50 Awesome Real Kids’ Room Ideas to Steal

published Feb 14, 2024
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.

If there’s any room in the house where we should all feel free to let loose and have a little fun, it’s the kids’ room. Color, pattern, texture, smart storage, fun design details — it’s all possible! But it’s helpful to see examples of cute real kids’ rooms to get the ideas flowing. Sometimes you don’t know what’s possible until you see what someone else has done. Here are 50 of Apartment Therapy and Cubby’s cutest kids’ rooms.

Design + Decor Ideas

1. Put a sofa (like, a real one!) in their room.

Sure, kid-sized chairs are fine, but if you have the space, a full-sized sofa — in their room — would be the ultimate lounge spot. Bonus if it’s a teal velvet Chesterfield, like in the above photo!

Credit: Lula Poggi

2. Go for simple design classics.

The father is a technical architect. The mother is an interior designer. So it should be of no surprise that the kids’ room is full of simple, modern pieces: shelves from Hay, a powder-blue Anglepoise task lamp, OYOY floor poufs. The room feels ageless, in a great way.

Credit: Tiffany Luong

3. Try twin cannonball beds.

Cannonball beds and spindle beds have been around forever, and that’s because they’ll never go out of style. They’re especially well-suited to a kids’ room, particularly if you buy a pair and set them up side by side with a dresser or nightstand in the middle.

4. Stick to a tight color palette.

If you don’t know where to start when decorating a nursery or toddler room, start with a three-color palette. This room feels very pulled-together, thanks to its navy, emerald, and white color scheme.

5. Or forget that and do lots of color and pattern!

If sticking to two or three colors isn’t bringing you (or your child) joy, you can also pull in as much color, pattern, and texture as you want. It’s a kids’ room! Have fun.

Credit: James Insung Ryang

6. Buy the MINNEN bed from IKEA.

Coming in at $170, this vintage-style kids’ bed from IKEA looks way more expensive than it is. Once you start looking for it in kids’ room photos, you’ll see it everywhere. It’s currently available in pink or white, but you can always spray-paint it.

7. Use a colorful locker as a nightstand.

This Shorty locker from Mustard Made makes a fantastic nightstand in a kids’ room. The powder blue color is currently unavailable, but you can find it in Poppy, Mustard, Navy, White, and Black.

8. Cover a wall with chalkboard wallpaper.

Forget chalkboard paint; chalkboard contact paper is where it’s at! Cover a wall for instant art play potential.

9. Mix stripes and checks.

Pattern play is a big trend for 2023, and this is a great example. Striped sheets, a checked duvet cover, all against floral wallpaper. Yes, please!

Credit: Rachel Manns

10. Bring the home’s vibe into the kids’ room.

Want your child’s room to have personality but not look like it belongs in a different house? Have it both ways! “We wanted her room to retain the character and personality that we’d tried to create throughout the house,” says one mother of the industrial-meets-Scandinavian design of her daughter’s room, which matches the tone of the rest of the family’s London home.

11. Go for a colorful vintage rug.

If you’re not quite ready to go all-in on color and pattern on the walls, try bringing some of that pattern into the room by way of a vintage or antique rug. It’ll ground the space and last through any trend.

12. Banish white.

Neutrals are out, and color is majorly in. Case in point? This joyous kids’ room in Australia.

13. Go retro.

A few retro items, either authentic or inspired, can create a whole theme for a kids’ room. The retro wallpaper was the jumping-off point in this room.

Credit: Viv Yapp

14. Go big with stuffies.

Now, here’s a fun one: Go BIG with stuffed animals, like Donna Wilson’s lambswool Mini Giant or XL Giant Creatures! Given their size, it’s probably best if they have a whole bed to themselves, ha.

Credit: Selena Kirchhoff

15. Build in a swing and playground!

If your kids’ room is lucky enough to have high ceilings, hang a swing or put in a mini playground, because why not?

Storage Ideas

16. Use a colorful locker for regular storage.

Mustard Made makes full-size lockers, too! The Skinny locker is only available in Poppy right now, but if you love that pale pink, check out the Twinny size in Blush.

