Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Shared (but separate) kid's bedrooms

I get a lot of emails asking for ideas on how to handle shared bedrooms among siblings.  Somewhere in all of these emails there is always a line that goes something like this:

"I want each child to feel like their space is personal but I don't want the room to feel like a complete hodge podge of things that don't look good together."

This can definitely be a challenge, compounded even more so when you have a boy and a girl sharing a space.  So today I am sharing some of my favorite images of children's bedrooms that I think manage to be shared but also separate.  {And because you all seem to hate them, for the purposes of this post, I am eliminating any bunk bed spaces.}

The easiest solution to this problem is to use color to clearly delineate separate and unique sides to the room.  Color is a very strong variable so to keep things from looking all together crazy, it is best to maintain some consistency with the other major elements.  If you study the images below you will see this in action.  Different colored walls but same bedding/headboards, different colored curtain panels (on the same window!) but same beds, etc.

A bit more complex (but equally effective) solution to this problem is to divide the room with some kind of architectural feature.  If space allows, lining the beds up against a wall and place a tall bookshelf (built it or free-standing) between them can give each bed just the feeling of seclusion you need. 

Even placing a desk or nightstand between them can go far to helping you create separate spaces for each child.  And of course, personalizing with things like art, monogrammed pillows and each child's favorite stuffed animals never hurts either.  The key is again, to keep the elements consistent.  In the image below, that's achieved by using art that is typographically the same but in 2 different colors.  The same can be said for the bedding. 

Did you share a room with a sibling growing up?  Or do your kid's share a room now?  What tips do you have for letting each one's personality come through?