Studying My Inner D.J.- Dorm Decor For Guys (#Oliohop 4)

As always, I am honored to be a member of's monthly Blog Hop (lovingly referred to as our #Oliohop). This month I share the stage with ten other design bloggers, many of whom I have had the pleasure of joining forces with before. Our oliohops are a fun way to see one design concept in many different professional perspectives, seeing our creative minds in action on 2D and 3D boards. So hop around with us today, as we tackle one of the happiest times of the year for parents... Back To School!

With two kids in college, creating a dorm room design is a bittersweet subject matter. Sweet because I have two wonderful daughters in college; bitter because they both still live at home, but hey, a gal can dream! 

I decided to venture out to a world that I love, a world of urban decor and music. Whether your child is a mixmaster himself, a closet bedroom d.j. or just appreciates music as much as I do, he will love the D.J. inspired room I created for this dorm.

Dorm rooms follow a few basic principles that we cannot escape; but instead play up within a design.

1. Dorm room space is limited- You only get half a room, and sometimes just a third. Make it work by maximizing spaces with items that are as shallow as possible, layering when you can. Here I added storage without adding furniture. By taking a basic shelf from Ikea and stacking them, I've provided a way to store books, equipment or decorative items without sucking up valuable floor space.

2. Pre-furnished versus adding furniture- Thankfully, most dorm rooms come pre-furnished with your basics; a bed, a desk and closet. For those that don't I suggest a simply framed bed, such as the Malm from Ikea. Lacking a box spring, the malm promotes a somewhat tidy bed, allows a great backdrop for decorative sheet sets and coordinates with most modern, transitional and even traditional decor.

3. Dorm room space is REALLY limited- (definitely worth repeating)Whether you've added your own furnishings or have brought in your own, adjust your layout to create the illusion of space as best as possible. By placing a desk at the foot of this bed, we've squeezed out a bit more wall space, which a dorm never has enough of. Here we've focused it on a fun way to hide your laundry, which very rarely fits in your micro-sized closet. This washing machine looking basket is from Modcloth for just $27.99.

4. Stretch Your Budget- With as little time as you'll spend in your dorm room, shop smart and decorate with in stock items as lower priced stores. Consider that you won't be the only one in your space, so high dollar decor is not only unecessary, it's unsafe to have.

5. Find A Theme You Love & Almost Go Nuts- Notice I say almost... There really can be too much of a good thing. Designers know how to edit, but often times someone gets an idea in their head and goes far too overboard with it, making every piece in that room focus on that one color or theme. This room is a good example of working with a theme without becoming a slave to it.

Hey Mr. D.J.

So, how do you get this funky D.J. look in your dorm room? Start with this fun wall applique by Etsy for $120.00. It's one of the most expensive pieces in the room, but takes up a great deal of space and creates an amazing backdrop for your theme. It comes in many different colors, so find one you want and build your accents around that color palette. Here I used blues. Best of all, it adds color and pattern to your walls that's easily removed when you're done learning!

For far less money, and a little labor, create this great equalizer look on your wall and make the buttons into hooks for your jackets, hats or headphones.

On the left of the wall are speaker box interiors that double as coat racks, also found at If you enter d.j. decor into the search, you'll find many of the items that I've used to create this room. Etsy is a fantastic source to support smal businesses and individuals who create handmade, quality goods from home decor to jewelry. It's a favorite source of mine when shopping for my design clients!

Tie in your decor by using a few pieces of art that continue your look along with a few pieces of decor that mimic your color sheme. 

Add Fun- College is an amazing time in your life. Bring in elements that show your personality, like these fun balloon dog pillows. Play games with your roomate or other room visitors with this great Scrabble wall mounted board by Entertainmenthearth for just $27.99. Both fun and educational, play a lifesized game of Words With Friends or total strangers. Feeling creative? Take some CD jewel cases and create a chandelier with a simple light kit.

This room will be your home for the next two to four years, so make it comfortable, but stylish with my help and the help of my ten other partners in #Oliohop 4. Find them below and see what they've created! If you liked my space, please let me know below. Don't forget to see my other boards at Olioboard.