17. Get creative with shelving shapes.

Sure, you can’t go wrong with standard rectangular shelves or a cube version like the Cubby-favorite KALLAX shelf. But breaking out of the ordinary and going for a triangle bookshelf (or a starship! Or a tree! Or an elephant!) is a whole lot more fun.

18. Opt for cubbies.

Then again, cubby shelves are always a good idea for kids’ rooms. They’re practical, low to the ground, not too big and not too small, and just right for small collections of books, toys, and treasures.

Credit: Lauren Kolyn

19. Do a statement bookshelf (and wallpaper!).

Here’s an example of going all-in on wallpaper, but the brilliant red bookshelf is the star of this room.

Credit: Natalie Jeffcott

20. Build a shelf right above the headboard.

A narrow floating shelf is the perfect landing spot for a row of treasured stuffies. It almost looks like it’s part of the headboard!

21. Set up neat, pull-out basket storage under the bed.

“I don’t need any more storage solutions in my kid’s room,” said no parent ever. We like the look of this particular under-the-bed basket setup. Because the baskets all match, the result looks much neater and more intentional.

22. Make space for collections.

Kids accumulate stuff, so you might as well let it be its own design detail.

Credit: Selena Kirchhoff

23. Set up a low play table.

Little kids don’t need a lot of space, but they should be able to access their things. This setup accomplishes so much in a little amount of space: There’s a long table with plenty of space for playing and coloring, a small stool, an easy-reach basket full of books, and a dollhouse at eye-level.

Credit: James Insung Ryang

24. Keep toys and play things out in the open at easy reach.

Two of my favorite kids’ storage pieces are IKEA’s KALLAX shelf and Oeuf’s Toy Store shelf, and they’re showing off quite brilliantly together in this Brooklyn kids’ room. I love Oeuf’s open, angled boxes; it makes it so much easier for kids to see their toys and clean up after playing. And of course, KALLAX is a cubby (and Cubby!) classic.

25. Install long shelves on the wall.

Long floating shelves keep floors tidy and create visual interest, in addition to being a great way to store lots of books, toys, and trinkets. Take the shelves all the way to the ceiling if you really want to make the most of your space! (Use the higher, unreachable shelves for cute decor.)

Credit: Emy Stenudd

26. Go custom with an incredible DIY bunk bed.

If you’ve got some DIY skills, you can try your hand at a built-in bunk bed and then paint it an incredible color.

27. Hack the classic IKEA toddler loft bed.

The reversible KURA toddler bed from IKEA is a worth the hype for its sleep plus play space capabilities, but this ball pit setup is next level.

Paint + Wallpaper Ideas

28. Paint stripes inside a closet.

The inside of a closet is a fantastic way to add a little color or pattern, even on a budget. (It’s much cheaper to wallpaper a small closet than it is a whole room, for example.) It also turns a humdrum space into something special, a little treat every time you pull out a dress.

29. Paint the outside of a closet, too.

Forget boring bi-fold closet doors. Get some colorful paint and try your hand at something a bit more creative, like a mural closet or one outlined in a playful scallop pattern.

Credit: Carrie Kline

30. Throw everything at the wall.

Sometimes more really is more. In this amazing kids’ room, every idea or vision was pulled into the mural design. The result is a completely unique, completely personal kid’s room.

Credit: Emy Stenudd

31. Paint the trim and woodwork a bold color.

This gorgeous teal kid’s room (painted in Jotun’s “Industrial Blue”) gives this room a timeless quality that’ll easily grow with the kid. You may even spot four built-in IKEA BILLY bookcases that were also painted to blend in and look like a custom part of the room.

Credit: Viv Yapp

32. Embrace pink as a neutral wall color.

The loveliest, lightest pink color — like Farrow & Ball’s Pink Ground, shown above is a wonderful backdrop in a kids’ room. It’s warmer and more inviting than a stark white.

33. Match window trim to a color in wallpaper.

Painted window trim is especially charming in a kids’ room, and even more so when the window pulls out a color from the room’s wallpaper!

