1. playfully quaint or fanciful, especially in an appealing and amusing way.
Our homes are where we display our most prized trinkets and pieces. They become somewhat of a catalogue of who you are as a person. Kids spend everyday growing, playing and using their imaginations, and as designers it’s our job to encourage the direction and which-way they want to head in; be it books, fashion or sports. Of course, we can’t just go right ahead and steal the stage from Woody, BB8 or Elsa and her castle, but once these die-hard stages settle down a bit, what’s left your little ones bedroom? Their personalities!
So grab your pink hard hats, close your eyes and wave your magic wand while chanting “…there’s no place like home…” and we’ll be on our way to styling a totally super cool #outthegate kids bedroom.
Function of the space
Kids are creative. When planning your kids bedroom, think about how the space could be divided up into functional areas; the sleeping zone, a play area, a study or desk, where is storage? Using rugs can be a great way to visually divide a space and ‘draw lines in the sand’.
Rug rule: Ideally all the furniture legs are ontop of the rug, however the font legs will suffice. If you’re unsure always go bigger, but depending on your child I’d say don’t always go more expensive as I’ve seen how fast a felt-tip pen can bleed…
2. Colouring in the white
Most kids love colour, usually it’s just one or two. Gently sway them out of their comfort zones and instead of letting them choose to paint their room the classic blue or pink (and defaulting yourself to a white or neutral), try colour blocking which adds layers a room - or two tones on the walls. It looks tricky, but all you need is masking tape and a good playlist and voila, instant artwork! You can always justify a neutral wall colour or wallpaper that (in 18 years) can easily transition into a study or office space - OR you can say “Right, my child will be in this room for a minimum of 5-10 years” and just GO with a fun decal or wallpaper. Your child will remember it always and let’s be honest - it’s not THAT hard to paint a wall! Or ceiling for that matter - another surface for creative juices yet typically pushed out of the limelight and easily forgotten.
Wall Tip: You can always paint over wallpaper if it’s not textured or heavily patterned.
Stacy Says: Even though I think it’s better to push the boundaries now, when I was a little girl my entire room was blue floor to ceiling, bed, curtains, lampshades - you name it. And I’ll always be grateful my parents let me have it exactly how I wanted it - granted most of which was a long-time of birthday/Christmas gifts and my own pocket money… and looking back it was a disaster. Balance.
3. The bed
This is my favourite part. How many cushions you have and what duvet cover you use has never been such a fun subject, I partly want to pop a few suckers out just to have a kids bed to dress. Firstly, go for cotton, it’s non-flammable, breathable and washes off ice-cream easily - in my experience.
Are you dressing a single bed? If so, I’d recommend 1x sleeping pillow, 1x euro pillow and 1x cushion. If you have a double bed, double it. Always go one size up for duvets; single bed = king single duvet, king single bed = double size duvet, etc. It always hangs beautifully over the edge of the bed ensuring the mattress isn’t seen. When it comes to choosing prints/colours, limit your palette to 3x colours and 1x print (not to be confused with a texture, like a waffle). This way you can have a lot of interest in your bed but not overwhelm the space with clashing prints - especially with kids merch because there are just ENDLESS options!
Bed styling tip: If your bedspread comes with a matching pillowcase, style it at the back so the same fabric is never on top of one another - it breaks up the bed whilst keeping a consistent look.
This one’s interesting (maybe for someone without kids who never thought about it or maybe for everyone). Everything has to be at a different height for kids to become independent in their surroundings, clothes hooks are lower, blackboards are almost on the floor, bookshelves are smaller, beds, side tables - kids are SMALL! Make sure your storage for clothes and toys are within easy reach - otherwise good luck when you next ask them to tidy up after themselves…!
Lastly, once you’ve calculated and planned every big-ticket item, bought all the necessities and done the hardyards of labour for your precious little treasure, it’s time to throw out the rule book! Embrace the fairy lights, the buntings, the teepees and mosquito nets, weave in trinkets and artworks that pack a punch, make a statement but are true to your childs hobbies. A good example from the kids bedroom we did was basing it off Adam and my own passions as children; soft animal toys (me) and LEGO (Adam). We were lucky enough to be working with Papier HQ who helped us design this LEGO Artwork (now completely sold out and retired) and we simply bought LEGO off Trade Me and designed from there. Same goes for the notorious swan above the bed, you don’t always need a sophisticated or expensive piece of art. Just have fun with it!
Style tip: When weaving in those little extras, don’t just go to Kmart and add meaningful $2 items just because you need to fill space. These meaningless items will be in the trash in less than six months time, and is what I like to call ‘hoarding’. Make things with your kids, buy them books, put plants on shelves, help them organise their crafts and display them.
Stacy says: I can tell you from experience, if they’re anything like Adam is with LEGO, they’ll have plenty of hobbies you can fill a space or shelf with and it’s so much more special starting with nothing and slowly adding to a space than buying a lot of things that mean nothing (and will definitely eventually go in the trash!!)
I hope this was insightful in some way shape or form, any questions please ask away!