfortable mattress, so it can be a good idea to add a mattress topper for extra comfort.

Mattress Toppers

3 Inch Memory Foam Mattress Topper

Mattress toppers are usually made of memory foam, but you can find some that are made of other materials, like hypoallergenic down alternative, for example.

Most dorm bed mattresses require Twin XL size bedding, but you’ll want to check with your residence hall to make sure.

This includes sizing for mattress toppers and protectors, sheets, and comforters. You’ll want to get everything in the right size for your bed.

Mattress Protector

Before you put your mattress topper down, cover the mattress with a mattress protector. You don’t know who’s been there before you, and it’s a good way to protect the mattress from dirt and grime.

Mattress Pad

A mattress pad can also help to make a bed feel more comfortable when you are sleeping.

Once the mattress is covered, you can move on to the fun stuff, like choosing pillows, bed sheets, and a comforter set or duvet set.

Bed Pillows

Bed Pillows for Sleeping

Next, you’ll want to focus on pillows for your bed. Often, the pillow that you choose will depend on how you sleep. There are pillows for back sleepers, side sleepers, stomach sleepers, and so on.

There are also pillows that are meant to be more general purpose in nature. No matter what you choose, look for pillows that give you comfort, support, and a good night’s sleep.

Pillow Protectors

Covering the pillows with a pillow protector can protect your pillow from dust and dander. Some pillow covers may also protect against allergens.

Bed Sheets

Bed Sheet Set

A Twin XL sheet set usually comes with a flat sheet, fitted sheet, and one pillowcase for your bed. This is one of the more popular bed sheet sets that are available.

Throw Pillow Covers + Inserts

Often, throw pillow covers are sold separately from throw pillow inserts. This makes it easy to change the look of your room simply by changing the covers of your accent pillows. All that you need are throw pillow covers that you want to use to decorate your room and a set of throw pillow inserts that you can use to fill in different throw pillow covers.

18×18 Inch Throw Pillow Inserts (2 Pack)

18×18 Inch Throw Pillow Inserts (4 Pack)

12×20 Inch Throw Pillow Inserts (2 Pack)

Blankets

Blankets are a great way to add a layer of comfort and warmth to your dorm bed. They also make great accent decor for a room.

Sherpa Fleece Throw Blanket

Comforters and Duvets

Choose a comforter or duvet set that reflects your style. Since the comforter or bed covering is one of the most noticeable things when you step into a dorm room, you’ll want one that adds a lot of style to your room.

Duvet Cover Set

Duvet Insert

Trendy Dorm Room Decor Ideas + Bedding

Now that we’ve covered some bedding essentials, here are some ideas on how to add some character to your dorm room using trendy ideas for decorating bedrooms.

Designing a dorm room can be tricky because it is your living room, bedroom, and dining room all combined into one. If you are lucky enough to have a sink and closet space in your room, then add bathroom and closet to the list.

This section will cover some of the top bedroom design trends, and how you can incorporate them into your dorm room bedding and decor style.

In This Section | Dorm Bedding Essentials & Style Ideas

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Bohemian chic dorm bedding ideas sectionheader with image of pillows and blankets.

Bohemian Dorm Decor Trend

Boho chic dorm bedding is one of the most popular looks around for the college dorm room. Boho chic is cozy, breezy, and approachable, so no wonder it’s one of the most popular styles.

Boho bedding, and room accents like rugs and curtains, come in many different colors and designs, so the best place to start is deciding whether you want to go for a softer look or for bolder colors.

Lighter colors can make a small room look bigger, but bolder colors are vibrant and fun.

Here are some tips for achieving a great boho chic style look in your dorm room.

  • Eclectic prints and patterns. One of the biggest things to note about boho chic is the use of eclectic patterns and designs. This gives you plenty of room to find your own style to start building a look.

Pom Pom Boho Curtains

Boho Throw Pillow Covers (Insert Not Included)

Boho Throw Pillow Covers (Insert Not Included)

Macrame Wall Decor

  • Use a variety of textures. Mix textures and patterns to create an easy, lived in look. Throw pillows are an easy way to do this. Add pillows in a variety of shapes and sizes and fabrics. Don’t forget to find throw pillow inserts to fill in any throw pillow covers that you get.

