Small bedroom ideas for kids – creative ways to make the most of your space

Create a child’s bedroom that combines fun and practicality, even in a small bedroom

Looking for small bedroom ideas for kids? Small children’s rooms can be a challenge when it comes to decorating. We all want our kids to have a bright, uncluttered place to play and do homework, but they’ve often been stuck with the smaller or oddly-shaped rooms due to space issues. Not to worry: with a little bit of inspiration, it can be easy and inexpensive to turn these into fun, attractive, and organised spaces.

Planning a successful child’s bedroom scheme depends on plenty of forward-thinking. Good storage, multi-functional furniture that serves a child’s changing needs, and imaginative décor are all key. A balance between form and function will result in a hard-working layout that stands the test of time.

Small bedroom ideas for kids

Photography: Jody Stewart

For more small bedroom ideas, see: Small bedroom ideas – to make the most of a compact space

HOW CAN I MAKE THE MOST OF MY CHILD’S BEDROOM?

A child’s bedroom needs to be a flexible space, accommodating their changing needs from babyhood through to teenage years. So it makes sense to ensure that big-ticket items such as beds, wardrobes and chests of drawers will stand the test of time.

Add color, pattern and magical touches through fabric, lighting, artwork and quirky accessories, and invest in some surprisingly grown-up touches such as a wooden canopy bed – a fun take on a traditional four-poster – and a pretty coronet with cascading fabric. These beds are statement pieces and work beautifully against mustard yellows, greys and midnight blues. It all adds up to a smooth transition to teen years. But fairylights, tactile fabrics and easy access furniture adds an informal note, perfect for early years.

‘The zeitgeist is to avoid trends – instead embrace your children’s passions and interests,’ advises Olive Loves Alfie’s Ashlyn Gibson. ‘Choose storage that is easy for children to use themselves, such as wooden crates on casters that can be taken from room to room and can also double up as ride-ons.’ Don’t forget to allow for plenty of free floor space. Installing a blackout blind in and investing in a dimmer switch or night light will also make bedtimes easier.

SMALL BEDROOM IDEAS FOR KIDS

1. EMBRACE MINIMALISM IN A SMALL SPACE

Small bedroom ideas for kids

Photography: David Lovatti

A Scandinavian, minimalist style is a popular trend, alongside natural wood and brilliant whites. It’s a clean, smart and versatile look that fits in well with other room schemes and can grow with your family.

2. USE A NEUTRAL COLOR PALETTE

Photography: Mark Bolton

Keeping color schemes as neutral as possible will help you adapt a bedroom theme easily as your children’s tastes develop and change. Grey and white work brilliantly with pink, red, navy or brighter shades like yellow or turquoise; vibrant accents like these can easily be changed as children grow.

3. CHOOSE COORDINATION

Photography: Jonathan Gooch

Ensure that the furniture in your children’s room lasts a long time by picking neutral-colored matching items, including a bed, wardrobe and chest of drawers. A wooden set in painted cream can be adapted to any color scheme, from bright colors for toddlers to cooler hues for pre-teens.

4. PUT IT ON A SHELF 

Photography: Mark Bolton

Make a display of books, teddies or dolls on a set of shelves lined up horizontally on one wall. This is a great way of keeping toys off the floor, yet still to hand when your child wants to get one down. Ensure there is enough storage for toys, clothes and games with shelving, drawers, boxes and hooks. These can be painted or color coordinated to complement your overall scheme.

5. GO FOR A GENDER-NEUTRAL GREY 

Photography: Jan Baldwin

Yellows, blues or pinks are usually the go-to colors for a nursery but try using a grey-and-white color scheme instead. This combination is not only timeless, but can be personalized by adding extras, such as painted stars that can be changed over time as your child grows.

6. GET TO WORK 

Photography: Mark Bolton

Just because the room is small, it does not mean it can’t be functional, practical or even stylish. Many brands now make furniture fit for tighter or narrower spaces. A well-organised desk area is ideal for crafts, drawing and eventually homework. Choose a white work space, which will go well with any color scheme or design and ensure that it has plenty of storage for books, pens and arts and crafts items.

7. ORGANISE A SMALL ROOM

Photography: Rachel Whiting

Colorful storage not only brightens up a bedroom but it is also a compact and practical way of storing toys and other bedroom accessories. If siblings share a room then provide each child with different colored baskets to store their belongings, which is a good way of avoiding fallouts over about whose toys belong to who.

8. LET YOUR CHILD’S IMAGINATION RUN WILD

Photography: Polly Wreford

A small bedroom does not mean you have to skimp on creativity. Imaginative play can help bring a sense of fun and fantasy to a child’s bedroom. Keep some role-play toys, such as mini kitchens and shops, within reach, so children can spontaneously decide when to use them. If your space is tight, choose a wallpaper in which they can express their unabridged creativity. Here, a picture frame-style paper will allow your child to paste their favourite photos directly to the wall. Or, if your child is a Da Vinci in the making, they can paint straight on to the wallpaper.

9. FREE UP FLOOR SPACE

Photography: Dan Duchars

Transform a cluttered room by investing in clever and versatile storage. Floor space is at a premium in a small room, so hang furniture and storage on walls and the ceiling. Clever combinations of floating shelves are great for displaying toys, books and maximising wall space.

10. DO NOT OVERCROWD A ROOM

Photography: Alicia Taylor

Look at the light and space you have available and work with that. Children of all ages, including teenagers, love lounging on the floor and so it’s important they have space to stretch out and play, or chat with friends. A lot of parents make the mistake of crowding the room, so that all of its contents eventually end up downstairs.

