When your daughter is begging for girly colors in her room, try a canopy, like this overhang from Hearthsong, in a translucent fabric that drapes dramatically over the bed. "One way to really add a huge punch of color is by adding a canopy," says designer Jennifer Delonge.
A simple and non-permanent way to add color is with pillows. Choose fun, funky fabrics and designs that appeal to children. Marta Blair designed color-blasted pillows in animal shapes for The Koko Company (www.kokotrends.com) by combining traditional embroidery skills from the Gujarat region in India with contemporary shapes and colors.
Get color on the walls without paint with wall decals. Wall-Pops (www.wall-pops.com) come in huge squares to add wallpaper-like color and patterns without sacrificing the wall's finish.
Try adding a squishy blast of color by plopping colorful beanbags in the room. "Beanbags are a really fun way to add color," designer Mary Wadsworth says. Kid-friendly seating choices can be fantastic for younger children, like this stuffed garden from HABA.
Jazzing up a door can give an otherwise neutral room a pop of color. You can go boutique by purchasing a door ready-made for child-sized fun, such as this one from PoshTots (www.poshtots.com) or you can let your child engage in some homemade door design with paint, stickers or permanent markers.
Bedding is probably the single easiest way to jazz up a room without painting the walls. For crib-sleepers, choose bedding that manages to be cool and colorful without becoming glaring or garish, like DwellBaby (www.dwellshop.com).
Seeing the Light
You can light up your child's life by thinking color when you flip that switch. For younger children, Ikea has fun and funky lighting designs that don't just spread color by looking pretty, but can actually bathe a room in a saturated glow when they shine.
While kids' clutter is often colorful, it isn't attractive. Designer Tina Barkley, of Babylicious, says parents can pack the toys and games away with panache by using colorful storage solutions. "Get rid of wicker baskets and add some of the bright plastic woven baskets like Land of Nod's shelving, storage and laundry baskets," Barkley says.
"One way that I love (to bring in color), which kids love too, is bringing in their own art," designer Mary Wadsworth says. One way to create a low-cost gallery: Wire hanging systems (like this one from www.potterybarnkids.com) are easy to install and use, and kids can be in charge of what's on display.
Have a Seat
Designer Jennifer Delonge says adding color through seating is a way to bring in a little spice with a lot of practicality, and for parents who want a solution with style, the Ava seating set by Delonge will be a perfect fit. "Kids love it because it's about their height, but for parents, it has good aesthetics," Delonge says.
When the walls sport neutral colors, but the room begs for blasts of fun shades, transforming furnishings by painting or staining pieces can take a boring space and make it bright. Because the colors are more isolated, parents shouldn't be afraid to make a bold statement.