Decorating tips for making your home durable, accessible, and practical yet still stylish when you have kids.
For the first year of being a mom, I honestly thought we wouldn’t be able to decorate our house until our kiddo(s) were grown up and off to college. I accepted it. I let the plastic toy explosion and chocolate milk stains of chaos rule our life.
BUT it wasn’t until I left my teaching job to be a stay-at-home mom after that first year that I realized sooooo many of the different tricks I could use to make our house look pretty without its first impression saying, “Hi, welcome to our home. We’re giving up for the next 18 years.”
And you want to know something awesome? Once we really started decorating our house, we realized it also taught our daughter to respect our home too. Yet we could still get messy and have wild fun despite the decorating changes.
So with another kiddo on the way now, I figured now was the perfect time to share some of my favorite kid-friendly decorating tips.
10 Tips for a Kid-Friendly Home With Style
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If you’ve followed this blog a while, I know you saw this coming. If there’s ever a spill or a tummy bug, just toss the slipcover in the wash, and it’s good as new (and clean of tummy germs). We have them on our living room sofa, armchairs, and dining room chairs, and we love not having to worry about them.
2. Weathered wood table tops
If you already love farmhouse style, using a weathered wood dining table or coffee table is already pretty great. But we also love that our kiddo can have craft time and bang them up all she wants without us being concerned. The more weathering, the more character.
This one in our breakfast nook was a super cheap antique Craigslist find, and it has served us well so far.
These are great too:
3. Baskets with labels for toy clutter
We felt like we were drowning in toys until we implemented a toy storage system with labels so that everything has a place. Use pictures on the labels and then even pre-readers know how to clean up by themselves. Woot!
Olivia cleaned her entire playroom yesterday within 30 minutes because she knows where to put everything! Before starting our organization system, that never ever happened.
4. Trays for easily removable decor
I usually put a few decor pieces in a tray on our coffee table, dresser tops, or dining room table, and if the decor ever needs to be removed for game night or a big family meal or just for getting rough and rowdy, I can just move the tray out of reach in one fell swoop.
I really love these:
5. Vintage style rugs
I’ve discovered that vintage style overdyed rugs ROCK! Not just because they’re gorgeous but because they hide stains really really well. And they’re nice and soft for sprawling out during playtime on the floor. (Here are some of my favorites.)
6. Black doors
Since painting our doors black (well, Benjamin Moore Wrought Iron really), we no longer see dirty black fingerprint smudges. Sure, they’re probably still dirty from exploring little hands, but we can’t tell. That counts, right? 😉
7. Wall hooks
When in the history of ever has a 4 year-old ever perfectly hung up a towel on a towel bar or a jacket on a hanger? We’re big fans of wall hooks in our laundry room for jackets or backpacks and hooks in the bathroom for towels to make it easy.
These are so cute:
8. Interactive spaces
Olivia’s two favorite spaces in the house are the spaces that are really hers, which she can interact with like her ballet barre (that she loves to twirl in front of for dress-up too) and the reading nook for quiet time.
9. Art displays
We love this little corner of Olivia’s playroom because it gives her lots of room to display her favorite artwork and encourages her creativity. When she has new artwork to put on the corkboards, we can take down the old ones, take photos of them to one day put in an artwork album for her, and toss. That way we don’t end up with piles upon piles of kinder fingerpaintings collecting dust for eternity in a closet.
10. Fake plants and flowers
I always say I have a black thumb anyway because I can only keep either the kiddo or the plants alive, not both. Ha! I keep an eye out for realistic fakes instead since they don’t make a mess like the real ones, and I don’t have to think about caring for them. Plus, if a child nibbles on a plant (it happens), you don’t have to worry about it being poisonous.
These are my favorites right now:
Do you have any other kid-friendly decorating tricks you use? There’s always room for more! Share them in the comments below so we can make this post a resource for other parents/grandparents/aunts/uncles.
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