What’s your pet peeve as a parent? Are you one of the 65% who hate picking up toys and clothes? Do you long to walk across your living room floor without stepping on building bricks or tripping over toy trains? Dedicating a whole room just to play is a bit of an old-fashioned idea, but it’s one that could save other spaces in your home from a toy takeover. And of course, a playroom can be a lot of fun to design and decorate too. If creating a playroom or play space is on your to-do list, this post aims to guide you through the essential points to consider.
Selecting a play space
A spare bedroom is a luxury that not all of his have. Lack of an empty bedroom needn’t prevent your playroom dreams from becoming a design reality though. According to research conducted by LV= only one in seven Brits has a dedicated playroom in their home.
If you don’t have a bedroom to give over to play, you could consider sacrificing a communal space such as the dining room or building a brand new fit-for-purpose space. This means you’ll be close at hand to keep an eye on play too. If you’ve room to extend, a warm-roof conservatory can make a comfortable and contemporary playroom that offers a lot of additional benefits. Take a look at https://www.lekasystems.co.uk for build inspiration and information about how conservatories should be designed with safety in mind.
Along with providing a light and airy space, a conservatory can make for a convenient option because it often acts as an adjoining extension of a communal area such as a kitchen or living room. Plus, the garden or yard runs right alongside your playroom for those sunny periods when little ones are running in and out all day long.
For those where building work is out of the question, separating off a small area of the child’s bedroom can help to create distinct areas for sleep and for play. Room sectioning is a technique that can also be applied to communal areas like the kitchen or living room, as considered design features can stop toys from taking over the rest of the room.
Choose your decorating theme
Choosing a decorating theme, colour scheme or bringing your little one’s favourite characters to life is something you can really have fun with if you’re designing an at-home playroom. Try to use their interests and personality as a starting point if you can. Kids love playing in a space if they feel they have helped to contribute to how it looks and have had their ideas listened to. Could your little one help you choose the colour of the paint for the walls?
There are some fantastic trend-led playroom items available in the shops right now with key trends spanning everything from dinosaurs to sloths and mermaids. If you prefer to stay clear of characters they may get bored of, geometric patterns are increasing in popularity for kids’ rooms and Pinterest has also reported an increased number of searches around ‘into the wild’ themed spaces. Think enchanted forests, woodland spaces and rustic touches – taking inspiration from nature can make for a really magical playroom that encourages lots of creative play. For toys and toy reviews a site like kidcrave.com could be a good place to look too.
Features to include
Once you know the space you’ve got to work with, you can get started on mapping out mini areas and features dedicated to different types of play. Let your inclusions be led by the age of your child but try and be mindful of how the area could be updated as they age too. A sensory area with a ball pit, lights or musical toys will delight babies and young toddlers. For older toddlers and young children, a craft and painting area complete with table and chair or an easel can keep budding artists busy. Roleplay areas such as shops or kitchens can also be set up ready to enjoy.
Or how about fuelling young imaginations with a reading nook that doubles up as a den? Keep it cosy and comfortable by piling up colourful cushions or a beanbag, or create a doorway to other worlds with the likes of teepees and play tents. Don’t forget to factor in an accessible book display too – keeping reading material at a reachable height will encourage younger children especially to select a story themselves. If you’re working with a more compact space you may want to rotate the books on display.
Whatever you do, don’t neglect to factor in smart storage. Whether it’s shelving built into the walls with pull-out boxes or a traditional wooden toy box, it’s easier to keep a space tidy when there are plenty of places to put things away. Though of course, there’s no guarantee those building blocks and trains will make their way back to their designated spot without a bit of extra help!If you’ve recently moved home or have welcomed a new addition and are hoping to create a more child-friendly space, take a peek at my recent post: Creating a child-friendly living room.