Cure for the Common Poster: Affordable Dorm Art That Doesn’t Suck

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A new semester has begun for college kids throughout the States, and now that they’ve settled into new living quarters, bought loads of clunky textbooks, and have their routines down, it’s time to talk wall decor! If you’re as tired as we are of bland walls and once-classic, now-tired posters and art prints, then fear not, dear reader! You can decorate your digs — whether it’s a dorm room or a new apartment — with this killer collection of posters that replace old standbys with fun, original, and inspiring pieces. So say goodbye to Einstein, sayonara to Animal House, and au revoir to Keep Calm and Carry On and prepare to fall in love with a brand-new collection of wall decor, after the jump.

Instead of a Marylin Monroe poster…

Set your sights on Sylvia Plath ($21 at Etsy). The tragic poet and novelist is a blonde bombshell for those of us who are of the literary-lovin’ mindset. Like Ms. Monroe, the Bell Jar author too had her well-documented personal struggles, which led to an untimely demise. A tragic icon, and with an amazing body of work that backs her fandom, to boot!

Instead of Starry Night…

Get into grayscale surrealist art ($55 at Etsy). No one is implying that Vincent Van Gogh’s swirly, celestial masterpiece can be replaced — it’s a classic and will forever have a special place in people’s hearts. But college is time to explore, so why not leave this number to the art history books and tack up an innovative, Magritte-channeling piece?

Instead of Keep Calm and Carry On

Why not pick another piece of endorphin-releasing typography to glare at when you’re stressed? While the Keep Calm message in all its endless variations was sweet at first, this horse is now dead, and there’s a bunch of new, lovely messages begging to be hung on your wall. We adore this darling, adventure-seeking poster ($25 at Etsy).

Instead of Albert Einstein…

Give Edgar Allan Poe a shot. (He’s out of stock at the moment, but we assume he’ll be back soon.) Whether you’re an English major or you simply have a thing for bizarre literature and poetry, there’s no need to have the physics man on your wall, no matter how “classic” his poster is. Plus, if it’s just the aesthetic that you’re after, our mysterious poet and Einstein kind of have a similar look, no?

Instead of book cover posters…

Try re-imagined novel art ($16 at Etsy). Book covers can be found anywhere — on your shelf, at the store, online — but how often can you witness one artist influencing another? Creatively interpreted prints that evoke the words of an author won’t merely put a smile on your face as they conjure up special passages of your favorite book; they’ll also inspire you!

Instead of Animal House…

Try a Wes Anderson-themed print ($15 at Society6). His films are perfect for the college years, with their whimsical undertones and unique voice, providing a wonderful alternative to the frat-boy flicks generally associated with college.

Instead of just covering your wall in personal photos…

How about an illustration that catalogs retro Polaroids ($22 at Etsy)? Not only will the vintage cameras give you photographer dreams, but they’ll also liven up your space with a modern feel.

Instead of a plain ol’ animal portrait…

Dig into the world of cut paper art with a Fantastic Mr. Fox-inspired piece $20 at (Etsy). It’s still got the sweetness of cutesy animal photos, but the multicolored-paper design adds an innovative and crafty feel.