Credit: Cathy Pyle

34. Do a statement wallpaper wall.

I tend to be a fan of going all-in on wallpaper, but there are many ways to use wallpaper in a kids’ room, including wallpapering just the ceiling, the inside of a closet, the back of a bookshelf, or, in this case, one wall!

Credit: Viv Yapp

35. Do a half painted wall.

I love a half painted wall in a kids’ room. It offers the option for color without feeling like you have to fully commit, and it brings the eye down so you notice everything that’s against or below the color — which, in the case of a child’s room, means seeing the world as they do!

36. Don’t underestimate the power of a bright yellow door.

If your kid’s room is missing … something, add in a big dose of bright, sunny yellow. There’s a 90% chance it’ll fix the problem.

Credit: Viv Yapp

37. Choose gray walls for a fabulous backdrop to bright accents.

A gray color scheme can quickly turn dull, but its cool undertone works well when paired with bright colors.

38. Give a room some personality with polka dots.

White walls, but make it fun with polka-dot decals! You don’t have to stick to black dots, either. I’m partial to these rainbow confetti dots!

39. Make the wallpaper the star of the show.

The rug is a classic stripe; the crib is simple and white — all the better to highlight the gorgeous Flat Vernacular wallpaper!

Credit: Viv Yapp

40. Get moody with forest wallpaper.

If you want your child’s room to be a calm oasis that encourages sleep, try Cole & Son’s Woods + Stars wallpaper. It’s a splurge, but your kid will feel like they’re sleeping in a forest.

Small-Space Ideas

Credit: Viv Yapp

41. Find a niche to “park” things.

Wagons, baby doll strollers, toy cars, and push toys are wonderful toys for little ones working on balance and stability. But they need to be “parked” somewhere, too! Designate a storage spot for them, like this tucked-away corner under a bookshelf.

Credit: Minette Hand

42. Keep toddler clothes out in the open, and hang them low.

This simple wooden toddler clothes rack is both practical and a sweet design detail, and it takes up way less space than a dresser or a wardrobe.

43. Create a hideaway nook.

It doesn’t need to be big — pick a corner, some space under a lofted bed, the inside of a closet. Add some pillows, a blanket, a few books, and a stuffed animal or two. Finish it off with sparkle lights, because sparkle lights make everything feel magical.

Credit: Katie Currid

44. Try this smart way to store stuffed animals.

Stuffed animals can take over a room if you’re not careful, which is why stuffing them into a shoe rack and hanging them over a door is a very smart, small-space solution.

Credit: Erin Derby

45. Fit 3 kids into one small bedroom with ingenious design ideas.

Who says a family of five can’t live in a one-bedroom apartment? These parents gave up their bedroom for their three kids, who are living large in the room, thanks to tightly edited toy storage and play solutions.

46. Take it to the wall.

If you have an expanse of wall space in your child’s room, and you’re running low on floor space, take that storage to the wall! Long floating shelves like you see in this kids’ room are a nice way to display books and to insert some design details.

47. Create a bookcase out of a faux mantel.

Another book storage idea — this one ideal if you live in an old house. Paint a faux mantel a bright color, add in two shelves, and you’ve got a built-in bookcase!

48. Paint floating shelves in fun colors.

Pottery Barn’s Pop Color Photo Ledges are very cute, but also very expensive — especially if you’re looking to buy multiples. So one mom made her own rainbow shelves to hold her son’s dinosaur collection, and we absolutely love it.

Credit: Leela Cyd

49. Embrace the stuff.

Collections, trinkets, treasures. You can edit it out or you can give in. If you do the latter, you’d be amazed by how many things you can fit on a few bookshelves and still have it look cute!

50. Cocoon a small space by taking it up to the ceiling.

You know what they say about small spaces: Embrace it. In this narrow kids’ room, the bookshelves go up the wall to make use of the height, and the result is that you feel like you’re in a cozy little bubble.

Cubby: Eat. Live. Play. Families Together at Home.

Want more great home ideas for families? Sign up for Cubby’s weekly newsletter featuring our best editor-approved product recommendations, meal ideas, and all the kid’s room decor ideas you need.