When I was approached to design a little girl’s room that would require me to use my design sensibilities as well as artistic skills, I was naturally thrilled and jumped at the opportunity. For this exciting new project it was imperative that I spent some time with the little one to get to know her likes, ideas and interests. Now this was the most challenging part, as we couldn’t settle on any one particular theme. A child’s head is a maze of various characters and colours and my five-year old client loved everything from dolls to fairies to nature.
So, after some rough sketches and discussions, and keeping the budget in mind, I got down to work on this little girl’s ‘dream’ room. The room was fairly large, with enough wall space so we decided to go with murals instead of painting it one colour. This would give us an opportunity to incorporate all of her favourite characters. Secondly, this would prove to be a better solution in the long run as it would be easy to paint over once the child grew out of this phase, unlike wallpaper, which can be a pain to replace.
The wardrobe was also painted in the same colours so as to blend in with the walls. The top half of the walls were painted in hues of sky blue first. Next, the bottom half was painted in shades of green and then textured to make it look like a forest with little pathways.
Fairies in their flying chariots were painted on the sky along with birds and bumble bees. There were bunny rabbits and tigers frolicking around along with panda bears, all painted on the walls amidst the greenery.
The next aspect to be dealt with was the furniture and since this was a kid’s room I didn’t want anything too big and bulky that would occupy too much space. All the furniture was custom made in equally bright and cheerful hues. The bed was texture-painted in green and red. Since she mentioned she loves flowers, a set of four hand-painted and textured floral shaped stools along with a floral shaped table were placed in the centre of the room for her to sit and do her homework, as well as for her to have her little parties with girlfriends.
The edges were rounded off to serve two purposes: the aesthetic aspect as well as the safety aspect. A drawer unit (low enough for the child to reach) was painted in shades of light pink and green and placed near the wardrobe. The wardrobe and drawer unit had animal-shaped knobs to add to the general feel of the theme. Since the young girl never sleeps in the room but uses it mainly to play and keep all her toys and books, the furniture was made in standard sizes as the room doubles up as a guest room.
While decorating a child’s room it’s important to have plenty of storage for all their toys and accessories. The drawer unit had enough space to store away toys and books and the bed had storage beneath in which the rest of clutter could be put away when it was lights-out time. Colourful boxes were stacked up in another corner near the door and could also be used as additional storage.
We decided to use light coloured flooring. Since there was plenty of colour already on the walls and the furniture, any more would make the room look cramped. Pale mushroom coloured vitrified tiles were used for the flooring with a rug on one side and plenty of floor cushions for the little girl and her friends to play. Once playtime was over these could easily be tucked away in the bed’s pull-out.
Lighting plays a key role while planning the decor of any room. And for a kid’s room it’s important to have plenty of light. So we placed general lighting with pretty shades. The curtains in light shades of blue and green are in simple cotton prints and merge with the walls and the wardrobe and at the same time ensure there is enough natural light in the room. Everything in the room was created in a manner that it could be changed easily within a couple of years. Just using paint made that an easy option.
My objective was to make the room look bright and cheerful without crowding it with too much furniture and other accessories as this was meant to be her own ‘special’ space where she and her friends could relax and have enough room to move around and play. I think I can safely say that the objective was achieved when I saw the wide smile on my client’s face as she surveyed her room.