defined as children between the ages of 9 and 13, today's "tweens"
are a rapidly growing and influential market of the population. Large
discount stores are particularly adept at capturing this market's attention,
as their products are both contemporary and affordable. Both boys and
girls enjoy up-to-the-minute products, particularly in today's hottest
color combinations. As the category of this age group falls between young
children and teenagers, effective designs should be age appropriate; highlighting
colors as well as motifs that grow with the aging child. The application
of paint is a wonderfully creative and budget friendly way to incorporate
fashion and function within a tweens living space.
As tweens are endlessly searching for ways to show their self expression,
involving them in a redecorating project is a great opportunity to demonstrate
their very definite opinions about their living areas. Ask your tween
to check out magazines for cool ideas that implement both aesthetics and
practicality within their space. Particularly at this age, children want
to be daring and different. Consider allowing your tween to deviate from
the rest of your home's decor by applying today's "hot" deeper
jewel tones or dark earthy shades, rather than insisting on white or neutrals.
(Bold, deep colors can effectively be accented with cream colored trims,
allowing the eye a visual resting place and creating powerfully dynamic
Adding colorful painted furnishings and decorative accessories is an especially
quick and easy way to transform unfinished furnishings, hand me down/mismatched
pieces and flea market finds. Spray paint is available in an endless array
of contemporary colors, and allows for quick coverage and a speedy completion
of several projects. Focus on creating an environment that is tailored
to study and relaxing using a myriad of furnishing choices, most of which
can easily be customized with paint. Wall systems represent ideal entertainment
centers or study areas for rapidly growing tweens. These units provide
a variety of storage options and are often available in several configurations
to accomodate specific room sizes and layouts. Typical accessories include
side cabinets, hutches, cubbies and drawers. Explore ways of adding paint
and color to unexpected places within the wall system, such as the interior
wall of a cabinet walls or the fronts of cubby trim. Festively painted
bookracks keep books and other items clearly displayed and at easy reach.
Extra deep bookcases hold baskets that can house magazines, videotapes,
cassettes, books and other belongings. Baskets, boxes and storage bins
can be painted in lively colors and used to store items attractively within
the wall system.
the possibility of creating a gallery wall, to add a distinctively personal
touch to the tween space. Let your tween choose the theme (ie. artwork,
family vacations, a favorite sport or hobby, etc..), then create a focal
point wall by mixing a variety of frames that depict the desired theme.
Visually tie mismatched frame styles, shapes and colors together by applying
one common paint color or special effect paint technique to all frames.
Selecting a hue that vividly contrasts with the wall covering creates
a powerfully dramatic look, whereas establishing an identical frame and
wall covering color creates an elegant, monochromatic appearance. The
fun part of this project is that it is an ongoing process that evolves
with the passing of time. Frames can be embellished with handpainted freehand
designs or stenciled motifs for an especially unique presentation.
With the beginning of the school year upon us, treat your tween to fresh
ideas for their living space that are simply accomplished with a minor
commitment of time, imagination and paint! Involving your tween in a project
invovling their living space will help to create a fashionable and functional
area where they will look forward to spending time in the coming years.
Brought to us by:
Gail McCauley and
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