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In gift guide, Lifestyle on
May 5, 2018

7 Creative Gift Set Ideas For Incoming Freshmen Living In Dorms

Happy Saturday lovelies!

I know that I said I would likely only be posting on Tuesday/Thursday for the foreseeable future, but I love surprising y’all with some interesting post ideas. So many people are graduating high school and college this week, so I figured I would give you a gift guide for any incoming freshman you know who will be living in dorms.

I want to do other gift guides throughout the summer so you can give your friends and family the perfect going away gift!

I have seven themes listed below. Feel free to buy them as sets, or just get individual pieces. I am sharing a ton of ideas below, and I hope you like these. Let me know in the comments below which idea is your favorite!

*This post contains affiliate links, y’all!

 7 Creative Gift Set Ideas For Incoming Freshmen Living In Dorms | Do you have any friends or family members who will be staying in a dorm soon? Check out my gift set guide so you can add some joy and practicality to their first year living the dorm life. #GiftGuide #GiftsForCollegeStudents #DormGiftIdeas #DormGiftGuide

1. The Laundry Starter Kit

Hear me out. Laundry is expensive AF, and not all dorms have free laundry. I was so fortunate my freshman year that my dorm didn’t make us pay for laundry, but your incoming freshman may not be as lucky. Seeing as how NO ONE has cash on them, get them a:

  • Jar full of quarters
  • Tide Pods (or another laundry detergent)
  • Dryer sheets
  • Laundry basket with handles
  • Tide To Go Pen (because sometimes, you just need some easy stain removal, y’all)

You can get as creative as you want with this starter kit. Just make sure that you are wary of the space that college students have in their dorm room. Don’t go too overboard!

Here is some inspiration for the Laundry Starter Kit Set:

2. The Drown Out The Dorm Life Set

What I learned while living in the dorms: dorm life is loud AF and a tad bit smelly. I decided to create this set so your incoming freshman can drown out dorm life and act as though they are living at home, even if they aren’t. In this set you should get them a:

  • Pair of headphones
  • Sleeping mask
  • White noise machine
  • Small dehumidifier
  • Fan
  • Essential oil diffuser
  • Essential oil starter kit

All in all, you just want to make dorm living as comfortable for them as possible through the use of items that make them feel at home.

Here is some inspiration for the Drown Out The Dorm Life Set:

3. The I need Coffee, Or I’ll Die Set

Coffee on any college campus is expensive. Most college campuses have Starbucks or some other large coffee chains and daily visits can add up. When I was in college/graduate school, I always went to Starbucks or Einstein Bros Bagels for my coffee fix, and I don’t even want to look at what a bill for all that would look like! Here are some ideas to help your college student out. Get them a:

  • Keurig K15 Brewer
  • Good set of starter K-Cups
  • Reusable KCup Pod
  • Cute coffee mug (or six)
  • Creamer/sugar set

This set will help them drink more coffee at home. They may still go out for those specialty coffees they can’t brew in their dorm. Overall, though, they will be happy with what they can save when they don’t have to go to Starbucks for everything.

Here is some inspiration for the I Need Coffee Or I’ll Die Set:

4. The Dorm Room Makeover Set

My favorite part of the dorm room process was deciding what to bring to decorate it. If the incoming freshman in your life is really picky, you may want to skip this set and just them a gift card to a place like Pottery Barn. If they are less picky, you know their style, or at least their color palette you could consider getting them stuff like:

  • Wall Tapestries
  • Canvas Paintings
  • Throw Pillows
  • Curtains
  • Posters
  • Loctite Fun-Tak Mounting Putty (sounds boring, hella helpful for adding decor to dorm walls without damage)
  • String Lights
  • Felt Letter Board

All these excellent decor pieces combined will give them a Tumblr/Pinterest dorm room for sure! Make sure everything matches, though!

Here is some inspiration for the Dorm Room Makeover Set:

5. The Get Your Academic Shit together Set

Your incoming freshman will likely spend a ton of time burning the midnight oil at their desk. Get them some items to help them make their desk feel more comfortable and easy to use such as a:

  • Laptop cooling pad
  • Desk organizers
  • Notebooks
  • Pencils, pens, markers, etc
  • Planner (We love Erin Condren in these happy parts)
  • Seat cushions
  • Ergonomic keyboards/mouse pads

Your incoming freshman will likely already have a desk and chair on campus, but they might not be the most comfortable. Purchase some extra goodies to help them feel better while studying.

