Splurge on qual­ity fur­ni­ture for teen’s room

Winnipeg Free Press - Section G - - HOMES - DEBBIE TRAVIS

Dear Debbie: We are dec­o­rat­ing our daugh­ter’s bed­room with in­put from her. The chal­lenge is that Tracy changes her mind about ev­ery six months. She is 11 and we would like to come up with a look that can keep up with her imag­i­na­tive spirit. Please help. Right now she is ask­ing for girly but def­i­nitely not frilly.

— Mon­ica Dear Mon­ica: Chil­dren Tracy’s age are at that stage when ap­pear­ing older and more grown up is hugely im­por­tant. But they also don’t want to let go of some of their lit­tle kid plea­sures. To­gether you can de­sign a room that will sup­port her per­sonal pas­sions and be a fun and wel­com­ing place to bring friends. This may be the time to splurge on qual­ity fur­ni­ture that will last through the teen years. One op­tion I like is a daybed. They are avail­able in many styles, and some of­fer a pop-up trun­dle, which is great for sleep­overs. The char­ac­ter or theme of your daugh­ter’s room can be eas­ily switched from pretty to so­phis­ti­cated to funky with the choice of com­forter and pil­lows.

Paint the walls a girly shade of mauve, and then ask Tracy to pick a few posters. Art­work, bul­letin boards, and a rack to dis­play and store her books and mag­a­zines can be con­stantly up­dated as her hob­bies and pref­er­ences shift and grow. A neu­tral car­pet de­sign and sim­ple cur­tains will bal­ance the other fea­tures. Dear Debbie: I am a high school li­brar­ian and we are des­per­ately try­ing to add colour and in­ter­est to our li­brary. Our goal is to cre­ate a wel­com­ing space where teenagers want to be — a “cool” space to read, study and hang out. We have bought colour­ful, comfy chairs, pil­lows and rugs. Any sug­ges­tions for paint­ing the walls would be greatly ap­pre­ci­ated.

— An­drea Dear An­drea: In your photo I see that you have painted a light blue on the up­per walls. Most of the lower wall space is cov­ered by book­shelves, but you could in­tro­duce a bright tan­ger­ine or­ange as a fresh and en­er­getic back­drop. I like your idea of mak­ing your li­brary an invit­ing place for teens to hang out. Why not cre­ate sev­eral mes­sage cen­tres for them to leave notes or pho­tos and make con­tact with each other? On spare wall space, paint blocks of colour with chalk­board paint and sur­round with empty frames. You can ei­ther buy in­ex­pen­sive frames or make them with mould­ing. (If you have a car­pen­try work­shop on site, this would be a good project.) The stu­dents will en­joy the op­por­tu­nity to fill the chalk­board spa­ces with graf­fiti and car­toons. Fill other frames with cork board for pin­ning up mes­sages and pho­tos. Let me know how this works for you, and thanks for your great ques­tion. Dear Debbie: We live right on the Mi­nas Basin, which is part of the Bay of Fundy, in a frame house that is seven years old. We have al­ready had it painted twice, but still the knot holes bleed through and the paint wears away from them. Is there a so­lu­tion?

Cathy Dear Cathy; The knot holes in wood will bleed through paint and even some primers un­less they are prop­erly sealed. Shel­lac is the best; sand or scrape away any loose or peel­ing paint and then ap­ply a coat of shel­lac over the knots. Let dry thor­oughly, then paint with a qual­ity ex­te­rior paint.

A daybed is a ver­sa­tile choice for a young lady’s bed­room, dou­bling as a place to play and sleep.

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