After design school, I was really lucky to start out my design career working for an interior design firm in Phoenix, Arizona that specialized in model homes. The sheer volume and lightning fast pace of designing model homes back in the mid-2000's gave me a crash course in designing homes from top to bottom. From selecting flooring and designing tile shower surrounds to selecting furniture, art and accessories to installation, we learned how to do it all.....FAST.
One of the biggest and most satisfying challenges (for me anyway) in those days was designing the kid's rooms. I love to make these spaces fun, inspiring and whimsical without being too "theme-y" or contrived. Now that I have my own interior design business, I still employ that same philosophy of making the room fun for the kid while being a bit more sophisticated and palatable for the adults.
Often, to make the design process simpler, it's tempting to rely on one central idea or theme based on something your child likes and run with it. Junior loves trains so let's do train wallpaper and train bedding and a pillow shaped like a train and train art and train lamps and train track curtains. Trains! Trains! Trains! Sure, that's great for now because Junior eats, sleeps and breathes trains but what happens in a year when he's outgrown trains and he hates his room?
Luckily there is a way to personalize a room for your child's personality and interests in a classic way while still allowing room for when those interests inevitably change. Here are my tips for designing kid's rooms that you and your child will love.
Tip 1: Keep the Color Scheme Fun & Sophisticated
My client's daughter loves all things pink but her mom wisely asked that we give her the pink she so loved but in a way that wasn't over the top. It's easy for pink to overpower so in this darling bedroom I combined it with shades of minty green and grounded the pastels with navy to keep it from feeling too sweet.
Tip 2: Keep the Major Elements Timeless & Add Whimsy in Creative Ways
My client's daughter was 6 years old at the time we designed her bedroom so while I wanted it to have a timeless quality, I also wanted it to feel fun and whimsical for her now. So I kept the headboard a solid navy, gave her a "big girl" lucite desk and a sophisticated chest for nightstands. These pieces can grow with her through the next several years as her interests and tastes change. I gave her the pink she craved in smaller doses such as the bedding, decorative pillows and the cutest little footstool I think I've ever seen. The beach umbrella drapery unifies our color scheme while adding a dose of playfulness.
Tip 3: Use Artwork to Reflect Your Child's Personality
Art is so personal and for kid's rooms I love to find fun, colorful art that speaks to my little client's interests and personalities. Etsy is a really great resource for affordable children's art and I use it all the time for my young clients. Recently I designed a room for a sweet little boy who is really into insects. So I created a gallery wall above his dresser (which I had painted a beautiful bright, grassy green) and hung prints of beetles, bugs and fireflies. I gave him all the creepy-crawlies he loves now and the ability for a quick, inexpensive update down the road as his interests change.
There you have it! My Top 3 Tips for designing fun, timeless kid's rooms that your child and you will love. I hope these tips help you create inspiring and whimsical spaces for you and your little ones to enjoy for years to come!
If you'd like help creating a beautiful, vibrant home that you absolutely love, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org I'd love to chat!