happy-room

When it comes to decorating your little ones room how much of a say do you let your child have?

Interestingly three quarters of parents DON’T actually involve their children at all, because they believe it is quicker and easier to make the design decision themselves. They also admitted they liked to match the bedroom to the style of the rest of their house and their own personal tastes, rather than the wishes of their child.

I totally get where these parents are coming from because children have some crazy ideas about what they would like in their bedrooms… treehouses, slides, trapdoors, glass ceilings, oh my!

treehouse bedroom

But according to a recent study by Dulux there are infact many benefits of getting your child involved in the decorating process and the impact this can have on their development is actually really quite important. Developmental Psychologist Dr Sam Weiss explains…

Children typically create little things, but the bedroom is the first real, permanent thing that they can influence. Involving a child helps them to establish their own inner space and the image that they want to project to others. And for parents, having a chance to work together with their children can really help to establish a stable, respectful relationship. Children, when given a chance to be in charge of their bedrooms, respond positively: they feel a sense of pride, they spend more time in their bedroom, and they become more inclined to keep it tidy to show it off to their friends. For these reasons, and more, I think it would be wonderful if more parents involved their children when decorating their bedroom.

The research asked 2,000 families their thoughts on decorating children’s rooms and it turns out it’s a really big deal for kids. In fact when asked about their most important life milestone, kids say that decorating their bedroom is the second most important thing they have ever done, just behind hosting a birthday party and above their first day at school, and losing their first tooth.

When it came to Littlelish’s room I knew she would want to get involved in the design process. She loves colour and design and has such a clear idea of what she likes and doesn’t like, that I knew she would want to provide her input. With our house being somewhat chaotic during the renovation I really wanted somewhere lovely for her to retreat to. Kids are amazingly resilient little things and she has been so great despite the massive turmoil jobs like rewiring and plastering seem to create. I wanted her and Babylish to be the first to have their rooms decorated so that they have a space to call their own and enjoy, away from the madness.

mint macaroon

She had chosen her bedroom colour as soon as we moved into the house, at age six and three quarters she has moved away from the pink and now her favourite colour is a very cool minty greeny blue colour. We’d found that Dulux had the perfect shade of mint macaroon for her walls but what else did she want in her room?

I could only imagine one problem with involving Littlelish, a huge fan of the Dengineers (who create wild and wacky rooms for children on tv), she has a wild imagination which meant we were potentially going to have to create a feat of engineering in her bedroom or find a magician! Did you know that the number one thing most children want in their bedroom is a treehouse? Littlelish was in fact no exception to this…

What do children most want in their bedroom?

1, Treehouse  2. Slide  3. Narnia style wardrobe  4. Swing  5. Trap door  6. Glass ceiling  7. A stage  8. Jungle  9. Space rocket  10. Pirate ship

Littlelish and I brainstormed themes, there was some great inspiration on children’s bedroom themes on the Dulux site as well as tutorials for some amazing techniques for creatiing an impressive wow factor! The videos have been designed around kids’ passion points, from avid bookworms looking for a place to spark their imagination to would-be astronauts looking to jet off to galaxies beyond. The storybook themed bedroom appealed to my little bookworm as did mermaids and a sport themed room, but then just as I was all excited about going into mermaid overdrive (I love mermaids!), much to my surprise she decided she didn’t really want a themed room after all! Back to the drawing board we went…

storybookstyle

Dulux storybook themed room

So I asked her what I’d ask anyone when designing a room – What is important to you and how do you want to feel in the room? I often find that is a good place to start, it gets you thinking about the function of the room and how you want the room to make you feel when you are in it. We use rooms for very different purposes and it is really worth thinking about this when considering the decor. She knew very clearly that she wanted a room she felt happy in so I asked her what it was that made her happy…. and the answer was icecream and sweets, sunshine and ice lollies, smiles and hugs. So that is what we decided to go for! A room where she feels joyful, inspired and loved surrounded by icecream colours, sunshine and cute fun details.

I made her a moodboard (see above) so she could get an idea of the colours we could use with the mint green and we looked online together for decoration details and shops that we could find them in. This made her very excited and she really felt part of the process, choosing what she liked and didn’t like for her room.

cute room

Inspiration for our happy room – kawaii!

Before we could get painting we had to replaster the room, sand the floors and paint all the wood work. It required a lot of patience from all of us! But after a week or two we were ready to go. We decided to use the Dulux Endurance+ paint which is 20 times tougher than standard emulsion and the perfect choice for kids rooms and playrooms as it is wipe clean! Actually we could do with using this paint in the rest of our house thanks to Buddy our Labrador who likes to make a mess just about everywhere!!

As it was the first time we had used Dulux Endurance+ we didn’t really know what to expect but I’m pleased to tell you that it painted like a dream. I could quite possibly go as far as to say it was the best paint I’ve ever used for ease of application and coverage. The colour is absolutely beautiful, a really soft, yet warm colour, like a warm sea breeze on a summers day, if I was being poetic! So the room is all ready and now it is just a case of adding the furniture and finishing decor touches. Will you check back to see the finished room very soon?

lish-collab