So you’ve moved into that new house or have cleared everything out to re-decorate and re-plan and are stood in what will be your child’s bedroom. Looking at four bare walls it can be hard to imagine just what you want from the room and how to make the most of the space.
At times like this we wish we could call in Linda Barker or Laurence Llewelyn Bowen who could create a stunning room in even the smallest of spaces! But you don’t need an interior designer to help create that perfect room for your child, a little imagination and a few handy hints will just have to do instead!
Planning Children’s Rooms
Note down all the room measurements and make a small plan on a piece of paper on your pc. There are plenty of free room planner downloads that will help you to scale and model your room, but do double check before downloading anything onto your pc. It’s much easier to plan a room on paper than it is when you are stood in it. You can experiment with colours and furniture to discover what looks great and what would be a mistake.
Making a Small Room Look Bigger
When I was a child I had, literally, a cupboard as a room! If only my mother had taken heed of these few tips it might not have felt quite so much like the broom-cupboard!
- Your child may want their room in black, deep purple or navy but these colours are disastrous in small spaces. Stick instead to light hues and pastel colours to open up the room. Cool blue instead of navy, lilac instead of purple and just no black — ever!
- A large mirror on one wall will also give the feeling of depth and will reflect the light from the room. Try to flood the room with as much light as possible, so get rid of heavy curtains and install lots of light options.
- Choose large pieces of furniture rather than lots of small items that will make a room look cluttered.
- Children’s storage solutions for small rooms come in many shapes and sizes and will often make clever use of any available space.
Decorating Your Child’s Room
You may think that decorating a room with dinosaurs or Barbie is a great idea but be aware that the decor will only last until they grow out of it, which will be a couple of years at best. So unless you want to keep re-decorating the room stick with a colour scheme that will last longer and if they insist on character decorations, get some wall stickers that can be easily removed once they’ve grown out of them.
Children are messy creatures so you need to consider that when planning the room decor. Choose carpets that are stain resistant and if painting a room, make sure that the paint is waterproof so that you can wipe off stains without wiping off half the paint!
When arranging children’s furniture, go back to your original plan and make a note of where the windows are, the electrical sockets and whether the door opens inwards or outwards. All of these are important considerations, for instance a desk will need to be positioned near an electrical socket for a lamp or laptop.
- Consider children’s bunk beds for small rooms as many bunks have not only a guest bed but cleverly incorporate drawers and a desk too!
- If you have a built-in cupboard, add shelves not just at the top but at the bottom of the cupboard for storing shoes, bags, games etc.
- Wooden furniture is great as this can be painted, stripped and varnished many times to create a whole new look for their room without the need for re-decoration.
Just remember that your child will do a lot of growing up in their room and as their tastes change, so will the room. But if you keep the base of the room as neutral as you can, then any changes made need only be aesthetic and can be easily incorporated. Above all, get your child involved in the design of their own room and you never know, if they’ve had a hand in decorating it they make want to keep it tidy and clean — we live in hope!