An Interview with Carol Maxwell Did you know maximalist art works great in kids' rooms? We did and we've picked Carol's brain to prove it. With colour being the theme of Issue 13, as soon as we saw Max Made Me's wallpaper launch we knew we had to interview Carol...
Kid’s Interiors Q&A
Your opportunity to ask the experts. A monthly Q&A featuring a handful of questions posted by our readers and followers allowing you the opportunity to get some fantastic advice from the pros.
If you have something that is bugging you or maybe you just simply want to know the best shade of paint to use and life would be that bit easier is a professional just told you the answer, then please send your question to firstname.lastname@example.org and maybe we’ll get back to you.
For our first Q&A we turn to two child interior experts who have contributed to Rooomy since it began and their advice and work is consistently perfect. London based designer Lisa Mettis of Born & Bred Studio. We love her decisiveness and we think you will too. And Edinburgh based designer Patricia Hoyna of Studio Hoyna who always encompasses exactly what her little clients are looking for and more.
How can I create more space?
Lisa Mettis says, “Apart from my mantra of ‘clear out’, the answer will probably be storage. BUT please don’t buy storage to house toys, books and clothes you’re not going to use. When choosing storage, choose options that sit or hang above the floor. Even if boxes are on castors the two inches of the floor you can see will really make a difference to the feeling of space. Also, when buying off the peg storage solutions, buy the item in multiples to make real impact and something unique to you. (see image below). Think about how you can make the most of wall space. Display books on ledges or hang cage shelving to house soft toys and arts and crafts materials.”
How do I make a room practical and pretty?
Lisa Mettis says, “Practicality basically makes for a boring interior, sorry! Make a list of all the practical things you need (i.e. a bed, chest of drawers, curtains). Review everything else in the room, is it needed? Edit the room, then the fun begins. Layer on the ‘pretty’. This can be inexpensive and is probably just a curation of the beautiful things your child has collected. As a little tick list, consider a personalised banner, garland lights, wallpaper or artwork, new bedding and of course, a rug. No room is complete without a rug, they’re incredibly practical. Children play at floor level most of the time which can be draughty, and it protects your flooring/carpet. Many options are now machine washable too.”
How do I put a nursery together on a budget?
Lisa Mettis says, “It’s so easy (particularly with your first child) to get carried away with buying ‘stuff’ which, guaranteed, you will never use. Treat the nursery not as a baby’s room but as a parent and baby room. During the early days you’ll be spending a lot of time bonding and nursing together. Your baby won’t notice the mural on the wall, but you’ll notice the dodgy paint or an uncomfortable chair. Get the room up to your standards and decorate neutrally. Buy only the essentials (i.e. a cot, chair, curtains), then splurge on something that will make you happy and make nursing time more interesting. It could be a Miffy night light, a comfy chair, a nice blanket or a candle. If you’re very lucky, gifts will start coming in and these will provide the decoration you need.”
How is it best to decorate when renting and not wanting to cause too much damage?
Patricia Hoyna says, “Paint gives you endless design possibilities for creative makeovers and it’s so easy to bring back magnolia if needed 🙂 Although, if it was up to me magnolia would be banished from stores forever! There are literally thousands of colours to choose from including new neutrals, wouldn’t it be more fun to try something fresh? Another option would be wall stickers/decals.
Window treatments – think colour, pattern, trimmings, pom-poms! Some high-end designs could be achieved with store bought curtains or blinds just by adding a colourful trim. You can have a go yourself, ask a friend who’s handy or even find your local haberdashery; they often provide a sewing service along with their merchandise.
Artwork – whether you frame your child’s drawings, your family photos or some super cool illustrations, use picture hanging strips; Command are my go to brand, easy to mount, easy to remove, and you won’t need a single nail. Top Tip – art must be hung at the right height, you should be able to look at it without tilting your head upward.
Rugs – I know we don’t always have the luxury to choose the flooring, but rugs are great for adding extra comfort for kids to play on and if you move you take them with you.
My child has lots of little nick-nacks, what’s the best way to create storage for the teeny annoying things that looks good and is easy to use?
Lisa Mettis says, “Arrhh yes…the little bits of toot. I say embrace it! They make such cool displays and let’s face it it’s a phase and they will move on soon to the next. Whether they’re collecting pens, Shopkins, Lego, I would split into two categories those you want to see & display. And those you need to file for a rainy day in a beautiful fashion. Check out these products to suit both budgets.
Kid’s Rooms and More…
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