5 tips 4: a kids bedroom

Alex Fulton

This is my eldest daughters bedroom.

Her brief (in her words):  Not too girly girly, I’m soooooo not like that but it’s still got to look like a girls room ok? I must have animals (hint: ALL my soft toys).  I need colours: black and white with lots of brights especially yellow, I love yellow.  Oh and I’m messy, so heaps of places to hide my stuff pretty please.

Tip #1:  Listen to your clients, no matter what their age is (and how you are related!).

Tip #2:  Who are you designing for?  I’m ALWAYS rattling on about being clear about who you are creating for – this is an interior design no brainer and a great place to start the design journey.

Tip #3 Be clear on budget.  You will get yourself into trouble if you are not crystal on how much you want/can spend.  Once you have settled on a figure then write a list of everything you need for that space (I call this a scope of work).  Now estimate what each will cost and this will quickly show if you are dreamin’ or on track.

Tip #4:  Spend the right money on the right things.  ‘Things’ can vary in cost and there is no point in spending money on a designer chair for a kids room if it’s going to get trashed.  In this room I needed a large rug to cover the very scratchy honey-coloured sisal carpet (so that she could play on the floor).  It was not in my budget to buy a huge rug BUT I found this beauty at Bed Bath and Beyond for $29.95 DONE.  Same with the wall dots.  I wanted spotty wallpaper but becasue of our insanely high ceilings it was going to cost a fortune sooooooo I went to Warehouse Stationary and brought quik stik dots.  Admittedly they don’t stick as well as the vinyl dots you can buy these days (which weren’t around  2 years ago) which are a really well priced option too!  Try KM2 Creative or One Hundred Percent Heart

Tip #5 Get creative.  My whippersnapper is soft-toy-mad but there was NO WAY I was keen to see them all over the bed/floor/cupboards etc so I made them a ‘net’ to capture them in .  It was perfect – they where out of the way and she could see them all while lying in bed.  Job done.

How to make a toy net:

I went to Bunnings to get all I needed.  Black netting, yellow rope, pulleys (or eye hooks), hooks, rings and a carbina.  Firstly I cut the net in a square approx. 1.5m x 1.5m then I weaved the rope around the edges (in and out) and knotted each corner.  I tied more rope off each corner and knotted a ring on the end.  The rings all joined onto the carabina which is then tied to a very long piece of rope that is attched to the ‘pully’.  Eye hooks guide the rope to a tie hold down by the bed so that your little one can operate it.  WARNING:  Soft toys en masse can be heavy so be careful when lowering or raising your net!  You made need to supervise or help out!!

Stuff in the Room:

Furniture (Bed, Wardrobe, bedside table and drawers) from Meluka

Lightshade made by Shademakers in IKEA fabric and coloured flex from ICO Traders

Art from Spoonful Design and framed by Seymour Framing (I customised the white boarders with black dot stickers)

Walls painted in Dulux Half Mount Aspiring

White open tall shelf by IKEA from AKIA

Red and White dogs my Magis Design from ECC

Black and White Rug with Pink Trim and Duvet from IKEA

Red spotty linen from Ezibuy

Pine tree Cushion by Fine Little Day from Douglas and Bec

Green spotty cushion from Bed Bath and Beyond


Image by Larnie Nicolson and features in the book NZ Interior Style (written by LeeAnn Yare)




  • Heather - September 6, 2014

    So cute! Where is the colorful rug from (not the black and witw ikea one but the other).

    • admin - September 10, 2014

      From Bed Bath and Beyond – it was cheap!!

  • annabelle - September 18, 2014

    The colorful rug looks what I’m looking for my daughters room. You wouldn’t happen to still have the link to it? The one in the post just goes to the stores home page. Thank you 🙂

    • admin - September 22, 2014

      It was just from Bed Bath and Beyond, from a couple of years ago – really well priced. It’s a rag rug. Hope that helps!

  • michelle - February 10, 2015

    would love to know where got the quilt cover from, article says ikea but cant seem too find anywhere love the colours rather than usual pinks for my 8 year olds room. Would love some info!

    • admin - April 24, 2015

      Thanks Michelle but very old now – they may not make them anymore!

  • Flossy - March 31, 2015

    The spotty wall is what a would like in my daughters room, Is it wallpaper or is it painted on

    • admin - April 24, 2015

      It’s stationary dots but there are plenty of wall vinyls out on the market that you can use! Good luck

  • Home Design - August 21, 2015

    I just love the colorful lamp, it is latest and somehow suits the room well.

  • Julie Tom - September 10, 2015

    Great post! The whole interior and decoration looks good. Dotted wall and a rug look too good.

  • Thanks for the excellent tips for kid’s bedroom. Choosing bedroom furniture for kids can be a daunting task, especially for new parents who lack experience in choosing room furnishings for kids. These tips for designing your child’s room are great for rooms of all shapes and sizes, and are akin to the latest themes for bedroom decor.

  • Katharine Ryan - October 12, 2016

    Those plastic dogs have always been a favourite of ours, since they were on Big Brother years ago!

  • Joanna - June 5, 2017

    Love the lampshade! I’m currently doing my kids bedroom and thinking a spotted wall would look good. Thanks for the ideas.