Small kids' bedroom ideas can be a challenge when it comes to decorating. Every parent wants kids to have a bright, uncluttered place to play and do homework, but they’re often stuck with the smaller or oddly-shaped rooms due to space issues.
Not to worry, with a little bit of inspiration and these small children's room ideas, it can be easy and inexpensive to turn their tiny space into a fun, stylish and organised retreat.
Whether you are looking for girls' bedroom ideas or boys' bedroom ideas, it is important to start with the essentials – bed and storage. From this starting point, there are plenty of opportunities to indulge in charming decoration to add personality. Although the possibility of your child growing out of a design should be considered, there is nothing to stop you from making sure they have a lovely space for both rest and creativity. Take a look at these smart small children's room ideas that have huge potential.
Small kids' bedroom ideas
1. Keep tiny furniture as long as possible
Don’t upgrade your child's toddler bed until the last minute. Most cots convert into toddler beds and you’ll be amazed at the difference in size they are compared to a standard single. Depending on individual size and growth, your child shouldn’t need a full-size bed until they are around primary school starting age. The same goes for wardrobes and chests of drawers; tiny clothes take up less room, so stick to small proportioned furniture for as long as possible to leave more floor space for play.
2. Make sure everything is easily accessible
Owning a small children’s bedroom doesn’t mean a child will accumulate fewer belongings. In fact, younger children’s toys are notoriously larger than big kid versions, so it’s time to get savvy with storage. Encourage tidiness in a small space by ensuring storage is easily accessible and within reach for little ones. Create a library for oversized books displayed front ways. Remove fitted wardrobe doors for an uncluttered and airy look and replace them with shelves for baskets and bins. Labelled wire storage will keep clothes off the floor.
3. Store toys under the bed
Under-bed storage is a godsend in children’s bedrooms as toys can be organised and out of sight and the low level means little ones can access what that need (and hopefully tidy away too). For a streamlined look chose a bed that comes with a matching under-bed trundle on wheels. Or for a budget version, make it colourful and fun with a series of bright plastic boxes. Your little one will enjoy making labels for boxes too.
4. Invest in a toy chest
There’s a reason sturdy wooden toy chests have been around for centuries – they are super useful! And, if you can make yours multi-functional, even better. This wooden ottoman works as storage, a colour co-ordinating bench with a soft seat pad and triples as a nightstand in this twin children’s bedroom. Make it practical by storing items that may not be used every day, such as fresh linens, warm blankets or out of season clothing.
5. Pop a pull out desk under a raised bed
When space is a premium, squeezing a desk into a children’s bedroom can be impractical. Instead, go for a cabin bed or mid-sleeper that comes with a pop-out desk and can be used as and when it’s needed only. They often come with additional side storage too. Alternatively, a pull-down table fixed to a wall or floating shelf mounted at waist level is a space-saving option as vital desk space.
6. Create more floor space with a high rise bed
Floor space is precious in a kids room, it's the building zone for lego, trains, fairy kingdoms and hours of fun. In a small room keep the footprint of the bed small by using a high rise bed. In this room the space under the bed has been turned into a lounging den for reading.
As your child grows up this space can be adjusted to provide extra room to store for clothes or a desk.
7. Utilise wasted wall space for storage
For the ultimate children's room storage idea go bespoke for wall storage. This smart kid's room features a wall of storage cubes to elevate everything off the floor on onto one wall – including everything from the TV to books and cuddly toys. This solution is ideal for small spaces because you have the vertical advantage, to use wall space you wouldn't otherwise be using. Whether it's a full wall or just a small section of a free wall allows plenty of storage potential, from floor to ceiling being utilised.
Freeing up the floorspace not only makes the rooms feel bigger, it creates valuable space for little ones to play.
8. Be clever with built in storage
In a small room built in storage can be a life saver in making sure the room feels spacious for your child, but still fits all their belongings in. When fitting a built-in wardrobe alone one wall, leave a small cut out for a slim laptop desk.
A pinboard like the one in this room can be added above the desk to attach pencil pots, lamps and even a tiny house plant. This will help leave the desk clear so there is plenty of space for them to do their homework.
9. Put a peg rail above the bed
It is important to make use of all the wall space so that you can keep the floor as free as possible. The space over the bed is often only used for wall art and stickers, but double this up as extra storage by placing a peg rail over it. Your child will be able to to grab their dressing gown as soon as they step out of bed, and they'll never be able to complain about loosing their PE bag again.
From a safety point of view ensure you only hang items that won't fall off and cause any harm to a sleeping child beneath.
10. Paint floorboards a similar colour to the walls
From looking at this room you would never be able to guess the size of it. Despite the tent that has be squeezed into the corner this room looks far from cluttered. This is thanks to the light colour scheme which has been extended from the walls to the floorboards. Carpets might feel a more natural choice in a kids room, but the bare floorboards make the space feel more spacious than it is, you also have the option to play around with rugs for added warmth and comfort.
11. Swap bookshelves for floating shelves
If you're child is a keen room, but their small room means there isn't enough space for a proper book shelf, try installing some floating shelves. They might not be able to hold up the last few Harry Potter books, but anything less than 300 pages should be fine. It is also a great way to create a feature wall in a small space that is functional and stylish.
12. Keep the colour scheme balanced
Small rooms can become easily overwhelmed by clutter and busy colour, leaving them feeling cramped. For this reason, it pays to keep a compact space white, but this doesn't mean colour and pattern can't be used to add fun and character. Window treatment ideas and bedding are the perfect vehicles for colourful scenes and patterns, and will bring the bed and blinds or curtains into sharp relief in a white room.
