Kid’s Interiors Q&A

Kid’s Interiors Q&A

April Q&A

 

Your opportunity to ask the experts. A monthly Q&A featuring a handful of questions posted by our readers and followers allowing you the opportunity to get some fantastic advice from the pros.

If you have something that is bugging you or maybe you just simply want to know the best shade of paint to use and life would be that bit easier is a professional just told you the answer, then please send your question to hello@rooomy.co.uk and maybe we’ll get back to you.

For our first Q&A we turn to two child interior experts who have contributed to Rooomy since it began and their advice and work is consistently perfect. London based designer Lisa Mettis of Born & Bred Studio. We love her decisiveness and we think you will too. And Edinburgh based designer Patricia Hoyna of Studio Hoyna who always encompasses exactly what her little clients are looking for and more.

How can I create more space?

Lisa Mettis says, “Apart from my mantra of ‘clear out’, the answer will probably be storage. BUT please don’t buy storage to house toys, books and clothes you’re not going to use. When choosing storage, choose options that sit or hang above the floor. Even if boxes are on castors the two inches of the floor you can see will really make a difference to the feeling of space. Also, when buying off the peg storage solutions, buy the item in multiples to make real impact and something unique to you. (see image below). Think about how you can make the most of wall space. Display books on ledges or hang cage shelving to house soft toys and arts and crafts materials.”

How do I make a room practical and pretty?

Lisa Mettis says, “Practicality basically makes for a boring interior, sorry! Make a list of all the practical things you need (i.e. a bed, chest of drawers, curtains). Review everything else in the room, is it needed? Edit the room, then the fun begins. Layer on the ‘pretty’. This can be inexpensive and is probably just a curation of the beautiful things your child has collected. As a little tick list, consider a personalised banner, garland lights, wallpaper or artwork, new bedding and of course, a rug. No room is complete without a rug, they’re incredibly practical. Children play at floor level most of the time which can be draughty, and it protects your flooring/carpet. Many options are now machine washable too.”

 

How do I put a nursery together on a budget?

Lisa Mettis says, “It’s so easy (particularly with your first child) to get carried away with buying ‘stuff’ which, guaranteed, you will never use. Treat the nursery not as a baby’s room but as a parent and baby room. During the early days you’ll be spending a lot of time bonding and nursing together. Your baby won’t notice the mural on the wall, but you’ll notice the dodgy paint or an uncomfortable chair. Get the room up to your standards and decorate neutrally. Buy only the essentials (i.e. a cot, chair, curtains), then splurge on something that will make you happy and make nursing time more interesting.  It could be a Miffy night light, a comfy chair, a nice blanket or a candle. If you’re very lucky, gifts will start coming in and these will provide the decoration you need.”

How is it best to decorate when renting and not wanting to cause too much damage? 

Patricia Hoyna says, “Paint gives you endless design possibilities for creative makeovers and it’s so easy to bring back magnolia if needed 🙂 Although, if it was up to me magnolia would be banished from stores forever! There are literally thousands of colours to choose from including new neutrals, wouldn’t it be more fun to try something fresh?  Another option would be wall stickers/decals.

Window treatments – think colour, pattern, trimmings, pom-poms! Some high-end designs could be achieved with store bought curtains or blinds just by adding a colourful trim. You can have a go yourself, ask a friend who’s handy or even find your local haberdashery; they often provide a sewing service along with their merchandise.

Artwork – whether you frame your child’s drawings, your family photos or some super cool illustrations, use picture hanging strips; Command are my go to brand, easy to mount, easy to remove, and you won’t need a single nail. Top Tip – art must be hung at the right height, you should be able to look at it without tilting your head upward.

Rugs – I know we don’t always have the luxury to choose the flooring, but rugs are great for adding extra comfort for kids to play on and if you move you take them with you.

My child has lots of little nick-nacks, what’s the best way to create storage for the teeny annoying things that looks good and is easy to use?

