Go To Your Room! (And Don’t Slam The Door!)
It’s summer vacation: The 10 weeks of the year where your children manage to turn your home into a giant yard sale. Toys, clothes, battered furniture and electronics litter their rooms, and before June is out, they have spilled out into the rest of the house. So what to do?
The first rule is this: Everyone appreciates a well designed room – yes, even kids.
Over the years I have had countless clients tell me “If I’d known that making their room beautiful would have made them want to clean it, I’d have done it ages ago!”
Kids are not dogs! I know that everyone is working on a budget, but I see so many children’s rooms where the box spring and mattress are just on the floor, or the furniture is old and broken. “The kids don’t care!”, I hear.
Well listen up! Children are not stupid – if they know that something is shabby they’re not going to treat it with respect. Show THEM respect, and give them a damn bed already! Trust me – if you take the time and effort to make a space that’s truly for them, they will appreciate it more that you know.
The first question I ask my clients is how old the children are, and therefore how long is it going to be before the child – and their room – transitions into the next phase.
Phase 1: Infant to 3 years old; It begins with the classy nursery and then transitions into a fun toddler room, or as I like to call it the “Princess or Frog” stage.
Phase 2: 4 – 9 or 10yo; If it’s a young boy, then popular rooms are hobby based (sports, cars, dinosaurs). If it’s a girl, then it can be fun and flirty with fluffy cushions and polka dots, and still lots of pinks.
Phase 3: 10 – 14yo; There are a LOT of changes in this phase, emotionally, physically and stylistically. Here I tend to keep wall treatments more neutral to let the accessories change over time. For boys it moves from “hobby” to “hip”: By the time your son is 15 and beginning to drive, the last thing he wants is his high school buddies to see his dinosaur quilt and Baseball Mitt Lamp. For girls, they have often become tired of pink by now (Praise Jesus!) and head towards comfort, sophistication, and good lighting for all that make up!
Next week I’ll wrap this up with some advice on room size and a my biggest and most important advice on this matter. Until then…