Most people decorate their child’s bedroom in one of two ways. Either they do something fancy to show people how much they love their children, or they focus on the child’s development. We chose to focus on the second one for this article.
From an educational standpoint, decorating a child’s room is not an expense, it’s an investment. It must stimulate the development of intelligence and imagination in order to make the child resourceful and curious, which cannot be accomplished with an endless pile of toys. Keep in mind the fact that practical doesn’t mean rejecting esthetics. Quite the contrary actually.
Decorating a bedroom for a baby or toddler is relatively easy. The parents decide everything. But things get trickier when the child reaches pre-school age and then adolescence.
Don’t fool yourself. Converting a child’s room into a NASA laboratory will not make them an astronaut. And your child won’t become a highly-paid hockey player because they have posters of NHL stars all over their room. On the contrary, you have to keep up on your child’s interests starting in the early years before opting for a decorative theme. That’s when you should devote a certain budget to a decorative theme. If the child wants it of course. After all, it’s their room.
Red is recognized as the most stimulating colour for a child. Does that mean you have to plaster the room with red? Obviously not. Especially if the child is hyperactive. Besides, why bathe the bedroom in flamboyant colours? Children’s toys already come in very bright colours. White and pale grey do the job perfectly.
There are so many decorative objects on the market today to stimulate a child: luminous decorative panels, wall fantasies, interactive walls, wallpaper designed especially for children, fantasy furniture and lamps, footstools and eccentric shelves, decorative lights, funny hooks to hang clothes, self-adhesive stickers, kite suspended from the ceiling, etc. The market is brimming with possibilities.
A giant map of the world can capture your child’s attention for hours. So will slate paint on which the child can draw as much as they want. Or a chalkboard.
Linoleum, parquet flooring (noisy unless you use a sub-floor to absorb the sound), seagrass, natural wool carpet, bamboo, natural rubber and cork (the last two being excellent sound absorbers) are recommended floor coverings.
Even in the digital era, you have to introduce books to children at a very young ag and at eye level: along the bed, on a mobile shelf or in a basket, on built-in shelves at the end of a bunk bed, the child just has to take a book when they climb up to go to bed. Reading is essential to stimulate the child’s development. And the cover pages are very decorative.
Deep sleep is of the utmost importance. Therefore, you should choose airtight blinds or opaque curtains. During the day, you should let in a maximum amount of natural light.
Decorating storage spaces is rather practical: stuffed animals thrown in a hammock, fantasy toy boxes, cork board to pin photos and drawings, colours on each drawer to determine which objects to place in them.
- Children create a world using very little. Who hasn’t turned a cardboard box into a car? Made a train out of chairs? Let them use their imagination.
- Most children are fascinated by animals. Why not use them as decorative accessories?
Chambres d’enfants, Les essentiels déco, Terence Conran, Gründ, 2011, 112 pages