Velvet Throw Pillow Covers

  • Add an artificial plant or two. Houseplants play a big role in boho chic design. Plants can make a room look more inviting. If you worry about forgetting to water plants, then buy a few faux houseplants to decorate your space. Ivy garland and flower garland wall decorations are another popular way to add style to a dorm room.

Artificial Plant

Faux Succulent Plants

  • Layer rugs. Add a rug or two to your living space. Not only can rugs help accent your look or tie a lot of design elements together, they are cozy and comfortable and add warmth to your room.
  • Accents. Think colorful rugs, plants and planters, earth tone vases, baskets, throw pillows and blankets, macrame wall hangings, artwork, and stacks of books.

Boho Wall Collage Kit

Macrame Basket

Chunky Knit Blanket

Boho Wall Decor

If you aren’t sure about going all in on mixing colors and patterns, then start with a neutral comforter or duvet set, and add a few boho elements—like throw pillows or a throw blanket—from there.

Boho dorm room design elements

These design elements can help make your room look relaxed, lived in, and warm, three things that come to mind when we think of boho dorm style.

Boho Lumbar Throw Pillow Cover

Look for things like tufted details, woven fabrics, tassel trim, and shag accents to highlight your bedding and pillows.

  • Boho comforter set. A boho style comforter set is one of the best ways to add an overall bohemian style vibe to your room. Look for details like textured fabrics, crochet, tassels, pom poms, and other unique details when choosing a comforter.

Boho Comforter Set

  • Boho duvet cover. Boho duvet covers often feature great details like pom poms, crochet, or tassels that add plenty of interest and character to a room. Look for linen, Jersey, or other textured, natural-style fabrics for a full boho style effect.

Boho Duvet Cover

White Duvet Cover Set

You could also go with a white duvet cover set that makes it easy for you to change the look of your room by updating room accents like throw pillows and wall decor.

Duvet Insert

Don’t forget to get a duvet insert to fill out your duvet cover.

  • Linen sheet set. Natural fibers are a big thing in boho style. A set of linen sheets are great because they add texture to a room and look warm and inviting. Look for linen sheets in natural colors.
  • Throw pillows and blankets. Throw pillows and blankets are one of the best ways to add comfort and texture to a room. You can also use throw pillows to tie the colors of your room together. Look for tufted pillows and throws, linen blankets, faux fur pillows, fleece throws, and round shapes to complete your look.

Macrame Throw Pillow Covers

Boho Throw Pillow Covers

Boho Lumbar Throw Pillow Cover

Throw Blanket

  • Tapestries. A tapestry is one of the best ways to add color to your wall and bohemian style to your dorm room.
  • Macrame wall hangers. Get easy bohemian style by hanging macrame wall decor in a room.

Macrame Wall Decor

  • Artificial houseplants. Artificial houseplants are easy to care for and they add a lively touch to any space.

Artificial Eucalyptus Wall Decor

  • Other accents. Woven mirrors, baskets, lanterns, floor pillows, and a record player are all things that can add boho chic style to a room.

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Mimimalist dorm bedding ideas section header with image of pillows and blankets.

Minimalist Dorm Decor Trend

Comforter Set

Minimalist home decor is all the rage right now, popular for it’s clean lines, simplicity, and practicality. Light, neutral colors can make your dorm room look bigger, airy, clean, and bright.

Minimalist decor is easy to achieve with a few basic elements. Start with white or neutral color bedding, including your comforter or duvet, pillows, and sheets. Look for clean lined and fewer frills than what you might see in boho decorating.

Then add a few style elements like a houseplant or small statue to add a personal touch to your room. Even practical elements like chairs, clocks, and trash cans add style and charm to a room.

  • White comforter set. A white comforter set adds a crisp, clean look to a room and makes a great base for almost any kind of room decor. Lighter colors can make a small space feel airy and like you have more room.

  • White duvet set. A white duvet adds a plush, comfortable look to minimalist decor.
  • White twin XL bed sheet set. A white bed sheet set continues the theme, and adds a crisp, clean look to your comforter or duvet set.

