coral and aqua bedroom

So I’m trying to catch up on some of the before & afters here at the Cottage, before some more changes happen. Next week, hopefully, we begin renovations to turn the upstairs attic space into two new bedrooms. We are EXCITED!

At the moment, we have two bedrooms. One for the parents, one for the three kids.

This post could more properly be titled: How to Fit Three Kids in One Bedroom.

As you can imagine, it works! :) Also, it is challenging! To put two girls and one little boy in the same bedroom, as well as all their clothes and toys, has been a stretch. While I feel that it has forced me to be organized, I also am not a died-in-the-wood minimalist, so sometimes this room goes through crazy purging (normally late at night after the kids are sound asleep and I haul half of their toys off to Goodwill).

The bedroom before: great bones, just not so great a color.

bedroom before jpeg

purple bedroom before jpeg

The bedroom after:
We painted with Benjamin Moore’s Revere Pewter, which is a cross between grey and cream. I was hoping for something a little more grey than what this turned out to be, but I was still very happy with the end result.

// looking into the bedroom, with some crafts on the doors the girls made at clubs one night //

bedroom door

Because this room holds three children, as well as doubles as our guest room, we needed a double bed, and we need décor that was appropriate for both genders and for guests.

I’ve seen many darling kiddo rooms. And I’ve seen some kiddo rooms that are beautiful, but that don’t look kid-friendly. It looks like the mom is wanting it to reflect her own personal tastes rather than making a place that the kids will enjoy. Naturally, a house will reflect the style and taste of the woman who lives there, and that is okay. But I also wanted this space to be something my kids liked too. So we all gave and took a little.

I knew that I wanted a mostly neutral room, with pops of color in aqua and coral (since those two colors can be somewhat gender-neutral). I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on this room, but I was willing to purchase a few items to make the room special and unique.

The Girls’ Side

You Are So Loved pillow

you are so loved pillow and shams

The Pottery Barn Teen website had a really cool feature where you can make a virtual bed, with various colors & styles & pillows to see how you like it before you purchase. Obviously it is only their own items (and I wasn’t planning to purchase there) but it was a great resource – which I cannot for the life of me find to link to. Maybe it was discontinued? But browsing the bedding on their website gave me some great ideas.

The girls had plain white sheets on their bed, which were a little boring, so I bought some aqua rick-rack at a fabric store (the widest I could find for the sheets, and smaller for the pillowcases) and sewed it on.

rick rack sewn onto a flat sheet rick rack sewn onto pillowcases for a pop of color

It was a big time-consuming, especially for the sheet because I could not simply sew a straight line down the middle. I tried that, but after one washing the edges curled so badly I knew it would never work long-term. So I had to sew on both sides of the curved edge, which was easy enough but just took some time. The rick-rack on the pillowcases was narrow enough that I could sew one straight line down the middle of that one.

The total price for the newly updated sheets was under $10. It sure beats a new set from Pottery Barn. :) I added some pillow shams I had gotten on clearance a few years ago and the color match was perfect.

sister silhouettes above the bed

For a final touch on their bed I bought the pillow cover that says, “You Are So Loved.” I fell in love with it the moment I first saw it, and have not regretted that purchase!

And, because I simply cannot leave silhouettes alone (even four years later), especially when they are silhouettes of my own children, I made newly-updated profiles for above the bed. I made them from 12 X 12 cardstock, glued them onto canvases that came 2/pack at Walmart, and then painted the edges of the canvas gold to bring in a bit of bling. I also added the name of each of my daughters in gold under her silhouette. It was the perfect touch for above their bed, and I love it.

sister silhouettes in coral and gold

Above their bed I hung a collection of paper flowers (aqua: my mother-in-law found at a yard sale) and tissue paper balls (white and pink: tutorial here). The large white round lantern was found somewhere years ago (read, cannot remember!).

 We also replaced the old brown ceiling fan with an outdoor hanging lantern that we found at a yard sale for $5. It is also old, but it is white, and it fit in the room beautifully.
above the bed

tissue paer balls

bedroom in coral and aqua

A few little extra details: the bed was a brown wooden thrifted find when we were newly married for $40. First it was black, and more recently white. We added this decorative piece to the headboard.

headboard detail

Old Quilt at the bottom of the bed: *say it all together* thrifted

quilt from Goodwill

And lest we be deceiving, at the moment (or for the past 3 months-moments) the bed has been held up by books on one corner. It’s true! :) Books hold up broken beds wonderfully. The Nesting Place gave me permission to show the imperfect along with the beautiful. xo

honesty is best aqua throw rug

To the right of the bed, with about 4 feet in between, is Hudson’s bed.