Lisa Mettis says, “Arrhh yes…the little bits of toot. I say embrace it! They make such cool displays and let’s face it it’s a phase and they will move on soon to the next. Whether they’re collecting pens, Shopkins, Lego, I would split into two categories those you want to see & display. And those you need to file for a rainy day in a beautiful fashion. Check out these products to suit both budgets.

If any of these links do not work please get in touch and we will endeavour to find you the product another way or something very similar.  And if you have an interiors dilemma of your own, please get in touch and we will try to help.

For more great kid’s room inspiration check out the posts below, browse the Rooomy site pages and of course subscribe to the magazine for free.

Kid’s Rooms and More

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy's Nursery And More Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning and becoming a creative legend   Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went...

New Term , New Room

New Term , New Room

Lisa Mettis’ Top 5 Tips for Teens

 

Lisa Mettis of Born & Bred Studio designs a room for Finn, a teenage boy. 

Asking all the right questions she keeps Finn and his parents happy with the end result.

Creating a bedroom that he is extremely thrilled to show off to his friends.

photographed by Alessandro Tear

 

The teen room … usually the most concise of briefs. Mainly as the young person knows exactly what they want (sort of). Parents are squirming in the corner with the ‘lets confer later look’ written all over their face.

I often can’t decipher why a teen or even tweens taste is so sophisticated. I really believe its all the ‘stuff’ they are exposed to. From parents, holidays and a constant flow of information and inspiration from social media. Many teens reference the latest eateries or places they have visited in the UK or abroad. It goes without saying, all of our inspiration is communicated via Pinterest and Instagram. 

Finn has a very strong character and knew what he wanted. At one point there was a suggestion of black walls, an open fire and sheepskins (I’m not kidding). But after asking some probing questions and getting on his level (something his parents could obviously never do…as that would be so uncool) it became clear which direction I should take to please both Finn and his parents.

 

“This was a complete education for me personally, a real eye opener for my future parenting”

Where do you like to hang out? What’s your favourite shop? What are your interests. The room was crystal clear in my head. He had a love for the Abercrombie shops. That lead to dark interiors. He was set on a double bed….hello I’m grown up now mum. Gaming is Finn’s main passion, when not studying, so an area for two monitors was non-negotiable. This was a complete education for me personally and a real eye opener for my future parenting! Finn also needed storage to house school work and sports equipment.

What I deciphered from the brief.  Dark blue walls, a large low-level walnut bed to sit at the right level next to the shutters. Some very cool blue-print artwork commissioned on the same colour wood as headboard incorporating Finns interests (sports, lego, gaming, bicycles). Low level lockers for day to day school books and sports kit including fencing and rugby. A gaming corner with two monitors, corner desk and swivel chair. Bedding and accessories are cool, creative and a fun (grown up) surprise for Finn. And the icing on the cake was the neon light which added the ‘cool teen’ hang out element to the room.

I was still in the house for the big reveal…and it must be said I was a little nervous with this cool customer. Early on winters evening, Finn walked into the room with a friend, the neon was on, new cool bedding laid out… initially speechless.. “OMG that light…turned his back looked in my direction ‘thank you this is really amazing…good job.’ I disappeared down the stairs and Finn’s friend lamented on how ‘awesome your room is’…and settled in for a night of gaming and chilling..

I disappeared into the night and the interiors fairies work was complete for another week…smiling ear to ear. Phheeww!

 

TOP FIVE TIPS FOR A TEEN SPACE

1. Is your child settled into secondary school? If so now’s the time. I have done several kids rooms the year before this transition…and honestly they are like different people a year on. New influences, friendship sets and outlook. And whilst its all a big leap and very grown up…there is an innocence their that needs to be (discretely) acknowledged and embraced as it will be fleeting.

2. In terms of the foundations…paint colour and anything built in… think adult. Does this have longevity could it be a guest room.

3. Embrace the accessories and the novelty…this is what the teen years are all about.

4. Think comfort and social. You want your teen to feel like they can bring friends home and hang out (away from you obviously). Encourage a place to chill and study. Tweens are under so much pressure both socially and academically … a safe place is key.

