Whether you’re looking back to yesteryear to remember your childhood, or are thinking about recreating one of these looks today, we have a few dozen ideas for you, with a variety of styles, colors, and features… many of which are just as delightful now as ever.
Vintage home decorating: Kids’ rooms can be their castles (1960)
Child’s space needs organization for sleep, play, study, sturdy charm
The most versatile room in the house should be the child’s. If it is only a place for sleeping and storing clothes, the whole family is being cheated.
With organized quarters, boys and girls may be less likely to drop books, skates and friends all over the house and living should be pleasanter for everyone.
The children’s castles shown here, executed by top designers, demonstrate how rooms of average size can serve many purposes.
Each room is a bedroom, a parlor where friends may be entertained, a study where homework can be done, a playroom and a museum for treasures. Fabrics, wall and floor coverings are able to take hard wear.
There are no perishable children’s beds, chairs, tables to outgrow. Furnishings are durable and adult. Though sometimes done on a small scale, they could come from or be moved to any part of the house.
Storage space is easy to rearrange or move if the family moves. Shelves and pin-up walls expand the use of the rooms. Moderately handy parents could do much of the work of making shelves and painting.
Bright colors make attractive order of the hodgepodge of unpainted, secondhand and new furnishings. Each room is designed to give a girl or boy an incentive to be orderly, to respect good furnishings and to have fun in his private world.
When two generations agree: Young furniture that grows up with its owner (1965)
From American Home magazine (September 1965)
No matter how independent teenagers may sound when they’re talking about furniture, they still need guidance and help when it comes to buying furniture.
Here are pieces that easily please all concerned – without a family scene. They’re in good taste and all have growth potential.
1) Going to bed in this sea captain’s bed is an adventure reminiscent of days gone by. It’s in dark pine, and comes with a small stool and handsome mirror. From Sprague and Carleton’s King’s Arrow collection. Four-drawer bed is about $259, stool $20, and the mirror $80.
2) Oak is the most “in” wood of them all. Here’s Broyhill’s Lenoir House version, a bookcase and triple dresser from their new Capacious group in sorrel oak that sells for about $98 and $106 respectively. Note rugged styling, brass pulls.
3) Sleeps two but sits the whole gang. For sleeping, bed half hidden by corner table pulls out completely. Its mate swings over, lines up next to it. There’s blanket and pillow storage. Sit and Sleep unit by Basic-Witz about $258.
4) Provincial charmer is this romantic bed and tall, hanging mirror from Kent-Coffey’s El Chico collection. Available in fruitwood or painted white finishes. Trundle bed about $280, mirror $40.
5) Lane’s trundle bed has the neat, tucked-in look of a ship’s bunk, is appealing enough for use in a guest room. Price, minus the mattress, is approximately $139.
6) This furniture can go from the youth room straight to the first apartment, will look well in both. Strongly defined blocked-front pieces adapt to many moods. Del Rio by Kroehler available in two finishes: sable or pumice oak. Approximate cost for the triple dresser is $122, for the desk $120.
7) Small desk for a serious student has practical gallery in back, is sturdily scaled and made of solid cherry by Heywood-Wakefield. Part of the firm’s Cliff House collection, it retails for about $70.
8) Bunk bed and armoire from Bassett’s Checkmate group are well-styled to meet a variety of needs. Oak grain in Gunstock finish is especially fashionable this year, has continuing warmth.
Bottom bed rolls out on casters to sleep a trio of children or friends. The bunk bed is also perfect for use in a vacation house or ski lodge. Sleeping unit sells for approximately $120, the practical armoire for about $140.
Wonderful, workable playable children’s bedrooms (1962)
Rooms where your children can be themselves, work and play and entertain their own friends
Our children, boys and girls, usually manage to be where they want to be, and often that’s home in their own room, if the room gives them a chance to be themselves. Therefore, it’s a wise parent who knows his own child, and decorates his room accordingly.
The rooms shown below have certain things in common that all youngsters want. They have plenty of shelf and storage space for games and books and sports and hobby paraphernalia.
They have good-size desks or tables for work and play and study. They are neatly arranged to leave as much free floor space as possible. They have bright color schemes and furnishings that will stand up under wear and tear.
The girls’ rooms are suitably feminine, with ruffles and flower prints and pretty curtains, and the boys’ room are thoroughly masculine, with clean straight lines and no nonsense about decoration just for its own sake.
All the rooms were decorated with due regard for the family budget, too: furnishings that don’t cost too much to begin with, and will give many years of service with very little upkeep (washable fabrics, for example).
Besides, each room has fresh ideas and real individuality. (Have you ever seen a child who wasn’t a rugged individualist, who wasn’t sure whether he liked chocolate or vanilla best?)
And these ideas are just starters. When in doubt, ask your own children; they know what they want to collect, what colors they like, what hobbies they want to pursue in the privacy of their own rooms. What’s more, they won’t hesitate to tell you.
A colorful bedroom for boys (1962)
Growing boys’ room is practically indestructible; has everything from bunk beds to baseball and mitt.
There’s plenty of storage space in the chests; awning-striped sailcloth slipcovers can be lounged on with a minimum of wrinkling; the study-play table with pole lamp serves two.
