Nice touches to make FC's bedroom seem welcoming

(17 Posts)
MrsBobHale Tue 07-Jan-14 22:16:33

I'm going to panel in a couple of weeks. I'm looking to get approved for one child of either gender age 0-10. I'll just be doing short breaks to start with for work reasons.

I have just started repainting the spare room, as it was a bit of a boring grown-up shade before. I've just whitewashed the walls so far to cover the darker paint, so it's a real blank canvas.

Do you have pink stuff for girls and blue stuff for boys? I've always resisted the gender specific stuff with my own DC but wondering if a child coming into the house would feel more welcome if I went down the pink/blue route? Maybe not the time to be worrying about gender politics!

Obviously would be cheaper to just get one lot of everything and go for neutral stuff, but I'm worried that might be a bit boring. I'd like to bring in some fun touches that liven it up a bit. My budget is small though so nothing too flash!

Any ideas for nice touches gratefully received. smile

mousmous Tue 07-Jan-14 22:19:03

primary colours at first.
ikea for example has lovely colourful bedding and toys.

cornishcreamtea Tue 07-Jan-14 22:29:05

I don't think you necessarily need to go down a specific pink/blue route but there are a few suggestions just to make the room slightly more girl/boy friendly as you never know what gender you are going to get.

Fostering friends of mine have painted the wall in a lovely sort of very pale lemon colour which lightens the room and then they ring the changes when a child comes to stay by having 2 different types of bedding and accessories. They also have a tab top curtain pole to make it really quick to change the curtains over. Its also really easy just to get a couple of different types of pictures to hang and swap over if necessary.

Hope that helps and best of luck!

ranoutofnames Tue 07-Jan-14 22:36:42

We have neutral walls apart from one wall that is wallpapered in a fun print - there are some really cool ones that would work for boys or girls. I think cushions on a bed make it look more dressed, plus a nice rug. I also am a recent convert to tab top curtains - they are much nicer than normal ones.

Ikea also do magnetic noticeboards (we've put two together to make a bigger area). It might be a quick and easy way of letting the child make their mark on the room - they could put up a memento from home or some pictures they've drawn etc.

MrsBobHale Tue 07-Jan-14 22:42:42

Some good ideas here. That's the sort of thing I was thinking of. I don't want to leave myself hours of work when I get the call, but obviously I'll be making the bed up anyway so different duvets seems a good idea.

Definitely pictures can be changed easily and I thought of getting some letters that would blu-tak onto the door to put the child's name on or maybe something that I could print off on the computer and put in a frame on the door?

One papered wall sounds good too.

hbr1989 Wed 08-Jan-14 07:32:53

Our room is painted neutral and we then have boy/girl specific bedding and accessories. It worked great for the first few placements and then I was asked to take boy/girl siblings ever since so the lamp shade is now pink and flowery and the wall art is of cars and planes!

Kahuna Wed 08-Jan-14 07:52:55

I have neutral coloured walls, lamps, furniture and curtains.
I have gender specific bedding to use as required.
The thing I do with each new arrival is take them out shopping for wall stickers.
We (me and the FC/dren) then arrange the stickers on the walls.

They all seem to like this (and it helps to make them feel included/make the room theirs as well as being lots of fun).
They are not very expensive and can be easily removed at the end of each placement.

lovesmileandlaugh Wed 08-Jan-14 14:56:30

I think the other thing to consider is the age range! A 10 year old will have very different tastes to a 2 year old. We decorated ours in a pale yellow, but will adapt with bedding, pictures etc to the child coming! Good luck!

LadyPenny Wed 08-Jan-14 18:17:37

We have neutral walls and carpet.
When a new child arrives the first thing we do is take them out to buy bedding. They get to choose any style they want and when they leave they take it with them.
I've found that they love being able to choose. It makes the room immediately seem more 'theirs'.

LadyPenny Wed 08-Jan-14 18:18:21

Good luck with panel [ grin]

Netutral walls and one wall chalk board paint and or magnetic paint? With cool magnets so they can put up pics etc?

JoJo90 Thu 23-Jan-14 18:00:57

We waited until we had a definite placement (he's long term) then we found out what his hobbies were and what football team he supported etc - I then actually showed him a colour chart and asked him what colours he liked (not letting him choose a specific colour) so he felt reassured that the room belonged to him and he could see the difference with the 'before and after'. Amazon do great wall stickers / decals and you can even personalise them with their names / colours etc

Artandco Thu 23-Jan-14 18:07:24

Whites, red and green are good base colours for everyone ( kinda naturish theme)

Chalk/ magnet boards

I would personally buy diff bedding, but all unisex ie green/ yellow/ red/ nice blue etc as you might get a child who say wets the bed several times who might be ashamed of the pink Disney once once the others have been used!

purpleloosestrife Thu 23-Jan-14 22:15:07

I have never bothered about how my FC's room is decorated, in the sense that it is in very neutral colours. It is spotlessly clean and warm. It has to cater for various age groups so I purposefully keep it neutral ( greens and creams)

To make the first night easier:-

I have an abundance of books and soft toys - new little ones get to choose a bedtime friend and a bedtime story. I have a collection of plastic cups/bottles for bedtime milk.

Older kids have drawers and a wardrobe to keep their private stuff. Access to lots more (older reader) books/games or even shock conversation with us! Tablet (parental controls in place!) and wi-fi for the older ones.

Each child will eventually enjoy "claiming" their space - it is a luxury some have never experienced. Lots of love boosts confidence to achieve this - (sometimes confidence issues means they feel they don't deserve this.) As JoJo said , wait until you know the child and encourage them to personalise their room. You don't need to do this, they need to do it, IYSWIM.

Much better to concentrate on love and confidence, than worry about the decor. GL

NinjaPenguin Fri 24-Jan-14 22:03:23

When I went to my bedroom for the first time (had three long term foster carers, and a short term), I would say cheerfully neutral but open to be made their own. So leave it white, but have colourful, primary bedding. I was given my own special box thing to keep precious random stuff I picked up or wanted to keep if I moved on, by my first foster carer, which I still have now. I would invest in some photos, posters and pictures so that you can swap them around quickly and easily, and some bedding sets, so for a girly girl, an older child, a younger child etc; you are prepared.

Fwiw, I didn't mind much about the room. I liked the fact that it was blank, because it made it feel more homely when I could properly change it, with little ornaments or photos. A cork board to pin up photos on would be nice, as I liked looking at them and it felt like a connection back. You can get those wooden letters on the door type thing, which might be useful, as they can be taken off easily, look good and make it more personal. Don't rush them into choosing the decor, make sure it is open for them to suggest/ask for something.

MrsBobHale Sat 25-Jan-14 19:05:24

Thanks for all the advice. I got approved at panel this week so it's all systems go now. And my assessing SW said there is a little girl they have in mind for regular respite so it's all feeling very real!

I have taken on board lots of ideas from this thread, and have painted the walls a warm creamy-white. I'm having a green carpet fitted soon and have got a plain duvet cover for now. If I do end up having one regular visitor I'll probably let her choose her own once we've got to know each other.

The pictures on the walls are all quite seaside themed, and the walls are quite sand coloured so it seemed to work well, but they can very easily be changed to suit personal interests of the child.

I have also put a chalk board in there, and will get a cork board.

Ninja - I love the idea of a box. I'll definitely do that. Thanks for your advice.

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