5. There is a lot to be learned from our teens. Many of whom are incredibly passionate about the environment. A good time to purchase design classics budget permitting. They will clearly be taking them with them when (if they ever) move out!

Finn’s room was designed by Lisa Mettis, Director of Born & Bred Studio

Photography by Alessandro Tear

If you have an enquiry about a product please get in touch here.

More Teen Rooms

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy's Nursery And More Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning and becoming a creative legend   Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went...

Teen Dream

Teen Dream

Monochrome Teen Dream Bedroom

 

Lisa Mettis presents the room she created for a sophisticated miss called Izzy. 

Photographs by Anna Stathaki

 

Meet Izzy, a sophisticated woman who works in marketing and travels frequently for work … not really! Not yet anyway! Welcome to the room of 13-year-old Izzy. I would be lying if I said the kids I meet, particularly the tween/teen stage never fail to surprise me (read impress me). Their taste level is so sophisticated at such a young age. It could be the constant exposure to the world of social media, with inspiration at your fingertips 24/7. Or maybe it’s confidence and knowing exactly what you want.

The process from start to finish was very simple as Izzy was very clear in her brief. Prior to our first consultation Izzy had collated a Pinterest board with a few select images that specified the look and feel she wanted for her new room. I translated her ideas into a cohesive scheme marrying Izzy’s wish list with the practicalities of the room and the budget.

The room is very compact but houses everything a gal needs. The floorspace is around 3m x 3m. Izzy needed a comfy bed to chill on that doubles as both storage and an extra bed for sleep overs, desk/dressing area and oodles of built in storage. We laid wooden floors and painted the boards white to create the illusion of space and light. We followed this through to the windows which were dressed with white slatted blinds. The wallpaper is an amazing faux white brick pattern, with copper highlights throughout for Izzy to display her pics and personal mementos. Warmth was added through textiles: sheepskins on the floor, mixed textures in the scatter cushions and bedding. Fun styling pieces included cacti, new stationery and fun pots and bottles for her stationery and cosmetics.

“Izzy had collated a Pinterest board with a few select images that specified the look
and feel she wanted for her new room

As Izzy chills in bed, she can see her framed collection of Vogue. She got the idea after attending the Chanel exhibition at the Saatchi gallery. Did I mention what a stylish, sophisticated young lady she is? Inspirational style lessons to be had for all ages in this teen room!

Enjoy and be inspired!

See more of Izzy’s Family home here.

More Lisa Mettis Creations 

Teen Dream

Monochrome Teen Dream Bedroom   Lisa Mettis presents the room she created for a sophisticated miss called Izzy.  Photographs by Anna Stathaki   Meet Izzy, a sophisticated woman who works in marketing and travels frequently for work ... not really! Not yet anyway!...

Neon Lights

Neon Lights

Who Runs The World? Girls!

 

Lisa Mettis presents the perfect transition ideas from child to teen. 

Light bright, with a touch of neon. 

Photographs by Anna Stathaki

 

This room is a beautiful, fun space for a tween. That difficult age between junior and senior school. Where everything is about to change, from your friendship group and influences, to those dreaded hormones. This is a great time to redecorate your child’s room. In my experience, once the new external influences start kicking in, it’s quite hard to get a mini client to express what they actually want, not their new friends. Also, if you select carefully and think ‘future’ with small tweaks, this room could well take your tween into their teens and beyond.

Gemma’s room was actually briefed by her mum. It’s a rented property and she was very keen to make it their own. First off by removing the shelves they had inherited, saying no to the magnolia and purchasing functional furnishings and accessories.

Quite early in the process the client expressed an interest in quality furnishings that have longevity. So, this lucky young woman is the proud owner of a room which houses some of the world’s best brands. They will stand the test of time.

