A bedroom makeover was the promise I made to my pre-teen this summer. Revamping her slightly tired, little-girl bedroom was an interior challenge I knew I was going to really enjoy. As a child I loved nothing more of a weekend than re-arranging my room so it felt like a completely different space – not sure my folks loved the constant scraping of furniture above their heads – but it kept me busy!
My own daughter has had a vintage /shabby chic style bedroom ‘Foreverrrrrrrr’ so she tells me, so it was time for action. Its sort of floral, sort of polka dotty and definitely shabby, chic? not-so-much anymore. She also has bundles of ‘stuff’ and some pretty strong ideas about what she does and doesn’t like so there was going to be some negotiation involved!
Coinciding with the start of first year at senior school (and needing a proper desk and workspace), this was the perfect opportunity to redecorate this bedroom. The challenging thing is with pre-teens is they turn into teenagers and teenagers can be notoriously fussy and fickle, so this had to be future-proof and funky. Tough gig.
This bedroom is quite large and has a big bay window which throws in loads of light. Problem is, our gal is a light sleeper, so we need it to be really dark at the right times or she is wandering the floors like the Grey Lady in a haunted house.
I should mention that I did not have the luxury of time on my side so no trawling over websites for hours on end, watching bargains on ebay for a week or scouring antiques markets to find that special ‘piece’. Once you start a kid’s room, you need to crack on as they need access to all their ‘stuff’ so it was all systems GO.
Firstly, the carpet had to go, it was the most revolting shade of dusky pink interspersed with green stains from glow-slime /silly putty (thanks Granny). A couple of coats of plain white floor paint (quick dry) did a great job, made the bedroom lighter and they’re intended to be mostly covered by a rug. Eventually. When she makes her mind up. *looks at watch*
Honor picked the wallpaper herself and I loved her choice – this is Nordic Tree print from Next who have a genuinely on-point range of great quality papers. It was really easy to put up and the pattern was so simple to match up. I have used them before in our basement and found them good to work with. Its modern and cool but I don’t think it will date (so will take her way into her teens) PLUS its black and white so a fab backdrop to all the colour that exists with her aforementioned ‘stuff’!
I chose the paint which I kept a surprise from Honor until the final reveal and used Mineral (again from Next as the delivery was the next day and I didn’t have to lug paint cans around). It’s a very uplifting shade and I think works perfectly in conjunction with the wallpaper in this bedroom. It’s not too feminine and not too bold but not insipid either. Bland was definitely not on the brief!
The bed we installed was cabin style with a desk underneath for homework and a chair for reading, playing her guitar and chilling out. I styled it up with throws and cushions and it handily converts to a single bed so it’s great for sleepovers too.
The wall art pictures are from Ikea with some white frames from Next which are very reasonably priced – she loves the theme of travel and this was a good way of introducing it without being too gimmicky (or difficult to swap when she changes her mind!)
To continue the travel fun, I added a globe and made her a gallery wall where we hung lots of trinkets and souvenirs from places we have visited (my word this girl loves a gift shop!)
The sink was here when we moved in and we were going to remove it but as she is getting older its proving very useful, so the boys don’t have to queue for the kids’ bathroom when she is faffing. I added some accessories from the bathroom section at Next in a dark teal which I think look great against the white and mineral colour wall.
The curtains have an amazing blackout lining and really do the job of keeping it dark. There were a few colours to choose from in different drops and widths, so I was pleased we could get these on next day delivery too. I think this teal shade is pretty gender neutral so would look great in anyone’s bedroom, so you aren’t tied to one room with these curtains.
What I have tried to achieve is a look which can be changed as she gets her own style and tastes as she grows up. The accessories are what bring the colour to the scheme and these can be switched up without any major hassle. The wallpaper and paint definitely offer some longevity but the colours and accessories mean its still contemporary – that’s the key to the compromise. She loves it and I do too, but what are the chances of her keeping it tidy……….?
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