Kids Room

Elements like built-in furniture and shelving will grow with your child for years to come. (Photo: Dreamstime)

Everyone benefits from a space that’s uniquely their own – especially kids. Kids love to help plan and design their bedrooms. After all, the place where they sleep and play is their own little part of the world, and it gives them a sense of ownership when they’re able to put a personal touch on it. Here are three ways to customize your child’s room without breaking the bank:

Think about flexible options

Neutral walls and colorful accents make for the best basic building blocks of a child’s room. Don’t worry about adding any bright color – all the toys and accessories in the room can do that!

When it comes to developing a theme for the room, consider using easily changed elements. This flexibility will come in handy as kids grow and their tastes change. If they’re on a baseball kick, get baseball-themed blankets and pillows for now and swap them out for the next obsession later. If they’re into trucks or dolls, place some on a shelf. You can also change these as their interests evolve.

Interior designers specialize in all aspects of home design and can give you pointers on how to involve your kids in the process.

Consider built-in furniture

Think about hiring a carpenter for built-in beds, dressers, bookshelves or seating. This way, you can maximize space while designing a room that will grow with your child for years to come. A twin-sized loft bed will be great at any age beyond toddlerhood, for example. Smaller children will enjoy using the space below the bed for toy storage (or an impromptu playhouse with a few cleverly hung curtains), and older kids and teens can use the space for a desk.

Window seats provide an outside view that connects kids to nature, and they can be decorated to suit their changing interests as well.

Built-in shelving saves space and offers great flexibility over the years. A toddler’s Dr. Seuss books can be replaced by toys, which can be replaced by schoolbooks. As an added bonus, built-in shelves provide a safety bonus for smaller children, since they can’t tip over.

Create a unique look with custom painting

The paint job in your child’s room provides the baseline for the rest of the look and design.

Look for paints free of volatile organic compounds. They’re the best choice for anyone sensitive to allergies or prone to headaches.

Satin and semi-gloss paint finishes are excellent choices for kid’s rooms – their water base makes them easy to clean with soap and water. Plus, satin paint is forgiving of imperfections.

To really fire up your child’s creative instincts, consider chalkboard or dry erase paints. They’ll let your budding young Picasso draw to their heart’s content with an easy cleanup later.

You can also place a layer of magnetic paint primer underneath standard colors, which will allow you to easily stick artwork or magnetic art projects right against the wall.

For a truly unique experience, mural painters can offer a distinctive and personalized look for a child’s room. Some will even mount art on canvas the size and shape of the wall, so it can be taken down and preserved when a child gets older.

By Paul F. P. Pogue, Angie’s List. Paul F. P. Pogue is a reporter for Angie’s List, a trusted provider of local consumer reviews and an online marketplace of services from top-rated providers. Visit AngiesList.com.