Children deserve a little space to call their own, something light and fun to reflect their childhood – but something that’s also as practical as possible for you, the parent. There are a few things you can do to make a kid-friendly yet stylish space in your own home.
Yes, modern colour schemes may lean towards muted neutrals and earthy tones, but kids crave the type of brightness that can only come from bold colours in solid tones. When welcoming a baby into your home, soft pastels and gentle whites are a good choice – yellows, duck-egg blues, and pink are popular choices and tend to coordinate well with a wide variety of furniture and accessories aimed at infants. As they grow, however, kids might favour bright, more “serious” tones. And don’t just keep it to a single colour per room – different coloured walls in the kids’ rooms will keep things interesting. If you’re feeling particularly bold, painting one wall entirely in chalkboard paint would mean your children can draw on the walls and let you keep your sanity.
Kids fall, tumble and, well, just plain love playing on the floor. It mightn’t seem like that much of a big deal, but a soft floor covering from a carpet specialist like Stainmaster Carpet really will keep the kids happy. Don’t worry so much about potential mess or wear; tough nylon carpet will resist both stains and the pitter-patter of tiny feet. As a bonus, carpet will insulate the room and help keep the noise of play down. And it makes sleepovers much more comfortable for your children’s guests when they’re in a sleeping bag on a carpeted floor instead of cold, hard floorboards.
There’s only one stage in a person’s life (sadly) when it’s appropriate to have a pirate ship bed: childhood. Pick fun, bright colours for the kids’ furniture; remember that colour coordination isn’t a big deal when you’re under ten, so let your kids pick out whichever colours they like – within reason! Bunk beds are a perennial favourite; the idea of being up high is appealing, but remember the top bunk is also a constant source of conflict between siblings! A child’s own desk can make them feel like a grown-up. A private bookcase in their room is a great way to encourage reading – give your kids a chance to fill it out with their own books. Creative storage crates can come in the form of pirate chests or old school lockers, and it can help to have lots of smaller storage spaces in a kid’s room rather than one single large one, as kids love squirreling stuff away in different hiding places. And, finally, give them an old two-seater couch as somewhere to sit other than their bed or their desk.
4. Let Them Contribute to the Rest of the House
All the previous tips have been for dedicated children’s spaces, but it’s very, very important to make your kids feel welcome and valid throughout the house. Let them contribute – in some small ways – to the décor of the rest of the house. And this goes beyond the most sacred space for your children’s artwork (the fridge door). It might be choosing a new pattern of crockery for the kitchen or selecting new soft furnishings for the living room. Integrate some of their craft creations into the spaces beyond their room to give them a sense of place and contribution to the household – it’s their house too, not just somewhere that contains their room.
If there’s one theme running through all these tips, it’s fun, fun, fun… Fun should be the only thing serious about childhood and, well, it can be a great excuse to break up the more formal, grown-up interior design. Hey, there’s nothing wrong with living vicariously through your kids – as long as they love it too!