In a home with very little space to spare, having your children share a bedroom might seem like a no-brainer. However, creating a space that suits two kids, no matter how alike they may be, is trickier than you might expect. Not only do kids demand a lot of room for all kinds of different activities, they also need personal space just as much as us grown-ups do.
So how do you tackle the task of creating a shared bedroom that will keep two (or more) kids happy?
Sharing Spaces: What to Consider if Your Children Share a Room
When decorating and furnishing a shared space there are a few key things you’ll need to keep in mind:
Equal division of space
Kids have a strong sense of fairness so keeping things equal is a must, especially when it comes to younger children. Be sure to divide a room as equally as possible, if not physically then through ensuring that they have beds of the same size as well as matching storage and desk space.
Privacy can be difficult to achieve when kids share a room but it can be done. Set rules for alone time and don’t expect children to always want to be together. It can also help to allocate play dates or sleepovers one at a time so each child can enjoy space with friends while the other watches a movie with Mum.
Space for homework and hobbies
A child’s bedroom has to be a multifunctional space. Make room for playing, doing homework and enjoying hobbies with clever desk and storage solutions. Consider your children’s individual passions when furnishing – an easel is ideal for young artists while a dancer might appreciate a one-person built-in barre and mirror.
Storage for two
Plentiful storage is a must in kids’ rooms so look for smart solutions such as ottoman beds or toy boxes that double up as a bench seat. This is another area where it’s important to be fair so ensure that each child has their own dedicated spot for clothing and toys to save on arguments and resentment.
Two Kids, Different Tastes: Top Tips for Shared Children’s Rooms
We all have different tastes and different needs. Here are some simple ideas to help celebrate your children’s individuality when putting a shared bedroom together:
Zone the room
A physical divider is ideal if you can find a way to include one. A screen that folds back or even a simple curtain can help to create much-needed privacy and a sense of personal space. Personalised colour schemes also help to create zones. Allow each child to pick a colour and use paint, stickers and rugs to denote personal areas and items.
Use bunk beds
Stompa Compact Bunk Bed
Bunk beds are ideal for kids who share, freeing up floor space for play. Alternatively a pair of High Sleeper beds or mid-sleeper beds provide space underneath for study, storage or den-making. This under-bed area is then clearly part of each child’s personal space.
Keep it neutral
A favourite colour is a big part of a young child’s personality and choosing a strong single scheme could leave one child out in the cold. Opt for easy to clean, gender neutral white and let each child pick favourite accessories for a splash of colour that speaks to their style.
Don’t forget fun
Build fun and cooperation into a shared room with dedicated shared play areas. A craft table is an easy way to zone-in productive playtime and a tipi combines privacy and imaginative play. A blackboard wall is good use of vertical space while a climbing wall is a unique choice for active kids.
Beds for Teenagers and Toddlers: Creating a Room for Different Ages
The NSPCC recommends that children should have their own bedroom from age ten. However, if your house dictates that two children of vastly different ages have to share a space there are ways to make it work:
Teenage bedroom style
Older children have strong ideas about style so let them have input into a decorative scheme. Creating an area just for them – whether that’s the space underneath a teenager loft bed or around a desk –where they can hang posters or create a mood board – is a must.
Teens need time and space for homework and revision. A good loft or bunk bed for teens might include a built-in table, while flip-down desks are great space savers and can be incorporated into built-in storage. Creating space and quiet elsewhere in the house can also help teens to study without distraction.
Older children and you really need personal space. Give them that by scheduling in me-time when younger siblings are at dance class or on play dates and by setting expectations for privacy with little ones. In the room itself, dividers or a bed canopy can help create a sense of personal space too.
The Best Beds for Shared Rooms
Slumberland Flip Mattress on a Hip Hop Bed Frame
Choosing beds for a shared room isn’t always easy. Here are some of our musts for maximising space and comfort in a room for two or more:
Bunk beds are the obvious solution for a shared room, freeing up floor space for play and storage. All kinds of bunks are available, some combine a double and a single and some even offer three tiers. Factor in sleepovers with trundle beds, some of which can even be used to create teenage double beds.
Don’t forget a good children’s mattress
A child’s bed needs change as they grow and the toddler mattress they’ll start out with won’t last forever. The best mattress for kids is hypoallergenic and easy to clean as well as supportive. And when it comes to upgrading from a children’s single mattress to something more adult? Look no further than the exclusive Slumberland Flip, a mattress designed to adapt to suit all ages from 11, teens and beyond. This innovative mattress uses smart technology for support and durability during those vital years of growth.
Another fantastic range of mattresses for kids is the Jay-Be Dual Support mattress range which, like Flip, are made specifically for kids. A mattress that’s made to support kids as they grow can help give the correct comfort and support during this important time of their lives.
What’s brilliant about our kids mattress collection is that it takes your child all the way from their cot to their young adult bed, giving the right comfort and support as they grow.
Design a Shared Children’s Room at Bensons for Beds
The team here at Bensons for Beds is full of great ideas when it comes to furnishing a room for kids and teens. As well as tonnes of great tips in our online Sleep Hub our instore staff are also well-informed on beds and furniture to suit all ages, just pop in to discuss your needs.
Not only can we help you to make great choices that suit you, your kids and your home, using handy tools like SleepPro, but we also make practicalities like financing and getting your items home simple.
To talk shared rooms or to place an order, shop online, pop into your local Bensons for Beds store or give use a ring on 0808 144 6160.