“Smart” Design

Decorating a child’s room is getting easier and becoming more fun thanks to so many innovative products and an abundance of decorating websites for inspiration. One area that has really grown is the world of decals making it easier to make a significant impact in your child’s room for relatively low cost. There are decals for everything – even furniture or light fixtures that give the illusion of upscale design without spending the big bucks.

New to the decal world is a product I have recently come to love because it not only looks great, but actually helps your child learn at the same time!! Pretty genius right? Teachstix are wall decals of sight words necessary in learning to read. Click on the picture to get a better look:

teachstix

Sight words are frequently recurring words in text that children learn to identify by sight rather than by decoding them. Most of them cannot be phonetically sounded out and do not come with a visual cue (how can you illustrate, “what”?);  therefore, children must learn them through memorization. Even children who have mastered the skill of sounding out can have trouble reading if they have not learned the sight words.

Full disclosure: one of the women who created this product is a mom friend who, like myself, has two smart and curious boys who love to learn. She came up with the idea for the product when one of her boys was having trouble learning to read. Read her story here:

http://www.teachstix.com/a-mothers-story

As an early childhood educator, this product is a dream! I know first hand the importance of sight words, but I also know how tedious and uninspiring flashcards can be. Here, your children can be immersed in a print-rich environment and be learning automatically instead of through a painstaking process. And as a designer, I love how modern and cool they look!

For more information please visit,

http://www.teachstix.com/

10 ideas for turning your baby’s name into sentimental nursery wall art

Here are some cute ideas for how to display your baby/child’s name in their room and in doing so create a work of art. Courtesy of Houzz. (Some of the pictures get cut off so you are better off clicking on the green title below to view the pictures in their entirety and be able to read the article.) Enjoy!


The Built-In Bed

 

Built-Ins have always been a sought-after feature in houses. If done well, they look stylish, save space, and most importantly create much needed storage. Increasingly, people are making built-ins multi-functional. Instead of just shelving or book-casing, they can also be seating and sleeping quarters. High quality built-ins add value to your property as they add a high end feel to an interior. Built-in beds can be a wonderful asset to children’s room but can be impractical if not designed with foresight. Because a built-in will be a permanent feature of a room (and generally an expensive one) the storage aspect should be designed to grow with your child. One must ask oneself what kinds of things will need to be stored in a few years or in many. It is a good idea to design both the bed and storage feature in a way that would be practical not just for your child but other home owners to come. Even if you know you will be staying in a home for a long time, the design should accommodate many scenarios. For example the storage may be used for toys now but text books later.

The best part about having a built-in bed in a child’s room (or any room really) is the cozy, nook-like retreat they create. Here are 2 of my favorite nook style built-ins:

   

The vintage style one on the left has particularly nice decorative storage features.

The following have nice but limited storage features:

  

The following have incredible storage features including full closet space.

This last one although not a true built-in but more of a custom bunk bed also had very creative storage features as well as being adorable!

If doing a built-in in your house, its important to have a trusted designer or architect design it rather than your general contractor. Built-in beds can be more complicated than they seem and as they will be a permanent feature, they must be well thought out.

 

Oh Jenny!

As I have a blog about children’s interiors I suppose it’s kind of imperative I have a post about Jenny. Who, or what, say you? About Jenny Lind. I know you keen observers of style and design have noticed too; Reproductions and modern versions of the vintage furniture are suddenly popping up everywhere! Okay- perhaps if your not always on the look out for trends in children’s furniture and design, it might not have caught your eye yet. But now it will. So let’s start with the what. Jenny Lind furniture is a style from the 1800’s characterized by its spindled wood. Jenny Lind the person was actually a Swedish opera singer of that time who because of being so damn popular had many things named after her, most famously furniture, after it was recorded that she slept in such a bed once. Ah, to be so lucky.

As I am a sucker for vintage pieces especially in children’s spaces of course I have been excited at the trend to bring this furniture back.

If you are lucky enough to find actual antique Jenny Lind furniture (and you can afford it) you wont be disappointed. Mixing it up with some modern pieces and bedding will look great!

 

But as many of us don’t have the time or money to rummage around antique fairs, luckily many furniture companies have brought them back and they look sweeter than ever.

I have to give props to Land of Nod for not only producing a lovely collection of Jenny Lind furniture but for actually getting more and more in touch with real designers and creating children’s room accessories of either, designer’s work, or that recall vintage designs of the past.

Ahh just a few more images to round it out.

Thanks Jenny!