Here is some inspiration for the Get Your Academic Shit Together Set:

6. The I Don’t Want To Use the Dorm Bathroom Set

Dorm bathrooms are kinda icky AF. Your incoming freshman needs to be prepared for dorm life, and I hope that this set of products will help them be prepared for the shared dorm bathroom life. It’s really not that bad, I promise, as long as your dorm-dwelling freshman has some essentials like a:

  • Bathrobe
  • Shower caddy
  • Dorm shoes aka flip flops aka flippity flops (You can likely get these cheaper at Old Navy or Walmart, but adding some links to Amazon in case you want to get them there.)
  • Soap/Body Wash
  • Shaving supplies
  • Towel Set

Dorm bathroom life is so much better when you have the supplies to survive it. If your freshman doesn’t share a bathroom with an entire floor, make sure they have some bathroom cleaning supplies. They don’t want to be the suitemate who never cleans up!

Here is some inspiration for the I Don’t Want To Use The Dorm Bathroom set:

7. The What Is Cooking And How Do I Do It Set

Sometimes you won’t feel like going to the cafeteria or going out to eat. For the times your incoming freshmen just wants to stay in, get them a few items to keep around their dorm for easy cooking such as a:

  • Mini-fridge (if they can, rent this from campus or share this cost with their roommate)
  • Tupperware set
  • Set of cookware (if they have room for it, otherwise, get individual pieces like a skillet and a pot)
  • Plastic dish set (don’t think these are automatically microwave safe, not all plastic dishes are!)
  • Metal cutlery (don’t go plastic on cutlery)
  • Kitchen utensils

To finish out this set add some ramen noodles, pasta, mug cakes (did you know Duncan Hines sells mug cake mix?!), and other goodies for the perfect gift set. You could also add a gift card to Walmart or another grocery store as well.

Here is some inspiration for the What Is Cooking And How Do I Do It set:


Dorm life can be fun again with all the products I showed you today! These gifts may not make your incoming freshman squeal like money or a new car, BUT they are super practical.

One of the best gifts I ever received when I was headed to college was a laundry basket and a bunch of supplies I could use in my dorm! At the time when I was getting gifts I was most excited about the monetary ones, but over time I realized I needed all the stuff I got in that basket.

You should strive to get your incoming freshman gifts that keep on giving. A lot of those gifts I got my freshman year followed me all throughout college. So, choose gifts wisely and make them practical, y’all.

In gift guide, Lifestyle on
November 17, 2016

UncommonGoods Gift Guide For College Students

Disclaimer: My lovelies at Uncommongoods sponsored this post. All opinions are my own.

Can you believe that next month is December? It’s almost time for the most magical time of the year, Christmas! With Christmas around the corner I thought I would get a heads up and post my very first gift guide of the year. We all want the very best presents right? Even if you are not currently looking for Christmas presents, finding cool items for potential gifts is great for birthdays and anniversaries. I recently discovered this awesome online website called Uncommongoods which features tons of amazing gift ideas for all sorts of people! I simply adore the stuff on this site,  y’all!

 Uncommon Goods Gift Guide For College Students | Are you searching for the perfect gift for the people in your life? Check out this awesome gift guide using products that make you feel good about shopping.

About UncommonGoods

What I love about Uncommongoods is that it combines my two favorite things: shopping and supporting small businesses. This holiday season, buy something a little unconventional and search for the perfect holiday gift. Not only that, support other people’s ability to have the same awesome holiday season by buying their products.

Uncommongoods strives to do the following things:

  1. Make a positive impact on the world and in the workplace by having integrity. They strive to provide a fair wage to all their workers, offer healthcare to all their full-time and most of their part-time workers, and treat those who come in contact with their company with respect.
  2. Uncommongoods is committed to offering products that are handmade, recycled, and organic. On top of that they strive not to share any products on their site that harm animals or people.
  3. Uncommongoods cares about the paper they use and works with the Forest Stewardship Council to get recycled paper if they mail out catalogues. They always strive to reduce the paper that they create in their company and bring more of their business online.

These are just a few of the points in Uncommongoods mission that I adore. You can really tell that being an environmentally conscious, people loving company is something that means the world to them.

Gifts For The Reader

One of my absolute favorite thing to do during winter break is read all the books. Christmas usually falls around the middle of winter break so I love to get books during Christmas that I can read for the rest of the break. Here are a few books that I adore on the Uncommongoods website.

 F This Test; $9.95 F This Test; $9.95

F This is such a funny book series. I have a few of these novels laying around and I absolutely love looking at them. This one in particular is called F This Test, and I think that any college student can agree with the sentiment on this one. Sometimes you go into a test and you aren’t sure what you are doing. These books are a quick and funny read and they have quite a few books in this series on the website. Any student (in high school, college, or graduate school) would appreciate the laughter that this book brings. Click here to grab this book

 642 Things To Write About; $17.00 642 Things To Write About; $17.00

Readers are usually writers, and writers block sucks. Sometimes you just need a little something to get your creative juices flowing. I adore this book on the Uncommongoods site called 642 Things To Write About (click here to see the product). This book is filled with lots of prompts (and writing space) to get your creative mind racing. This is the perfect present for any reader who wants to dabble in writing.

