I’ve recently been asked by a few moms to help with inspiration for a rainbow room for boys in preschool/early elementary school. Since kids change their minds often, I like to keep my entire design (including all furniture and accessories to under $2000/room. Obviously, if you keep existing pieces and work around them, you can work with a much smaller budget.
To make rainbow colors feel ‘bold’, I focus on jewel-toned colors – emerald green, sapphire blue, ruby red, and citrine yellow.
Since we’re designing a bedroom (and want it to keep it serene and cozy and conducive for sleep), you want to be sure to balance your vibrant colors with a few less saturated colors and white.
Since we’ll be introducing so many different colors through furniture and accessories, I would keep the walls a bright white or light grey. Add some visual interest by painting jewel-toned rainbow lines across your wall (make it interesting and wrap it around a corner).
Thicker rugs are significantly more expensive than thinner rugs. You can achieve the same luxurious feel by placing a ½” thick pad under your rug. This is my all-time favorite rug pad (yup, have it in our home too!). And it cuts to size with regular fabric scissors! I chose this bright yellow as a bright (but not too bright) anchor for the room.
Emphasis should be on comfort and durability. This likely will be your most expensive purchase, and will probably stay with you for a while.
To narrow your search, focus on:
- A comfortable headboard – for both kids and adults (bedtime reading!)
- Underbed clearance – are you going to use the space for extra storage? Do you have a robot vacuum in your home?
This emerald green bed will work great in a bold rainbow room, and can easily be set in other themes (we have the same bed in a space-themed room in our home, but I can imagine it in a dinosaur theme, or even an enchanted forest theme)
I’m a huge fan of IKEA for bookcases and storage solutions. Their bookcases are super durable, priced well, and fit a variety of styles.
- Swap out hardware and consider adding crown molding (when appropriate) for a built-in/custom look.
Kids beat up their desks – paint marks, scratches, watermarks, the list goes on… Keep it simple, and find an inexpensive piece that will complement the other furniture in your room. This desk is also from IKEA, and mimics the simple clean lines and finish of the bookcase. Remember that kids need lots of storage, so be sure to pick a desk that offers some drawers for their supplies and school work.
Must be comfortable, but doesn’t have to be a traditional office chair.
Using a dining room chair as a desk chair is a fantastic way to keep extra seating throughout the house without cluttering your place up (even if it doesn’t fit the rest of the dining room chairs, you can still pull it out when needed)
I like to splurge on nightstands. Even though they have a small footprint in the room, they make a statement and complete your space. Also, specifically in a kid’s space, they tend to get banged up less (unlike adults that use them more frequently).
When shopping for a nightstand:
- You want the top of your nightstand to be flush with the top of your mattress.
- Don’t be scared to play with size and color. Get creative!
This is where you get to have fun. Table lamps (and wall lights) are a super easy and fun way to add character to a room.
When planning for lighting, you want to think about –
- Task (work at a desk/ reading / overhead)
- Mood (dimmers are a must! Even on table lamps!)
This light fixture is so light (no pun intended, ha!) that you can actually use 3M Velcro strips to attach it to the wall
I like making statements with art – go big, as big as you can (either with one piece, or multiple pieces arranged together). Art doesn’t need to be complicated, or expensive (or serious).
Framing matters. Play with negative spaces (a larger frame and white mat framing a smaller piece of art), or play with the art itself – even a scribble of a 3yr old can be framed in an interesting way!
I tend to limit the decorative accessories in kids’ rooms because they tend to accumulate so much “stuff”, and their toys can be displayed in super fun ways. But I do like finding one or two items that are a bit unexpected and add them for character and whimsy. This could be a cool piggy bank, a paper pinata, even a disco ball!
You do want to invest some thought in how your kids store their things. Set aside the plain plastic bins, and find cool containers that will inspire them to stay organized – a pouf stuffed with stuffed animals, a lego display, patterned boxes for craft storage, and so much more…
So there you have it. A few key pieces can transform a kid’s room into a bold rainbow room.
And as you can see – you can easily grow with each of these pieces and use them to transform the room into a completely different space as your needs and taste change over time.
Looking for more ideas for your bold rainbow room? Be sure to follow my inspiration board on Pinterest. I’m constantly adding more ideas to it!