Thursday, May 29, 2014

Moving my daughter into the guest room

Working with parents on their children's rooms, I've noticed a wide spread in attitude about involving the child.  Some basically feel that it is their house and their money and therefore they need to love the room, too.  Others believe that their child should have free reign--after all, it is their room.

There is no "right" or "wrong" on this.  Like I wrote about here, it's all about being honest with what works for you.  But in this case I do believe there is a happy medium.  It's called "presenting options."  If you gather your child's input (what colors they like, patterns that make them happy, what kinds of activities they most want to do in their rooms), and then present them with choices that meet their needs and your own, everyone wins.

My two girls have shared a room for as long as they can remember.  Lately my 5 year old has been struggling with bedtime and keeps my 7 year old awake, so we are considering moving the older one to the guest room in the hopes of creating smoother nighttime routines.  The room is "finished," and while it is colorful enough for a kid, it is a bit grown up, and it seems wrong to move her in there without making any changes.  While I do not want to spend much money in there, I would want it to feel a bit more like "her" room.

There are some parameters, naturally.  I would not like to paint, though of course that would be the lowest-cost way to make a big change in the room.  The furnishings and new bedding would stay.  So, I like the idea of swapping out some of the textiles and/ or art (currently this, this and this) to make the space more fit for a going-on-8-year old.

I've been playing around with the idea so that, if we decide to move her, I'll be ready to talk through her input and present some choices.

I like the idea of connecting to the orange in the girls' existing room down the hall.  These two schemes would swap out rugs and pillows and use some extra white Ritva curtains panels with tassel trim added like I did here (scroll down).

These two actually get MORE colorful and push the eclectic bohemian feel even farther.

But, knowing my daughter, who will only ever wear monochromtic outfits, I have a feeling we would hone in on the blue and white palette and keep things very focused with either the existing red (curtains), or a focus on yellow (from the wood tone of the desk in there).

This last one feels most like her.  It is fairly monochromatic, she adores stripes, and the girl on that pillow has glasses just like hers.

While I actually hope we can keep her where she is, I look forward to transforming the space together eventually (even though my 5 year old will want equal treatment in her room.)

Is't it amazing how much you can change the vibe of the room by changing just the textiles?

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Occupational Hazard: Starting Over at All Times

My love of wicker and rattan knows no bounds.  Seriously, I should live in Florida.  From my wicker shelves in my college dorm room (so cool, friends, so very very cool) to my ongoing obsession with Peter Dunham's Marilyn chair, I just can't get enough.

Occupational hazard: I am constantly finding great pieces that tempt me to start over (before I have even finished in the first place.)  Whilst searching for a Queen size (and budget friendly) replacement for the Land of Nod headboard in my last post, I came across a number of darling pairs of bamboo, rattan, or wicker headboards.  where were these when I was doing my girls' room?

I want them all.  If I wasn't already on the second iteration of my girls room in 4 years (including building and then reupholstering the headboards) I would consider one of these sets for sure.

I guess I need a beach house to furnish on the cheap.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Working from an inspiration room

Land of Nod

We all use inspiration photos as we figure out our design schemes, especially in this day of Instagram and Pinterest.  But how do we interpret that inspiration into our homes?

I'm working with my brother and sister-in-law on their new house, and for their 18 month old daughter, they love the look of this space from the Land of Nod catalog.  Since it is from a catalog, we could simply copy it, right?  

Well, no.  (I mean, where's the fun in that?)  Our space has mauve carpeting, oak trim, and it lacks the multi-paned windows looking out on sunny palm trees.  Plus, we are possibly going to use my sister-in-law's childhood furniture, which has that sort of 70s french look, AND we bought fabric for their old house that we saved once they decided to move.  We can use this for curtains:

So how do you get the vibe of that room in a different space and with some pre-determined elements?

To me, it's all about creating a sense of whimsy and a bright, fun mix of color and pattern, but remixing the original elements in a fresh way that works for our space.

This one is probably truest to the inspiration, with the wicker headboard, prominent chevron upholstery, "frame" bedding, and a fun floral, jut moved from the rug to the pillows.  (The Elephant hamper is in there because I have an extra.)

If they want an upholstered headboard for snuggling, the whimsical wicker can move on over to a chair.  You can't tell from the photo, but those euro shams are covered in tiny little hearts, and this one has the actual bedding from the inspiration, along with glass ball lamps.

Finally, this one goes a little more boho.  My sister in law is partial to anthropologie, and to me this takes the Land of Nod room and puts a bit of an anthro spin on it.

These are all really "sketches" as we get into planning, but good for direction, no?

What do you think: do these do enough to evoke the original, taking into account our constraints?
How do you interpret inspiration images?


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