College Dorm Room Ideas for Guys – A Mom’s Perspective


It’s Friday y’all!  That means only 3 more weeks until my son graduates high school!  Where did the time go?!? I’ve put it off as much as possible, but it’s time to start thinking about college needs.  There are lots of ideas for the college dorm room out there, but most are for the females!  I’m a #boymom (even if he has a beard now!) & I need ideas for guys.  I know other moms in the same situation who may be looking for ideas.  So, I rounded up some college dorm room ideas for guys!  Maybe this will help ease the transition a little – sniff, sniff!

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Updated 8/17:  Some products sold out, so they have been updated with alternatives!

I’ve tried to include a variety of products in this post.  Everyone’s situation is different and I wanted to show a range of options.  There are things for dorm dwellers & those living in an apartment.

Dorm Room Storage

I can honestly say, most guys are messy creatures!  This not only comes from being a boy mom & having a husband, but from working with mostly teenage boys as a teacher.  I teach drafting which usually attracts a mostly male classroom.

Storage solutions need to be practical & easy to use.  Although most of it will probably wind up on the floor!

  1. Grid Wire Modular Shelving and Storage Cubes • Bed Bath & Beyond • $19.99 ~ These are a great alternative to regular shelving when space is an issue.  {The ones with the cool geometric design sold out!}
  2. Dorm Trunk, Navy with Rubbed Brass, XXL • $195–399 ~ This is a pricier piece, but it’s also multi-functional!  Not only does it provide storage, it’s rated for up to 200 lbs & can be used as extra seating or a coffee table.
  3. HONEY CAN DO Honey-Can-Do Set of 4 Plastic Bed Risers • Honey-Can-Do • $16.99 ~ These bed risers will give extra storage in an unused space.
  4. Household Essentials® Canvas Decorative Box – Natural with Coffee Trim • Household Essentials • $8.59 ~ You can find bins like this with or without lids & they work great under the bed or in the cubed shelving.
  5. Kennedy 6 Shelf Sweater Organizer • Dormify • $15 ~ A great way to get extra storage in a closet area.
  6. Over the Door Shoe Rack, Gray Mini Dot • $9.99–24  ~ Over the door storage is often missed!  This shoe rack is great for much more than shoes!

Dorm Room Furniture

Many dorm rooms or college apartments come with furniture.  It may or may not be functional or useful!  College can involve lots of late night study sessions (hopefully!) and having a good space to do that is important.

  1. Reservation Seating Structured Bean Bag Chair • $49.99 ~ What dorm room is complete without a bean bag chair?  This one’s a little neater because it has a handle for dragging it around!
  2. Sit & Store Folding Ottoman • $9.99 ~ I love multi-functional furniture!  This little ottoman not only provides storage & seating, it folds up for easy storage.
  3. Zipcode Design Alex Convertible Sofa • $125.99 ~ This is a stylish double duty couch for those with a little more space!
  4. Seville Classics Tilting Sit-Stand Mobile Laptop Desk Cart in Walnut • Seville Classics • $45.99 ~ I can see this being great for a laptop or food & the wheels make it easy to move around.
  5. Equip Your Space Matte Black Metal Goose Neck Desk Lamp • $9.99  ~ Put light right where it’s needed with this little desk lamp.
  6. Winning Solutions Scrabble Message Board • $29.99~ Okay, this is not really furniture, but hopefully something like this will be near a desk to help keep up with important college tasks. ; )

 Dorm Room Bedding

You’ll notice I didn’t include a bed in the furniture section.  That’s because most college dorms or apartments come with at least a bed.  There are things you can do to make it cozier!  I’m planning on sending a homemade quilt with my son.  : )

  1. Home Expressions Cooling Gel Mattress Topper • $27–42 ~ This is a cheaper alternative to bringing your own mattress!
  2. The Big One® Microfiber Pillow • $3.99–9.99 ~ Got to have comfy pillows!
  3. PROTECT-A-BED Protect-A-Bed Bed Bug Box Spring Encasement • Protect A Bed • $49–69~ Pair this with #1 for a comfortable & bug free night.  ; )
  4. Plush Blanket, Twin/XL Twin, Navy • $19.99–49 ~ Plush blankets just make it cozier!
  5. Keaton Stripe Pillowcases, Set of 2, Blue • $19.99 ~ Extra pillow cases in case he decides to actually wash them!
  6. Kyle Dorm Comforter Kit in Grey • $49.99–69.99  ~ This is a great bedding set!  Sheets, comforter, sham, & throw!

Dorm Room Bathroom & Laundry

This is an area that really makes me cringe!  I know guys are notorious for being very messy in these areas.  All I know to do is give them tools (& knowledge) in this area & hope for the best!

