This post is all about the best places to shop for dorm room stuff.
Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. See our full disclaimer here.
Shopping for dorm decor is stressful. Every major store is marketing for their dorm room merchandise, and everyone seems to know the trendiest and best places to shop for dorm room stuff.
For most college students, your dorm room is your first real home away from your parents, and your first time living on your own. So, of course it’s important to have your dorm room feel comfortable and to be stocked with college essentials after move-in day.
Luckily, I’ve done the whole dorm room shopping thing quite a few times. The key to successful dorm room shopping is to get your dorm room items from a variety of stores. This ensures that you are getting the best deals, and lets you pick from a wide variety of options.
For this technique, I really recommend online shopping over shopping in stores. When you online shop, there are many more options for discounts, and you are able to shop at stores that you normally would not be able to attend in person.
In this post, I show you not only the best places to shop for dorm room stuff, but also where to get the best deals. With this post, your dorm room will be trendy and functional, even on a budget.
Here are the best places to shop for dorm room stuff.
IN A HURRY TO DECORATE?
SIGN UP FOR A FREE MONTH OF AMAZON PRIME TO GET EVERYTHING FROM AMAZON DELIVERED TO YOUR DOOR WITHIN 2 DAYS. LIFESAVER!
Wayfair is one of the best places for any decor or furniture that would usually be more expensive. Wayfair really works best for price-checking – I recommend searching for any large items you plan to purchase in Wayfair before purchasing elsewhere, to make sure it isn’t at a cheaper price there.
2. URBAN OUTFITTERS
Urban Outfitters is one of my top picks for college students for unique, trendy dorm decor. While it’s hard to catch an Urban Outfitters sale, you’ll be able to find some very reasonably priced items if you spend time browsing.
If you are looking to decorate your dorm room in a boho dorm room, aesthetic dorm room, or minimalist dorm room style - you are bound to find lots of decor options here. I love their tapestries and other wall decor.
3. BED, BATH, AND BEYOND
Bed, Bath, and Beyond has a surprisingly huge amount of deals available on their college essentials page. You are able to sign up for a “college savings pass,” which will soon be opening for the 2023 college season.
Even better, Bed Bath and Beyond does a fantastic job of dividing their college merchandise into many categories, including the section they title “college essentials” featuring categories like “bedding,” “bath,” “organization,” and “student faves,” alongside categorizing their merchandise by price.
I did so much of my college shopping at Bed, Bath, and Beyond and definitely recommend it for stocking up on essentials, like towels, duvet covers, and a coffee maker.
Target is really an all-around store for anything you need. I am very guilty of walking into Target with one thing on my list, and walking out with a full cart.
When it comes to college shopping, Target really knows what’s going to be trendy and sell fast for the upcoming year. The affordable, high-quality items that Target offers are hard to beat. They also have a great selection of school supplies.
If you shop at Target more than once a month, I really recommend signing up for their Red Card. You have the option to sign up for a debit version of the Red Card, rather than credit, which is really nice if you’re wary about opening up credit cards. Then, Target has their own coupon program called Target Circle, which just stacks on top of your savings. When these savings are combined, you’re able to check off a lot of the items on your dorm room shopping list without blowing your budget.
5. THE CONTAINER STORE
The Container Store is a fan favorite for organizing any space. In your dorm room, it’s essential that you are able to use the most out of every inch of space. I really like using products from the container store for college dorm room organization, to organize larger spaces in my dorm room, such as under my bed, on closet shelves, desk drawers, and even dresser drawers.
H&M is a well-known store for buying trendy clothing. However, they also have tons of affordable dorm decor items. I recommend shopping for dorm decor on hm.com, rather than going to the store in-person. In the US, you won’t find a large variety of homewares in stores, but the options online are extensive.
Plus, with UNiDAYS, a college student discount program, you get 10% off your entire purchase. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend signing up for UNiDAYS as soon as you have full access to your University email.
Anthropologie has a reputation for selling absolutely breathtaking clothes, but at a steep price. However, the homewares that Anthropologie offers are high-quality, and they don’t cost an arm and a leg. While the housewares section of Anthropologie is definitely far from thrift shop deals, they have very unique pieces that are sure to bring some character and class to your college dorm rooms or college apartment.
