Tips For Designing And Decorating A Kid's Room

Whether you are preparing a nursery for your newborn or keeping pace with your pre-teen's ever- changing taste, designing and decorating a child's room calls for long-term planning and versatility. Kids' rooms receive their fair share of abuse. Begin by setting aside any expectation that they should be showpieces. This is the place where children sleep, play, study, draw, paint and spend time with their friends.

And whether your kids are five or fifteen, they like to leave their things out in the open where they can get their hands on them easily. But there is a difference between a room where things are on display and easy to reach and one that's a disorganized mess.

If you are starting from scratch -designing and decorating your first nursery, for instance -pick the functional pieces you will need first. Plan the room around the bed or crib, storage for clothing and toys, a change table for infants, or a study space for school-age children.

Draw a floor plan on graph paper and plot out where you will place everything. You can use the graph to calculate your wall and floor square footage before you paint, wallpaper or lay a carpet.

Choose furniture that you can see functioning in multiple ways as the child grows older. For example, you might choose a wall unit that you can position horizontally so it's low and stable for a young child but which can later stand vertically as the child gets older.

When decorating, choose a decor that is easy to update. While there are some great washable wallpapers on the market today in many textures, themes and patterns for kids, remember that it's less expensive and far easier to replace a poster.

Finally, always consider your child's taste and opinion when decorating their room. Young children may have particular colours or cartoon personalities they like, while older children may want space for a special hobby or activity. Furnishing and decorating a kid's room takes imagination and creativity -both yours and your child's.

Younger children

Keep furniture, toys, books and clothes accessible to young children. This makes them feel more secure and capable. It also means you have to ensure they can reach the top drawers, shelves and other storage units. Try to include a low table with chairs for colouring, doing puzzles or even snacking. A toy bin on wheels is easy to move around and quick for cleanups.

School-age children

As kids get older they get more involved in collections, hobbies, sports and clothes. They need more places to display and store things. Modular storage systems which often include a built-in desk can be the best solution. Children's tastes change throughout their school years. The pink room with the white canopy bed your daughter loved when she was eight may be too childish and cute for your sophisticated twelve-year-old.

If you don't want to redecorate your child's room several times between kindergarten and high school, choose furniture that has staying power from the start. High-quality, solidly-built beds and dressers in neutral or natural colours that are long-lasting may cost more, but will pay you back in the long run.

Opt for more inexpensive accessories -bed linens, drapes, blinds, rugs -which can be changed more frequently to keep pace with your child's ever-changing interests.

Always thing safety

When decorating a room for toddlers or young children especially, always keep their safety in mind. Check the room for any hazards such as unprotected electrical outlets, mini-blind cords, dangling cords and drawstrings, small objects that can be swallowed and furniture that is unstable and could tip over.

Any furniture or other items that could tip over should be fastened securely to the wall. Install smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in or near your child's room. Always choose crib mattresses that are firm and fit the crib frame snugly and securely. And don't forget safety rails on your child's first bed.



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