Kid-Friendly Living Room Ideas - IKEA Home Tour (Episode 307)
How to Make Your Living Room Kid‐Friendly
Creating a kid-friendly living room means picking materials that will hold up against the rambunctiousness of kids. It also means finding ways to organize the room so it makes sense for your family. You should also find ways to make the living room safer for your kids, as some grown-up items won't work for kids.
Using Kid-Friendly Materials and Colors
Pick a kid-friendly paint.Gloss and semi-gloss are your best bets when it comes to cleaning up after kids. These paints wipe more easily than matte finishes. However, if you must have matte, pick one of the new paints that are made for easier cleanup, called "washable" mattes.
Choose sturdy fabrics.Leather is a good option for kids, as it is sturdy and it makes for easy cleanup. You can also use slip covers, so you can take them off and wash them as needed. You can also opt for heavy duty upholstery fabric meant for places like hotels, which are designed to stand up to wear.
Lean towards easily cleaned floors.When choosing flooring, pick ones that are easy to clean. Laminate is a good option, as is tile or wood. Carpet is harder to clean because of spills. However, you can choose carpet tiles, so that you can get rid of tiles that become too stained.
Pick dark-colored fabrics.Darker fabrics tend to show fewer stains than lighter fabrics, so pick a darker tone if possible. Nonetheless, if you go the slipcover route, you could also choose white slipcovers, as you can bleach them to remove stains.Another good option for fabric is choosing fabrics with patterns, as stains don't show as much on these fabrics.
- Another option is treating your fabric with a stain repellent, such as Scotchgard. You can also choose fabrics that are created to be stain-resistant and easy to clean, such as microfiber.
Organizing the Area
Add storage cabinets.With kids, you're going to need to store things. Anticipate this need by adding in cabinets or bookcases to the room. Cabinets help hide clutter, but you can also use slide out boxes on bookcases to hide clutter, as well.
Use stylish baskets and boxes.Another way to contain the clutter is to make use of stylish baskets and boxes. If these items are large enough, they can be standalone items. The key is to make sure they are easy enough for kids to open if they have a lid.
Store kid stuff low to the ground.Kids want to be able to get to their stuff, so try storing it near their level. Bonus, if it's on their level, they're more likely to put it back afterwards than if it goes back somewhere they can't reach. Plus, they don't have to ask you every time they want to play with something.
Make furniture moveable.That is, pick pieces of furniture that are easy to move around. That way, you can move them out of the way if you need lots of floor space for a fun family project. It can also help if your kids want to do something like put on a play, as they can rearrange to make a seating area.
Add versatile pieces.When picking out items like side tables, try to make them as versatile as possible. For instance, small, light tables can sometimes function as extra seating, particularly if they're sturdy enough. When you have guests, just pull the tables into the circle for more seating. These chairs make particularly good seats for kids.
Create enough space for everyone.When picking out couches and chairs, make sure that everyone will have a seat. That is, don't just get enough seats for the adults, as the kids will want to pile on the couches, too. It's even better if you can all pile one couch. If you don't have a lot of room, try a sectional with a corner piece to help save space.
Add a kid corner.If your living room is big enough, you can add an area just for the kids. Use your furniture to help section off areas a bit, or put a brightly colored rug and small chairs in the kids area. You can have toys, a small desk or table for coloring, and/or a few shelves of books for your kids. It could even have something as fun as a small trampoline or a swing hung from the ceiling.
Making the Room Safer
Remove pointy corners.Kids have a tendency to run into sharp things, and coffee tables are particularly notorious for this problem. Consider choosing round or oval coffee tables or one with rounded corners. You could also choose a sturdy padded footstool instead.
- You can also buy special guards for sharp corners if you don't want to change out your furniture.
Hide wires when possible.Wires are both a tripping and hanging hazard, so try to hide them away in cabinets. You can also use wire guards, which hold the wires down to the carpet or you can hold wires to the walls with adhesive hooks. Plus, hiding the wires away helps the room look less cluttered.
- It's also a good idea to replace your outlets with the kind that have a sliding cover. That way, your child can't stick anything in the outlets.
Choose cordless blinds.Cordless blinds are becoming more common because the kind with cords are a hanging hazard for kids. If you have the kind with cords, make sure to switch them out to help keep your kids safe.
Pick soft spaces.Adding cushions and other soft spaces in is helpful, as kids tend to be rough and tumble, landing in places they shouldn't. You can also add some large pillows to the floor to create padded areas there.
Bolt heavy furniture into the wall.Items like large bookcases can pose a threat to your kids. They can pull on them with enough force to pull the furniture over on top of them. The best solution is to bolt these items into the wall so that they can't come crashing down.
- In the same vein, make sure to hide floor lamps behind furniture so your kids can't climb up them.
- Close drawers after you use them because toddlers can use them to crawl upwards.
Put hazardous items out of reach.Think about items that could cause harm to your kids. For instance, small items like paper clips or buttons could pose a choking hazard, while any kind of chemical could be poisonous. Make sure these are out of reach of your child.
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