Photo Illustration: Curb; Photo: Getty Images/Retailers
When my son was born, we put a crib in our office in the spare room and found ways to use our old furniture for our new life, like turning a dresser into a changing table. Now he’s much older and has his own proper room, and it’s a pleasure to find ways that reflect his interests, his personality, and the way he likes to spend time.
When I was first assembling his small room, I struggled with the landscape of kids’ furniture and decor: Everywhere I looked, I saw either Ikea pieces everywhere or expensive designer items. what am I required It was interesting furniture, strong and flexible enough that he could adapt to the changing style of his room. In other words, I wanted pieces that could last through the train stage, dinosaur stage, Pokemon stage, and wherever we go next.
Here are some tried and tested pieces for children’s rooms. It’s affordable, durable, and full of character, but it’s also easy to mix and match as the years go by.
When it came time to get out of the crib, we decided to use a floor bed, which would make it easier for the little dude to get in and out and prevent big falls. This home bed, available from several sellers on Etsy, has been a huge hit. It’s easy to hang sheets and blankets over the top to create a secret hideaway, and we decorated the posts with climbing vines to create a tree house in the woods. It’s made of beautiful unfinished maple, and its thin profile, while not the most solid (we don’t have any swing from the top base!), allows it to become a blank canvas for a child’s imagination.
When my son’s bedroom suddenly became a classroom during the pandemic, I spent some time researching a good classroom setting for the corner. We asked for this group, but the seats were not comfortable to sit in for a full Zoom lesson. We kept the bent plywood table and added it to these molded plastic chairs, which were a great investment. It’s comfortable, hard to flip, and has a really cool shape that’s perfect for toddlers and elementary school (and even for homeschooled parents).
You may ask yourself, Why is a pillow worth the cost of a piece of furniture?, but I would like to tell you that this is the most frequently used item in our house. My kids jump off sofas, roll on rugs, and tumble on ottomans, and I’ve been searching for a long time for some floor cushions to support these tricks. This dense pillow is the basis for a pillow fort, a base for snuggling stuffed animals, and a landing platform for couch launch. The handles make it easy to pull, and it’s available in a wide range of stylish, easy-to-clean neutrals.
I discovered this Etsy shop when searching for Rifle paper printing masks, and have now ordered dozens of these name banners as gifts. In our house, we decorated names with gems and puffy paint and nailed them to each child’s door. It’s such a simple banner, but because of its gorgeous print and charming colors, it’s an easy and affordable piece to display on the wall or above the bed. Every kid in the world wants to write their name in all capital letters every possible place in their room and I also asked them funny messages for holidays and parties.
Cell phones have fascinated me since I spent the summer guarding Calder’s statue at Peggy Guggenheim in Venice. Mobile phones are dynamic and ever-changing, occupying three-dimensional space in a way that delights and perplexes children. The walls of our children’s rooms are covered with years of artwork, from finger paintings to collages to pencil drawings, without leaving much room for anything else. Cell phones are a way to use the ceiling to display artwork, and I love this Calder-inspired one for its fun colors and childlike shapes.
I spent quite a bit of time searching for a solid wood shelf that was low enough for a little kid to reach before I came across this wonderful line of Montessori furniture. School furniture is incredibly durable, sized to the right, and generally affordable. Plus, it comes in a slightly polished maple plywood that pairs well with IKEA furniture and other Scandinavian light wood pieces. We filled this with soft felt containers for Lego, bristle blocks, and food toys.
There are a lot of fun message boards out there, but what I love about this board is that it’s both a magnetic board and a double-sided whiteboard. It comes in classic green and black as well as bright blue, and the soft foam lettering in the gorgeous Futura / Gotham sans serif font is in a variety of colors. We keep two singles by my son’s bed in a matching blue color; One board hosts an ongoing game of Snowman, and the other is for practicing the multiplication tables. PRO TIP: Order this letter organizer box and this adorable soft Japanese chalk.
I’ve tried baby sheets from a lot of stores, but H&M sheets are my favorite. The sets are mostly under $30, are all cotton, and come in adorable prints, like this space lifted from Oliver Jeffers’ book or this dinosaur rating print. After years of laying the flat sheet on the side of the bed, I’m using H&M’s European approach of having only a fitted sheet and a duvet cover, and it’s so much simpler!
This is an absolute splurge, but the castle in Australia makes the coolest prints for a kids room. From sausage dogs to wildflowers to Matisse-like cutouts, these can become the focal point of an entire room.
I have recommended this lamp before. In white, it’s great for adults, and in fun coral and blue colors, it’s great for a kid’s room. The well-proportioned base consists of matte balls, perfect for reading a bedtime story.
We get folders and folders for cute drawings and paintings from our kids’ schools, and for years I struggled with how to manage the papers. Framing them isn’t practical, and with their wide range of sizes, I couldn’t always get them to fit into my magnetic oak hangers. Instead, I’ve been using these very basic cork strips in stacks of long rows; The artwork is neatly aligned upwards, creating some order to break out of the clutter. I like to spray the aluminum mounts either white or a bright neon color.
I’ve tried a lot of different laundry baskets over the years – natural woven baskets, spacious plastic tubs – but this one is the best. It’s solid enough to stand in the closet, soft enough to easily pull into the laundry, and it even has a drawstring to keep clutter inside. This cute cotton storage basket comes in a few different animal faces and coordinates with some matching mini boxes for winter socks and gloves.