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 As your kids prepare to dress themselves up in Halloween glory, perhaps it’s time to dress up their rooms. So, what are some ideas that you can start on right away, and without spending too much? Interior design enthusiast and Mom Kim Gellman is here to present seven ways to approach a kid’s room transformation.

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A decade ago, the go-to decor for children’s rooms was a bed-in-a-bag with matching bed-clothes, curtains, and throw pillows. Today’s kids’ room designs are a bit more sophisticated, incorporating modern colors and designs that can grow with an infant through the teen years. Say goodbye to Disney characters and other decor that pigeon holes you, and opt for a contemporary pallet of neutrals with a few extras to add the oomph.

1. Pops of Color

Kids bedroom purple accents

Image via Flickr by MAZZALIARMADI.IT

Modern rooms incorporate basic, neutral colors and then add pops of color around the room so the eyes don’t become bored. Popular color combinations include gray and yellow, black and white, green and white, or an all-white room with splashes of primary colors here and there.

One of the many benefits of decorating in simple neutral colors and adding a few bold accents is that the room is ideal for either a boy or a girl. As many couples decide not to learn the sex of their baby before birth, these options allow parents to create a fully decorated room perfect for whatever bundle of joy happens along.

2. Wallpaper

kids wallpaper three strips

Wallpaper of old usually meant selecting a single pattern for all the walls in the room. But contemporary kids’ rooms incorporate two or three different wallpaper patterns, all in the same color combinations, around the room to create visual interest.

Select the colors of your wallpaper, such as pink on white or green on yellow. Then select a floral pattern, striped pattern, and polka-dotted pattern, all with these same color combinations. Use one pattern on each wall, separating the bolder patterns with the simpler ones. Alternate the pattern around the room, painting a single wall in one or two of the solid colors used in the wallpaper print.

3. Area Rugs

area rug

Area rugs add oomph to any room, but in the child’s room it also adds warmth and comfort. Fluffy rugs visually soften the hard contours of modern walls and furnishings, and also provide a comfortable surface for parents to stand on while caring for the child, and for children to enjoy during play time.

There are two ways to incorporate an area rug into a child’s room. First, you can select one that coordinates with the other colors used in the decor. Optionally, you can match the color of the rug to the color of the floor so that it blends and keeps the colorful room from becoming too busy for the eyes. The former is ideal for rooms that need more pizzazz, the latter is perfect for rooms with lots of patterns and designs competing for attention.

4. Beanbags or Poufs

beanbag chair boy dog

Modern parents aren’t confined to the staple rocking chair when it comes to comfortable seating for nighttime feedings and chasing away tears. Beanbags and poufs are replacing rocking chairs for both comfort and visual appeal. Beanbags and poufs are available in most any color to match the decor of the room.

Using beanbags or poufs instead of rocking chairs also has a safety advantage. Small children can easily lose a finger if a parent is rocking in the chair and the child accidentally reaches under. Also, a falling toddler is less likely to bump his head on a soft beanbag or pouf chair than a hard wooden rocking chair.

5. Wall Art

removable wall decals for bedrooms

Stencils are so easy to use, and are the perfect way to add color and visual interest to any room. Don’t limit yourself to stencils of princesses and automobiles – consider trees, landscape patterns, ivy trellises, or skyscapes which are suitable for either sex and any age.

Paint the walls in basic white or just off-white. If the wall was colored before, you might need to prime the wall to eliminate any color bleed through. Allow the wall to dry fully before beginning with the stencil, and let each color dry before you add another to the stenciled pattern. When you’re done, you’ll have crisp, clean lines and a perfectly finished design.

6. Light Fixtures

kids lamp lighting fixture

When the size and layout of the room dictate that all the furnishings have to be positioned along the walls, the room starts to look flat. An easy way to add dimension back into the space is by using bulky light fixtures to add depth and texture. Choose a light fixture that coordinates with, but doesn’t perfectly match, the rest of the decor.

For example, if most of the room is decorated in wood furniture, balance the hardness of the wood with a fluffy or soft chandelier. In rooms with lots of furry stuffed animals, balance the softness with a hard glass or plastic fixture. Use the colors from the room in the fixture, but use a different pattern to create oomph. Rooms with lots of floral pattern are well balanced by stark stripes. Mostly solid colors are easily balanced with a bold pattern such as zebra print.

7. Multicolored Shelving

colorful storage

You can add lots of color and spunk to a room in a very useful way by filling one wall or multiple walls with shelving in a pattern of colors. This can be done in one of a few different ways. One way is to paint the shelving in a single color, and paint each of the doors or shelves in a variety of contrasting colors.

Another way is to paint the shelving in a single color and adorn each of the drawer fronts or doors with stenciling. Alternately, you can paint each shelf a different color. A good way to see how your color combination is going to look before you start to paint is to take pieces of construction paper in the colors you plan to use and hang them up in the pattern you’re planning. This lets you see how the color scheme is going to work before investing time and money.

Shelves grow with children, later holding toys, books, and school supplies where diapers and baby ointments once were.

A little oomph for your child’s room is easy with the right planning. Using these techniques, you can decorate for any sex or age child and the room will serve them well into their teen years.

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Thanks, Kim!

Kim Gellman created Artistic Sensations in 1996, an independently-owned online collection of high quality, customizable furniture and décor that makes a child’s room their ideal space to play, learn, sleep and call their own. A mother of two boys herself, Kim’s search proved difficult when trying to find the perfect pieces to furnish her sons’ rooms. Artistic Sensations was created to fulfill the needs of parents looking for superior quality without compromising the fresh and unique designs that appeal to their kids!

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Cate Morgan-Harlow

Cate Morgan-Harlow is an all arounder, writing about how-to, DIY, and design with gusto. She is a shadowy figure with a mysterious past.