Add scatter cushions and rugs to increase the impact. Alternatively, knock colour back to a few key accessories, such as table lamps or wall art for a more controlled scheme. Bear in mind that objects and toys targeted at children are often brightly coloured or patterned, so that once the room is a little more lived-in it may appear more balanced than when first painted.
13. Add smart storage solutions
When it comes to storage for a small kid's bedroom you need to thinking outside the box. Quite literally, but limiting the amount of bulky storage, such as wardrobes and chest of drawers. Instead think about adding peg rails, clothes rails and baskets all attached to the walls to minimise impact on the room but maximise storage potential.
14. Buy the right bed
Often the focal point of the room, the bed is a crucial consideration. Traditional bunk-beds are the perfect space-saver if you have a small room shared permanently by two children. It is also worth considering buying children's rather than adult-size furniture, as one way of increasing floor space.
Most bunk bed designs, for example, can be bought in narrower and shorter sizes. However, you will need to weigh this up against the added expense of having to buy again once your child outgrows everything.
15. Limit wallpaper to one wall
With so many adorable options out there for children's wallpaper, it's easy to fall in love with some bright, bold pattern. Don't despair: although simpler is generally better with small spaces, it can be done. If you keep the print to one wall and ground it with furniture in front, you can achieve both cute and charming.
Keep the rest of the room relatively simple in contrast, but with some smaller spots of vibrancy to keep the scheme balanced, ideally picking out and continuing a colour. Here, the orange bedside lamp calls back to the orange wings of the owls, and the patchwork quilt has detailing which harks back to the blue.
16. Assess the shape of the room
Awkwardly shaped rooms can be tricky to decorate. Make use of alcoves by building in storage like the shelves and drawers in this room - think about going bespoke if you are struggling to find something that fits. Instead of a bed frame opt for a futon or low platform bed that can be slotted under a lower ceiling.
If your room is in the eaves, squeeze in few bean bags into the corners to make a cosy lounging area. Any beams can also be used to attach rails or pegs for clothes, instead of trying to wrestle a wardrobe into the room. Make a splash in the room my fitting a hanging chair to the highest ceiling point in the centre of the room, just make sure you hang it from a sturdy bean.
17. Invest in multi-functional furniture
A small desk that doubles as a bedside table is a great solution for a small bedroom. Welcome a chair that can be used both by mum for a bedtime story and by a child for homework or colouring-in. The soft contrast between the pink and the blue colour scheme keeps the eye moving around the room so it doesn't feel stagnant.
18. Streamline furniture choices
Cramming too many things into a small room is a sure-fire way to feel claustrophobic. Because of this, it's important to prioritise what your child needs and what they don't. Children's clothes don't require full-length hanging space so a half-wardrobe, half-drawer option can be a real winner in a small room.
Always measure carefully when ordering furniture and hunt down a piece that matches your measurements as closely as possible.
19. Make the most of high ceilings
If floor-space is small but the ceiling is quite high, drawing attention to the latter can make the space feel roomier than it essentially is. The best way to do this is with choice, trailing decorations that draw the eye in specific places without making the room unbalanced.
Here, a string of fun, brightly-coloured spherical lights lifts the attention away from any potential playtime clutter on the floor and towards the clean, high walls. Fun alternatives could be butterflies on an invisible wire that seem to fly away, or cute hanging charms round a light fixture. Do be cautious: such decorations should be few but pointed, or else the room feels too crammed with embellishments.
20. Introduce colour to lift a small space
Whichever path you choose, make the bed feel specifically incorporated into the design, rather than a functional necessity. Paint colour can be used to add interest to a backing plain wall and play-off a simple design. This mountain scape in warm orange is a lovely addition and makes a feature of the open shelf and the bed below, complimenting the pale wooden furniture. A thought-out decorating style keeps a room from feeling too untidy.
How can I make the most of a small children's bedroom on a budget?
Whether large or small the most affordable way to decorate a space is with paint. Rachel Homer, interiors writer and mum of two suggests. "For small children’s bedrooms, go for a two-toned paint effect that is not only on-trend but will create an illusion of space."
"Keep the top half a light and bright shade to bounce light around the room. Then choose a darker shade for the bottom which will also be practical for hiding wear and tear. When it comes to storage, plastic boxes and tubs are more affordable than wooden versions and available in all types of beautiful and bright colours to match your scheme."
Whats the best layout for a small children's room?
When it comes to small kids’ room ideas for design and layout – less is usually more. Keep the decor simple and add colour through accessories and toys. Make sure shelves and furniture are mounted at a child-friendly level and where you can choose ‘mini-version' furniture to increase the sense of space.
Place furniture around a floor-play space if possible or keep the area under a raised bed clear for this purpose. Lastly, go for a simple window treatment that allows lots of daylight into the room. A simple blackout blind is a practical option.
How do you fit two kids in a small bedroom?
Fitting two young kids into a small room is a common decorating dilemma for many growing families. Being smart with furniture and storage solutions is key because both are necessary but both take up valuable space. Choosing bunk beds is one of the best options, with two stacked beds instead of one over the same floor space. Use valuable wall space to hang racks, peg rails and clothes hooks to elevate belongings off the floor.
Will you be using these small kids' room ideas to give your child's room a magical makeover?
Tamara was Ideal Home's Digital Editor before joining the Woman & Home team in 2022. She has spent the last 15 years working with the style teams at Country Homes & Interiors and Ideal Home, both now at Future PLC. It’s with these award wining interiors teams that she's honed her skills and passion for shopping, styling and writing. Tamara is always ahead of the curve when it comes to interiors trends – and is great at seeking out designer dupes on the high street.
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