When it comes to dec­o­rat­ing play­rooms, it’s all about creat­ing a space that is fun, ed­u­ca­tional and suits your per­sonal style.

Homes+ (Australia) - - INSPIRING CHOICES - Kate Sparks Founder & Owner, Lit­tle Dwellings lit­tled­wellings.com.au

The first step is selecting your floor­ing, as this will help you gain a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of your de­sign brief for the whole space. When de­cid­ing on your floor­ing think about what type of things your chil­dren will be do­ing in the room, for ex­am­ple, play­ing, draw­ing/craft, danc­ing, watch­ing movies, eat­ing etc. So it’s im­por­tant to se­lect a floor­ing so­lu­tion that is ‘mess friendly’: easy to clean, stain re­sis­tant and some­thing that can deal with ev­ery­day wear & tear, with­out age­ing quickly. I per­son­ally love floor­boards with a large comfy rug for a cosy at­mos­phere.

When think­ing about the walls of chil­dren’s spa­ces, peo­ple of­ten think ‘bright’ & ‘cheer­ful’ colours, sim­i­lar to what you may have seen at childcare cen­tres: these colours are not nec­es­sary to cre­ate a bright & cheer­ful at­mos­phere, espe­cially in a space that they are go­ing to spend much of their time in over the years. Mod­ern chil­dren’s in­te­rior spa­ces should be a rep­re­sen­ta­tion of what the rest of the home looks like, en­sur­ing the con­ti­nu­ity runs nicely through­out the whole house. Don’t fear ‘adult tones’ in chil­dren’s spa­ces as when the full room is in place the wall colour will blend nicely into its de­sign. This also al­lows your eye to be drawn to the child spe­cific items in the room. For ex­am­ple, con­tin­u­ing a nice grey tone through to the play­room will al­low a beau­ti­ful print or chair to be the fo­cus, rather than an over-stim­u­lat­ing colour.

I be­lieve light­ing is also a very im­por­tant as­pect of any room de­sign and flex­i­bil­ity is a must! As play­rooms will most likely be used at all times of the day and pos­si­bly night, con­sider hav­ing dim­mers on the main lights in the room for when the kids are watch­ing movies but still want the lights on, or dark and rainy days when light­ing might be dull. I love child friendly lamps and highly rec­om­mend in­clud­ing one that is non-break­able, doesn’t get hot if touched & some­thing that can be ac­cessed to add ex­tra light­ing for read­ing or draw­ing. There are so many great chil­dren’s lamps out there these days; it’s some­times hard to pick which one, so if you can’t de­cide why not go for two!

The fi­nal con­sid­er­a­tion is room lay­out and this is where most peo­ple freak out and think “I have no idea where to put things!” Well fear not be­cause... you do! Take a step back, look at the space as a whole & think about ‘ar­eas’ or ‘zones’. Then ask your­self these ques­tions:

What ex­ist­ing fur­ni­ture am I go­ing to use? What fur­ni­ture do I need to buy? What items do I want to put in there? What toys need space? What gets packed away & what stays out? What gets used all the time?

An­swer­ing these ques­tions will take the stress out of plan­ning your room lay­out. Re­mem­ber, trial and er­ror is okay, what works for your fam­ily now might not work for you in the fu­ture, so be for­ward think­ing and flex­i­ble in what­ever you do. Ro­tat­ing toys or chang­ing the lay­out ev­ery now and then can cre­ate a new sense of ad­ven­ture, pro­mote re­silience and fos­ter cre­ative and lat­eral think­ing.

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