Colours in kids rooms: do they really matter?

Posted by on February 6, 2017

I’ve always wondered if using colours in kids rooms made any difference.  So I have to admit that I was more than impressed when I found out that Amanda (Owner of Mama’s Home) was a Educational and Developmental Psychologist (the word starstruck or “new idol” may also apply).

Mama's home Amanda

If ever I needed  extra incentive to buy more stuff for the kids rooms, then choosing from products that have been handpicked by someone who KNOWS exactly why aspects are important was definitely one of them.

In all seriousness though, you hardly need extra incentive to stock up on beautiful STUFF when you walk into Mama’s Home (based in Brisbane and also available online).

While I’m all for decorating that works well aesthetically (of course!), I’ve always been a little fascinated by how it can affect growing minds and the role that using colour in kids rooms plays.

Was I putting up too much colour? Not enough?  The wrong shades?  Is monochrome ok?? Am I overthinking it all? Underthinking? Should I burn it all and start again?

While Amanda points out that there isn’t really a right or wrong way, she had some AMAZING advice when Lisa-Marie (Bear and Sparrow) and I picked her brains on decorating a child’s room.

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On Tween Rooms

I really do believe that it is important to include a Tween in the process of designing and styling their bedroom.  

A bedroom at this age is a place of retreat from the world that can be overwhelming at times, and a bedroom allows this to be shut out.  The room needs to be a place they feel relaxed, happy and confident in themselves.  

Even if a tween is sharing with a sibling, there section of the room needs to represent them and these same calming aspects.

Unfortunately, the tween’s ideas might not match perfectly with your ideas and concepts, but listening to them is essential and coming to some form of middle ground where you are both happy. No one particular colour is suited to tweens as such, but they tend to gravitate to more mature tones, colours and textures.

They may no longer love the pastel pinks and purples as they did when little, however they may still like tones and flicks of these colours, with more mature accessories and decorations.

Some tweens like their personality to really shine through and do this with bright pops of colours such as neon’s and bright colours.

It is worth a discussion with your tween about colours, preferences, and styling, and how this is going to best reflect their personality. Of course all the usual is still necessary such as bed etc., however at this age tweens are very much friend focused and an area for photos and their treasures is essential.  

They love to display their achievements and gifts given by their friends.  This can be done in a way that stays with the theme of the room and can incorporate their creativity.  

Each home varies on where the kids work on their homework and projects.  Some parents like to have a desk in the child or tweens room and others like to have the family working together in a common space, such as a designated study area or the kitchen table.  In their room a study space may be important, so this needs to be factored in.

Whether a boy or girl tween, storage is essential.  It needs to look great and be functional.  

For the girls, hairclips, bracelets, necklaces and jewellery of all kinds rules the room, so for the sanity of the parents, storage of these is essential.  

The beautiful Mama’s Home apple baskets and basket containers we have handmade for us, are the perfect option for this!

Special shelving and display units work well for both girl and boy tweens.  Designated areas and spaces for things in the bedroom are a great idea, which also allows for the room to be kept as tidy as possible.

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On Toddler Rooms

There are numerous studies on the psychology of colour and how colour impacts upon children’s moods, behaviours and temperaments.  Colour is wonderful for toddlers and bright colours certainly stimulates the brain in a positive way. 

Very bright colours are thought to energise a child, stimulate learning and development and create movement. So you need to think are these the activities what I want happening in the toddler’s bedroom or is this more of what I want happening in the playroom.  

If you love bright colours, that is great, however chose carefully the tone of those colours.  The pastel trend that we have seen in nurseries for a few seasons now is thought to create calmness and relaxation in the room, for both children and parents.  

Any colour can really be used in a nursery or children’s bedroom.  The feel of the room comes down to the tone, coolness and depth of the colour and the combination with other colours.  

In regards to the monochrome trend that is seen in social media as of late, if you love colour, this is not the way to go.  Dark colours are traditionally known to dull the senses and create a reduced mood.  However if the room is styled well with the lighter shades and tones of white or cream, with a few hints of coloured items it works well in creating a room that is calming and simple, yet warm.

All toddlers and children tend to gravitate towards things that are familiar to them and make them feel positive and happy.  In this day and age, the influence of mainstream TV and movies certainly impact on this.  

There are ways that you can incorporate elements of their favourite trends such as frozen, without having to have Disney themed bedroom.  For example, for a frozen type theme, you can include the beautiful tones of an ice blue, silver foiling and white.  

