Make It Personal: Simple Design Tips To Help Your Kids Make Their Rooms Feel Like Their Own

When your children get to a certain age, they’ll likely start spending more time in their rooms. After all, this is the first place that they get to call their own, and it’s where they’ll quickly start to develop their independent play and their sense of identity. All of which are great things!

While you might have had free reign of their bedroom decor when they were too young to say anything about it, they’ll probably also start to have their own ideas about bedroom design around now. And, that can often lead to some clashing ideas about what counts as ‘good bedroom decor’.

Children can certainly have some funny ideas about how they’d like their spaces to look. Because of this, you might not want to let them loose with a paintbrush and a creative vision just yet. But, given how crucial their bedroom will continue to be for their development, security, and beyond, you won’t want to altogether bulldoze their creative decor expressions and ideas either. 

But, is there a middle ground that could keep everyone happy? We believe so, and we’re going to consider some simple childhood bedroom design tips that could help you find that balance. 

Joint Decisions

You don’t need to let your child completely take over to give them a say in how you decorate their bedroom. You simply need to make sure that you involve them in any decor decisions before getting down to work yourself. For younger children, this may mean giving them a choice of preselected options, or character designs that you can work within.

For older children, however, you could take them along to your local DIY store and let them choose the color palette they like best, and even the fixtures that will go alongside it. You’ll then be able to make those choices work realistically and attractively, while your child will still feel more like this is ‘their’ space thanks to their input in the finished product. 

Chalkboard Walls

Chalkboard paint is now widely available, and this can be a lot of fun for letting kids make an impermanent mark on their decor. After all, a chalkboard wall is a blank canvas. Your children are then free to add things like drawings of their favorite cartoon characters, or just pretty additions such as flowers that they can always erase and change if their tastes happen to shift.

This is an especially great option for young kids, who are otherwise at risk of growing out of early decor choices within less than a year or so, no matter who’s implementing them. Plus, as a parent, this option ensures that your child doesn’t ruin their room like they would if they made a mistake once you’d let them loose with proper wall paint. 

Framed Crafts

Most often, a child’s desire to have a say in bedroom decor will come down to a budding need to have a space that they feel reflects them in some way. This is a need that we can all relate with to some extent, but often, it’s possible to achieve a reflective space without letting go of the paintbrush just yet. Framed crafts are especially great for letting your child’s personality shine through, no matter how you’ve decorated their bedroom itself.

Even better, creating those framed crafts is a great way to spend quality time together, and to give you a better idea of what kind of look your child would like most in their bedroom overall. Framed paintings are perhaps the most obvious choice for this task, but you could also let your child loose with a camera, or try an alternative to paintings, like embroidery or origami. These are great skills for your child to learn generally, but they’ll also ensure that they can create plenty of original and unique-to-them frames for a bedroom that suits them down to the ground. 

Open Units

Often, it’s the things inside a room rather than the colors on the walls that add to the overall atmosphere of the space. Even though you may want to take care of painting itself for obvious reasons, it’s therefore beneficial to let your child choose simple decor stuff, like what toys they have on display. This isn’t to say that you should just let them sprinkle their teddies all over the place in the spirit of creative expression, but it does mean that you should stock up on some open units and let them loose with minimal guidance. 

Open units are generally great for young and older kids, as they make it possible to see the toys on offer. From a decor perspective, these can also help to bring your child’s belongings into the room in an organized and eye-catching way. Of course, a messy open unit also leaves you with nowhere to hide, so you’ll probably want to take care of specific positioning if your kids are younger. But, letting them choose what goes on each shelf, and roughly where, can still help them get the space to look exactly how they envision it. 

Wall Stencils

While actual wall painting isn’t an option for younger children, you may find it worthwhile to let older kids do at least some painting with you. After all, it is their room. Wall stencils offer a great way to keep things under control if you do decide to go down this route, and can help guide your kids about what they should do. Even better, with research, you should find that there are wall stencils of all different types and sizes. And, surprisingly, you may find that even something as simple as a small flower stencil that you let your child loose with is enough to satisfy their creativity.

Obviously, you’ll still need to take care of things like laying down old sheets and covering skirting boards, light switches, etc. that your child might end up working near. But, once you’ve completed these tasks, your child can’t do all that much damage if you let them loose with a stencil that has a generous surround, and a sponge with which they can apply light layers of paint. 


Some of us are more specific about decor than others, and parents who like a sleek finish will probably want to steer clear of this option. However, if you don’t mind a slightly less neat finish, you may find that you can keep your child happy by dedicating a small area of their wall space to something like paint-covered hand prints. These are great because they ensure at least some level of neatness from even younger kids (who you will need to assist with placing and removal of hands). Yet, if you all get stuck in with doing a handprint and labeling them, this can be a subtle way to add fun, personality, and child-led input into bedroom decor.

If you want to go really wild, and your child is slightly older, you could even let them paint their hands and create basic pictures like hearts, circles, and flowers. Or, they could do upside-down handprints that you embellish to create elephants, giraffes, or more. All of which can remind them of the creative input you trusted them to have. 

Make It Personal: Simple Design Tips To Help Your Kids Make Their Rooms Feel Like Their Own


Childhood bedroom decor can be tricky once your kids are old enough to voice their preferences and opinions. Make sure you never end up creating a bedroom that feels alien to them by allowing them to add their mark in these small but creative ways. 

Barb Webb. Founder and Editor of Rural Mom, is an the author of "Getting Laid" and "Getting Baked". A sustainable living expert nesting in Appalachian Kentucky, when she’s not chasing chickens around the farm or engaging in mock Jedi battles, she’s making tea and writing about country living and artisan culture.
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