Happier children: let them help decorate their bedrooms!

Getting your child involved in a summer bedroom makeover project will give him a real sense of ownership and happiness in his room. And it's easier than you'd think, with these top creative tips.

Unbelievably, there’s not much left of the school summer holidays. If you’ve already taken your holiday, filled your quota of family days out, and are looking for something to keep everyone busy in the last couple of weeks before the new school year begins, you might want to consider bringing forward that decorating project.

Brilliant Kids Bedroom Designs

Bedroom makeovers are a real rite of passage for children. I remember vividly making the change from neutral nursery to little girl’s pink fairy heaven, complete with princess castle dolls house and twinkly-lit den under her high sleeper. She adored it, but hardly spent any time there, preferring to be in the kitchen, with me, looking for entertainment. All the time. That may well just be her character, and age, but research commissioned by Dulux indicates that a massive 92% of kids say they would spend more time in their bedrooms if they had helped to plan it themselves.

Tween teal bedroom makeover: how we went from Disney princesses to this
Tween bedroom makeover

When GG made the transition from little girl in pink to single-minded tween, she played a huge part in designing the room of her dreams. She set up a Pinterest board and filled it with teal and aqua inspiration, from lighting and cushions to huge round beds in the middle of swimming pools. Of course, practicality reigned, but the process of designing, and shopping for her teal tween room makeover gave her a real sense of ownership, and she spends so much time in her room now, happily reading, or doing homework.

Why helping to decorate makes children happier

Child Developmental Psychologist Dr. Sam Wass (who you might know from Secret Lives of 4, 5 and 6 year olds) researched the benefits of involving children in the decorating process, and found that decorating their bedroom is more important to kids than other popular summer activities such as watching their first football match, or riding a bike. It’s even more important in kids’ minds than their first day at school, and second only to a birthday, the research revealed.

How to create a Star Wars room makeover

When the Bug was too old for his nursery, we created a Star Wars themed bedroom, based around a wall mural he had seen and loved. Given his age, I decided to do the whole thing as a surprise, but because he had chosen the wallpaper, and knew what the theme was, he absolutely loved it. Watch the video of him discovering his new room in the post linked above – it’s adorable. He has since had his say though, on where he thinks the pictures and accessories should go, and I think that he would have loved being part of the process of putting it together. There’s something quite special about watching a room transform, day after day as the decorations progress, and the paint colour brings it to life.

The Dulux study showed that children felt a real sense of ownership about their room if they’d been involved in the decorating process, with some parents even claiming that rooms were kept tidier because their children wanted to show it off to friends and family.

Dulux Kids circus bedroom

Children’s Bathroom

Whether it’s an ensuite bathroom or shared bathroom between the siblings, pulling in their help with the redecorating or revamping the bathroom is just as important as their bedroom. Let them have their say in everything, from the towels, bathmats, overall colour scheme (or theme) to the shower wall panels. Google is great to use if you’re not sure where to buy shower wall panels or any other fixtures, and you can even get your child involved in the online search. Make it more exciting and pick a top 3. Always have a backup plan in case there isn’t stock. This will narrow down possibilities and make your decision quicker when you go to the showroom. Who knows, your children might be so proud of their new bathroom that they might even volunteer to keep it clean!  

Bedroom makeover inspiration

What’s clear from the research is that helping to design their own rooms really unleashes children’s creativity. The top 10 design wishes for a bedroom are as follows:

  1. A treehouse theme
  2. A slide
  3. A Narnia-style wardrobe
  4. Swing
  5. Trap door
  6. Glass ceiling
  7. A stage
  8. Jungle
  9. Space rocket
  10. Pirate ship

If some of those themes seem a bit daunting, all it takes a is a bit of creative interpretation. Dulux have a great range of online tools to help you create brilliant bedrooms for happy kids. From practical tips on decorating in the theme of their choice, to a fab kids bedroom summer holiday workbook, Dulux give you everything you need to get started on a bedroom makeover right now. There’s even a quiz template to help you and your child decide what kind of bedroom is best suited to their passions.

Storybook bedroom
Storybook bedroom

The workbook gives you suggested shopping lists for your chosen bedroom, and even a schedule to follow to project manage the decorating process through to completion. Getting your child involved in this fun and colourful downloadable resource will really show them what’s involved, and teach them the principles of creating a great space.

And if you’re struggling for inspiration, Dulux has created a range of fun YouTube videos with suggestions and instructions on how to recreate the bedroom of their dreams. We absolutely love the tips for this Superhero bedroom:

So rather than leaving your child’s bedroom makeover until after they’ve gone back to school, why not involve them in the process? Just download the Kids Bedroom Summer Holiday Workbook to get started, and check out some of the design inspiration on the brilliant bedrooms for happy kids Dulux page. You can also find out more about the research while you’re there.

Dulux’s Endurance+ range is the perfect paint for a kid’s bedroom makeover – it’s 20 times stronger than normal emulsion, so when you’re tackling sticky fingers and mucky paws it’s a great solution, allowing you to wipe away the stain and not the paint underneath, meaning your walls stay as fresh as the day you painted them!

Post in collaboration with Dulux.

4 thoughts on “Happier children: let them help decorate their bedrooms!”

  1. Perfect timing! We spent yesterday moving furniture around so that all three of my girls have a bedroom each instead of two of them having to share. Now we just need to decorate all three bedrooms! Have downloaded the pack and will start using it to help with inspiration right away 🙂

    • I think you have to negotiate a bit, but having done it with the Bug, it’s a really nice thing to do. Sometimes they have really nice ideas to add, for all their fantastic imaginations!


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