Let’s face it: Tween and teen girls are not all that easy to handle.
At that age, my room was my own private sanctuary where I’d listen to records, flip through Tiger Beat and YM (wow am I dating myself or what?), play around with makeup and my curling iron, gossip with my friends on the phone, have sleepovers and do my homework. More importantly, when I was in a bad mood, I’d be out of my parents’ hair.
Tween and teen girls are going through lots of changes, and their tastes can change from boppy boy bands to melancholy Morrissey at the drop of a hat. They want their childhood rooms to grow up and put their own personal stamp on their bedrooms (yes, these personal stamps can change quickly too).
Let go and let them, but avoid massive redecorating costs when their tastes change with the following tips.
1. Start with good bones.
Provide seating, a simple bed design, storage and a place to do homework. These elements will never need to change. Built-ins provide plenty of storage and display space. A window seat is a cozy lounge alternative to the bed, and a desk fits right into the room past the foot of the bed. Even if you redecorate after your child leaves the nest, these elements will work well in a home office or guest room.
Provide a big board for inspiration.Teen girls love to tack up their favorite pictures from magazines, shots of themselves and their friends, ticket stubs and other mementos. A large corkboard will give her lots of room to enjoy her favorite ephemera. In case she starts to spread beyond the board, provide plenty of Blu Tack, which will hold up posters without damaging the walls or paint.
2. Plan for future redecorating by making light commitments.
If a 12-year-old wants to go for wallpaper, it’s a pretty safe bet she’ll want something completely different when she’s 16, and you’ll have a big task on your hands removing it. Instead, reach a compromise with paint or wall decals.
These dots are easy to apply, they are easy to remove and they won’t damage walls. If fuchsia should fall out of favor, a can of primer and a can of paint is all that will be required to suit her new style.
3. Use neutral colors on big ticket items.
A white headboard, bed skirt and linens means that when she starts to prefer black and silver over pink and green in a few years, all you’ll need to switch out are a few colorful throw pillows and a quilt. I hope these tips will help navigating the tween and teen years with your daughter a little easier!
Becky is a contributor at Houzz, a home design site focused on helping design professionals and homeowners manage the remodeling and decorating process.