Interior Design ‘Dribble’ (Part 1): Ideas for Designing Around Kids

basketballLately, my life has become consumed with basketball!  My sports crazed son, the baby of the family, has decided that he deserves to be on the Harlem Globetrotters… even if he IS only TEN YEARS OLD!  There are now basketball hoops on every door in my house (no wonder I can’t get my redecoration project complete!),  and there are basketballs for me to trip on each and every time I get up to use the bathroom in the middle of the night.  In addition, the noise of a bouncing ball on a hardwood floor is enough to make me KNOW that I need mental help! However, as part of my survival mode in my nutty family, my mantra has quickly become, “If you can’t beat ’em (Have you seen my layups and foul shots?! Ugh!), then better to JOIN ’em!

So, off I go, stressing myself out hourly trying to figure out how I can run (in high heels, of course!) from jobsites to the barn to watch my number five child ride her horse, and then trek the 30 miles to make yet another basketball game for number six child.  (Did I mention that he played on two leagues this season and is now a member of the all star travelling team?!)

So, yes, things are a bit hectic, and often, the interiors of our homes can reflect the pure craziness of our busy lives filled with our childrens‘ schedules and all of the STUFF that comes with them! As a mother of six children… adopted, blended, and biological…. I realize the inherent struggle to find balance between the livability of home and the beauty of interior design…. But it is achievable!

Here are some tips for keeping your sanity – and even some organization! – while marrying your home interiors with the everyday challenges of family life:

1. FIRST THINGS FIRST! TEACH YOUR KIDS TO LIVE WITH YOUR STUFF, RATHER THAN PUTTING IT AWAY.

Now granted, this may seem like a challenge to some – and it can be, at times – but I never removed my accessories from anywhere in my home when my children were small. Instead, I simply taught my kids to live with those things without breaking them. When my children were little, it meant repeating over and over, “No touching”. But soon enough, they learned not to touch, and I never had to live in a home stripped of all of its lovelies. Sometimes, parents tend to take down all of their beautiful accessories to avoid them getting broken. However, the problem with that theory is that the children never really learn to co-exist with these fragile items. Therefore, your accessories may spend years in hiding, which is simply a sad alternative! At this point, my kids can successfully manage any sport inside my home, while also strategically avoiding each and every “obstacle” I have placed in their way!

Kimberly Grigg's Living room

Here is a photo of my living room before we started the renovation. And yes, I left all of these things out, when my kids were small!

2. DON’T WORRY SO MUCH ABOUT DISARRAY, AS LONG AS IT CAN BE EASILY AND QUICKLY CLEANED.

It is nearly impossible to keep a perfectly organized home every second of everyday! And even if you build a playroom to house your childrens’ toys…. GUESS WHAT!? Your kids will STILL drag them out into the livingroom and every other space in the house. Your children want to be wherever you are, so trying to keep their possessions somewhere that you are not, is a daunting task. Learning to accept some “mess” strewn about your house is crucial for maintaining sanity! However, it cannot be a free-for-all of toys everywhere that take forever to drag back to their playroom or bedroom. Instead, have your children choose a few favorite toys that they are permitted to keep in the main living areas of the house, that will fit in a designated, and easily accessible, storage area. All other toys should stay in the playroom or bedroom, and if a new toy would like to visit the livingroom for a while, then it should be exchanged with one of the existing toys stored there. This method keeps the disarray down to a minimum and also allows for speedy clean-up should unexpected guests arrive!

storage basket

Small basket of toys tucked neatly beneath a table. Photo from ohdeedoh.com.

3. HIDDEN STORAGE BASKETS!

I think we can all agree that there is NEVER enough storage space…. No matter how much you have! Therefore, when my children were small (and even now that they are older!), I became very adept at utilizing every possible space to stash baskets of toys! I use a great deal of skirted tables in my designs, and that is one of my favorite places to hide a basket containing puzzles or games. Since nobody ever really looks under them, why NOT use them for extra storage space!?

Skirted table

Skirted table. Photo from House Beautiful.

So, the next time you look around your house at the craziness and chaos, simply take a deep breath, embrace it, and make a plan! It IS possible for your family to live in harmony with your home interiors!

NOW, GO HAVE AN “It’s So Fabulous!” DAY!

IF YOU WOULD LIKE HELP WITH MAKING YOUR HOME EVEN MORE FABULOUS, PLEASE CONTACT ME FOR AN IN-HOME OR ONLINE CONSULTATION  AT KIMBERLY@KNOTTINGHILLINTERIORS.COM

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Stylish, sophisticated and dramatic, Kimberly Grigg brings her unique talents to client’s homes across the country and to her retail boutique, Knotting Hill Interiors. An award winning retail boutique and an award winning full service design firm, Knotting Hill offers luxury interior design, renovation and remodeling services, custom design, childrens rooms and nurseries and accessorizing. The retail boutique sells fabric, home furnishings, retail design, lamps, accessories, art, upscale furniture consignment, gifts, fashion and jewelry. Voted “Best on the Beach” in both retail and design, our customers say that this place and this process is truly “enchanted”! Knotting Hill Interiors is based in Myrtle Beach South Carolina and has two locations at 7753 North Kings Hwy and 7751 North Kings Hwy.