Saving with 6abc: Dorm Decor on a Dime

EAST FALLS - Aug. 13, 2012

Beth Allen of DIY Hip Chicks spent just over $100 at Impact Thrift stores to transform a dorm room at Philadelphia University.

Allen explains her strategy. "We found this beautriful purple comforter. It was $25.99 at Impact and if you use the coupon that they have on the back of the receipt, you get 25% off. And we decided to go with a whole purple palace, Bohemian Rhapsody theme."

The pillows cost $3-$6 each. Frames and boxes for the desk just $.50 each and a little lamp was $4. Allen then put her creativity to work on some other accessories.

"You have to think outside the box. You have to look at it and thine, 'Can I put a coat of paint on it? Can I wrap it in fabric? Can I wrap it in paper? Can i give it some new life and save myself a fortune over Home Goods and Pottery Barn?' "

She gave a $2 coat rack new life with spray-paint and paper. A beat-up old desk organizer got the same treatment. And -- also using decoupage -- she turned an old plastic cafeteria tray into a multi-purpose laptop desk.

"They're plastic cafeteria trays, vinaage, way back from what we remember," she explains. "And I took one and found some interesting paper at Michael's, they were 6 for $1. I used three pieces of paper, I decoupaged it, ripped up, tore paper, decoupaged all over it and now it's a tray for a laptop, it's a tray to sit in your room and eat your snacks, you could put it on your bed as a decorative tray, you could hang it on the wall."

By putting light-colored fabric behind a $2 plexiglass poster frame, she created a wipe-off board. And she used Velcro tape to hang a $2 sheer curtain by the bed.

"We took a $2 unused sheer curtain from Impact, this was an Ikea sheer, and we literally just taped it to the wall, and the velcro is like $2 for a pack," Allen says. "So now it'll come down, it won't mar the paint and it just adds a pop of color behind the head."

Allen shares her decorating and do-it-yourself tips on her website and will be holding a decorating seminar in September. Click here for more information.

And to find an Impact Thrift store near you, click here.

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