Decorating, Organization and Safety Tips for Your Child’s Room

Children grow up fast. Furnishing a kid’s room to keep up with their likes and dislikes can quickly put a dent in any parent’s wallet. A timeless design means parents don’t have to replace furniture every year or two. Experts say that while people should look for pieces that can stand the test of time, they should also be comfortable and suitable for the child’s interests – something fashionable as much as it is durable.

Here are a few ideas and tips on various things you can do throughout your child’s room to decorate, organize and keep it safe.

Safety First

Safety precautions are top priority for children’s rooms. Climbing and exploration are part of growing up. Before you begin decorating, think about how you can make and keep your child’s room as safe as possible. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

1. Furniture should be sturdy and well-built.

2. Remove locks and heavy lids from storage containers.

3. Secure open shelving or bookcases to the wall so that they cannot topple over if a child decides to climb or hang from them.

4. That being said, try to keep things at their height if you can help it. Place things that your child uses on a regular basis at their level, so as to avoid the climbing of a bookcase to reach their desired item.

5. Avoid sharp edges and corners on beds and tables.

6. Install overhead lighting. If a lamp or other electrical equipment is used, tape the cord down behind furniture and use a safety plug.

7. The cords on Venetian window blinds are a hazard. Choose roller blinds or curtains that are securely installed.

8. Instead of closet doors, which are begging to pinch little fingers, opt for curtains. They can be pulled back to provide access to favorite books and toys or drawn to conceal clutter.

9. If you are using a ladder or there are open cans of paint while decorating, remove small children and pets from the room.

Decorating

1. Be sure to use non-toxic latex (water-based) paint on walls and furniture.

2. Be sure to include multiple kinds of lighting in a kid’s room. Overall lighting
is a necessity but so is a reading light. It may even help them find the bathroom in the middle of the night.

3. Removable wall transfers are becoming increasingly affordable and the range of patterns and styles grows every day. Call them temporary wall tattoos and let
your kid have fun decorating their room in a way you know you won’t have to fix
later.

4. All kids want display space. Galvanized metal is fairly inexpensive and
can be purchased in sheets at most home improvement stores. Just mount on the wall and you have an instant magnetic board.

5. Check your local art and crafts store for peel-and-stick cork. You can cut out
any shape, simply peel off the backing and attach to any wall for fun pin-up
space.

6. What would make a kid happier than having a wall in their room to draw on? (Without getting into trouble!) Paint an entire wall, a portion of a wall, a door, or simply hang a framed chalkboard and let the creativity begin!

Finding Space

Children accumulate ‘stuff’ at an alarming rate. Clothing, toys, books, art work, and sports equipment all compete for space in a room that’s usually not too big and has only one small closet. How do you organize all these precious possessions? It may be necessary to do a little purging; a sidewalk sale will reap rewards that can be spent on a cool new acquisition for their bedroom. And then take advantage of hidden spaces, corners and dual-purpose furniture. Try some of these tricks.

1. Baskets and boxes are available in every shape, size and material from clear plastic to coloured cardboard and wicker. Fill them with clothing and toys and line them up under the bed.

2. Plastic garbage cans and laundry baskets make excellent containers with handles for easy totting.

3. Save old soup cans and transform them into a clever organizational system. Store art supplies, like colored pencils, rubber stamps and markers, for easy access.

4. Bookcases or display cabinets offer a place to display their stuff, and having plenty of space for books encourages kids to read.

5. A single shelf built near the top of the walls is a good solution for storing items that have sentimental value but aren’t used every day.

6. Build a window seat with storage underneath.

7. Line up a row of clothes pegs on the wall at a child-friendly height.

8. Choose a bedding system that will grow with your child. In a small space, the bed can be raised and the space underneath used for a desk or play station.

9. Cut off the lower section of a dresser so that it is a good height for a tabletop. You can screw wheels into the bottom and you have a piece of movable storage that doubles as a play or work surface.

10. Divide up existing closet space with a combination of hanging rods and shelves.

**TIPS**
1. Keeping things at their height, i.e: closet storage, benches and coat racks ,will encourage kids to use them more often.

2. It’s easy to get sucked into spending more than you planned, especially since
kids don’t separate “need” versus “want.” Have your child make a list of all the
things he or she wants for the room, from rugs to a lava lamp. Then, commit to
the three most important and add the rest of the list as your budget allows.

3. Generally, there are three transitions in the life of a kid’s room: The move
from a crib to a big kid bed at age 2 or 3; the changeover from the toddler room
to a kid’s room from ages 6 to 12; and then another redecoration at age 17 or
so. With that in mind, it makes sense to spend money on high-quality beds or
dressers, as this may end up saving you money in the long run.

4. Any chalk board paint, cork and metal being used to decorate a child’s wall can be framed with wood and stained/painted to match the room.

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