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Tickled Pink

Style at Home / September 2014

Girlie girls may love pink, but their bedrooms don’t have to be saccharine

When design blogger Christine Dovey of the popular site Bijou & Boheme took on the challenge of turning an above-the-garage family room into a bedroom for her eight-year-old daughter, Scarlett, the mission was clear: Create a fun and glam space that caters to a tutu-wearing girlie girl without falling victim to a childish princess look that would be down- right embarrassing by middle school. Because, despite her passion for design, says the busy mom of four: “There’s no way I’d take the time and money to do it all over again in a few years. No way!”

So the style, while youthfully pretty in pink, also had to be timeless and mature. Her strategy? Mixing splurges and saves, Christine (whose gorgeous Oakville, Ont., home was featured in Style at Home’s January 2013 issue) avoided picking permanent pieces with overly bright colours and kitschy themes. Instead, she opted for grown-up neutrals that would stand the test of time: Chic gold wallpaper, the biggest investment, looks as good with kiddie accessories as it would with modern art; complementary dark hardwood floors were there from a previous reno, yes, but they’re refined and lend weight to the otherwise light space; and a fluffy budget-friendly rug looks much like the one in the Doveys’ basement family room, a space for both adults and children.

With solid bones in place, the kid-pleasing pink glamour can be found in the movable details. An ornate cabinet scored at an antiques store – its ample storage not just for Scarlett’s ever-growing wardrobe, but books and toys, too – boasts soft pink velvet curtains (replaceable, if necessary). The electric pink settee was scored for a bargain on Kijiji (and can be redone if and when the brightness overstays its welcome). The vintage brass Venini chandelier, equal parts playful and sophisticated, “is sparkly but not princess-y,” says Christine, who would happily call it her own should her daughter ever tire of it. The same can be said for the entire space, really. And that is this blogger’s secret for a child’s room with grown-up appeal: “Don’t feel the need to shop in kids’ stores,” she says. “Pick the things that you yourself would like. That’s what I did.”