To kick things off, we freshened up the room by painting the room in Farrow & Ball Blackened. Their whitest of the grey shades. Described as an architectural grey white. It’s one of those wonderful shades that looks different in each light, and a perfect choice in this period London town house.

After exploring several storage solutions. We selected that design classic, the string shelving system, which can incorporate a desk space, house homework, books and knick-knacks, whilst also storing clothing and small accessories, such as socks and swimwear. The iconic Eames desk chair fits the brief of clean, cool and contemporary.

“The look is incredible, fresh and functional.  It has allowed Gemma the luxury of
some features she never had before, such as a workplace and a space to chill and lounge”

The look is incredible fresh and functional. It has allowed Gemma the luxury of some features she never had before, such as a workspace and space to chill and lounge (the floor cushion was non-negotiable!).

The single Sparrow Bed with trundle for sleepovers is by Ouef. It’s very heavy with a high-quality finish, incorporating pale Baltic birch and white. The custom-made light we commissioned is the perfect feature for a strong independent young woman to wake up to every morning. All the pale design classics are punctuated with pops of fun, bright colour and pattern. The bedding is from the fabulous Love Frankie, which we purchased in both colourways. Come wash day the room will have a completely new fun look!

The family are big art collectors and have an impressive collection of prints around the house. I wanted to source something in keeping with the rest of the house, but unique to Gemma’s taste. These limited addition print runs by Berlin-based artist Eillot are perfect. I had several clues that Fluro donuts and ice cream might go down a treat, no pun intended! We love the chilled grown-up vibe of the added texture from the dip-dyed faux fur bean bag and the Beni Ourain inspired rug.

We’re totally thrilled with the end result, we know this room will take Gemma from tween to teen and beyond, in fact, can I have a room like that?

Girls, Girls, Girls…

 

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy's Nursery And More Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning and becoming a creative legend   Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went...

Arthur’s London Bedroom

Arthur’s London Bedroom

London Baby | Arthur’s Bedroom

 

In a beautiful Edwardian house in Notth West London,

Lisa Mettis worked her magic on an extra special room for Arthur. 

Photographs by Anna Stathaki

 

The client asked if we could do something extra special for her son.  The brief was very open and there were no real restrictions. Our clients were overwhelmed with the thought of juggling full-time jobs, two children and the renovation of their home. The brief for Arthur was a fun kids room that’s not twee or gender stereotyped and initially, they thought they’d do the kids rooms last and at their own pace but after looking at the mood boards we had created, our clients realised we opened up the possibilities of using high street and small brands which have so much to offer in terms of fun and affordable children’s homewares that we were thrilled to get to work much sooner!  

For us, Arthur’s room really reflects all the key elements of the perfect child’s space. A few focal points like the teepee bed, the lockers, the wallpaper but also the detail of the practical (yet novelty) lights and the use of Arthurs belongings to create displays and show off his personality. The brief of fun is fulfilled and not only is it gender neutral but it’s perfect for the eventual transition from baby to junior.  

The look on Arthur’s face was priceless when we showed him into his new bedroom and his parents were delighted with the outcome. The relief of having another room ticked off the list was evident! We interview our clients after each job and hear about the new rooms from the child’s perspective. Not only is it super sweet and sometimes highly entertaining, it also marks the end of a project for us and the start of new adventures and memory making for that little person and their family. 

“The biggest tip of all is to go out of your comfort zone and take a risk”

The trust between designer and client is paramount and is always reflected in the end result of the project. There is always an open dialogue for the designer and clients to make changes along the way and although there is a period of ‘getting to know each other’ it is important to consider a few things before hiring a designer. My top tips would be, do your research, find someone that has a portfolio which reflects the style you aspire to and make sure they have testimonials to back up their work.

The biggest tip of all is to go out of your comfort zone and take a risk…after all, that’s what you’re hiring a designer for! 

Born & Bred Studio are a London based interior design company.  Check out their website and social media for more inspiration. 

Boys, Boys, Boys…

 

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy's Nursery And More Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning and becoming a creative legend   Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went...

Pin It on Pinterest