6 Cool Custom Cork Boards for Your Dorm Room
Don't settle for a basic bulletin board. These easy DIYs will help you stay organized and double as wall art for your dorm.
A memo board of some sort is a must-have for a dorm room: It's the perfect way to display favorite photos, leave notes for roommates and dress up those boring white walls. Store-bought cork boards can be a little blah, though, so we've got six fun ways to customize them. Use removable adhesives to hang these so you don't damage your walls when it's time to move out.
Make a Geometric Memo Board 03:00
This DIY memo board doubles as an art installation. Just paint hexagon-shaped cork tiles in your favorite colors, then hang them on the wall with removable adhesive strips.
1: A Pinboard That Doubles as Wall Art
To make this wall, purchase hexagon-shaped corkboard, or cut heavy-weight cork sheets into hexagon shapes. Paint in the colors of your choice (we used navy blue, hot pink, coral and gold) and hang on the wall using removable adhesive strips. Tack on favorite photos and magazine clippings with oversized pushpins.
3: Washi Tape Refrigerator Makeover
Mini refrigerators are useful, but they aren't all that attractive. Personalize your dorm room refrigerator using strips of washi tape. We created an abstract stripe design with metallic gold tape.
4: Chalkboard Refrigerator Update
Turn your dorm freezer into a reusable spot for notes and grocery lists by adding a sheet of removable chalkboard adhesive. Have a favorite hashtag to describe your #dormlife? Spell it out using gold alphabet stickers.
7: Chalkboard Wardrobe Dress-Up
Dorm room wardrobes offer a large, blank space that's dying to be dressed up. Here, we took advantage of this blank space just inside the door to create a chalkboard memo board with a side for each roommate's to-do list.
9: A Yoga Mat That Does Double-Duty
This embellished yoga mat is pretty enough to leave out as a dorm room accent when it's not in use for morning stretches. Recreate the look by creating stripes using medium-width painter's tape, then coloring in the exposed space with a gold paint marker. Seal with waterproof sealer and let dry completely before using.
10: A Totally Removable Gallery Wall
A gallery wall with no nails? Yes, it's possible! We used removable adhesive photo strips rated for 5 to 15 pound items to ensure the artwork would stay put. Be sure to allow the strips to cure according to package directions before hanging artwork.
11: Instagram Corkboard Map
Make your dorm room into a home away from home by incorporating items from where you grew up. Here, we used spray adhesive to attach a meaningful map to a piece of corkboard. Then, pin photos of favorite memories to the place where they happened.
13: Find Art in Inexpensive Places
Adding a mat gives even the most inexpensive object a high-end look. We framed a fun, dollar-bin binder divider, but the options are limitless: Try wrapping paper, an old T-shirt, fabric scraps and more.
15: Say Hello in Washi Tape
Make your dorm door stand out with a ceiling-to-floor greeting to your fellow dorm dwellers. To recreate this look, use scraps of painter's tape to divide your door into five equal sections, then outline each letter. Go back and add geometric details, if desired.
16: Add Removable Wallpaper
Here, a gold-and-white peony pattern dresses up a plain desk surface. To apply the wallpaper, peel off the backing a little at a time, adhering to surface and smoothing out bubbles in small sections a little at a time. If bubbles are left after application is complete, move the air pocket towards the edge using a credit card.
20: Suspend a Hanging Planter
Every room needs a little plant life, but dorm rooms don't have much horizontal surface to spare. Instead, suspend your planter with a DIY rope or macrame hanger. We hung this planter from an exposed water pipe, but it would look just as fabulous hanging atop a bed or desk.
Mark where you've been and where you're going with this colorful cork board. We've got printable world map and U.S. map templates to make this project a cinch.
Make This: Cork Board World Map
Fabric + Paint
Cover plain cork trivets with fabric and chalkboard paint to create this multifunctional message center. Hang them in a group above your desk and keep all of your notes and reminders in one convenient spot.