 Banned Books Morph Mug; $12.00 Banned Books Morph Mug; $12.00

College students live off of coffee, so naturally mugs are a great addition to any college student collection. This mug is cool because it starts off censored, but as your pour your favorite hot beverage in this mug the censorship slowly fades away! How neat is that? Click here for more info.

Gifts for the Techie

This next section is for people who love technology. I am not a super techie, but I love a good gadget here and there. These are my three pics for those gadget lovers!

 Smartphone Instant Photo Lab; $169.00 Smartphone Instant Photo Lab; $169.00

This is such a random technology object, but it seems like such a cool little gadget. It’s expensive (which makes it a good gift so you can ask others for it) at $169, but if you are a technology lover, you probably expected it. This is a Smartphone Instant Photo Lab, click here to see this product. Essentially, you can attach your smart phone to this device and you can make polaroid style photos from any smart phone picture. Awesome, huh?!

This would totally help you spice up your dorm or apartment room. Photo string lights anyone?! Or, you can even pick up this photo display or this photo display from Uncommongoods!

 Laser Projection Keyboard; $150.00 Laser Projection Keyboard; $150.00

Does typing on a regular keyboard here feel boring? Check out this Laser Projection Keyboard on Uncommongoods! This keyboard is so awesome, and again a bit pricy, but who doesn’t want to have the literal coolest keyboard? This keyboard would be such a conversation starter, and if you have a desktop like me–would help you clear some of the clutter on your desk! Think about how much space you could finally take back on your small dorm room desk with this cool tech gadget!

 Bedside Smartphone Vase; $32 Bedside Smartphone Vase; $32

The last techie item I am going to cover is this awesome Bedside Smartphone Vase from Uncommongoods. This vase comes in mint and white and it would be such an adorable addition to any office or bedside table for the woman who loves technology. I am not sure why I love this vase so much, but it is just such an awesome piece, I seriously want one for my home right now! Plus, the colors are so feminine!

This would also be such a great gift for an anniversary or even Valentine’s Day is it too early to think about February? Could you imagine getting or giving flowers in vase that doubles as a stand for a phone? Best gift ever!

Gifts for the home

The last gift set I am sharing is for the home. Pieces in this set will liven up any dorm room or apartment to make things feel just a little more home-y. Uncommongoods is amazing because they have a gift guide of amazing gifts for women!

 Pacific Ocean Gift Set; $53.00 Pacific Ocean Gift Set; $53.00

Sometimes you have someone in your life who you just don’t know how to buy for. When I come across those people, they usually get a set of some kind. The reason I love this Pacific Ocean Gift Set from Uncommongoods is that it’s totally made with love by a maker in California. This set is so different from sets you would normally find at a store. It’s beautifully crafted and totally gift worthy. With this set instead of saying I totally don’t know how to buy for you, you can say that and say that you support a small business in California!

This set would make any bathroom feel luxurious and home-y. The person getting this gift would have the perfect spa day all set up for them with this cute little set. You need this on your wishlist or your give list!

Just a note, I think this would be the perfect gift for a mother or your boyfriend’s mother.

 Wine Soaps; $28.00 for four bars Wine Soaps; $28.00 for four bars

Okay, who doesn’t want to bathe with wine (responsibly of course). If you have an apartment of your own and you have a bathtub, this is just such a perfect gift for you or the friend who loves wine! These wine soaps come in a perfect box (great for wrapping if you aren’t the best wrapper like me!) and they come in the scents Chardonnay, Cabernet, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Grigio. You have to pick these up from Uncommongoods!

 Agate Coasters; $64 for four coasters Agate Coasters; $64 for four coasters

Last, but not least in our gift guide we are going to talk about these adorable Agate Coasters from Uncommongoods. Coasters, if done correctly, can be such a fun way to protect your furniture from stains and decorate your apartment. I love agate because each piece is so unique. These coasters, while pricey, are just such a great addition to any fashionista’s apartment (plus I am sure you could use them as an Instagram prop too.)

Are you looking for a gift for your boyfriend or A male family member?

This post really touched on things I thought women would like more, because that’s my audience after all, but Uncommongoods even has a gift guide for men. If you are looking for a cool gift to get your dad, brother, or boyfriend you can get that here too!

Final Thoughts

Uncommongoods has so many adorable items on their website, it’s the perfect place to look for a gift for your friends or request as a gift for yourself (in fact the collection I just linked features a great list of gift ideas for women)! The collection of items on their website are so unique and they have such a great message that The Happy Arkansan can really get behind. I love supporting small businesses and giving back to the community and the earth as a whole. My mission is to leave this place in a better place than I found it in and I believe that Uncommongoods believes in that mission as well.

Thanks again to Uncommongoods for giving me the opportunity to explore their website and their mission. Whether you are looking for a birthday present or a Christmas gift, Uncommongoods should be your first stop!