How to fit three kids in one bedroom

Little Man’s Corner

We found an antique toddler bed at a thrift store when Zoe was a baby, and so far each of our kids have used it. It is made of solid wood, and it’s just so gorgeous! All I needed to do was clean it up, and it was ready to go. I do think it tends to look a little girly though, so when Hudson moved into it we tried to make it a manly little corner. :)

I found Little Wanderers store through Instagram, which is where I found the white cardboard deer head mount. I LOVED it, and knew that it would be the perfect statement piece for above his bed, setting it apart as the boy side. It was super easy to assemble (punch out, then follow the numbered pieces), and I absolutely love this!

the boy side

Gold frame: thrifted
White Deer Mount: Little Wanderers, source at the bottom of the post
Arrow Pillow: made by me
White comforter: throw-sized down comforter that fits a toddler bed perfectly
Bed: thrifted

the boy side of the room little boy bed

deer mount deer head mount

  deer head cardboard mount

antique headboard little boy bed

antique baby bed anitque bed

little boy corner

We put white faux-wooden blinds up on the windows, but no window treatments.
I liked the clean white lines, and it draws the eyes to some of the other places in the room, while keeping the windows stream-lined.

The bedroom also has a mantel (one of five in this cottage, isn’t that crazy?!).
However, we did not make it functional: we use it for decorative purposes only.
As cute as it might look, fire in a kids’ bedroom would just terrify me.

Beatrix Potter theme mantel

wagon in the bedroom with books

So because it started out as a nursery-turned-kids’-room, this area has a Beatrix Potter-theme of sorts. Add in some fedoras (Target’s dollar bin) and baseballs (thrifted), a painted “H” for a whimsical look, and it’s good to go.

mantel in the kids bedroom old baseballs

Okay, so this is where it get nitty-gritty practical: storage space.
Three kids in one room isn’t all rosy (other than the fact that they LOVE it).

We have one dresser (gifted by our landlord at our previous rental house), and it houses all the clothes for all three kiddos, with the exception of hanging clothes (dresses, dress shirts, sweaters) and shoes. Sooo, the good thing about this is that it forces me to be basic with their clothing because there simply is not room for each child to have lots of clothes.

There is still a changing pad on the dresser because, yes, my son is still being potty trained
(don’t even get me started on all his escapades while in the process).
I hot-glued some aqua ribbon onto the lampshade to continue the aqua/rick-rack theme,
and hung a decorative mirror.

Under the dresser are baskets: one for each of the girls to hold their shoes and socks,
and the little yellow one for Hudson’s shoes and socks.

one dresser for three kids

decorative lamp shade whimsical mantel

  mirror reflection wagon with books

Not pictured is the closet, one of three in the entire house, which holds their clothes and all of their toys (except for the white trunk at the foot of Hudson’s bed that stores the doll clothes for the girls, and the living room coffee table trunk that holds a few more toys).

It IS possible to have several children in the same bedroom. Ideal? Perhaps not. But when it is all you have, you make it work, and you make it fun and beautiful. You choose to have only the things that you really really like, and remove all else and haul it to Goodwill. :)

I’m still learning – after nine years of marriage – that home is not about being a perfect place, or having all the perfect things. With kids especially, things will be imperfect, and that’s okay. If you’re a bargain-hunter (like me), you won’t find everything all at one store, all in one day. It takes patience, and eventually, over time, you will have a unique collection of things you really love. We’ve lived in the Cottage for four years, and the kids’ bedroom is finally coming together how I like. And now within two months we will be rearranging and moving around again because of the upstairs renovation. :)

So goes life, and that’s why it’s so important to enjoy the process of homemaking, not just waiting until everything is exactly perfect before you can see the beauty. Beauty does not equal perfection. Beauty means that you choose to see the lovely, the precious, right now, today, right in the middle of what may be a mess.

I hope you enjoyed the little tour of the kids’ bedroom, and are encouraged to “fluff your nest” too. :)


“You are so loved” pillow cover: Society 6
Deer/Buck Cardboard Mount: Little Wanderers
Rug: thrifted, but similar one found on Overstock

34 thoughts on “The Kids’ Bedroom {Before & After}

  1. Jolene

    I think the room is lovely! ! I love that little bed!! Love seeing these before and after posts :)

  2. amy

    Great makeover…I love your clean style! And, I esp. LOVE your next to the last paragraph… “So goes life… … …” Thank you for the reminder.

