Making over a child's bedroom
Unlike renovating kitchens or bathrooms, where issues such as piping and connecting electrical appliances can be both stressful and time-consuming, making over a children's bedroom is arguably the most fun part of doing up a London property.
Of course, as with all makeover projects, money worries will also come into play, but this downside is often offset by the fact that making over a youngster's room allows homeowners the chance to bring the family together and be creative.
Keep it simple
Though it may be tempting to go over-the-top on themes or colour schemes, as with all home makeover projects, it's wise to adopt a long-term view of any renovation and keep things simple.
Obviously, children are going to get older and tastes will quickly change, so what seemed like a good idea just a few months previously can become a source of major contention and unhappiness.
As such, it's best to keep the staples of a bedroom - think beds, desks and other furniture - simple and fad-free, thereby making the room easy to change.
If it's individuality a child is after, then opt for quirky accessories that can be easily and affordably replaced over time.
And, as with kitchen appliances and other major home purchases, it pays to invest wisely in such staples, for example splashing out on a solid, no-nonsense desk to see a child through school and even beyond.
While storage can often be over-played by estate agents or home-sellers keen to make up for a property's shortcomings, when it comes to children's bedrooms, setting aside space for storing toys and other random objects likely to be accumulated over the years is a very wise move indeed.
As well as teaching children to be organised at an early age, such a policy has the added benefit of ensuring that a home stays tidy, though sacrificing shelves and other open-display storage units in favour of hidden storage can take away the colour and sense of individuality that should be present in a child's room.
Get them involved
Though they may never have watched a home makeover programme or read an interior design magazine, children themselves have the best idea of how they would like their own rooms to look.
Despite this, however, many adults neglect to take youngsters' views into account, with this inevitably leading to disappointment and flared tempers.
But, obviously, going the other way and giving children total control over their own rooms can be a recipe for disaster and will almost certainly mean the above tips are completely thrown out of the window.
Instead, redesigning a child's bedroom should be something of a collaborative effort, with appropriate levels of give-and-take bringing the family together and guaranteeing years of future happiness.
But, perhaps above all, the best tip to making over children's bedrooms is to be realistic.
Kids, after all, will be kids and will probably not be bothered how much wallpaper or carpets cost or treat hand-carved furniture with any great reverence.
So, by all means invest time, money and effort in doing a room up, but be prepared to see breakages, spillages and general wear-and-tear before too long.
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