Wallpapers for the children’s room – a handy guide


Disclosure: This is a collaborative post with Wallpaper from the 70s

It’s no secret that wallpapers are back into fashion. You just need to browse a lifestyle magazine, enter a boutique or drink at a trendy bar to witness the renaissance of this form of art décor. In the space of less than a decade they have gone from being a faded childhood memory to an essential tool in the armoury of the savvy interior designer.

Out of all rooms in your house, the children’s room is likely to be the place most suited to feature a wallpaper. Why you might ask? Well, unlike the other inhabitants of your house, children have this habit of growing up fast, way too fast! As they grow the room in which they spend their time needs to grow as well as wallpapering it every other year with something that better reflect they changing tastes is a very cost effective way to keep the space in line with their age group.

Luckily a whole new range of wallpaper from trendy European designers has cropped up, with interesting models that take into consideration different stages of development, genders and interests. This article aims to provide you with a few handy tips to better choose which wallpaper might be suitable for your renovation process.

Who gets to choose the wallpaper?

One important point that needs to be raised first is that it is always a very good idea to involve children when selecting patterns, motifs and structures of the wallpaper that will decorate their bedroom. Unlike adults, their choices will continue to change with age as they go through the various stages of development and their individual taste and preferences develop, but no matter how young the children are, they should not be completely left out from such choice.

When it comes to pick the functional and practical characteristics of wallpaper however you should be the one making the decision, since practical issue would be here at play that children cannot yet factor in their choice.


The children’s room, is after all, a place where they get to play out their adventures, unfold their imagination by role-playing and invite their friends over. It’s not a quiet library room, kinetic energy will be released in abundance. It is therefore essential to pick a model of wallpaper that, besides being beautiful, is also durable, wipeable and ideally washable.

Is there a clear distinction between wallpapers for boys and girls?

Long gone are the times when such questions didn’t even warrant an answer. Everyone assumed that girls’ rooms needed to be pink and feature horses, princesses, unicorns, castles and fairies, while boys’ rooms were some variation of light blue with motives depicting cars and trucks, rockets and sport characters. Luckily these stereotypes are fading away with time as many motifs in wallpapers for kids can be attractive to both girls and boys.

Of course, the classic gender roles still play a part and there is nothing wrong in choosing a wallpaper accordingly, but it is important to keep an open mind and avoid falling in the pitfall of deciding before enquiring. Let’s also not forget that there are many gender-neutral motifs that appeal to both boys and girls, like animals, pirates, comic characters, the sea and what is under it, as well as more abstract choices like letters or geometric shapes.

Picking a wallpaper that is age-appropriate

At different stages in their development kids might require different stimuli. It is therefore important to keep in mind their age group when picking the right wallpaper for their room. The graphic of the motives needs to take the child age and matching development stage into consideration, as picking an age-appropriate model can support the child’s learning process.  For example, newborn babies and toddlers cannot really focus well their eyesight, so small motives are less relevant, and colours play a bigger role.

wallpaper pink

As they grow, after a few months they start to slowly familiarise themselves with shapes and colours. For this reason, the patterns on the wallpaper should not overwhelm the child’s mind or eyes. Avoid clashing colours and small, complex motives. The younger the child, the more abstract and large-scale the wallpaper pattern should be.

Once the toddler’s age is behind you, patterns and motifs can become more concrete, with actual characters they will start to recognize and interact with. By the time kids are in nursery, they will have a very clear idea of what they like and, once you have decided the material type and characteristics, they will make clear what they like.

Once the kids hit the teenage years, the question of what they want for their rooms will be likely defined by what you don’t like.

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