Shared bedrooms – decorating ideas for boys and girls

With four children, sharing a bedroom is a fact of life in our house. My youngest two kids, a boy and a girl, have shared a room from the very beginning and while we were in ‘nursery’ mode, unisex kids’ room decor was not difficult to come by (think shades of yellow and green). Now that both kids are in ‘big beds’ (bunks at that), choosing unisex bedlinen and accessories is far more challenging than I anticipated.

When I suggested a piece on shared bedrooms to Babyology editor Mandi, I fully expected that some serious internet-surfing would uncover a whole range of co-ordinated bed linen and decor items that ticked the box for both boys and girls. It was not to be. Bold, plain colours and the occasional checked fabric cropped up repeatedly – adequate, but not what I was hoping for. So I started searching more widely and finally yielded some good returns. If you have a boy and a girl sharing a bedroom, cast your eyes over the following pictures and grab some sensational ideas for your place.

When decorating a shared bedroom, the choice of bed will dictate much of what you do. For most people, choosing bunks is necessary, simply to save space. We have reviewed lots of designer bunk beds on Babyology in the past and there is certainly no lack of choice.

When space allows, a shared room can be divided yet unified at the same time. The most obvious way to divide a room is with a screen. For a dramatic approach, built-in beds with curtains allow for privacy and a shared space at the same time. The room below, by Ginger Brewton Interiors, is positively luxe – although not a children’s room, it can be adapted for kids by replacing those gorgeous armchairs with a play table, toy box and kid-sized furniture.

shared bedrooms for boys and girls

Likewise, these built-in beds, showcased by Coastal Living, show the possibilities for kid’s shared spaces.

shared bedrooms for boys and girls

shared bedrooms for boys and girls

shared bedrooms for boys and girls

When it comes to colour schemes both brights and neutrals work equally well. Italian design house Stemik Living have put together a bright green kids room that certainly gives a fresh start to every day!

shared green bedrooms for boys and girls

Also hailing from Italy is Berloni, with their take on unisex bedrooms shown below in bright red and bright green.

shared bedrooms for boys and girls

shared bedrooms for boys and girls

There’s neutrals by Dear Kids (we reviewed them previously and showed their designs in glorious colour) – a good choice for older children.

And other neutral rooms with hints of colour.

While stark black and white might not be an obvious choice for children’s bedrooms, it can work extremely well, particularly if an accent colour is introduced. While both the pictures below are of single rooms, they do show how black and white might be a winning decorating scheme for shared bedrooms.

After years of (mostly) harmonious bedroom sharing in our household, I’ve learnt a couple of things. Most importantly, wherever possible, give kids a bit of personal space and stuff of their own. In our house, it’s all about reading lamps and each child having a ‘private drawer’ for their own treasures that’s out-of-bounds both to others and folded washing. Their own bulletin boards for artwork, posters and so forth also works well if your wall space allows for it.

When it comes to bed linen, simplify the look with identical bedding or choose different bedding for each child in co-ordinating colours and patterns. Ikea have a decent range of well-priced gender-neutral textile patterns and linen (shown below) or you can browse through the copious virtual shelves of Spoonflower, Fabric on Demand or Rooms By You for customised and unique fabrics – check out the fantastic Mod Yellow Collection at Rooms By You and you’ll see how easy choosing co-ordinating fabrics can be.

(additional images via Home-Designing, Home Klondike, My Home Ideas, Home Design Modern, Parents, Mini Meise)

Katrina Whelen

Katrina studied planning and design, did the hard yards working in a big office building and then traded it all in for a relaxing (!) life at home with four children. She now fills her time with writing, completing a degree in genetics and taxiing her children around Melbourne to their various sporting commitments (not necessarily in that order).

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