Red Bulls Academy

Courage Confidential vol. 2

psssst…..

Without revealing the extraordinary age at which I bore my first child, might I just say that the envelope was pushed. So by the time I sat down to design my first child’s bedroom I consulted my mile-high “Baby’s Room” folder and created a magical fairyland for Claire. But in the wink of a pixie’s eye she graduated from a toddler to twin bed, pink & purple to “I’m over it mom” white and began rearranging her own furniture.

so?
Don’t spend too much money on furnishings that your baby or child will inevitably outgrow! (And as for the twin bed…if you have the space I would skip it altogether and opt for a full or queen instead!)

STORY No.2 I ROOM TO BLOOM-in
Start with a basic shell, a neutral paint color or a wallpaper in an understated palette that your child can grow with. A somewhat “blank canvas” allows the child to evolve their own taste and participate in the design process aka express themselves!

This nursery below balances white walls, minimalist finishes and natural textures in a warm, sophisticated palette that will beautifully stand the passage of time. The ebonized dresser from Restoration Hardware and Belgian linen slipcovered club chair could easily move to any other room in the house.

Design by Jake Arnold

Invest in a few foundation pieces of furniture and artwork that your child can use as he grows up and hey…. even in his first apartment! One less chair you’ll have to buy when your son moves into the city!

In this young boys room below, the antique wooden eagle hovering over the bed has become his “special friend” and I’m sure will follow him as he grows. Finding meaningful, beautiful pieces gives kids’ rooms personality – it takes a little more time, but this is how the best interiors develop…organically. The woodland fantasy hand painted on the walls depicts child-like squirrels and birds, but the muted tones give it an ageless charm. And quirky details like the lamp made out of furry hooves add fun and folly. The bright Tartan fabric covering the daybed gives a modern twist to a Men’s Club staple.

 

 

Design by Courage & Co

An alternative to wallpaper (expensive’ish to buy and install) are removable decals or mural panels that, at a low-cost and low-commitment, completely transform the space. Decals easily peal off to make way for your child’s new mood or passion.

Below is a peel off mural in a primitive, folk art style that spans the entire bed wall creating a faux headboard affect.

Designer Unknown

One of my favorites is this peel-and-stick wall decal from RH Baby&Child depicting a dramatic, oversized black and white photograph of a WWI fighter jet on the runway.

Design by Courage & Co

And lastly, expressing my love of Audubon prints, I hired an artist to paint “Audubon-like” images, printed them on a sticky acetate and pasted them around the room; this one peeking out from behind the curtains. Decal images can peel right off and moved to other spots around the room.

Design by Courage & Co

+ The same considerations of functionality, practicality, storage requirements, natural light should be exercised when designing a child’s room as any other room in the house.
The clever use of standard pine shelving (below) gives this lucky client plenty of storage ad display space for his treasures now; books later!

Design by Weitzman Halpern

And finally…. Modern Classic design is here to stay because it’s….well…..classic.

The modern classic aesthetic incorporates the best qualities of contemporary interior design; melding simplicity with traditional features to create clean yet striking spaces. Ok here comes a little design history 101…

Modern Classic interior design follows a core set of design principles:

Preserving and highlighting the defining features of the original building is the first step towards achieving a modern interior. We call it design integrity. R-E-S-P-E-C-T (RIP Aretha)

Avoid trends and fads! They are the archenemies of Modern Classic design. Before you drool over the Flokati covered bench, imagine those sticky fingers and bubble gum. You may think again. Classic Modern design in functional and sensible.

Your walls are your canvas. Bright whites give architectural features a fresh start, bringing them into the now. Statement walls (below) can also bring an interesting modern edge to a space.

Speaking of purple ;-), a brave splash of color, a piece of modern art, a bold light fixture creates drama, but in a simple, minimal way. Restrain from over-accessorizing that may compete with the wow factor and look cluttered.

The use of natural materials like wood and stone is really the missing link between the modern and the classic. These organic elements are of the earth and even when they’re polished or manipulated or stained or cut, they still feel timeless and effortless.

Design by Weitzman Halpern

Where were we?
So ahem…..in conclusion….there’s no other room in the house more fun to decorate than your childrens’ rooms. No.2 Room-to-Bloom offers a little sound advice from a design veteran on a tight budget, but it is, by no means, gospel. OMG NO! The most important thing to remember is breathe and keep smiling cause it all goes so fast.

And please write us at Courage Confidential – courageandco11.com – with all of your design questions and dilemmas. We can help. That’s what we’re here for.

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