Caitlin Hazell

Caitlin Hazell


For this month’s blogpost, we hear from Carole Whitby, contemporary interior designer of Upside Down Design, with her top tips and advice when planning your child’s bedroom.

When you first start to plan your child’s bedroom, all sorts of things will pop into your head including the bedroom that you had as a child, or maybe the one that you wished that you had! However, this time the room must please at least two people, you and your child, so it’s not an easy path to tread. 

Always begin with a planned conversation with your child, having pens, crayons and paper at hand.  Encourage your child to articulate their thoughts either by writing them down, drawing them or cutting and sticking images from magazines. You can do this too of course; in fact, why not do it at the same time for fun? Ask them how they’d like their room to feel when it is done. Some will say cosy or cool; others safe or bright or happy…there are many feelings that a child’s special space can evoke. 

Next discuss with them the practicalities of their room. We come across ‘floordrobes’ (floors used as wardrobes) in our job as interior designers all the time.  If the child doesn’t have the correct storage for their needs, they’ll end up dumping their possessions in places where they (and you), have no chance finding them again when needed in a hurry – like school uniform and gym shoes! Many children don’t like hangers; they prefer drawers and shelves. The challenge is to find the right combination of storage that helps them stay organised and saves you from having to search for things buried in their rooms.  

Once you’ve determined the practical requirements and how they want their room to ‘feel’, you can then start planning in detail – this is most definitely the fun part!! Do they want a study area and a play area? Can the space (if not very big) be multifunctional to accommodate both? Do they have a theme in mind or should they keep it simple and personalise using cushions, bedding and wall art to reflect their personality? Beware however that room finishes vary enormously in budget – it’s easy to get carried away, so first start with a realistic idea of how much you want to spend. 

Future proof the room if you can with enough electrical sockets – in the right places, not under the bed which is where they always seem to be!

Consider if the bed you choose is age appropriate (especially for little ones). Then if possible, choose one that they can also grow with. If you can get five years out of a bed, you might want to invest a little more in it. Ten year olds become fourteen year olds in the blink of an eye and stretch accordingly – so choose wisely. If you can fit a small double bed into a pre-teen room, it’s a great idea. 

Have your child work with you and shop with you when it comes to final finishes like paint, blinds, bedding and lighting. These are the details which will define the mood and feel of the room, so it’s important to get them right.   

Most of all, have fun with your child planning their special space and try to keep in mind that this is their room not yours.

Perhaps copper green and pink really can work together. Unless you try, you’ll never know! 

Upside Down Design is a unique independent interiors shop and design space on Bootham, just a few steps away from the historic city walls. If you’re looking for inspiration for your home, Upside Down Design offers a versatile range of services and products including interior design. As well as offering help to those wishing to enhance their home, it’s also a veritable treasure trove for those seeking stylish gifts (or treats to self of course).  From cushions, throws, lights, books and games – they pride themselves on having something to please and tempt everybody.

You can visit Upside Down Design, 27 Bootham, York, Y030 7BW from Monday- Saturday: 9.30am- 6pm and Sunday: 11am- 5pm.


Caitlin Hazell


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