  3. Sharon

    Beautiful. I love the combination of old and new. I am also a Beatrix Potter fan, so those mantle pics were the icing on the cake! Two of our daughters share a room too, and I think it makes for some special memories! Thanks for sharing, your home and your thoughts :)

    1. The Cottage at 341 South Post author

      Yay for another Beatrix Potter fan! :) Yes, I think sisters sharing a room is one of the best things in the world. Not always easy, perhaps, but also so very good. Thanks for visiting! ♥

  4. Kayla

    I love seeing your before and after pictures and hearing the stories! I love the colors you used for the girls side especially and how you added to the sheets! God bless you and your family.

  5. Ervina

    Get out of town, I’d sleep in here with ten siblings it’s that wonderful! You just do the best job of making things so beautiful and yet still kid friendly and something they enjoy, too. Such an art. The gold-edged silhouettes and pillow are my favorite. Oh, and I’ll claim giver of the Beatrix Potter picture. I think I got it at a garage sale and I’m so happy you liked it well enough to use it. I’m saving up my pennies so I can someday hire you for an all-out interior design consult on our house. :)

    1. The Cottage at 341 South Post author

      Oh dear, I forgot to give credit where it was certainly due. You did indeed find at least one – maybe even two- of the Beatrix Potter pictures for me, and I love them so much. If you want them for your nursery in the future I will be happy to give them back. ;)

  6. Jill

    Clarita, you truly are an encouragement to me! We too have three kiddos (a boy and two girlies) in one bedroom so I can totally relate to this post. I love your comment about enjoying the process of homemaking too…so true! Thanks again for sharing the lovely and the real. =)

  7. Kim

    Super good nest fluffing, indeed! The white linens are crisp and lovely! Hudson’s bed is well done, love the arrow pillows and monkeys to keep him company, not to mention that amazing deer head. Once again, you have given a great example of gathering things over time, adding embellishments, plus creating and combining fun things for wall groupings with your classy taste in evidence at every turn.
    I am staying tuned to see what you guys have planned for upstairs. Carry on with the fluffing!!! Can’t wait!

  8. Christy

    Oh, how fun to see this post when I just posted on our kids’ room as well. :) Clarita, the room is so beautiful!! I looove the fun colors you chose and how you made the room look both boyish and girlish–a challenge for sure. A friend and I were just talking about how we both grew up sharing a bedroom with siblings and how we wouldn’t trade the experience for a room of our own. I think kids learn so many life lessons by sharking a room–negotiation, grace, conflict resolution and friendship, for sure. =)

    1. The Cottage at 341 South Post author

      I love how we posted about our kids’ bedrooms on the same day. ;) I so agree with you about sharing bedrooms… There were times growing up that I wished for a room of my own, but mostly, it was just so good. So many life lessons to be learned by it – YES!! xoxo

  9. Lill

    Gracious, it’s beautiful! We also have 3 kiddos in one room (2 boys, 1 girl) and looking forward to adding another in about 6 months:), so I understand the challenge. I’ve been wanting to update/redo for awhile now, and you’ve totally inspired me to get it done. Love your house so much!

  10. Cindy

    i love it! you did a really good job. And I appreciate your attitude towards the tight corners and really, truly making the best of it!

  11. Kim

    Your kids’ room is perfectly lovely! I thoroughly enjoyed reading this post about all the details. There are so many wonderful touches I could point out that are my favorites, but it’s too many to list concisely. i was thinking of The Nester even before you mentioned her. It feels like y’all are sisters or something. ;-) Anyway, awesome creativity and functionality and beauty in this room!!

  12. Rach

    I love how the bedroom turned out!! The colors are just what I’d pick if I had a girl.. My 3 boys are all in one room & it is a constant battle for me to keep clothes organized.. But I love that they all are happy to sleep together in one room!! ;) Their room is the next one to be updated- I’m dreaming & planning!! Wishing you courage for today.. xo

    1. The Cottage at 341 South Post author

      Thank you!! And yes to three children being happy to be in one bedroom! I love that too, and know it will be a sad day for all three of them when they need to separate. The organization is probably the hardest part of it all, I so agree! xo

  13. Diane Yoder Beiler

    Love your post…we live in a small house, so I know the challenges of having a nursery/guest room/toddler’s room You’ve made yours beautiful! Can totally relate to the potty training escapades! I’ve done things in the last few weeks that I would have deemed entirely too gross to consider in my “before I was a mom” life:)

  14. Kassie Pounds

    Such a cute room! I don’t know how you do it! We have 2 in one room and I feel like I’m going nuts with all the “stuff”! Oh – and I think the bed propped on books isn’t so terrible. Some really cool books with the title’s facing out….hmm…anyway. Cute room! :)

  15. Bethany

    i think the room is a sign of your kids growing up! The different paint and colors give it an older kids’ look but still a fun, kiddish place to play and be cozy. Good job! So creative! “Everything she touches becomes a ‘Mozart’ ” :)

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