4 Family-Friendly Design Tips
Believe it or not, having a well-designed home and having kids can go hand-in-hand. Shocking, I know! There are so many options out there now that allow for functionality while still being beautiful. Here I'm sharing a few of my favorite tips for designing a house with little ones:
1. Choose your materials wisely
When looking to purchase upholstered furniture, opt for performance fabrics that will be extra durable and typically easier to clean. Furniture made of solid wood will be more sturdy and last longer than those made of engineered woods. In general, natural materials like wood, cotton, jute, etc. are going to have lower chemical emissions which is always good to keep in mind.
If you have kids, you know how important the washability of an item is. It's the same for your home furnishings.
Pillow covers + couch cushions-- your pillows are sure to get something on them at some point and nothing is more frustrating than having a removable cover tell you it's 'dry clean only'. 😑 Before purchasing, check that the covers are at least machine washable (unless you don't mind running to the dry cleaners frequently, but that's not my idea of a good time). Another thing is your couch cushions, bonus points if they're removable and machine washable!
Rugs-- there are so many beautiful washable rug options out there now, which are a great option for high-traffic areas in your home or playrooms.
Miscellaneous furniture-- think barstools, dining chairs, accent chairs, etc. When purchasing, the easier to clean the better!
3. GREENGUARD Gold Certified Furniture + Furnishings
Kids are more susceptible to IAQ (indoor air quality) issues, so looking for furniture and items that emit less volatile organic compounds or VOCs is important. Many products out there now, from flooring to furniture, can be found with a UL GREENGUARD Certified logo on them-- this means they've been tested and have proven to have low chemical emissions. Since children are more sensitive to these chemical emissions, their products have even more strict standards. GREENGUARD Gold Certified furniture means products emit even lower levels of VOCs, which is amazing info to have when looking for nursery and bedroom furniture for children. I've seen everything from dressers to cribs to bean bags that are GREENGUARD Gold Certified, so it's worth it to do a little research before purchasing. There are also other methods for measuring VOCs in kids' products-- typically in the description companies will add if their product is low-VOC in any way, so be sure to read the descriptions!
4. Cleaner Paints
Paint is an item that typically has higher chemical emissions. There are some conscious paint companies that have lines of zero or lower VOC paints. My favorite zero VOC paint company is Clare paint-- their colors are ah-mazing!
On another note, certain paint finishes are easier to clean than others so also make sure to look into this before selecting your finishes. For example, eggshell finish for interior walls is a go-to for a reason-- it's easily cleaned!
I'm sure there are a million other tips, but this is a great place to start. If you have any to add, I'd love to hear them in the comments!