I personally think of Nordstrom as a great place to get some discounted designer clothes, but I was recently introduced to the amazing array of home decor that they have available.
While it does take some browsing, it’s worthwhile to sift through the merchandise available at Nordstrom to find some stunning, designer pieces that are perfect for making an impression in your college dorm room. Nordstrom Rack is also an option!
Etsy is a great way to support a small business from anywhere you’re located. I love that a lot of the stuff you buy on Etsy is handmade, too! I especially love the photo print packs that are sold. These packs are affordable, and they create such a simple gallery wall.
Ikea offers tons of storage solutions for even the tiniest dorm rooms. Plus, they give you tons of dorm inspiration during your browse. If anyone knows how to organize a tiny dorm room in a stylish and trendy way, it’s definitely Ikea with their Scandinavian inspired furniture perfect for a small space!
11. HOMEGOODS or T.J.MAXX
One of my favorite things to do is go to HomeGoods or TJ Maxx and dig through the clearance section. The items there are unbelievably cheap, and you can find anything from picture frames to a shower caddy!
Lately, I’ve been doing a lot more online shopping. I found that they had the same great finds, just online. In fact, there were even more great finds since I had the selection of everything online, and wasn’t restricted by what was in a specific store.
If you’re looking for cheap, trendy dorm room decor, Shein is definitely the place you want to look. The prices on Shein are unbeatable, although you have to be wary of what you are ordering. I wouldn’t order anything where you are dependent on the quality of the item. However, if you’re looking for some trendy, cheap decor, this is definitely the place you’ll want to look. The decor on this site is practically screaming “I belong on Instagram!”
Plus, SheIn is always running some kind of unbeatable sale that makes the prices even lower. I really recommend signing up for their email list to get exclusive deals, too.
If you’ve read other posts on my site, you’ll know how much I love shopping for dorm items on Amazon. You can get some great deals! As a college student, you get 50% off of an Amazon Prime membership. Just click the link below!
Just like Etsy, Redbubble supports independent creators by selling their products. The artwork that is available on Redbubble is truly unavailable elsewhere! I love the unique, fun items that you are able to get on this site. The home decor is great for expressing your personality in an individualistic way.
Dormify is exactly what it sounds like – an online store completely dedicated to making your dorm room the best it can be. I highly recommend looking through dormify’s site, even if it’s just for some inspiration.
16. POTTERY BARN: TEEN
Pbteen has an amazing selection of college dorm items. If you’re a Pottery Barn lover, Pbteen is definitely the place you want to shop. They run some pretty great sales, so sign up for their email list and keep an eye out for coupon codes.
Walmart may not be the first place that comes to mind when shopping for dorm decor, but they’ve upped their trendiness in recent years, and you can find some cute stuff there now! It’s also great for anything practical or affordable you are looking for - they always have great deals on items.
18. ZARA HOME
Zara is known for their clothes, but did you know you can also shop online for cute home decor stuff at Zara Home? They have really cute decor options, and are a great option for elevating your dorm room with some key decorative pieces.
Frequently Asked Questions About Dorm Room Decor Shopping
How to shop for college dorm?
When it comes to dorm shopping, you should make a list and browse online before purchasing anything. Compare prices and make sure you are getting the best deal and lowest prices.
Focus on necessities at first, like bedding, shower supplies, and stuff for laundry. Don’t forget to coordinate with your roommate on items you may be able to share.
When should I start shopping for my dorm?
This really depends on how much of a planner you are. I’d recommend to start 4-6 weeks before your move-in date, especially if you are shopping online and need to factor in shipping times.
You can always make last minute trips in-person to places like Target. And can start dorm shopping as late as 1-2 weeks before college move-in.
What do college students need the most?
There are so many necessities for college! When it comes to the dorm room, twin xl bedding, a mattress topper, and a comfy duvet are very important. Laundry and shower supplies are also crucial.
And then for school, things like a sturdy backpack, comfortable shoes, and a planner are necessary.
What should you not bring to a dorm?
If you’re concerned about what not to bring, definitely check out my article on items I regret bringing to college. I’ve been through it and you can learn from my mistakes!
Whether you’re going into your freshman or senior year, you want your dorm room to be a place that truly feels like home. I hope this list of best places to shop for dorm room stuff is helpful for decorating your dorm room!