Whilst it hasn’t been much of a Summer so far, now would be a good time to start deciding what you are going to do this Autumn and Winter to improve your home. One thing that will go down well is to look at your children bedrooms. They are often the forgotten rooms, the general places like the kitchen and lounge getting all the attention, but in the modern home, particularly when it comes to pre-teens and teenagers themselves they are well used!
There are a number of things to consider and the key to decorating a modern child’s or young persons bedroom is to be able to adapt your home and the bedroom easily to match their needs and stage in life. Here are some tips from our Show Home design team at Peter Ward Homes.
Tip One – Create Spaces
In todays homes bedroom space can be at a premium. Whether you live in a brand new home or an older one, quite often the decision making on whose bedroom is whose is down to age. But is that the right way to go about organising your home? For example a combined bedroom and play room for children between 7 and 12 is ideal, younger than that you need to keep an eye on them, older and they don’t need the play space. So think about how you allocate space in your home. Talk it through with the family, and don’t stick to a one room for life policy. When young adults go away don’t retain their room, reallocate rooms to maximise your space and give them to the younger siblings left behind.
Tip Two – Adequate and Matched Storage
Little people have little clothes so when it comes to storage they don’t need as much. Wrong! When they are younger they may not have much in the way of clothing but most children these days have grandparents who buy them a toy a week. Children’s bedrooms can be dangerous places if there is no place to put things away. Letting them put things away is a good way of teaching them the benefits of being tidy. And don’t just adapt adult storage. Think about reach heights and how strong young kids are. Wardrobes aren’t child user friendly but pull out storage boxes are. And think about bookshelves so they can find their favourite book of the moment. As they get older start to introduce some more grown up furniture. And a tip if you can’t afford new teen furniture, let them loose with stickers and paint – after all its their bedroom and they have to live (and sleep) in it!
Tip Three – Fit Black Out Curtains and Blinds
We all know how important sleep is to our young ones. And once up, the little treasures are great at waking up the whole house. So to ensure a good nights sleep for all, make certain that you can darken children’s bedrooms. A combination of blinds and black out curtains will keep out any street lighting or early morning sun. It will also help older children sleep during daylight hours! However curtains can be attractive as swinging points when playing pirates so, with younger children, fit a fun blind and make sure that the cord has a safety break on it or can be stowed away.
Tip Four – Accessorise those Characters or Themes
I’m sure they all loved Thomas the Tank Engine but just like the videos they are soon out of favour as the next trend, TV programme or film comes along. So rather than a mural on one wall or special Batman wallpaper, that you can’t paint over, try to decorate the walls in neutral and pastel mix colours. And use large posters or framed pictures that can easily be changed (and the frames re-used).
When it comes to the bed choose one with lock down wheels (so it can be easily moved around the room and make way for some play space) and theme it. Thinking in this way you will get the best out of the room and not have to redecorate each time the new craze arrives!
Tip Five – The Bed
We have already mentioned that a bed with wheels is a good idea so that it can be moved to make more play space. Beds pushed against walls are not necessarily a good idea, although available space can mean that it is the most practical solution. Just remember, the space where the bed is pushed against the wall can become unhygienic so make sure it is regularly cleaned.
Also think about drawer space under the bed to help out on the storage front. And as your child gets older consider a pull out from under their bed, so that sleepovers become a bit easier all round. Finally don’t shirk on a child’s mattress, just because they are light doesn’t mean posture and the shape a mattress forms is not important – it is.
With older children and young adults it is even more important to get them a proper bed and mattress, taking into account their size and the room within their bedroom. Don’t make the mistake of putting a king size bed in a room just big enough for a single – you will live to regret it! And letting them keep their bunk beds may seem quaint but it isn’t going to do their backs or temperament any good. Or their street cred!
Tip Six – Plan and Create Excitement
Whilst its not ideal for family members to spend all their lives in their bedroom, we all need places for “me” time. In the case of younger children play is an important element of their development so make their bedrooms a place they want to go and play in. Try and introduce “educational” elements but in a fun way. make a bedroom desirable and it will be appreciated and used.
As children get older the bedroom can be a place for study so make sure you encourage this, for example fit it out with a desk. And as young people go through puberty they need their own personal space, where they aren’t constantly interrupted by other family members.
Thinking about the way you allocate rooms is important, is one better suited than another to a particular child’s age? Most of all make your children’s bedroom an exciting place to be in and, no matter what their age, they will benefit in all sorts of ways.
Please note: All the photographs used in this article are from Peter Ward Homes showhomes and demonstrate how much attention we give to child and young adults bedroom space. For more ideas come and visit one of our show homes at our sites. Just visit our website for location information