Bringing a Kid’s Room Back Down to Scale

Tuesday January 10, 2017

From the time Bean was still a surreal fetusbaby kicking around in my abdomen, Dave and I set out to create child-sized spaces for her. To boost independence and comfort, to make clear that she had spaces of her own, that she was able, despite her young age. We had her micro-nursery down, with the low toy and bookshelves, low artwork, floorbed for easy baby access. We found space in our entryway, kitchen and bathroom for Bean-sized shelves, tables, mirrors, and artwork. We even gave her a toddler-sized closet!

But, then, over a year ago, when we “renovated” our apartment to give Bean her own room (and turned what had been our bedroom into the living room/murphy-bed-bedroom), we also dumped a lounge chair in with her. There wasn’t really space for it in the new living room, and we figured, we’d still want somewhere to sit in her big new room.

Me me me. Adults adults adults.

It’s good every now and then to step back and decide if your home is really functioning as you like. I realized a few months ago that we’d dumped this chair in her room, taking up critical space, and had in the process shifted the scale of her room to something adult-sized. Her rooms, which had always been joyfully child-centric (child-size/Montessori rooms are really super cute — look at that wee little table!), now looked like any room in a house, not one meant for a kid. She had to maneuver around the chair while holding trays of paint supplies to get to her table. Stuffed animals kept getting lost under it. It served no real purpose in her life.

We moved it back into the living room this past weekend, and WHAT a change. She now has so much more space to roll out mats, build cities and towns, create entire railroad universes. Or roll herself around in her wagon, as you do when you’re three. (And, it turns out, having another place for an adult to sit is actually really nice in an (adult-sized) living room too!)

And now everything in her room looks appropriately sized, child-sized. Her dollhouse at her eye level, her small table with small chairs, her short shelves filled with toys and books and art supplies.

If you haven’t taken a sharp eye to your kids’ rooms in a while, give it a try. Is their room functioning for them? Is everything comfortable and easy for them to access? It’s amazing how huge of an effect a small (adult-sized) thing can have.


(I’d show before and afters, but you guys understand about not wanting to share photos of your kid’s room with the great mysterious world, right? Right. Take my word for it. SO MUCH MORE SPACE.)

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