Transform your Dorm into a Boho-Barn Dreamland!

Written by Rachel Fay:

Hey hi hello! My name is Rachel (though most people call me RayFay) and starting today you can consider me your go-to gal for all things cute & crafty.

In college, it is so important that your room is YOUR space: a place to zen, de-stress, and escape from your crazy schedule. However, we know that it can be hard to make your cramped student apartment feel like a home, without blowing your textbook budget at IKEA. At Twazer, we’re all about helping you live your college years in style, while saving you money! The best way to get the job done? Getting crafty.

If your aesthetic falls somewhere in between rustic and bohemian, this DIY is right up your alley- and the best part about it is that it usually costs UNDER $20! All you need is wood, sandpaper, and maybe some paint for dimension and a little pop of color.

My distressed wood essential is some good old (emphasis on the old) shutters. I love shutters because they not only make a room feel like a fairytale farmhouse, but they also serve as picture holders, a place to hang dried flowers, a mount for string lights, a frame for a wall mural…the possibilities are really endless.

So let’s get started!

Begin by painting your wood the color you want at the “bottom” (the base coat). This will be the color that appears closest to the wood when sanding. In my example (see photo above) I used white paint for this step, as it was the only color I decided to use on my shutters this time around.


After your bottom layer dries, paint your next color. Continue with as many colors as you want; I’ve used anywhere from 1-4 colors!

Here is another example just to clarify the order of colors. The base coat I used here was white. I followed that with a light yellow, then red, and finally blue. You can see this in the way the colors appear layered after sanding.


Once you have finished painting, let it dry COMPLETELY.

Next is where the magic happens! Grab your sandpaper and start roughing up your paint job. Differentiate the intensity of your sanding based on where you want wood exposure vs. where you just want a few scratches in your top layer of paint.

Here’s a closeup of what the sanding might look like once you’re finished!


I have also found that using a flat-head screwdriver to chip away at paint and wood is helpful in getting an ultra distressed look. (I used a screwdriver to get the smaller bits of wood showing in the shutters pictured above.)

And it’s that easy! Once you’ve finished your sanding, your piece is good to go. Find the perfect spot for your new rustic decor and decorate it with pictures, flowers, succulents, lights, whatever your little heart desires.

And voila! The perfect easy DIY to transform your space into a farmhouse fairytale.


Have fun crafting! And be sure to check back later for more DIYs from yours truly.





For more ideas on how to improve your college space while saving money, check out Twazer’s Instagram, Facebook, Blog and Website!

Rachel Fay is a student at UC Berkeley, a Santa Barbara native, and a crafting extraordinaire.


Here are a few other ideas from Pinterest that use the same technique:



Pinterest/ Anita Spero Design


Pinterest/ Kate’s Kreations


Pinterest/OakRidge Nursery

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