When you’re designing a room for your child, the options can seem endless—not to mention the challenges. One of the issues: keeping your child’s belongings in order while striking the right aesthetic. As parents and design editors, we’ve experienced this dilemma firsthand. With that in mind, we break down the top considerations when designing your child’s room.
Whether you’re dealing with a small closet or a walk-in, use the space efficiently by adding shelves, an extra pole for hanging clothes, and storage baskets or bins. Have a place for everything (with labels) to make it easy for your child to find things when he needs them and put them away when he doesn’t. This creates a sense of independence and accomplishment when he keeps his room neat and tidy.
Your kids have a lot of stuff, and you need a lot of places to put that stuff to keep it organized. Baskets and bins are your friends, and there are tons of options to choose from. They can also be moved from one room to another if you choose a neutral or a crisp white. Some of our favorite places to shop include www.containerstore.com, www.landofnod.com, www.serenaandlily.com, and www.potterybarnkids.com.
Toy Barrel available at The Container Store, White Plains (914) 946-4767; www.containerstore.com, $25
Got more kids than you have space? Bunk beds are perfect for a bedroom shared by more than one child—and even better for sleepovers.
Fillmore Twin-Over-Twin Bunk available at www.potterybarnkids.com, $1,499
As your child grows, her room color will change and you will switch out her bedding and accessories, but you want investment pieces to outlast the trends. Doing wall-to-wall carpeting? Consider wool sisal. Buying a bookcase or wall unit? Go with white, cream, or natural wood.
Find ways to incorporate things about your child into the room: her initials, a favorite sport or activity, photos (of her or that she has taken), awards, and more. Consider allocating one area of the room for the display of trophies, trains, dolls, or whatever else she is into. The key to incorporating personal components is not to have them dominate the space, but rather have them set the tone and reflect your child’s interests.
Belden Bedroom Set available at www.potterybarnkids.com, $1,345-$2,695
This creates a cohesive and unified design, even after you introduce accent colors. Having an overall palette for the room lays the foundation for the space.
Color Frame Duvet Cover & Shams available at www.serenaandlily.com $38-$178
Whether it’s an oversized map of the world covering one wall, a ladder for climbing into bed at night, or a chalkboard, encourage your child to have fun and interact with her room.
Create storage and organization systems. Baskets, wall units, shelving, and door hooks are great for segmenting and organizing items. Designate areas for shelving. Use baskets in closets as well as under desks and beds. And pare down belongings to what is actually being used. This reduces what is in the space and the components needed to house it.
Tuscan Gabrielle System available at www.potterybarnkids.com, $19-$69
Bulletin boards are an ever-changing, interactive way to display your child’s art, mementos, notes, doodles, and photos. You can have one large board spanning a wall or several smaller ones grouped together. Or you could go big and cover a whole wall with cork.
Corkboard Map available at www.anthropologie.com, $48
Whether you cover an entire wall or just a small space, chalkboard paint gives him the opportunity to post his schedule and reminders, draw, create, and play. There are many paint options on the market, so it’s an easy DIY.
Elementary Table available at www.landofnod.com, $299
Use different kinds of lighting in different parts of the room. This may include an overhead light, a desk lamp, and a bedside light.
Wiry Pendant, available at www.landofnod.com, $49
Twin beds are fun for kiddie sleepovers; later on they are nice in a guest room. A desk or dresser can be used as a changing station for a newborn, then for its intended purpose later. A double-size platform bed with built-in drawers keeps toys in order during childhood and stores clothes in her teenage years—and it’s big enough for her to sleep in at any stage.
Fillmore Bedroom Set available at www.potterybarnkids.com, $1,025-$2,195
Homework is a struggle for many kids (and parents), so make sure your child has a comfortable place to study. And when he needs some creative downtime, a good desk or table gives him a place to nurture that instinct.
Compartment Department Play Table available at www.landofnod.com, $449
Make him feel like he is part of the design. Before starting, try to look at the room through his eyes and ask what he wants. If he is little, get down on his level to see how he experiences the space.
A bed is a place to sleep, not hang out, so as your child gets older, include beanbags, chairs, poufs, floor pillows, or benches into her space. Create a designated lounge area in the room; it doesn’t need to take up a lot of space. This is important for when she’s reading or just surfing the Internet, or when her friends come over.
Newport Lounger available at www.serenaandlily.com, $228