Creating a Cool Bedroom for Your Teenager

You remember your teenage years, don't you? You were coming into your own and searching for your true identity. You were maturing into an independent young adult. You needed a space of your own to think, read, watch TV and gossip with friends. No one over 20 could possibly understand what you were going through—especially your parents! Really nothing much has changed, except YOU are now the parent.

Lucky you. You have taken on the challenge of transitioning a juvenile bedroom to one of a teenager. This is quite an undertaking. What was cool when you were a teen is probably not so cool today. Before you go out to buy paint, bedding and furniture, you should understand one important thing: you are not completely in charge of this project.

While you may not agree with all of the details, try to strike a compromise with your teen as to the bedroom’s general design direction and key elements. Obviously, a spot for a computer is mandatory—whether for homework or social networking. A bed and clothing storage are also points on which both parties will likely agree.

Creating a cool bedroom for your teen doesn’t need to be a test of wills. Try throwing out of a few of these ideas to help bridge the generation gap and hopefully you can find some common ground!

Gobs of Pillows
Mounds of pillows on the bed and larger floor pillows make your teen’s room a place to totally unwind and relax. Pillows can add color and set a mood. Imagine rich textures and paisleys to give the bedroom exotic Boho flair.

Special Lighting
Your teen needs a task light for studying, but once the homework is done, give him or her something special. A string of twinkle lights for the ladies or a funky disco ball for the gents will give their bedroom a lounge vibe for the evening.

Organized Chaos
We all know most teens can have very questionable standards when it comes to tidiness. Get them to cut down on the mess by creating places to keep everything under wraps. Under bed storage containers, baskets and shelving with bins keep strewn clothing and miscellaneous clutter to a minimum. Or, like in this room, take storage to new heights by constructing a raised platform and incorporating drawer storage beneath!

Fashionable Windows
Most teens are fashion-conscious whether they admit it or not. Why not extend their love of fashion to the windows? There are so many fun curtain fabrics today, you can find something to satisfy even the most design-forward teen. For something more tailored, consider woven grass, matchstick shades or wooden blinds.

Wall Art
Wall decals are a great way for your teen to express their individuality and creativity without ruining the walls. They can choose from scrambled message or poetry word decals to wild polka dots. When they tire of one phase, just replace them with another set of peel and stick wall art.

Fresh Duvet Cover
No room is complete without a cool comforter or duvet cover. I personally like the idea of duvet covers because of their versatility. Just purchase an insert (either down or fiberfill) and encase it in a fabulous duvet cover to suit your teen’s favorite colors and patterns. Pick up a few coordinating pillow shams as well. And by all means, do not purchase a matching bed-in-a-bag set. That is so not cool!

New Paint Scheme
You and your teen can tackle this as a first or final step in the room design process. If she absolutely adores “Tiffany blue”, then by all means, start by painting the walls that color. If you’re both stuck for inspiration, choose a few key fabrics, a rug, bedding and upholstered pieces to give you wall color ideas. Not up for painting the entire room? Get a quart of paint and tackle an accent wall—preferably the headboard wall.

Kelly Sue DeConnick via flickr | Corey Taratuta via flickr | DIY Ready | Freshome 
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