  1. Body Glove Men’s Sandbar Flip Flop 8144463 • Body Glove • $8.95 ~ For those that have to use “community” showers.  Ugh!
  2. Williams Sonoma Carrier Caddy • Williams-Sonoma • $7.95 ~ A basic tote for keeping bathroom essentials separate from other roommates.
  3. Nice ‘n Clean® 48-Count Flushable Moist Wipes • $3.49 ~ Whether it’s moist wipes or the standard variety, you can never have too much toilet paper!
  4. Maytex Mills Maytex Mesh Pockets PEVA Shower Curtain • JCPenney • $19 ~ This is great for those sharing an apartment bathroom!  Label each pocket for each person.
  5. Pinzon Basics 100% Egyptian Cotton 725-gm 6-Piece Towel Set, Cocoa • $21.99 ~ This towel set is a great starter set for a great price!
  6. Whitmor 6155-699 18″ Collapsible Hamper, Wht W/ Blue Trim • Whitmor • $13.79 ~ Dirty laundry hauler!

 Dorm Room Kitchen

I realize most college kids survive on pizza & ramen noodles.  However, I’ve made it a point to show my son how to cook a simple meal.  I also made sure he understands that he will be the one paying for takeout, not mom!  Some students only eat in the cafeteria & can’t cook in the dorm, but some of these are good for both.

  1. Gibson Home Dorm Kitchen 38-pc. Combo Set • $69.99 ~ What a great little set for the kitchen!  It’s got all the essentials!
  2. Mr. Coffee Pour! Brew! Go! Personal Coffee Maker – Black • Mr. Coffee • $39.99 ~ Compact coffee brewer with cup.  Yes, my son loves coffee too!
  3. Nostalgia Electrics Nostalgia RMO770RED Retro Series 0.7 Cubic Foot 700-Watt Microwave Oven • NostalgiaElectrics • $99.99 ~ 99.9% of dorm food is cooked in a microwave!  That’s just my guess, anyway.  ; )
  4. Gourmia Portable 6-Can Mini Fridge • $39.99  ~ A little fridge/cooler to keep drinks close by & cool.
  5. Williams Sonoma Campus Oven Mitt & Pot Holder Set, Red • Williams-Sonoma • $8.95 ~ Food can be very hot when it comes out of the microwave!
  6. Madesmart ® Collapsible Dish Rack • Crate & Barrel • $19.95  ~ Maybe someone’s washing the dishes & not just using disposable things.

 College Dorm Decor

I’m sure most guys dorm rooms are decorated with posters & such.  My son is an artist, so I feel he needs some art for his walls!

  1. Wolf Of Wall Street by Matt Dinniman Unframed Wall Art Print • • $17.09 ~ This is right up my son’s alley!
  2. – Times Square • • $19.99–84.99 ~ My son wants to live in the big city, so here’s something to help reach that goal.
  3. Canetti Design Group Acrylic 4″ x 4″ Picture Frame • $20 – A simple frame to keep a picture of, oh I don’t know, me? ; )
  4. Seiko Get Up & Glow Silver Tone Travel Alarm Clock – QHL004SLH • Seiko • $35 ~ A clock to tell time when the phone’s dead because it wasn’t charged!
  5. 3M CommandTM 3-Pack Medium Picture Hanging Strips • $2.99 ~ Removable hangers are a must in rented spaces!
  6. 3M CommandTM 48-Pack Poster Strips • $7.99


Well, I think that’s a pretty long list!  My son won’t need everything on that list, but it has definitely made me think about what he does need.  It’s also made me think of what I’m going to need:

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Okay, enough college talk for today, I already need more tissue!  Y’all have a great weekend & come back Monday for Part 2 of Using a Photo for Fabric Art.  We’ll be working on stitches!  My new health log is up, if your interested. : )

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  1. Monique says:

    As the mom of a boy who just came home from college I can attest they need/have a LOT of stuff in their dorm rooms…our van was packed FULL and now the house is a mess! But it’s nice to have the boy home for the summer and I’m not complaining 😀
    Good luck with your college adventures in the Fall!

    • Kristie Cook says:

      Glad to hear he’s home for the summer! My son will be going year round, so no summers home, just holidays – if I’m lucky! I may need to find some new projects to distract me. 😉

  2. Elly says:

    Thanks for the ”boy Mom” perspective! I have two sons; one went the military college route; this one is civilian university. The packing lists being completely different and expensive, your take has given me some useful insight.

    • Kristie Cook says:

      Glad it helped you out Elly! 🙂 I’d hoped when writing it that it would be useful to fellow “boy moms”.

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