A space of their own
Designing a child’s room requires careful, detailed planning as this is one of the busiest and most multifunctional rooms in the house where children play, sleep, study, host their friends and store their belongings.
The numerous toys in a toddler's room make this task even more challenging. As children grow, their needs have to be considered like adding a study table and a bigger bed.
By carefully planning the room layout and the colour palette, it is possible to create a simple, multifunctional room that your child will enjoy for years to come.
Planning & Organization
It is important to think ahead when planning the room. It should meet the child’s immediate and long-term needs. A baby’s room will become a toddler’s room, then a school-goer’s, right up to one fit a teenager. At all of these stages, listen to your child and support their needs, their dreams and the child’s own taste.
Organize the room so that it is easy to keep tidy and clean. Use materials that are easy to maintain and washable. By creating zones for different activities, tidying up will be easier for all. Most children need the basics of bed, wardrobe, storage unit, desk/table and chair, but if arranged creatively, your child may have a sleep-zone, drawing zone, reading zone etc and will relish time in this homely space.
Layout & Storage
Avoid placing a large piece of furniture like a wardrobe or a desk near the entrance as this will block the room and make it appear smaller.
The bed and the desk should have a direct view of the room's door. It is better if the bed is placed adjacent to the door.
In case two children are sharing a room, define and create a separate corner for each child. If there is a bunk bed, arrange it in such a way so that each child has his own, designated area to store and access his toys, books and things. You could even paint the upper half and the lower half of the wall in different shades. Mount a wall unit for books high up next to the upper bed or place a curtain in front of the lower bed to offer each child his own space and privacy.
For the same reason L-shaped bunk beds are preferable.
Look for storage solutions that suit your child’s lifestyle and needs. Multi-functional units and storage bins and special containers for toys, games, books, puzzles etc. Beds with pullout drawers are useful to store bed linen and look for space-saving beds with extra pullout beds for your kid’s sleepovers.
When looking for furniture, consider the quality and durability of the pieces you want to buy. Check that the furniture has safety features including child-safe fixtures, hidden joints and curved edges and corners. If painted, only non-toxic paints should have been used.
Look for modular designs that offer flexibility and that allow for modification such as changing the colour and design of the knobs, drawers or doors to complement your child’s tastes as they grow. Or purchase multifunctional pieces of furniture like a baby's changing table with drawers that can later be used to store and shelve toys.
Background Colours and Materials
Consult your child regarding colour or if in doubt use colour psychology to decide on the right colours that suit your child’s temperament. Feng Shui for your child’s room is popular today. Calming colours such as soft earth tones are good for active children, equally bright orange help a shy child.
The basic wall shades should be a background colour that will not compete with the interiors. It is safer to use pastel shades or paint one vibrant shade on one of the walls, but avoid painting large areas in red orange or yellow shades.
While choosing a shade, try to strike a balance with cold and warm colours. For example a blue-green wall will strike the right balance with a wooden floor or one wall painted in shade of pink will be in balance and contrast well with white or purple furniture.
In the same way, balancing materials is essential to give the room harmony. Hard materials such as marble floor can be balanced with soft furnishings, a curtain and a rug. A metal bed will work well on a wooden floor.
A theme is not a must for your child’s room as many items and accessories will be added to the room over time, eventually creating a mishmash of items that will not match the original theme. It is more important to balance the shade of the walls.
If your child really likes a special character or motif, embellish and dress the room in a way so that is easy to change and remove when your child outgrows it. Instead of covering the walls with the theme character, consider using a border on plain-coloured walls. This is a more elegant and minimal way of adding your child’s current favorite character/motif.
You could also print a picture of the character and frame it. Later on the picture can be changed and updated to the new favorite motif/character.
Lamps, rugs and colourful soft furnishings are a good way to add a theme or character to the room and can update a room instantly and economically.
Accessories and Toys
It is important to give the child a corner for his/her own creativity. Hang up school artwork, mount a white or chalkboard for drawing and a pin-up boards for those treasured pictures. Remember to change the child's own baby pictures with updated ones as the child grows.
Remove any broken toys from the room, bits and pieces of an old game unless your child is highly attached to this item.
Think twice before putting a TV or a computer in your child’s room. Arrange a family corner where you can sit together and watch TV and place a computer somewhere you can keep your eye on your child.
Finally, the Vanilla Team wants to wish you and your child lots of enjoyment in the experience of planning and decorating your child’s room