11. WORK WITH THE ARCHITECTURE OF YOUR ROOM

Small bedroom ideas for kids

Photography: Alicia Taylor

Make the most of the room’s features. Whether it’s a sloping ceiling or a kooky cupboard, create a feature that gives your child something interesting to look at when they go to bed at night. If you have an awkward room shape, consider a bespoke option to make the best use of available space without the need to wedge a bed in or shoehorn a desk in the corner.

12. HANG IT ON THE WALL

Small bedroom ideas for kids

Photography: Mark Bolton

Children’s rooms are the perfect place to let your imagination go wild, especially when it comes to decoration. Bright colors, quirky furniture and playful accessories will create a personalized space for your little (or not so little) one. Choose a color scheme and functional furniture that can be effortlessly adapted as they grow and have fun doing the decoration together. Wall stickers are a budget-friendly option and can be changed easily, and are perfect for a small bedroom.

13. PLAN ACCORDINGLY

Photography: James Merrell

This clever bespoke design features bunk beds set into a wall of storage, and a floating desk (just seen) positioned beneath the window. The upper level is accessed using stairs – note how the treads segue with the shelving for a seamless effect. The room is neutrally decorated so that it can be changed as the children grow. The choice of pale wood and grey painted tongue and groove gives this space a relaxing, Scandinavian vibe.

14. GO FOR A TRULY BESPOKE DESIGN

Small bedroom ideas for kids

Photography: Ben Anders

Opt for bespoke fitted shelving to maximise storage. This simple white painted system was designed to be robust enough for the children to stand on to reach the top shelves. A giant light-up anchor adds a fun decorative touch.

15. CREATE A SHOW-STOPPING SCHEME

Small bedroom ideas for kids

Photography: Rachel Whiting

When decorating a child’s room, think outside the box or, in this case, the treehouse. Themed bedrooms are fantastic for smaller spaces, and using one large piece of furniture can really make the whole space standout. Choose one theme and run with it. Start with an eye-catching and, more importantly, sturdy piece of furniture and work around it. Great for rooms with high ceilings but minimal floor space, this treehouse bed is the ultimate show-stopper. The alcove behind the bed has been papered with a montage of wildly exotic prints, which are all in-keeping with the jungle vibe. As this space is all about individuality, mix it up with a modern geometric rug and a glamorous metallic pouf.

16. STIMULATE THE SENSES

Small bedroom ideas for kids

Photography: Jody Stewart

Create an interesting feature wall that will excite curiosities. Wall murals work brilliantly in a small kids bedroom as it doesn’t take up any extra space. A world map can work particularly well in a child’s room, acting as both an educational aid and colorful décor. Track down a good-quality mural company that can create a bespoke design to perfectly fit your entire wall. Practical flooring and furniture are excellent options in a child’s room. The dark grey carpet will disguise stains, while a hardy chest of drawers has great storage potential.

17. STICK TO A SIMPLE SCHEME

Small bedroom ideas for kids

Photography: David Cleveland

Use contemporary ideas to decorate a room in a listed period house. Nothing says neutral more so than a cream scheme, but that doesn’t mean it needs to be so vanilla. Hand-blocked wallpaper with a quirky alphabet design works perfectly alongside the striking original features, which are the real stars of the show in this room. If your space is verging on the small side, then it is best to keep furniture to a minimum. A painted chest of drawers, wicker baskets, chequered blinds and a plantation-style armchair are beautiful additions to this traditional room.

18. FIT IN

Small bedroom ideas for kids

Photography: Carolyn Barber

Maximise the potential of an eaves space in the loft by using the space around it for recessed storage and a bed with pullout drawers. Teens will especially love this idea as it provides them with a space for friends to sit when they come over, or as a quiet nook for reading.

19. RAISE THE BED

Small bedroom ideas for kids

Photography: James Merrell

In compact bedrooms, raising the bed up onto a platform provides the perfect solution for maximising storage space. This room feels calm despite its small size with light and simple bespoke cabinetry and a vertical-striped paper that visually adds lost height to the room.

HOW DO YOU DECORATE A SMALL BEDROOM?

Putting together a cohesive, creative and practical scheme for a child’s bedroom is no mean feat. The best way to create a successful bedroom is talking to your child about their ideal room – after all they are the ones that will be living in it. Listen to their ideas about color and style and then come to a practical compromise. There are plenty of ways that you can incorporate a favourite theme without having to repaint a room. Try starting with a neutral palette such as white or grey and then accessorising with bedding, toys and prints.

The key is to introduce flexible and accessible storage, colourful accents, and one or two striking elements for a look that can evolve as your child grows.

Floor space is at a premium in a small room, so give the illusion of more space by installing floating shelves, investing in beds with wooden legs, raised high above the ground, wall-hung units and storage that can be hidden behind a door.

Small bedroom ideas for kids

Photography: Davide Lovatti

WHAT SHOULD I PUT IN MY KIDS BEDROOM?

Whether you are looking for girls’ bedroom ideas or boys’ bedroom ideas, it is important to start with the essentials: bed and storage. From here, there is plenty of opportunity to indulge in charming decoration and that crucial bit of extra aesthetic effort. Although the possibility of your child growing out of a design should be considered, there’s nothing to stop you from making sure they have their own lovely space for both rest and creativity.

HOW DO YOU MAKE A SMALL ROOM LOOK BIGGER FOR KIDS?

‘If space is an issue, a bed with drawers underneath works really well as you can never have enough storage in a child’s bedroom. Alternatively, one that incorporates a pullout bed underneath is ideal for sleepovers. Install a wall of shelving for toys and books too. If space is tight, try adding shelves above a desk, which can be used for storing homework as well as for display,’ says Blanca Sanchez, Halo Design Interiors.

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