As a mum of three, I like to think that I’ve got a pretty good understanding of what works and what doesn’t when you have kids at home. Especially young kids that can’t yet follow instructions. I’ve always been of the firm belief that homes should be for whole families, not just adults. Yes, get things that you like the look of, but also don’t waste time or money on things that are just impractical with young children. Your interior design plans just need to take into account the youngest members of the family.
Children won’t be young for ever and as they grow you will be able to adapt your home style along with their age. Whilst they’re young it pays to keep things simple and practical. Otherwise you’ll just get upset about precious things being broken or spend all your time laboriously cleaning up after them.
When it comes to your walls I can guarantee that at some point you child will use them as a blank canvas for their art, and will also drive or ride some sort of toy into them. They will get bumps, scrapes and various. It makes sense therefore to go for a wall covering that you can easily wipe down.
There are some fantastic ranges of durable paint on the market now. Many of them are marketed for what they call “high traffic” areas like the stairs, but there’s nothing stopping you using them on any wall in your house. They resist small chips more than normal paint, and also can be wiped down easily. Baby wipes do an incredible job or removing marks from many surfaces. Keep a packet handy at all times.
I’m a firm believer in investing in laminate flooring when you have young children. Babies and toddlers emit far too many bodily fluids in unexpected places to make paying for an expensive carpet worthwhile! Again, you need to think practically here.
With laminate flooring you can easily clear up puddles of any sort, and if you have a combined living dining area it also makes cleaning up after meal times far simpler. A dust pan and brush and then, when required, a damp cloth saves so much time over trying to get mashed up carrot out of a carpet. Trust me, I speak from experience here!
With all the different colours, textures and patterns available nowadays it’s also possible to get something that doesn’t even look like a laminate. Modern laminates are hard wearing and it’s easy to find a design to meet your own tastes and style.
If you’re worried about the floor being a bit hard for young babies then invest in a cheap rug. Once they’re at the walking stage I’ve found that baby walkers run far better on hard floors, and so do toy cars!
Soft furnishings are a key part of your interior design, but you might have guessed what I’m going to say here: practicality is key.
Go for a comfy sofa or arm chair, but also choose one that either has washable covers (ideally machine washable so you can do them at home) or uses a material that you can easily wipe down with a damp cloth to remove marks. Some fabrics even come with a stain protection on them and this is perfect for parents. Kids will climb on the sofa with dirty hands and feet. They will use it as a trampoline and they will grind food into it, even if you don’t allow them to eat in the living room. Those are just the facts of life.
Having young children at home doesn’t mean that you can’t think about trendy interior design, you just need to be mindful of your family’s requirements whilst you do.