Before & After: A $5,000 Makeover Transforms This 9-Year-Old’s Room into a Serene Space

published Dec 19, 2021
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Before: Kids' bedroom with lofted bed, pink walls, and garland

Kids’ rooms often are the best places color and pattern inspiration galore. The tough thing about decorating spaces for kids, though, is that it’s hard to justify expensive furniture or decor for a space a tiny person will eventually grow out of — size-wise or personality-wise.

As interior designer Jennifer Harrup (@jenniferlauraliving) puts it, “Sometimes the hardest part in renovating a kid’s room is feeling like they might outgrow it.” That’s why, in her niece’s bedroom, she used her $5,000 budget to create design features that can adapt as 9-year-old Harley gets older.

Before Jennifer started working on it, Harley’s room was “a pretty typical kid’s bedroom — full of life and messy carpet,” Jennifer says. The paint color was an intense Pepto Bismol pink, which was there when Harley’s parents moved in a decade ago.

Jennifer’s sister-in-law requested her help with the space. She worked on the project with her husband. They ripped up her old carpet, laid luxury vinyl planks, painted the walls, installed an accent wall of wallpaper, and assembled new furniture — and nothing is too permanent.

Jennifer chose a “sophisticated pink” with mauve undertones (Behr’s Smokey Pink) for the walls that’s much more neutral than before and a striped modern wallpaper that “could take her all the way through high school,” Jennifer says.

She swapped the ceiling fan for the PB Teen Capiz Chandelier, a more fun and definitely more luxe-looking choice for the room.

The six-drawer dresser and the Target mirror are also more sophisticated and neutral than the floral vanity from before — and can last into early adulthood. And the new hardware looks more mature and ties the whole space together.

“I am most proud of laying the vinyl planks,” Jennifer says of the new, nicer-looking and much-easier-to-clean floors. “I’ve never laid flooring before, and this was a first for me. It was so easy and I would totally do it again!”

The whole project came together over the course of a long weekend in just four days, and the space is now much more timeless.

“And then some of the “tween elements” could be swapped out, like the art and accessories,” Jennifer adds. Her favorite part of the revamp is the gallery wall above the daybed, and Harley can easily swap the art in the frames for whatever’s trending in 2030!

For more kid’s room inspiration (for yourself or your kiddo), check out these design lessons inspired by kids’ rooms. (In fact, if you’ve ever found yourself flipping through the PB Teen catalog with envy or adding something from Crate & Kids to cart for your adult room, you’re not alone. There are plenty of ideas from kid, teen, and tween bedrooms to steal even if you don’t have kids.)

This post originally ran on Apartment Therapy. See it there: Before and After: Four Days and $5,000 Make a 9-Year-Old’s Bedroom Totally Unrecognizable