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Littles Living Large: 5 trends for kids' rooms with a big impact

Hi friends! I'm pleased to finally present my first blog entry for Fresh Paint. After a few years of brainstorming, procrastinating, and pregnancies (yep, still here), I am taking the leap and putting pen to paper. With two toddlers and one on the way, I wanted to start with one of my favorite and most studied design subjects these days... Kids! Always on my mind and underfoot (!), they undeniably present the greatest design challenges. As an interior designer, creating or making anything look too nice seems illogical when they are just one step behind smearing, smashing and undoing. So I guess as they say, if you can't beat 'em... join 'em. And I mean that in a completely metaphorical way ;) Seriously, there are so many ways we can create wow factors for these simple little creatures full of wonder and awe. Kids spaces really do brighten my spirits more than any other when unabashedly bold or full of whimsy and color. . let's give this topic a go over the next few weeks as we explore one by one 5 trends that hit the mark in the simplest of quarters.

Today I'll just talk about my 1st of 5. So grab a coffee and humor me. On this snowy first day of March (really?), here's to hoping to spark inspiration for perfectly unpredictable kids rooms everywhere.


1. Wallpaper: walls or ceilings

2. Unique hardware and hooks

3. Bespoke bunks

4. Unconventional play surfaces

5. Storage, storage, storage


Wallpaper is still getting over a bad rap is seems.. somewhere embedded in our minds is an image of a 1980 striped moire with pink roses and a coordinating floral border wrapped at chair rail height and we shudder. But! I'm thoroughly convinced there's a fresh new graphic world of papers out there defying all the cottage garden prints of yesteryear that got us wary in the first place. And I find myself convincing the uncertain skeptics one by one, including my husband (maybe).


As we speak, I am in the process of choosing one of these dear applications for my own nursery for little guy number 3. Yes, a designer with 3 boys 3 and under seems ironic and dirty, and it probably will be. Fortunately I am stubborn and determined enough that he will not just commandeer the hand-me-downs and decor leftovers of his two older brothers. He will have his own theme. There. ha. We finally moved from a NYC apartment to a townhouse that has just enough space for a little nook of a room to call his own. It was our master walk-in dressing room/closet complete with natural light and and a cedar closet and for about a minute before the pregnancy news, but alas. Our charming new townhouse in all its 1700's glory, doesn't have many rooms with straight walls or 90 degree corners to speak of. Especially a true statement in the nursery, along with a lot of window and door interruptions. So this leaves you to wonder: why in the world are you considering wallpaper? We'll come back to this in a second..


Wallpaper comes in all shapes and applications these days. Gone are the days when wallpaper must leave a permanent presence in your humble abode. You don't even need to leave your home to find it. Now there's a vast selection of DIY removable wallpaper that you can remove or reuse from accessible online resources such as Etsy, Chasing Papers, Hygge & West, Restoration Hardware, Wayfair, Target, and Walmart for that matter. These include full sheets, tiles, or decals. Some small scale design companies are even making a wide variety of custom-sized papers for a single wall installation including one-of-a-kind murals. So here are a few of my contenders:


Above is a sweet twin room that successfully uses the sloped roof-line surfaces to mimic the lofty flight of birds soaring in the paper graphic. Delightfully hand-drawn by Hygge & West (pronounced Hue-guh for cozy in Danish) in both wallpaper tiles and tradition wallpaper rolls, "Daydream" comes in a variety of bright and modern colors. This gender-neutral theme is cheerful, playful and anything but outdated.



Australian wallpaper and decal company, Ginger Monkey, renders a garland of watercolored foliage as a delicate statement in this otherwise monochromatic children's room. Decals come in sets printed full color onto a peel and stick, polyester fire rated, green, non-toxic fabric material. Easy install on any clean, flat surface and reusable without residual adhesive, these will not shrink, rip or wrinkle. I adore this particular flowerless arrangement with its fresh springtime composition. Over a crib, on a stand-alone focal wall or unexpectedly as an overhead ceiling canopy are perfect applications.


No mistaking this over-scaled feminine and floral design for meek or inaudible. These peonies may speak sweetly, but they will be heard! RH baby & child uses dramatic appeal for these watercolored peel-and-stick vinyl panels. Without borders or background, the 9-pc bloom and 17 separate leaves can be layered without caution and seamlessly applied to any color wall. Size matters in this case; peonies range from sizes range from 19" x 18" to 27" x 52". Available in 2 colorways: Petal or more neutral White.

Another light and lofty aspiration from Schumacher comes in 3 colorways: Gold, Quartz, and Mineral. This washable, strippable, non-pasted paper comes on a roll with a 38.25" straight repeat. You can find this dreamy number on Wayfair for $10/sq ft but be sure to be have a professional verify your required amount before placing an order. You don't want to under or over-estimate when dealing with any wallpaper. Dyes diff from lot to lot in production, so its important be to confident in quantity required for the job. Dream big, little one.




Okay, so where were we on baby 3 nursery? Here we are above, sampling some Hygge & West papers and mocking up my existing drapery panels with limited options on wonky walls. As you might have guessed, I'm taking it off-wall and upward. What better way to doze off than looking upward into a whimsical cloud filled sky? The ceiling it is. Less obstructions, slivered cut-outs, and frankly less DIY work for pregnant me. Once this detail was put to bed, I went to work on researching my favorite pick, the Daydream Sunshine (far right ceiling) to determine shall I stick or paste? Daydream conveniently comes in either roll or tile...


A consideration I found noteworthy in this decision is the slight color and scale change between the two options of roll/tile. The actual tile size upon ordering is 24x32"Wide and the roll is 36" Wide, making the scale for the removable tile just slightly smaller than the roll. Also, the color on the tiles is slightly paler than their counterparts on the roll due to fabrication methods. Word to the wise, use caution in sampling the material.

*This photo shows (2) 3x6" tile samples together at REDUCED scale for both the "Sunshine" and "Orange" ceiling samples (as per H&W sample department). Notice the center panel Daydream "Cream" is a much larger scale sample from the wallpaper roll. A truly safe bet for sampling the removable tiles is probably to just order a set. But if you do, keep in mind that small lot variations can happen with each production. Keep your samples as such; samples only. Make a final decision and order the complete amount required in one shot for a cohesive look.


Two birds with one stone, a nursery decision and a blog post.. excuse the intended pun but I'm feeling enthusiastic. Cheers to wallpaper, parenting, and more upcoming kids trends in the next weeks. I'll keep you in my nursery wallpaper loop as this project progresses!


Thanks for stopping by to check in.. Stay tuned for all things charming, whimsical, and practically unpredictable:)

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