$25 or less budget-friendly items

“Hello, MTV! Welcome to my Spalding crib.” 

Move-in day is almost here! First-year Spalding University students, like many other college bound adults, arrive on campus and will be living away from their homestead for the first time. 

Resident Life’s packing list is a great resource for what to bring for campus, but check out our companion list of the top dorm items for $25 or less. This list won’t break the bank, but will have a huge value on your first year experience. 

We’ve sectioned the items into categories related to bathing, rooming necessities/ decor, dining/kitchen and school supplies.

**Disclosure**- these are not paid placements from Amazon or other vendors. 


Shower Shoes

These shower shoes got you covered (literally) in trekking to and fro the communal showers and bathrooms. If you are looking for a pair of shower shoes that are rubber, non-slip, flexible, and quick-drying then these are for you. No need to thank us, your feet will.

Shower Caddy

Another shower essential! This highly rated shower caddy from Amazon has nine pockets to fit all of your shampoo, conditioner, body wash, and bathroom essentials. A perfect pair with the shower shoes. Thanks, Amazon!

Rooming Necessities/ Decor

Ottoman/ Storage for the dorm

Work smarter, not harder! Take it from Tallie Davis, resident assistant, and her dorm room life hacks. “I recommend this ottoman. It doubles as extra storage and a stepping stool when you loft your bed. Perfect for a clutter-free dorm!” Res Life also encourages students to bring additional storage containers for clothes, shoes, and anything else that can carry and hold your personal belongings.

LED Color-Changing Lights

Light” up the dorm with these color-changing lights. These LED lights also include a smart app control and music sync feature. A fun way to decorate your dorm and brighten up your living space. 

Fuzzy Rug

No socks, no problem! Deanna Kirby, Housing Program Assistant, recommends to all incoming freshmen to bring an area rug. “I walk barefoot most of the time around the dorm! A fuzzy rug is a great addition to your dorm since the floors are not carpeted.” The rug can also be bonus seats for the floor.

Dining/ Kitchen

Microwavable Dinnerware Set

Another day, another microwavable ramen meal! A must-have dinnerware set for “everyday dorm meals”– a plate for your leftover pizza, cup for your Ale8 and a bowl for that late night cereal. And an eco-friendly bonus compared to paper cups and plates!

Reusable Storage Bags

The “snack bag” that smiles back. Okay, not really. However, it’ll make you smile by saving the planet with these reusable bags! Fill them up with fruit, chips, crackers, etc– whatever your heart desires. They are perfect to store in the fridge, freezer, and take “on-the-go.” Not saying we are encouraging eating snacks during class, but they are a quieter alternative than rustling plastic or paper bags.

Over the Fridge Caddy

Not a want, but a NEED! If you and your roommate are bringing a mini-fridge to the dorms then pair it with this over the fridge caddy storage. It’s the perfect place to store your new dinnerware set and reusable bags. Easy and clever, two words we like to hear!

School Supplies

Dry Erase Calendar

Stay on top of your deadlines with this dry-erase calendar! A visual reminder of deadlines, big tests, important dates, and Spalding events that are happening during the month. Also, a great way to write reminders for your roommate. Tallie Davis, resident assistant, emphasizes, “This dry-erase calendar is definitely a life saver! When I see it everyday on the wall, I know how to plan my week.”

Desk Shelf

Store your books in a “top shelf” desk shelf. Display your knick-knacks, alarm clock, and whatever you want to make this shelf more “you.” Study at ease with an organized desk!

We hope this list gives you inspiration or at least ideas on how to decorate your dorm! Pro tip: less is more when it comes to packing. Coordinate with your roomie and see what you can divide and conquer together. Can’t wait to see you on move-in day!

“Bye Freshmen, hope you find your class!”- Mr. Narwhal, Elf


LEARN MORE: Resident Life & Housing

Visit Admitted Student Information to apply for housing or request a housing exemption. Send us an email with any questions.