Make This: Fabric + Paint Bulletin Board
Upcycled Picture Frame
If shabby chic is more your style, pick up a picture frame for cheap from a thrift store and transform it into this cute message board. Cover the cork in colorful fabric to customize it for your space.
Make This: Picture Frame Message Board
In tight quarters like a dorm room, multipurpose items are a must for saving space. One side of this versatile bulletin board features cork for displaying photos and memos; flip it over, and you'll find a mirror — a handy thing to have when your roommate doesn't feel like sharing.
Make This: Dual-Purpose Bulletin Board
3 Cork Board Backdrops 03:39
If you just want to dress up a plain ol' sheet of cork, we've got three techniques using paint, paper and washi tape.
Personalized Desk Accessories
Use various containers like Mason jars, vases and tin cans to create a matching desk accessory set that will keep all your school essentials organized and within reach. Get the step-by-step instructions.
Personalized Wall Photo Mural
A customizable, printable wall mural makes a bold statement without the need for paint or wallpaper, perfect for apartments and dorm rooms where temporary decor is a must. Get the step-by-step instructions.
Washi Tape Decor
Washi tape comes in a rainbow of patterns and is easily removable without leaving damage or residue. It's the perfect material to use to decorate a dorm room and personalize college belongings. Get decorating ideas.
Curtains Decorated With Ribbon Trim
Use fun pom-pom trim and colorful ribbons to update an inexpensive pair of ready-made curtains into a custom decoration for windows. Get the step-by-step instructions.
Low-Maintenance Plants + Flowerpot Painting Ideas
Just because you live in a dorm room, that doesn't mean you can't bring nature inside. These succulents aren't just beautiful, they're super low-maintenance, too. Plant them in bright, hand-painted pots and they instantly become the perfect addition to your temporary small space. Get the step-by-step instructions + painting ideas.
Fabric Pouf Ottoman
This fabric pouf can be used as an ottoman, extra seating for guests or as a coffee table with a tray on top. Use a fun, patterned fabric that matches the other decor in your room. Get the step-by-step instructions.
Use glass flask, flask stand, Edison bulb and glass plate to create an industrial beaker lamp perfect for a sophisticated study space. Get the step-by-step instructions from HGTV Magazine.
Multipurpose Message Center
Keep yourself (and your roommates) organized with a stylish and multi-functional message center made from round cork trivets, patterned fabric and chalkboard paint. Get the step-by-step instructions.
Keep perfume, makeup and jewelry stylishly displayed with this custom tray. Paint wooden chips in the palette of your choice, then place them in a herringbone pattern on the base of your tray. Watch the step-by-step instructions.
Fabric + Chalkboard Room Divider
Separate your spaces with a multifunctional room divider that is upholstered in a patterned fabric on one side and painted with chalkboard paint on the other. Get the step-by-step instructions.
Wooden Crate Jewelry Display Boxes
Give old wooden crates a brand-new purpose by turning them into jewelry display boxes that will showcase your stunning collection and keep it organized, too. Get the step-by-step instructions.
Find an inexpensive dresser with flat-front drawers at a thrift store or discount retailer, and spice it up with your favorite patterned wallpaper. Get the step-by-step instructions.
Framed Wipe-Off Board
Every dorm room needs a wipe-off board for messages from friends and to jot down to-do lists. Use a flea market frame and a funky fabric to create a one-of-a-kind message board that will make your space look chic. Get the step-by-step instructions.
Several Small Rugs = One Large Area Rug
The key to getting a custom look from off-the-shelf area rugs is to combine several together, giving the appearance of a large, custom-sized version. Get the step-by-step instructions.
Polymer Clay Photo Holder
Use polymer clay and 22-gauge wire to create a modern photo holder. Instead of a heart, you can bend the wire into a star or a hexagon. Get the step-by-step instructions from HGTV Magazine.