Pink can be Sophisticated

girl's_bedroom_montageFor most of us, when we hear that a girl’s bedroom has pink in the color scheme, it sounds cute and pretty, but not very sophisticated. But don’t limit your thinking. With the right accents and style, pink will surprise you. Let’s take a look at how this girl’s bedroom makes that happen.

The right accent colors: One quick and powerful way to add sophistication to any room is by throwing black into the mix. Used judiciously, black makes other colors pop and grounds the space. By mixing a light ballet-pink and black together, the final feel is daring and interesting, and definitely more than cute.

Using metallics: The bold gold on the bedding and poster make everything in the room pop. This is a risky choice and you can’t have a sophisticated look without taking some risks.

Mature fabric choices: It’s easy to go with a juvenile fabric when working with pink, but these fabrics pull you away from that. Adult patterns and moods in the fabric help make this room more grown-up.

Unusual artwork: The Wizard of Oz theme on the poster over the bed says it’s a children’s room, but the retro illustration combined with images from the book itself in the background make this poster worth more than a glance. Really, this piece feels like the inspiration for the entire room.

Eclectic furniture choices: The vanity has an old-fashioned style but the white paint makes it feel up to date. The small chest gets its personality with the different designs on each drawer, which are echoed in the canvas above. Once again a risky mix-and-match mood adds a chic feeling to the space.

Altogether, this room works for a young girl, yet opens up a glimpse of what kind of grown up she will eventually become. Visit Oasis at Queen Creek for a closer look.

Cozy Play Space

Bedroom20DSC_0256Little ones love little spaces, places where they can tuck themselves in and feel safe, a bit hidden, and above all, in proportion to the world around them. For a child everything is so big and mostly out of reach. A cozy space just big enough for one or maybe two children makes everything better.

This children’s room makes a point of providing that hiding place, perfect for retreat when the world seems more than a bit overwhelming. The little tent, in a circus theme to fit the room’s décor, creates the opportunity for imagination, storytelling and even a bit of adventure. Please pay attention to the fierce tiger playmate in the tent waiting for a chance to pounce.

When planning a small child’s room, be sure to make room for a little nook, hidden corner or just a chance to feel the right size for once instead of so very small. Choose a pint-sized table and chair set, an easy chair made child-size, a canopy surrounding the bed or even a desk or dressing table with a drape concealing a small toddler-sized place.

As your child gets older, old enough to reach the sink for his or her own drink of water, old enough to use the microwave instead of having to ask someone else for help, the need for a cozy space will fade. The desk will become just a desk, the tent will go into the attic or be given away, and the world won’t feel quite so overwhelming. But until then, be sure to make a small space for your small one.

Decorating a Boy’s Room for Fun & Flexibility

Fire Bedroom DSC_0287

Fulton Homes Daylight Model

It’s fun to decorate a child’s room, and the photo to the left shows a delightful way to make a boy’s room special while allowing easy opportunities for changes as this child grows up. Take a look at the essential furniture. The headboard and lamps will work with almost any design.

One fun choice in this room comes from selecting shipping containers in place of standard nightstand/chests of drawers. While these will appeal to a small boy, they have the potential to be interesting elements as he grows into his teens. When choosing furniture for a child’s room, don’t be afraid to have fun, but think of the future for more substantial pieces.

The fireman theme carries through with inexpensive pieces such as bedspread, pillows and various toy fire trucks. By using stick-on and peel-off decorations on the walls rather than wallpaper, making a change to reflect the boy’s changing tastes is easy. These are available online and at various home stores in a good selection of themes. Notice that the sophisticated paint color allows transitions without repainting.

Car Bedroom DSC_0288The photo to the right provides a design choice for an older child. The metal signs and old-fashioned posters reflect specific interests while still demonstrating a sense of style.

The strong green focal wall gives extra oomph to the room and pulls in the stripes on the bedspread and pillows.

Both rooms would work well with either wood floors or a neutral carpet choice. It’s also smart to look for neutral window coverings such as wood blinds to keep the space flexible.

By taking this approach to a child’s room, you create the opportunity for the design to change frequently to reflect his or her changing interests without creating a need for a great deal of effort and expense.

Help your Child Redecorate – Room for Growth

8829658_SAs you and your child plan and redecorate his or her room, it’s up to you as a parent to think about the future. Those dinosaurs or princesses that seem so appealing now will feel too juvenile in just a few years. Color favorites may also change or head to more subtle hues. Here are a few things to include in your plans to help the room redo hold up as your child gets older.

Paint is easy: Colors can be changed by simply repainting one or more walls. Try to keep the ceiling – which is harder to paint – a neutral tone. Look for temporary additions such as wall stickers or wallpaper borders rather than painted murals or wallpaper.

Linen options: Combine solid bed linens with a few theme items to make a room seem focused on the interests of your child without investing a great deal of money on a particular story or character. It’s easier to give away or recover a few throw pillows or shams than replace a full set of sheets and bedspread once your child has lost interest in the merchandise from a current children’s film or TV series.

