Eva got a new bedroom for her birthday!
She doesn’t turn seven for a couple of weeks, but she asked for a pretty big present this year so we had to get started early. We gave her a choice this year of spending her birthday budget on either a party with her friends, a weekend trip for the family, or a room redecoration. Since we can’t really do parties here at home, all of those options were going to cost us about the same amount of money and I was really happy that she went with redoing her room since I think she’ll enjoy it the most.
Instead of just redecorating the room we had, we actually switched rooms with her and redid our old bedroom. Her old room is rectangular and ours was square so the furniture fit a little differently and we couldn’t find space to put all of her things. Plus, our room was dark and blah with ugly blue paint and one little window so I wasn’t terribly sad to get rid of it.
Now when we agreed to redecorate her room, I pulled all sorts of pictures together on Pinterest and had visions of a beautiful monochromatic white oasis with little gold accents and lots of elegant fabrics. Everything was going to be hidden in natural wood bins and she’d have sleek furniture with nice clean lines and just a few stylish throw pillows.
And then I let Eva put together her own Pinterest board and it was like all of the crayons jumped out of the box and had a party. She wanted bright bright bright colors and lots of her stuff on display and her big requests were that she hang lots of her art up and have a place to see all of her toys at once.
She won. Mostly. I drew the line at the multicolored bohemian tent she wanted and made her switch to a bean bag. I also limited the number of pictures she hung up. I love her madly, but her art production is a little insane and she was in serious danger of living in a room that looked like a recycling center.
As it is, she still got lots of what she wanted:
The room, although slightly larger than her old one, is still pretty tight so I wanted to keep the furniture minimal. We took her desk out and replaced it with a coffee table from IKEA and some floor pillows so she still has a place to create and write without it dominating the room. The pillows are from Homegoods and they’re exactly what I wanted so I was really happy to find them. The overflowing stuffed animal basket is from The Container Store and the bean bag is from Target.
For some reason, all of the closet doors had been removed from the bedrooms before we moved in and replaced with curtains (???) which is not my favorite so I took them down and we’ve had open closets ever since. I don’t think Eva is ready to keep to neatly hanging her clothing in a way that doesn’t make her closet look insane so we put her dresser in the closet instead and all of her clothes and accessories are in there.
Her coats and backpack are hanging on her door right now in one of those over-the-door racks from Target. It’s not a perfect solution but we don’t have a family coat closet so everyone needs to hold things like that in their own room. The marquis letters above her door are from target and they run four hours at a time on battery.
The bookshelves are the cheapest available at Target, perfect because they’re shallow and short enough for Eva to manage on her own. As you can see, my dream of uniform neutral colored storage lost out to Eva’s desire to (A) see as much of her stuff at once as she can and (B) preserve treasured random items like her Halloween bucket from last year.
Only two of Eva’s walls have art on them because I didn’t want it to be too crazy. This gallery wall has her framed artwork and some little things collected over the years along with a couple accents I found at Target. The two mirrors are actually decorative trays that I found in the office supply section at Target on clearance and they’re perfect because I just needed a little something to reflect the light. The butterfly pictures are actually framed remnants of a beloved poster she had in her old room that fell prey to her baby brother’s grabby hands one day when I wasn’t looking. The pennants are from Little Rebel Rosie.
The opposite wall has Eva’s coloring panels, which are large pieces of foam core with coloring pages from Jenean Morrison printed on them. We’ve had them for a few years now and they’re starting to fill up! There’s another panel behind Eva’s door but I forgot to get a picture of that one. There’s a basket with a couple of boxes of Mr. Sketch markers on her coffee table in case she gets the urge to color.
Above the coloring panel, I let Eva hang some art and some frames she’d painted. I have to admit that I had a couple of pictures that she was desperate to hang up but which maybe don’t exactly represent her “best work” to me so I did put up a memo board I found at Target just to have a place to rotate art in and out. The other art is hung up using 3M strips and some wide painter’s tape.
Now, obviously the biggest change we made to the room was a new coat of paint. That was something of an adventure! I had a vision of doing some sort of glitter accent over a bright white to maximize the limited sunlight that this room gets and picked a purple-based Behr white paint called Bit of Sugar.
Unfortunately, I made a big mistake and got flat paint because I was confused about what I needed and ended up with bright white walls that wouldn’t wipe clean. (Not ideal for a kid’s bedroom.) Luckily I was already planning on doing a glitter glaze but I ran into a roadblock when I couldn’t find anything like it at Home Depot. Apparently that’s not a request they hear very often because nobody had any idea what I was talking about and when I asked if I could just use lacquer I thought they were going to die laughing before they explained that I would definitely ruin the walls if I didn’t asphyxiate first.
So, I went out on a limb and simply got a gallon of Mod Podge and a lot of iridescent glitter, mixed them together and applied it to the walls. I got very lucky because the effect was exactly what I wanted – not overwhelming but very pretty wherever the light hits and up close it looks a little like sprinkles.
Now, I love the iridescent walls but I did tell Eva that she could pick the glitter for one wall and she ended up picking fat gold confetti glitter and a lot of fine gold glitter to go with it. I’m not going to lie – I wasn’t totally thrilled with how this turned out, especially since I didn’t use painter’s tape and underestimated how noticeable that would be. It’s just louder and sort of like vintage wallpaper but Eva LOVES it and was rather sad that I wouldn’t let her do more than one wall. This one looks bumpier but both walls are totally smooth to the touch so if we did want to paint over them it wouldn’t be difficult.
As a side note, the wall with the window is still just flat white paint but the coloring panels are high enough that they’ll protect the wall from handprints and the gallon of Mod Podge was enough to do the three glitter walls, but wouldn’t have been enough for four.
Overall, it’s bright and crazy and pretty and feminine and young and functional enough that it should grow up with her without needing big changes. I’m really happy with how it turned out, even with all the colors and the chunky gold confetti wall. Now I need to talk Calvin in to asking for a room redo for his birthday this summer!!