Once upon a time, I returned home from a weekend at Grandma’s to discover my bedroom had been the target of an extreme makeover. I do mean extreme. Not only had the color scheme changed, the entire location of my room had changed as well. I went from a modest sized bedroom to something that rivaled the size of my mom’s master bedroom. Needless to say, I felt like a princess.
To sweeten the pot, my old bedroom had been converted to a comfortable hideaway for me to enjoy with friends. Talk about two awesome deals rolled into one! On one side of the hallway I had my spacious bedroom decked out with all my favorite frills, and on the other side of the hallway I had a private space where me and my gals could gather and gossip. I was the envy of the neighborhood and it was awesome.
Talk About Sibling Rivalry
I think my sister was more excited about me leaving for college than I was. She inherited my large bedroom, which she quickly repainted, as well as the girly den which she was kind enough to leave intact. I always looked forward to holiday breaks, not only for the chance to wash mountains of laundry, but for the opportunity to unwind in my cozy haven as well.
Creating a Haven for Your Teen
- Liven up the space with a splash of color – I’m a sunshine and rainbows kind of gal, so you can imagine how ecstatic I was to find the walls of my hideaway painted a cheerful yellow hue. Whatever color you choose, be sure to involve your teen in the decision making process. Even if you want to surprise your child with a room makeover, like my mom did, make sure you know their preferences well enough to create a color scheme they will adore.
- When in doubt, choose a theme – Trends change faster than your teen’s taste in clothes. Take your teen’s interest to heart when settling on a focal point, or theme, for their hideaway. Some popular favorites include movies, music, travel, and rival NFL teams if they’re constantly on www.nfl.com.
- Prepare for the inevitable snack attack – A teenager’s stomach is a bottomless pit! After a long day at school, followed by soccer practice, and an intense text conversation, they’re bound to be hungry. Provide a snack station and mini-fridge in their hideaway and make sure to stock it with mom-approved munchies and beverages.
- It’s not all fun and games – In addition to a television and a gaming console for mindless entertainment, my mom also left the mirrored closet doors intact and included some clever storage options for makeup and hair accessories. The extra closet space was great for storing off-season garments, and the mirrored wall made for the perfect spot for my friends and I to primp before homecoming and prom. Oftentimes we had more fun getting ready for dances than we had at the dance itself.
- Encourage academics – I’ll never run out of nice things to say about my mom (she’s pretty awesome, if you couldn’t tell) she had the foresight to include a desk, as well as a small table, where my friends and I could study and do our homework. Ever the fan of literature, she also included a small bookshelf stocked with classics, which inspired my lifelong love of the written word.
- Double-duty furnishings – Storage ottomans hadn’t been invented yet when my mom renovated my bedroom into a teen hideaway, but that didn’t stop my mom from using decorative baskets for storing loose items. My friends were particularly fond of the cozy daybed with trundle beneath, they loved the comfortable seating by day and even more comfortable sleeping by night.
- Make it personal – I think my favorite part of my hideaway overall was the addition of an artists easel. Knowing that I love to draw and paint, mom included this small design touch that really made the room feel like it belonged to me. Whatever your child’s interest or hobby, try to find a way to incorporate it into the design of the room as a way of encouraging your teen’s creativity.
The Gift That Keeps on Giving
My mom managed to renovate not one, but two rooms, in the course of a weekend. Impressive, I know, but that’s because she had done a lot of planning and legwork well ahead of time. This was twenty years ago, so she didn’t have the luxury of doing all of her shopping online. I think the toughest part of the makeover job was keeping it under wraps long enough that I would truly be surprised. She often jokes and says her one regret was not saving enough room for a retro coke machine.
About the Author
Freelance writer Rachel Cook loves a good makeover., whether it involves home décor or an ugly duckling, she always revels in the big reveal. She loves shopping online at places like http://www.menshideaway.com where you can find great retro gift items. When she’s not experimenting with new hairstyles and outfits, Rachel can be found researching her next series of articles.