Style & Shopping

How to Create a Cozy Cottagecore Dorm Room for Under $150

published Aug 25, 2023
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Collage of cottagecore decor with groovy mushroom print on top left, image of a cottagecore decorated bedroom in the center and floral wallpaper on bottom right.
Credit: From top left to bottom right:KinderPlanetCompany / Etsy; Johner Images / Getty Images; Wayfair

Cottagecore is an aesthetic that idealizes rural life. It’s been trending ever since it first exploded on TikTok in 2020, and it now influences people’s fashion (ruched blouses and floral print), hobbies (cooking, gardening, and crocheting), and even home decor (vintage wooden furniture, pastels and earth tones, cozy knits, and whimsical details that make you feel like you’re in a cottage from a storybook).

If you’re anything like me — a college student juggling internships, managing a busy class schedule, and planning out my dorm room decor — it can be hard to enjoy the simple things in life. Cottagecore can help you filter out some of the noise. And because the cottagecore aesthetic celebrates simplicity, it’s super easy to achieve this look for your room on a budget. The trend encourages thrifting and crafting, so you can also be sustainable while you’re at it (another hallmark of cottagecore). Plus, even when buying new items to elevate your space, you can find inexpensive products — for example, getting all the pieces in the list below would only cost you about $150!

1 / 5

If you’re looking to bring some charm to your room, maybe because your walls feel dull or because you’re looking to spruce up your bathroom or common area, this wholesome print from Etsy has it in spades. Featuring a frog resting atop a bed of bright mushrooms, this piece is perfect for lovers of nature and whimsical art. It’s simple and cute, and will look great no matter how your dorm room is arranged.

When selecting this print, you can pick what size and colors you want (either the full colors as pictured, or just cream and burnt orange, if you’re going for a monochromatic look). No matter where you hang it, this wall art serves as a gentle reminder to stop and enjoy the little things.

2 / 5

This mushroom-shaped lamp is small, but it has a big effect. If your dorm room has a wooden desk (most do), place the lamp on it along with a stack of your favorite books and a journal for a minimalist look with maximum cottagecore vibes. You could also place it on a nightstand next to your bed in case you want to do some early morning studying or late-night reading. The soft lighting will brighten your space while adding a cozy feel to your dorm.

3 / 5

Cottagecore decor is all about creating a comfortable and rustic atmosphere in your room, and one of the best ways to achieve this is with your bedding. While the right bedding really ties the whole look together, the wrong bedding can completely ruin the effect you’re trying to create. Thankfully, this green duvet cover falls into the former camp. Green is an essential color to the cottagecore aesthetic, which is often characterized by grass, flowers, and trees. This duvet set basically brings the outside world into your dorm room. Pair it with a cream-colored throw blanket or pillow to add some extra warmth and texture to your bed.

4 / 5
was $38.00

Consider bringing more greenery into your space with this solid shag rug. It has a texture and color that mimics the look of fresh grass without the itchiness from unknown insects biting you. If you’re ever feeling overwhelmed, you can lie down on it and pretend you’re in a meadow — far, far away from the stresses of your organic chem class.

5 / 5

I’m a firm believer that you need at least one floral element in your space to capture the cottagecore vibe. And if you’re not down to regularly pick wildflowers or pay for a new bouquet of daisies every week, I recommend this peel-and-stick floral wallpaper. Featuring so many elements that make the cottagecore aesthetic so beloved, it’s a simple cream and black wallpaper with branches, birds, and flowers plastered across it. One roll covers 20 square feet, so you can decide if you just want to cover one wall as an accent wall, or get multiple rolls to cover your whole room for the full floral effect.

Makenna Underwood


Makenna Underwood is a senior journalism major, English minor attending Howard University. Originally from Hot Springs, Arkansas, Underwood has always been interested in media and has a deep appreciation for the power of storytelling. She is passionate about exploring the intersection of culture, style, and wellness as they pertain to her community. Makenna is an active member of her school’s newspaper, where she reports on various events and issues affecting the student body. Additionally, she dedicates her free time to writing on her blog, Makenna’s Meditation, which focuses on college lifestyle and wellness. Through her writing, Makenna hopes to inspire others to prioritize their well-being and to live their best lives.

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