Before and After: A $1,000 Kids’ Room Redo Has Custom Built-ins to Corral Clutter

published Jul 7, 2023
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About this before & after
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Messy kids bedroom with bunk bed before renovation.
Credit: Sierra Begg

Creating a shared kids’ bedroom that’s functional and stylish and able to grow with your children is no small feat — especially when you’re on a budget. But if you’re looking to get a little more out of a shared bedroom, here’s a beautiful — and versatile — bunk-bed to inspire you, completed by DIYer Sierra Begg (@mindfulhomedesigns) and her husband, Sam.

Credit: Sierra Begg

Sierra and Sam’s daughters’ room was stylish before, but it was lacking in function. As Sierra puts it (and as the cluttered photos would suggest), it had become “a dumping ground.” During the One Room Challenge, Sierra and Sam decided to add some built-in features to help tame the mess. A room redo became even more urgent after the couple discovered mold underneath the baseboards of their daughters’ bunk beds and in between the bedroom walls. 

Credit: Sierra Begg

To get rid of the mold, Sierra had to master two new skills: drywall and mudding. “Thank goodness for YouTube videos!” she says. After everything was clean and mold-free and reassembled, Sierra set out to create a room that would best suit her daughters over the years. “I was looking for a room that could grow with them,” she says. 

Credit: Sierra Begg

This meant she was looking to add some major functionality to the space, and she did so with lots of woodworking. After adding drawers to the room’s shared closet, Sierra built a desk for her daughters in the corner of the room next to the window. It has two seats for coloring and LEGO assembly and, eventually down the line, homework. 

Sierra and Sam also built upgraded bunk beds for the girls — this time they opted for a more built-in look with thick framing (painted Behr’s Blank Canvas), drawer storage underneath, molding around the top, and a detailed “roof” made from bamboo wall paneling

Credit: Sierra Begg

Sierra also outfitted each bunk with floral wallpaper, handmade floating shelves, and a reading light. She applied a purple floral wallpaper along the side — and if you’re a parent of two kiddos with very different vibes, you could also mix and match patterns for a bit of personalization.

The DIY Sierra says she’s “most jealous of” — aka the one she wants to copy in her own grown-up space — is the boho arch with floating shelving that she built herself. “I found that making your own floating shelves is way cheaper than buying them,” Sierra says. The shelf features more storage and acts as a chic toy display, again using the bamboo wall paneling for a fluted look. 

Credit: Sierra Begg

Another one of Sierra’s favorite features also happens to be the most unique one: a full-service rock climbing wall for the girls to play on. “I am always looking for ways to get my kids off of their iPads and be more active,” she says.” The wall has adjustable, customizable holds, so Sierra and Sam can change its difficulty level as their girls grow — in keeping with the theme for the rest of the room.

Credit: Sierra Begg

Lastly, Sierra added low-profile vertical book storage next to the climbing wall, changed the wall color to something subtler (Sherwin-Williams’ Natural Linen), and reapplied the boho palm tree decal from before for a finishing touch.  

Sierra’s advice for other parents hoping to add some new life into their children’s rooms? “Don’t be afraid to start!” she says. She’s proud of the functionality she added to her daughters’ room, and because she and Sam did all of the woodworking themselves, the transformation cost about $1,000 all together. 

Credit: Sierra Begg

“The room has its life back,” she says. “I get to hear our girls’ laughter coming from the room as they climb the rock wall, play with their toys, and do artwork on their new desk!” For more inspiring kids’ rooms great for play and rest, check out these 12 redos.  

Inspired? Submit your own project here.