styler Photo: madeforu.target.com

‘Boom! Shape the room,’ declares a brightly hued banner on Target’s Made For U College Styler page. While this reference to DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince is likely to go right over the heads of Gen Z, the company’s new design tool appeals directly to the tech-savvy, social media-minded cohort. The program accesses college-bound students’ Facebook and Instagram posts to gather information that will reveal their dorm decorating personality.

A short quiz refines the search results, asking about topics such as the state of your desk, breakfast habits and personal interests (Road trips! Photography! Clubbing!). The College Styler then creates a room design using Target’s catalog of over 400 decor items. You can ‘heart’ products and add them to your ‘faves,’ because brands love embracing slang words. From there, you can share your results with your future roommate(s) to determine if you are “style besties” or “design frenemies.”

The tool showcases Target’s new line of back-to-college essentials, developed through Umbra’s design student collaboration, which utilized crowdsourced up-voting to select the best prototypes. The dorm decor business is now worth an estimated $50 billion a year, with students spending an average of $907 on “necessities.” furniture Photo: madeforu.target.com

To mourn the simpler days of dorm design, we asked BuzzBuzzHome employees how they spruced up their spaces.

“For a short time, my room was furnished with some couches that I stole….errrr……borrowed from the common area (until a nosy RA ordered me to put them back). Good times.” – Ryan McGovern, Data Operations Manager

“I lived with a dead basil plant, because no light EVER came through my windows. RIP.” – Meghan Zabinsky, Digital Account Coordinator at 88 Creative

“We kept every single liquor bottle and beer bottle we ever drank and decorated the house with that. We also had all of the typical dude posters that we bought at the poster sale.” – Jason Giles, Digital Strategist at 88 Creative

“Jason and I had the same decorator. I remember one of the posters we picked up at the UBC sale depicted the final scene in Scarface in which Al Pacino is firing off the machine gun in the mansion. Classic.” – Michael Aynsley, News Reporter

“I furnished my half of the dorm room entirely in red and orange Ikea decor, including a scratchy bedspread and $9 carpet. Due to the lack of fresh air/circulation, everything was covered in an extremely attractive layer of dust, which I think really accented the multiple boxes of Easy Mac on my desk. – Erin Bury, Managing Director at 88 Creative

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