These colours can be encompassed in bedding, pillows, wallpaper, foiling in prints, or decals on the wall. You can avoid entirely the Frozen themed items, however have the same undertone and feel.

It also comes down to how you talk about the room with your child.  If you are excited by the concept, so too will your toddler and child.  

Decorating your child’s room can at time be costly, so the parents certainly needs to be happy with the room and concept as well and have the choice over the more expensive items.

Baby and Toddler Bedding - Mamas Home Brisbane

On Nurseries

For around the first three months of an infant’s life, babies can only see shades of black, white and grey.  

From this very basic perspective a nursery colouring is irrelevant for the baby.  However, the colour does have significantly high importance on the mental health and wellbeing of the mother and father who nurse and care for the baby in this room.  Particularly maternal mental health is of high importance with increasing numbers of mother experiencing post-natal depression.  

If a nursery can provide a sense of calm, warmth and wellbeing, this may contribute to the overall wellbeing of a mother and baby.  

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On Toys

I am always an advocate for wooden toys, as they last longer and can be kept for the next generation.  

Children however not do particularly mind what they play with.  I personally love the appearance and feel of the wooden toys.  The quality is significantly higher than plastic toys.  

If you are more of an organic parent, wooden toys are the way to go, moving away from the plastics.

Pretend play is such a wonderful aspect of childhood and is also a very necessary component for developing social skills, brain development, fine and gross motor skill development, language skills and developing the all-important emotional skills. 

Without pretend and role play, children’s development would be dampened.  So in this regards, role play toys such as kitchens and cooking sets, dolls houses, wooden castles and car garages, and train and farm sets are very important.

This is certainly where my love of wooden toys comes into play, it has developmental purpose and a beautiful aesthetic purpose.  

A wooden role play set can become an amazing feature in a bedroom or playroom for a child. 

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Children will love any idea that the parents may have if the parents are enthusiastic about it.  Whatever age a parent feels comfortable including their child, a child will respond.  

I would certainly take baby steps in this process with the parent choosing a majority of the main and high expense items, due to these needing to last several years, such as the bed and storage needs.  

The items to include the child on would be the cheaper and more replaceable items, such as pillows and trinkets and certainly as they get older bedspreads and wall art.  

The best advice I could give would be to provide for the younger children, options between 2 or 3 items that would suit the theme and room, as well as meet your criteria.  The child is then given a little freedom and a sense of independence.  

If you say they can chose anything they like without boundaries, this may be very overwhelming for some children, and may not end well in the store or in what they chose.  Planning ahead is very important. 

Keepsake Dolls Mamas Home

On Must Haves

  • A beautiful and unique doll is probably one of our top selling décor items at Mama’s Home.  The brands that are sought after are Nana Huchy, Alimrose, Kate Finn and Miann & Co. These typically get kept on a bed or on a shelf, nice and safe until the little ones are a bit older.  These dolls are beautiful, very special and will be passed down to the next generation.  A doll such as this makes and amazing gift.
  • A classic bed spread from Lazybones, Linen n Things or our new brand Bonne Mere.  We stock the highest of quality bedspreads that you cannot easily find.  These present your room in a classic and long lasting way.  This is for both boys and girls’ rooms.  
  • A beautiful pillow that sits on the bed.  This is an amazing gift for someone.  A little bit of mix and match is wonderful for pillows and can speak volumes in terms of a little one’s personality and style.
  • A framed print or quote that continues the theme that has been developed in the room.  At the moment for a girls room my favourites are the Nana Huchy doll prints, flower crown bunnies, unicorns and swans, and for the boys the navy and gold To The Moon and Back.
  • A statement piece such as a wooden shelf, series of wall hooks or a shadow box. These can become an amazing feature in the room that you can build a theme around and add to slowly.  This type of item can last a child for years in terms of décor and styling.  
  • Storage is also in need of mention.  It sounds boring, but is a must in every bedroom. If you make it fun and functional, it will work well for the bedrooms.

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If you’re Brisbane based, check out Mama’s Home – January saw the store have an absolutely AMAZING facelift.  DISCLAIMER:  you’ll spend a long, long, long, LONG time (and possibly all your money) in the store – it’s seriously beautiful and addictive.

Shop 303 Homezone Shopping Centre

142 Newmarket Rd, Windsor QLD 4030

Store Hours

Monday to Saturday 9:00am – 5:00pm

Sunday 10:00am – 2:00pm

Phone: 07 3357 3333

Online: Mama’s Home

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