Last updated on Jun 25th, 2015 at 12:37 pm

Redecorating your baby’s room to reflect their transition into a “proper child” can be fun and rewarding – and pricey, says Claire Cobbledick, of Gumtree South Africa. “But ultimately it can be a bonding experience and a great way to get to know your child a little better.”

Claire is the mom of two kids with very distinct personalities and says it is important to cater to their tastes. “The nursery is pretty much a reflection of your own taste, but as your child’s personality develops, you have to start considering someone else’s taste…which is challenging in any event. Children are still figuring out what they like and dislike, so it is important to create a space that they can grow into.”

One of the methods you could use is to buy furniture that can double-up as something else over time.

Being versatile

“A work bench can go from being a changing table, to a desk, to a bookshelf over time. You can change the colours from white to bright blue when your child goes from baby to little boy and then sand it down and varnish it to suit a teenagers room. It’s a surprising versatile addition to your home.”

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Add a theme

Wall decals can be another way to decorate a child’s room with a little whimsy. “Their favourites are going to vary. One day dinosaurs will be their passion, the next it could be spaceships. Wall decals go up and they come down and it’s a great way to add a theme to a room.”

Let your child redecorate

Chalkboard art is another fun way to commemorate a birthday . “It’s inexpensive and something that you can compile with your child. It also makes for a nice keepsake. Alternatively, you can paint a wall with chalkboard paint and let your child redecorate every now and again. Whiteboard paint is also an option for kids with allergies. Just make sure your children know the difference between permanent and whiteboard markers!”

Multi-functional furniture

You can also opt for multi-functional furniture. “If you have a small space, buying furniture that serves as beds, desks and storage space all-in-one can be useful. Not only do you avoid investing in tiny desks and shelves that will be outgrown, but you also create more space for kids to run around in!”

Involve your toddler

The biggest design tip, however, is to involve your child in the process.

“There is so much furniture available at bargain prices online – because kids inevitably outgrow their furniture – you could take some time to sit with your children scrolling through the options and picking out styles and furniture they like. Getting them involved and excited in the process is part of the fun, plus there are lots of lessons to be taught about picking the right size furniture, or sticking within a budget. A bedroom should definitely be more than four walls and a bed, it should be a retreat.”