Transforming Children’s Bedrooms: No Longer Just a Sleeping SpaceSep 07, 2021 05:00PM ● By ANN MARIE O’PHELAN
Bedrooms are no longer just a place to rest one’s head. More than ever, they are becoming multipurpose rooms—places to study, relax and play. This is reflected in the decorating trends making their way into children’s bedrooms.
Dedicated study spaces, charging stations and activity tables have gone from kitchen tables into children’s bedrooms. Monica Monroe of Fort Myers, the parent of two elementary-school-aged children, couldn’t agree more. “Their homework pile was spilling onto the kitchen table and into the living room. It was not only messy, it was hard to stay organized,” says Monroe. To help solve the clutter crisis, she crafted small spaces in her kids’ bedrooms with desks, chairs, lamps and charging stations for their electronic devices.
Because changes to a bedroom are not always possible, some parents opt for a dedicated study area in another part of the house. This type of space helps parents and children stay better organized and keep the clutter down. Clive Daniel Home interior designer Núbia Rosa is creating a specific hangout/study area for a client that will be child-oriented with an emphasis on the teenage years to come, so the space is not outgrown too soon.
Longer-term plans for bedroom designs are something many parents think about to save money. One project in Kalea Bay in Naples, by the Clive Daniel design duo of Charlie Hansen and Rebekah Errett-Pikosky, incorporates bright coordinating colors, furniture the children can grow with and touches of modern coastal elegance, including a palm-patterned wallpaper. These collective elements keep the space fun and sophisticated at the same time.
Another trend in children’s bedroom design is to give them more of a say in their own space. “These days, parents are actually letting their children design their own space, as opposed to imposing their design style on their children’s areas,” says Rosa. Allowing the young ones greater input in what goes into their bedroom design—from color to style to layout—helps them enjoy the room more and for a longer period of time, and it can save time, effort and money when they are happier with the outcome. Monroe, who created study spaces in her two children’s bedrooms, asked them to choose their own desks, chairs and lamps, and then she discovered a bonus in doing so: “They seem to enjoy studying more,” she says.
Making space is also on top of the list. Many popular items such as under-bed storage, shelving, benches with storage, bins, boxes and carefully crafted closets to keep clothing and accessories tidy all work to free up more room. Furthermore, bunk beds, trundle beds and loft beds are making a comeback. Lori Manning, owner/designer of Lori Manning Designs, recently completed a children’s bedroom using custom bunkbeds with twin beds on top and queen beds on the bottom. “Each bunk has a charging station for electronics. The bunks also have lights that children can use for reading,” explains Manning.
Bedrooms can also be personalized through artwork, using favorite colors or incorporating special storybook characters or superheroes. Manning has used murals on the walls in her bedroom designs and then carried the art into the adjoining bathroom. Artist Bill Kreutz, an instructor at Centers for the Arts Bonita Springs, has created many such children-themed murals. He is a member of Splashes of Hope, an organization that focuses on creating pleasant environments for children who are going through medical challenges or rough times.
Speaking of adding something bright, metallics—copper, silver, brass, gold—are finding their way into children’s bedrooms on everything from bed frames to fabrics to accents like lamps, picture frames, mirrors and even on dramatic touches such as chandeliers. They add sophistication, along with some shimmer and shine.
Rosa recently completed a bedroom design in which the client’s young daughter requested bubble-gum pink and lots of bling. To address this, the back wall in the main bedroom and the stripes in the adjoining bathroom are finished with diamond dust, so they sparkle. The lighting fixtures also have crystals, reflecting light onto the walls and creating a magical feeling.
While professional interior designers can help add a new look to a bedroom, you can also get ideas and inspiration by checking out showrooms that offer children’s furniture and accessories, such as Mega Kids Naples and Rooms to Go in Fort Myers.
Ann Marie O’Phelan is a Southwest Florida resident and a regular contributor to TOTI Media.
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