shared boys room
Photography + Styling: Gather
Sarah: Who owns this room?
Mel: Brothers Blair (7) and Kobe (4). Blairs our quieter fella. He takes his work seriously. He sees the black, white and grey shades of life, and has a wicked sense of humour. He’s the one who sits back and pushes everyone’s buttons just so. Kobe, on the other hand, is the larrikin. Always the giggling baby, he has become the joker of the family, the one to challenge the status quo. He doesn’t do things half-heartedly, he’s fully committed – either jump off that top bunk in a ninja pose or go home. It’s hilarious to have them in the same room together.
Sarah: What was your inspiration for the room?
Mel: The boys have more and more wanted to start sleeping together. They actually both have their own rooms, this one is Blairs, but they keep ending up together for sleep overs so bringing both of their spaces together has been an easy transition. We’re considering Kobe a part-time resident. The boys are busy; ones a real thinker, the other adventurous and busy all day, so creating a space that’s gentle and relaxing has always been a priority in our home. They get so much stimulation during the day, that their bedroom needs to be a place to chill, slow down, definitely not rev up before bed! So naturally the colours here are muted and refined tones of whites, warm greys, browns and timber accents.
Sarah: Tell us about your business and how you used it in the rooms.
Mel: When I was creating the GatherKids range, I was working from a place of what I would like to see in our home, and how I would want my children to feel in their spaces. That’s why we have such muted and calm palettes, and none of the crazy brights that can be overstimulating in a child’s space. They get so much of this during their day, their sleep and recharge space needs to be just that, a place to recoup. I’ve used lots of our linens in here, which are made from organic cotton and pure materials in lots of earthy tones.
Sarah: Did you face any challenges while designing the room?
Mel: The room is an awkward shape, with two opposing wall niches. Fortunately, the Ikea bunk bed fitted in the largest as though it were made for the space, which allowed the remaining niche to become a much needed desk zone for the boys. There’s a few years between the boys, so they really don’t need an individual desk at this stage, but there’s potential to create a beautiful one under the window should we need it in the future. Storage is also an issue with two in one space, so the full height wardrobes have been a lifesaver. Inside houses a ‘gaming station’ with TV, Playstation, and a million lego collections which they can open the door to and begin playing as its all setup. I think inside wardrobe are an under-utilised play hub. If they are well thought out, they can store everything out of site, but also give the kids great control over their belongings. We’ve deliberately hung clothing low and at their reach so they are independent and get on with things without me hovering over them.
Built in desk unit
Sarah: Tell us about the desk spaces you created.
Mel: The desk nook was custom made with a beautiful marine ply by my Hubby. He’s the one who brings all my scribbles to life. We’ve used marine ply previously in Kobes space, so bringing it down to the boy’s shared room connects the rooms as you walk through the home. The drawer unit beneath is quite shallow, but as wide and as deep as the entire desk to make use of the entire surface area. At the moment, it houses not only stationary but a huge amount of treasures from the boys. There’s also dividers on the inside to keep their pieces somewhat organised. The beautiful pendant above was found at Monsoon Living and can be hung as a spot-light, adjusted to shine into the room, or placed on the shelf out of their way.
Sarah: How did you personalise the room for the kids?
Mel: I tend to use photographic art in most of our home – so each of the boys has some framed photos or pieces of their own artwork framed or on display. Then the inside of the wardrobe doors is plastered with more photo memories from holidays and friends, and all their certificates and ribbons. I think this part is really important. I know it’s out of sight when entering the room, but those hidden elements are perfect for keeping the rooms feeling calm and uncluttered, and magically personal when they open up their doors. We also have a gaming station setup permanently inside the wardrobe. I found these awesome folding vintage chairs at a second-hand store which hang flat against the wall when not in use, and can be setup for SkyLander sessions when they are needed.
Vintage Chairs by Secondary, Newcastle, hang on the Ikea coat hooks when not in use