Keeping Krisunique: How to Decorate Your College Apartment Your Way


I have noticed many “Fashion Girl’s Guides” floating around the Internet in the last few years. These guides reflect everything in life from where you eat, shop, to how you decorate your room. While I enjoy these guides and follow them from time-to-time, I want to clarify that there is no such thing as a perfect recipe for being a fashion girl. A fashionable life as far as I am concerned is one where you take pride in the details and those details are based on your own personal taste. In this case specifically, I am talking about decorating your college apartment or dorm room. It is absolutely crucial to have an inspirational space you can escape to in college, because this can be your space to de-stress from your academics and an overcommitted life (as a Pepperdine student, I fit the overcommitted stereotype pretty well). Contrary to popular belief, having a Pinterest worthy space can be anything you want it to be and can be pretty cost effective. As a third year university student with a passion for the perfect ambiance, here are my tips on how to achieve a collegiate interior that is “fashionable” and unique to you at the same time:


  1. Let your wall tell your story, not someone else’s: There is no “wrong way” to decorate your room. We may be living in an age where the modern aesthic is the most fashionable (yes I’m speaking to the marble flatlay millennial tendancies that I too am guilty of), but if you are a history and fairytale obsessed girl like me, you can adorn your walls with paintings that reflect that passion. I picked works like Degas’ “The Ballet Class,” Waterhouse’s “The Lady of Shallott,” and Van Gogh’s “Books and Roses” to reflect my art peruses through Europe last year. I also have a picture of the London skyline as a token to studying abroad in London and an Arthur Rackham illustration to represent my lifelong love for Grimm’s fairytales.
  2. The Best Decorations are not bought, they’re discovered: From experience, I have discovered that my house is filled with treasures waiting to be found. When I decided to create a gallery wall in my room, I immediately ran to different stores like Michael’s, determined to buy gorgeous frames. I could not find any that fit my vision, until I looked in my garage. It turned out that I had a plethora of gold frames that had the antique chic look I was going for. They fit well with my impressionist, pre-Raphaelite, and fairytale paintings.
  3. Don’t be By-the-Coffee-Table-Book. Embrace your personal library: I love a picture heavy book on Chanel as much as the next girl, but I would pick literature over a coffee table book any day. As I tend to collect beautiful copies of classic works by Jane Austen, Tolstoy and the other greats, I find that they will fit better on my desk and tell my visitors more about me than a fashionable photo book. Plus, these books are not just for display. You bet I will be reaching for them during my down time. Am I the only one who wants to forget reality and go to the English countryside in my spare time? Yes, I am a grandma in a twenty-year-old body. However, if you are not a literature person, you can put comic books on your table if it is your thing, or celebrity magazines. Really, your desk is your oyster.
  4. Reconsider Colorful Bedding: There seems to be this stigma that you can only have really colorful decorations if your bedding is all white. If you fall in love with a bedspread that is multicolored, it is still possible to have a colorful art gallery wall like mine. Try to pick paintings that pick up on the colors in your bedspread for chic cohesion.
  5. Not All Flowers Have To Be Fresh: Fresh flowers may be beautiful, but if you are living in an apartment without air conditioning, they will not be pretty for very long. Get a fake version of your favorite flowers. They are just as beautiful, but they will last the entire year and not stink up your space with dying flower smell. I picked pink and white peonies, as they are my favorite flower besides roses.

I hope these tips were helpful and made you realize, as cheesy as it sounds that every girl is a fashion girl. Embrace what makes you different. It is the trendsetters that trigger a wow factor, not the followers.

Keeping it Krischic,

Kristin Vartan

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