With three large renovations under her belt, Donna Ford began an award-nominated interiors blog last year to share with others what she’s been learning. As she expands into offering affordable interior design services, she has discovered the relevance of her previous life as a dance artist and her experience in arts management and as a mentor and teacher. She lives in and renovates a 1930’s home in South-East London with her Director of Photography husband John and their two little boys. She particularly loves designing kid’s interiors as they lend themselves well to being brave with colour and trying new ideas. This room was the first new room to be completed in the new build in her home for her four-year old son Jack and is inspired by the colour palette of the gorgeous illustrations by Maurice Sendak from the book “Where the Wild Things Are”. Sounds intriguing? Then keep reading..
CAN YOU TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT JACK, THE OWNER OF THE ROOM?
This room was designed for my son Jack who is four years old and the whole concept is based on an illustration by Maurice Sendak in the children’s classic book Where the Wild things are. You know that magical moment when Max, alone and angry in his bedroom starts to see vines emerge and grow through the walls and that cheeky smirk that arrives on his face that knows an adventure awaits him! Jack adores forest walks (even though we live in London the woods are only ten mins away) and has always loved stories and now that’s he’s at school it’s great to see him reading them and creating them by himself.
DID HE HAVE A SAY IN THE DESIGN PROCESS AND AN IDEA OF WHAT HIS DREAM BEDROOM WOULD LOOK LIKE?
I would say he’s a big young for any serious consultations (!) but when I showed him the mood board he seemed excited! He loved the abstract mountain and the gallery wall. The parrot skeleton is his favourite picture and he choose it himself from the artist’s stall.
WHAT WAS THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE DECORATING THIS ROOM?
I found that once I’d chosen the colours (the monochrome scheme combined with mint green), the hardest bit was deciding what walls should be which colour. I’m glad I took the time to to think this through as I am so pleased with the result. I love the green ceiling which sort of signifies the growing vines in Max’s room in the story and I love the gallery wall on the dark grey wall. The triangular mountainesque mural for me signifies adventure and overcoming challenges which is something I want Jack to experience in his childhood. This room was freshly plastered and created as part of our recent renovations so the room was a completely blank canvas and didn’t present any difficulties (which makes a change from the rest of our house!)
WHAT WOULD BE YOUR TOP TIPS WHEN RE-DECORATING A KID’S ROOM FROM SCRATCH?
This is a great question. This is my third kid’s bedroom that I’ve decorated in four years and I would say the most important thing is be brave and try something different. You won’t regret it! This is the one place where you can really play with colour and concepts and as a result you’ll probably find that this experimentation will overflow to your design decisions in other rooms in your home. The other thing I would say is make the space cosy with atmospheric lighting, even fairy lights so you can snuggle up for bedtime stories. Oh and bookshelves to hold said stories is also a must!
IS THERE ANYTHING THAT JACK MISSES IN THE ROOM?
I think Jack is really proud of his new room but misses his two year old brother sleeping next to him so there is every chance that Ethan will move in there in the next few months. It’s very sweet seeing them bond and become reliant on each other. However, Maverick the cat loves curling up at night on the end of Jack’s bed and that keeps him company for now…
Paint : Salty Sea and Grey White by Valspar I White metal bed : Maisons du Monde I Triangular shelf : La Redoute I Bedside table : La Redoute I OSB3 Flooring : About Flooring I Bedding : Made.com I Books (Fantasti Birds and Curiosity) : Walker I Wall sconces : Ebay I Prints : Hazel Nicholls/Moxi/NickieKelly I Picture ledges : Ikea I Playmat : Play & Go
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