Organic Cotton Sheet Set

  • White headboard. Headboards are a big design trend in dorm room decorating right now, and it’s no surprise. They add a lot of style and character to a bed and make your room look more lived in and put together.
  • Throw blankets and pillows. Throw blankets and pillows are a good way to add flavor to a room. Look for blankets in pillows in a neutral color or use them to add a surprising touch of color to your room.

Boho Geometric Lumbar Throw Pillow Cover

  • Black and white accents. Black and white photography and wall art add a sophisticated touch to a minimalist design room. Black and white throw pillows are a big thing in design right now.

Geometric Throw Pillow Covers

Boho Throw Pillow Covers

Boho Throw Blanket

  • Add a houseplant. Houseplants or faux houseplants are a good way to tie together a look in minimalist decor. They add a lively pop of green color and warmth that highlights the minimalism of the design elements in the room.

Artificial Plants

  • Minimalist decor. Look for things like vases, macrame plant hangers, and wall art to round out your minimalist decor.

Heart Hands Sculpture

Artificial Plants

Geometric Table Top Decor

Gold Small Bird Statues

Velvet Throw Pillow Covers

Large Display Digital Clock

Plush Knot Throw Pillow

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Other style trends and dorm bedding ideas section header with image of pillows and blankets.

Other Dorm Bedding Design Trends

Bold, bright colors

Comforter Set

Bold, bright colors and preppy style are a big trend both in interior design and in fashion. If a bold comforter is not your thing, then consider sticking with a neutral color comforter or duvet cover and adding a throw pillow or throw blanket in a bold color for a nod to this trend.

Pink Throw Pillow Covers

Pink and Orange Throw Pillow Cover

Gold Photo Frames

Orange Throw Pillow Covers

Flower Pillow

Photo Frame

Knot Ball Pillow

Checkered Throw Blanket

Wall Art

Cube Storage Bins

Decorative Tray

Storage Basket

Photo Frames

Art Prints

Wall Art

Pastels

Pastel Comforter Set

Pastels are everywhere right now, and it’s amazing how comfortable and inviting they make a room look and feel. To achieve this look, stick to neutral colors and soft tones like blush pink, carnation pink, lavender, and soft gray.

Floral designs and prints add a nice touch to the pastel bedroom. Look for floral throw pillows, wall art, or accent decor that compliments the look of your bedding.

Use throw pillows, blankets, and other accent decor to add a warm look to your dorm room.

Faux Fur Throw Pillow Covers

Pom Pom Throw Pillow Covers

Letter Throw Pillow Covers

Corduroy Lumbar Throw Pillow Cover

Sherpa Fleece Throw Blanket

Bed Sheets

Storage Ottoman

Marquee Letters

Wall Art

Affirmations Art Print

You Are So Loved Art Print

Butterfly Wall Decor

Shades of gray

Gray is another big trend in bedroom design. This trend works for so many styles and tastes. Big trends are combining shades of gray and pink or shades of gray and blue.

To soften the look, go for grays with warm undertones of green or blue. Gray also makes a great color for dorm room accents like blankets, throw pillows, backrest lounger pillows, lamps, and rugs.

Faux Fur Throw Pillow Covers

Backrest Lounger Pillow

Sherpa Fleece Throw Blanket

Small Bird Statues

Headboards

Statement headboards are a big design trend, adding a warm and elegant layer to the bed. They add so much character and style to a room, and can be used to help anchor a look. Tufted headboards can also give your bedroom a boutique hotel-style feel.

Use a unique headboard to create a focal point in your room. Whether you go for bold colors, soft pastels, patterns, or minimalism, the headboard is a great statement piece for the dorm room.

Artificial Plants

Artificial plants are big in bedroom design, and so is the trend of adding floral decor to a dorm room wall.

You can also add throw pillows or blankets with plant motifs or use botanical print wall art to add this look to your room.

It’s all in the details

Common household items like lamp shades, trash cans, clocks, and photo frames add subtle details that help pull the look of a room together. Match these items to your dorm room theme to help create a complete look for your room.

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This post was all about dorm room bedding essentials for your college dorm room.

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Credits
  • Photo by Taryn Elliott / Pexels
  • Photos used for illustrative purposes only.

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