Filling your home with fancy furniture that will make you cringe when your little one’s hands get dirty is probably not the best way to decorate your house when your children are young. But you don’t want to look like you live in a day-care center, either. Instead, choose a style that durable and decorative – a happy medium for a happy family
Kid-friendly homes can be fashionable if you keep these six things in mind when selecting your furnishings:
1. Cushions will become forts. That means you have two choices: Get a sofa with firm cushions that will stand up wear and tear. Or pick a sofa with cushions sewn in so they’re not removable. You can satisfy your child’s imagination by providing other fort-building props, such as portable and stackable cube ottomans or a fabric tee-pee
2. Upholstery will attract spills. Whether it’s sofas, chairs, headboards or ottomans, choose fabric for upholstered pieces that is a durable, such as microfiber or leather. You can also check the color of the stains on your sofa before choosing a hue for the new one. Something in taupe, gray or tan will hide spills, making them less noticeable. Or pick furnishings with slipcovers that can be thrown in the washing machine to be freshened up.
3. Rugs camouflage a multitude of mishaps. Just like upholstery, your floors will take a beating be the recipient of a few spills, as well. A rug with a rich pattern will hide just about anything, and it provides cushioning for little ones who might slip on hardwood flooring. Rugs are easy to send to the cleaners. And when kids are grown, rugs are more affordable to replace than wall-to-wall carpeting.
4. Round corners are your friends. Small children, especially when they’re learning to walk, tend have plenty of trips and falls. Since cocktail and end table corners are at eye-level, you can help prevent bruises and bumps by choosing tables that are round or oval instead of shapes with corners. Upholstered ottomans are a great option for a cocktail table.
5. Kids have lots of stuff. That means it’s smart to incorporate storage to keep clutter at bay, and plenty of options will tie in with your décor. For example, decorative baskets and bins tucked under end tables can be a quick hiding spot for blocks and dolls. Bookshelves can hold reading material as well as board games. And a chest that doubles as a cocktail table can hold blankets, magazines and stuffed animals. Make sure the storage is accessible so kids get things out and put things away.
6. Kids just want to be kids! While making sure all of your rooms are family-friendly, having a room that is meant for the kids helps minimize the wear and tear on your home. Whether it’s a family room, basement rec room or your child’s bedroom, create a space for kids by filling it with the things he or she loves to do – such as finger paint and cartwheels. When kids have a place of their own, they’re less tempted to get into stuff that’s not theirs.