Charisse of

Kate of


Colette of


 Julie of

Matthew of


 Joanne of

Lynda of


 Antoinette of

 Selma of

Ana of




Kids Styles- A Frou Frou French Nursery & Modern Little Man's Room

Today I have the honor of being part of Olioboard's 1st monthly Monday Blog Hop. Myself and nine other designers have the distict pleasure of rolling out some of our tricks and design ideas and create a nursery and/ or kid's space. The idea behind our Blog Hop is that you will "hop" from blog to blog, checing out all that us designers have to offer in great design, creative thinking and enjoyable writing. So many of us have great blogs where we write regular content about our lives, our projects and tasty tid bits related to our colorful and inventive world of interior design. As a personal experience, I enjoy my connection to many of these diverse designers, getting to know their styles and personalities through our exchanges on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter. I hope you will get to know and enjoy them as much as I do!

I have a tendency to challenge myself to go against the grain when I'm presented with a design inquiry and this time was no different. Olioboard has asked us to create a nursery or kid's room to wow you with. I always enjoy creating kid's rooms. It's the one space where, even if homeowners are scared to use color for their own space, they let loose and go Crayola for their kids. And kid's rooms should be fun, energetic and bright...but, that doesn't mean that you can't also create a sophisticated space for a baby that highlights one controlled color.

In my 'Petite Sophisticate Twins Nursery' I've taken stark neutrals and softened them up with a beautiful pastel. I very rarely leave a wall white (actually NEVER), but for this one room I went classic white and added panels for a regal look. My inspiration for this space was the amazing, luxe heart shaped twin crib set that I found at I LOVE using unique pieces when my client has such a budget. Olioboard allows me to create moodboards for rooms that I create for my clients, but also allows me to make "dream rooms" like this one; although I'm open to do a room just like this for you if you want one! :-)

Gray continues to be a hot NON-color for the coming seasons and has replaced brown as the go-with-all neutral. Here it creates the perfect balance between the blank white walls and the rich darkness of the bold, black furnishings and accessories. The dresser on the back wall is a repurposed 1970's or 80's piece that many of you still have today. A nice satin coat of black spray paint and fresh new knobs will update your old piece and this piece in particular fits in well with it's French Provincial look. Add to this luxurious look with black sprayed frames in different, ornate styles and use them open (like shown) or frame family photos or even fabric or decorative papers in gray and powder puff pink. And speaking of pink, the lightest shade of this pretty girl's mainstay adorns the dual hampers by the window, a soft shag rug and accents throughout the room that can easily transition into other colored pieces as time goes on and tastes change. 

Although I finished my design, I began to create another room fit for a modern prince (all while watching the season premiere of True Blood, so I'm surprised the room is not red). Again, I went against my norm. I rarely use the typical boy/ girl blue/ pink thing! I prefer alternative colors to define gender or not define it at all! Yet here, I played with blue and brown, inspired by this fantastic modern updo of a mid-century styled dresser. I love the random color pops on the drawers. 

I love to play with paint. On a recent client's home, I painted an apple green square (see 2 Weeks in The Life of a Small Design Job series on my blog). I've done stripes and chevron, circles and squiggles, all with paint or wallpaper. Walls are a canvas just calling for creativity. There really aren't many rules- it just has to look good! On this 'Little Boy Blue's Modern Bedroom' I made random stripes in the contrasting brown against a baby blue wall. It makes the blue a bit more grown up, yet still fun.

Think outside the box when it comes to walls. I have taken phrases we often tell our children and carrried it onto the wall for a great Typography style. Just handwrite your words along very straight lines to create this look. There doesn't always have to be a theme to a space. Simple and clean lines make rooms look clutter free. If your space is a little less modern, work in the alternative castle bookcase, or fun, blue toychest. Go over to and create a fun nursery or kid's room of your own! If you do, I'd love to see it, so please post a link in the comment section below. 

I hope you enjoyed the little look into my creative mind and what you can do with a nursery space. regardless of your budget, there are ideas within this design that are easily adaptable into your space. Please take a little time and see what some of my colleagues have come up with for their nursery and kid's rooms. Click on the links below and hop on over to see them!

Dabble in Chic -

Design Magnifique -

Fashion House Interiors -

Focal Point Blog -

Jennifer Reynolds Interiors -

Pinklet and C -

Push Interiors -

Selma Hammer Designs - 

Stacy Naquin Interiors -