Before & After: Family Room Turned Dream Playroom

published Aug 27, 2013
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(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

One of my favorite home trends is families using their space to suit current needs and desires instead of being hemmed in by traditional floor plans or how a room had always been used. Last week we saw Lindsey turn her family’s formal dining room into a family study and today’s example is a huge family room re-imagined as a dream playroom for two young kids. It’s quite the transformation and is just what this family wanted.

When Asia’s first child was young, the family was living in a small Seattle house and, because of the trademark Seattle rain, they spent many days at home coping with cabin fever. When they moved to a bigger home, and with a second child on the way, creating a playroom was a top priority. Now, my guess is they have to be sorely tempted to leave!

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Pretty great right? Not only is the new room a physically charming space (lightened up with carpeting, off-white paint and colorful circular decals), Asia has included so many different activities and distinct play zones:

  • swinging rings, a small trampoline and a rock wall for moving (and burning off energy on those rainy days)
  • a terrific play kitchen for imaginative play
  • sensory boards and discovery bottles for exploration and motor skills development
  • a huge magnet board that not only covers up a not-so-kid-friendly spot but becomes a letter learning station
  • a swinging pirate ship (gift from grandparents) for physical and pretend play
  • toys both quickly accessible on kid-height shelves and organized in see-through containers

I know what you’re thinking – this is awesome, but our playroom is tiny or I don’t have a room to make into a playroom. There are still important takeaways ideas here for inspiration in a smaller playroom, kid’s bedroom or your living room to make it maximized for play. Here are two pieces of advice from Asia:

My mom, who was instrumental in helping me lay everything out, warned me that the biggest mistake people make with a large room is laying everything against the walls. We made an effort to break the room up into sections by using a couch and one of S’s toy shelves and it really does make a difference!

Finally, a playroom is floor space, for sure, but there’s also wall space and ceiling space you can use! In addition to decals, we also have sensory boards, Discovery Bottle display shelves, and a rock wall on our walls. We have a pirate ship and swinging rings hanging from our ceilings.

Thanks for sharing, Asia! Readers, you can see more of this playroom on Asia’s blog, Fun at Home with Kids. She also converted a bedroom into a reading room and a former home gym into an art room – check them out!