Function: Your child may be too young for much or any homework at the moment, but it’s wise to plan for bookshelves and a desk or table in the future. Modular furniture makes it easier to transition over time.

Show and tell: Include a bulletin board, shelves or other space for your child to display items of current interest or any awards and recognition. It’s easy to change the contents of these items as your child matures.

Requirements: You may want to set up expectations when you initiate the redecorating process, such as keeping the room tidy. That way the redecorated room makes life easier for you as well as more fun for your child!

Help your Child Redecorate -Color and Pattern

12105159_S This stage is the most exciting part of redecorating a child’s room – or any room for that matter. There are a few simple ways to help your child define the colors and look of a bedroom without taking over the process. Here are some ideas.

Picking colors: One easy way to determine a good main color for your child’s bedroom is to focus on a favorite color or colors. Another option is to consider the colors of your child’s favorite clothes. Don’t discourage bright tones – a child’s room can handle more vivid colors than you may want in the rest of the house. This is a great time to encourage experimentation and creativity. Colors can also be mixed – take a look at the broad variety of choices in the room above!

Choosing patterns: Fabric, rugs, stencils and wallpaper can all add pattern to a child’s space. In the room above, a simple mural provides the largest element of pattern. You might want to visit a fabric store or look at bed sheets and coverlets to see what appeals to your child. Be sure to consider stripes, checks, ginghams, polka dots, and other standard pattern styles.

6249365_SApplying color and pattern: Paint is the easiest way to establish color in a room, and the easiest to change later as your child’s taste changes. This can include walls and furniture. Wallpaper can also be applied to one wall or a piece of furniture to add pattern. Just be sure to prime the surface first so you will be able to strip the paper off later. Curtains, bed linens and rugs also provide methods for introducing color and pattern.

Working with existing choices: You can introduce colors that don’t seem to work with the current room options and still be successful. Take a look at the girl’s room to the right. The pastel pink and blue scheme wouldn’t be expected to connect with the light camel carpeting, but it does. As long as options such as flooring don’t actively clash, they will retreat to the background once the overall look of the room is established. An area rug or two also keeps the focus on the décor rather than the carpet.

So encourage your child to be daring – a child’s room should be fun, colorful, happy and expressive, and as a parent you have the chance to encourage those abilities in your children with their bedrooms and their lives.

Help your Child Redecorate – Function and Storage

7857385_SAs you and your child plan a room redo, be sure to factor in storage needs and functional demands.

Does your child do homework in his or her bedroom? Plan on a desk along with space for books and homework projects. How about overnight guests? Consider twin beds or a trundle. Closet organizers can also make space more efficient.

The box-style approach shown in the photo to the left provides a great storage solution for a less organized child. Labels can define each space, and these boxes work well for books and other items.

426141_SIf space is limited and functional and storage needs extensive, consider using vertical space. Take a look at the photo to the right. The raised bed provides extra play space and a storage shelf underneath, and the three-foot raised floor in part of the room holds storage containers including one box-style shelving unit, with lots of room underneath for extra storage or a special kid hideaway.

A simple desk and chair match the style and colors in the room while working well as a homework center. There is plenty of room under the bed’s platform for extra shelves or hooks for clothes. Colors and pattern integrate all the storage and functional pieces to make the room feel creative and exciting.

These options may or may not work for your child. But no matter what, it’s important to determine what storage and functional capabilities are needed when planning the renovation. Look for extra space under the bed or on the walls. And think outside the box to make the space inviting as well as productive.


Help your Child Redecorate

6607525_SAs your children grow, it’s up to you as a parent to give them opportunities to make decisions. One great way to expand the thinking of a child is to involve them in redecorating their bedroom. You can include budgeting, planning, prioritizing, space planning and combining function with style. Here are a few steps to get you started.

Set a budget: How much money is available for the remodel? Before you and your child make a plan, it’s important to determine the amount that can be spent.

Make a plan: Will you be buying furniture? What about new window treatments? Balancing the budget against the desired changes can help your child determine what goals are most important.

There may also be problem-solving opportunities. For example, if your child would like to replace flooring but the budget won’t cover it, how about an area rug instead? Furniture could be repainted rather than replaced. Using graph paper, draw the furniture layout for the room. Using a tape measure and laying out a room is a great way to show your child how math can have real-world value.

Negotiate: This process also provides an opportunity to negotiate with your child. Would you be willing to up the budget if the child gave up presents for an upcoming birthday? Can he or she grab the desk from the basement to make a homework station in his or her room?

Set a schedule: When you’re redecorating, what needs to be done first? With your child, set up a reasonable schedule for selecting and installing the new look. If you have more than one child, you may want to stagger the remodels so that you are not overwhelmed.

Make it fun: Yes, this is a learning experience, but it’s also a real treat. Look for ways to make the process enjoyable rather than stressful. Mistakes will probably happen, but that’s part of making changes in your personal space.