Flooring is cork and vinyl. Idea for displaying toys or collections: A shelf that runs around two walls.
Growing boys’ bedroom floorplan
A girl’s blue bedroom is fresh and flowery (1962)
Little girl’s room is fresh and flowery, with a canopied bed, one wallpapered to match the bedspread fabric, painted furniture, the tea table set for Raggedy Ann.
The love seat opens up to sleep a guest. Attached to one wall are sheets of perforated metal, painted white; decorative and useful for hanging up pictures, shelves.
Retro-style girls’ bedroom decorating: Victorian charm with modern practicality
Teen-age girls’ room combines Victorian charm with modern practicality. The curvy chairs, stools and bed headboards are natural peel you paint yourself; the efficient storage wall, with desk-dressing table for each young lady, is built in.
The sunny color scheme is taken from the flowered chintz, quilted for the bedspreads, plain for the draperies. A white cotton rug marks off what every girl wants: a conversation area for exchanging news about boys.
Teen-age girls’ room floorplan
Red & pink nursery for a baby
Nursery in pink and red and white is complete; it even has a rocking chair for the baby’s mother. The crib is neatly fenced off from drafts and light by folding screens, and a red picket fence wallpaper cut-out decorates both the screens and the wall behind them.
Flooring is vinyl, valance is papered to match walls, window shade is a matching pink and white checked cotton.
Rooms for children with European flair, and sixties style (1965)
Nursery in pink & red floorplan
All-American red, white and blue bedrooms for boys – from the 60s
Teenage boys’ room are all-American in character, with a positive red, white and blue color scheme.
The room below is also planned for rugged individualism: each boy has his own desk, captain’s chair, shelves installed on a backing of plywood with slots, built-in wardrobe with drawers beneath. The flooring is vinyl, bedspreads are sailcloth.
Teenage boys’ room and the All-American & Little girl’s room
Tent-striped bedroom and bunk beds in a 60s home
Kids’ retro bedroom with emphasis on color & practicality (1965)
This nursery side of a divided room (top) for two children is filled with the brilliant colors children adore; the practical materials mothers depend on: vinyl floor, shelves that adjust to growing needs, Formica-surfaced cupboard. Acrylite panel screen provides privacy with filtered light. Sheet and pillowcase are Fieldcrest’s “Puppet Show.”
Kids’ old-fashioned bedroom decor with a young, feminine mood (1965)
High point of high ceiling is gingham-check wallpaper with repeating bows. These are handpainted in larger scale on scalloped window shades.
Along the wall behind beds is 10-year-old owner-artist Lizzie Meyer’s private gallery of watercolors. Bedroom decorated by David Barrett. Flowered sheet and pillowcase are Wamsutta’s “Milles Fleurs.”
Daisies and trellis make for a garden-themed bedroom (1966)
Treillage headboards set the bucolic theme that pervades a young girl’s bedroom from the lattice ceiling to the grass green vinyl tile floor.
“Daisy Delight” cotton print in curtains and bedspreads by Bates Fabrics; Zefran and nylon rug by Regal. Interior design by Randy Trull.
Pink floral bedroom with wallpaper everywhere (1966)
In eight-year-old Victoria’s private bower, the wallpaper covers walls, ceiling, beams, moldings, even the window frames and a tier of shelves. The rest is strictly practical: corduroy on the bed, deck paint on the floor. Victoria’s desk is an old Dutch marble-top washstand.
Vintage kids’ bedroom decor: Place for a girl with a hobby
The room is designed for a sewing buff — half of the nine million US teenage girls sew — but it would accommodate any teenage hobby.
A wall of felt panel — felt is glued to wall with wallpaper paste; edges are covered with ballroom’ molding — serves as ample pin-up space for fabric swatches, homemade art. A flush door with pole legs makes an oversize work table lighted by adjustable hanging lamps.
Brass curtain rods on the back wall hold dress fabrics. Sedan chair behind girls makes an ideal nest to curl up and read in.
The bed, on the opposite side of room, is rattan. Loaded with pillows, it makes sofa by day. Both girls’ rooms are by Decorator Barham D’Arcy of Bloomingdale’s, New York.
Retro bedroom style: Where a boy can let off steam (1960)
This small room makes such canny use of space that it gives a boy a workroom with a maple block workbench and pegboard for tools; and a bedroom, study, and an active game room with a punching hag, dartboard and climbing ladder. Desk behind ladder has a white Formica top with an inlaid checkerboard.
Cabinets and bookcases are cantilevered from plywood wall. The red walls are covered with a plastic-coated fabric mounted on Homasote board. The plastic is easy to clean, makes a good surface for thumbtacking and pinning. When tacks are pulled out, holes do not show.
Vinyl cork tile floor does not show dirt easily. Rug under bed divides sleep area from play space. Venetian blinds are metal with plastic tapes, long-lasting and practical. Bedcovers and pillow are of Acrilan and cotton, a dirt and wrinkle-resistant fabric.
Large square ottoman (foreground, below) is covered with Naugahyde, has hinged top, holds games, books and toys. It is mounted on casters for freewheeling. Room was done by Interior Designer William Pahlmann for the Venetian Blind Institute.