Dorm room interior design 101

For most kids, college is the first time their parents aren't there to clean up after them. That sweater that got tossed on the ground? No magical wind is going to ferry it to the washing machine and then into your closet. The dishes in the sink? Those sticky plates and soggy dregs are going to start smelling long before anyone takes care of them for you. For this reason, the first rule of dorm room interior design should be giving your college student a space he or she can care about.

Rather than stick to the familiar designs of a home bedroom, outfit your student with the personalized style needed to feel like a young adult with a room of his or her own. Of course, your kid will need to share this space with a roommate, but since many schools put confirmed students in touch with their future roomies, your soon-to-be student can hit the ground running with a little late summer planning. Consider these options for some dorm room interior design 101.

1. Area rugs. The floor is sure to be freezing on feet when heading to those early morning classes. Area rugs can be a lifesaver to the unsocked foot stepping out of bed. They also tend to pull a room's color scheme together and can even cover up unsightly flooring materials.

2. Under bed storage. While your student will be outfitted with a desk and dresser, any other storage will end up being luck of the draw. Make sure he or she has plenty of other handy options for organization. Under bed containers are fantastic for keeping clean bedding or seasonal clothes out of your kid's way and decreasing clutter.

3. Framed prints. On a campus where most posters are tacked to the wall and tearing at the edges, a few frames go a long way. Don't break the bank at a professional framer either. Most thrift stores will have plenty of old frames - find one that fits your print. It'll add instant class to your student's wall.

4. Heating options. When it comes to heat, your student is going to be at the mercy of whatever medieval contraption keeps the dorm warm. When late autumn and winter roll around, he or she might just need a little extra warmth. Under desk heaters like the ones made by WarmlyYours might be just the thing to keep your student warm through long, chilly nights pouring over books and finishing term papers.