written by:
August 8, 2013
For a youthful perspective on design's playful potential, look no farther than this slideshow. These five rooms put the fun back in functional.
Designer Erica Islas grabs a book inside the lower space of the Palisades Kids' Room, showing it's big enough for adults as it is for children.

Design isn't just for adults anymore; the demand for innovative kids' spaces in on the rise. Erica Islas, founder of EMI Interior Design, has been busy creating nursery, kids, and play rooms. Some trends she's spotted recently: "Right now there are a lot of activity-driven things like rock-climbing walls or swings inside rooms. The thing that's taking over chalkboard walls are wall-to-wall dry-erase walls because they're not as messy." She's pictured here in a room she designed in Los Angeles, which features a rock-climbing wall, rope, and plenty of little hangout nooks. Read more childrens' room tips from the designer.

Originally appeared in Erica Islas on Kids' Spaces
1 / 5
All it takes is gentle downward pressure to lower the desk to the floor, bringing the kid-size mattress into position for bedtime.

Living small is par for the course in New York City, but accommodating a family of four in under 700 square feet rarely looks as effortless as in this storage-smart renovation. In Jonah Finger's room, all it takes is gentle downward pressure to lower a built-in desk to the floor, bringing a kid-size mattress into position for bedtime. Photo by Raimund Koch.

Photo by 
Originally appeared in Storage-Smart Renovation in New York City
2 / 5
Ground-floor gallery with library shelving
In the ground-floor gallery of Andrew Dunbar and Zoee Astrakhan's San Francisco home, 40-foot-long library shelving is punctuated by floor-to-ceiling columns made from white acrylic panels that conceal low-cost fluorescent-tube lighting. The shelves are enlivened by sliding panels made of Homasote (composed of 98 percent post-consumer recycled paper mulch). They shield books while also providing pin-up space for the children's art projects and the office's large-format print-outs and house plans. Photo by Justin Fantl.

 

Photo by 
Courtesy of 
justin fantl photography
Originally appeared in Just Redo It
3 / 5
Green magnet wall

Elsewhere in Dunbar and Astrkhan's family home in San Francisco, walls serve another fun purpose for their kids. The couple initially painted partition walls between the children's room and their own with black metallic paint creating both a writing surface for the children and a magnetic bulletin board for notes. However, "the black looked too oppressive," Astrakhan says. So they applied several coats of lively lime green paint to brighten up that section of the house. Photo by Justin Fantl.

Photo by 
Originally appeared in Just Redo It
4 / 5
Formal lounge area with leather and rosewood chairs

A mix of warm Brazilian furniture, refined antiques, period furniture, and contemporary lighting turn this renovation project in a hip suburb of Melbourne, Australia, into a family home for the ages. Photo by Stephen Oxenbury.

Originally appeared in Aussie Living Room We Love
5 / 5
Designer Erica Islas grabs a book inside the lower space of the Palisades Kids' Room, showing it's big enough for adults as it is for children.

Design isn't just for adults anymore; the demand for innovative kids' spaces in on the rise. Erica Islas, founder of EMI Interior Design, has been busy creating nursery, kids, and play rooms. Some trends she's spotted recently: "Right now there are a lot of activity-driven things like rock-climbing walls or swings inside rooms. The thing that's taking over chalkboard walls are wall-to-wall dry-erase walls because they're not as messy." She's pictured here in a room she designed in Los Angeles, which features a rock-climbing wall, rope, and plenty of little hangout nooks. Read more childrens' room tips from the designer.

Join the Discussion

Loading comments...

Latest Articles

content delzresidence 013 1
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
June 29, 2016
abc malacari marwick stair 01 0
A simple set of stairs is a remodel’s backbone.
June 28, 2016
Design Award of Excellence winner Mellon Square.
Docomomo US announces the winners of this year's Modernism in America Awards. Each project showcases exemplary modern restoration techniques, practices, and ideas.
June 27, 2016
monogram dwell sf 039 1
After last year’s collaboration, we were excited to team up with Monogram again for the 2016 Monogram Modern Home Tour.
June 27, 2016
switch over chicago smart renovation penthouse deck smar green ball lamps quinze milan lounge furniture garapa hardwood
A strategic rewire enhances a spec house’s gut renovation.
June 26, 2016
young guns 2016 emerging talent coralie gourguechon treviso italy cphotos by coralie gourguechon co produced by isdat planche anatomique de haut parleur1
Coralie Gourguechon's paper objects will make you see technology in a whole new way.
June 26, 2016
green machine smart home aspen colorado facade yard bocci deck patio savant
Smart technology helps a house in Aspen, Colorado, stay on its sustainable course.
June 25, 2016
Compact Aglol 11 television plastic brionvega.
The aesthetic appeal of personal electronics has long fueled consumer interest. A new industrial design book celebrates devices that broke the mold.
June 25, 2016
modern backyard deck ipe wood
An angled deck transforms a backyard in Menlo Park, California, into a welcoming gathering spot.
June 24, 2016
dscf5485 1
Today, we kicked off this year’s annual Dwell on Design at the LA Convention Center, which will continue through Sunday, June 26th. Though we’ve been hosting this extensive event for years, this time around is particularly special.
June 24, 2016
under the radar renovation napa
Two designers restore a low-slung midcentury gem in Napa, California, by an unsung Bay Area modernist.
June 24, 2016
Exterior of Huneeus/Sugar Bowl Home.
San Francisco–based designer Maca Huneeus created her family’s weekend retreat near Lake Tahoe with a relaxed, sophisticated sensibility.
June 24, 2016
light and shadow bathroom walnut storage units corian counter vola faucet
A Toronto couple remodel their home with a special emphasis on a spacious kitchen and a material-rich bathroom.
June 24, 2016
Affordable home in Kansas City living room
In Kansas City, an architecture studio designs an adaptable house for a musician on a budget.
June 23, 2016
modern lycabettus penthouse apartment oak vertical slats office
By straightening angles, installing windows, and adding vertical accents, architect Aaron Ritenour brought light and order to an irregularly shaped apartment in the heart of Athens, Greece.
June 23, 2016
kitchen confidential tiles custom cabinetry oak veneer timber house
A modest kitchen addition to a couple’s cottage outside of Brisbane proves that one 376-square-foot room can revive an entire home.
June 23, 2016
feldman architecture 0
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
June 22, 2016
Blackened timber Dutch home
A modern dwelling replaces a fallen farmhouse.
June 22, 2016
hillcrest house interior kitchen 3
Seeking an escape from bustling city life, a Manhattan couple embarks on a renovation in the verdant Hudson Valley.
June 22, 2016
angular
Atelier Moderno renovated an old industrial building to create a luminous, modern home.
June 21, 2016
San Francisco floating home exterior
Anchored in a small San Francisco canal, this floating home takes its cues from a classic city habitat.
June 21, 2016
modern renovation addition solar powered scotland facade steel balcony
From the bones of a neglected farmstead in rural Scotland emerges a low-impact, solar-powered home that’s all about working with what was already there.
June 21, 2016
up in the air small space new zealand facade corrugated metal cladding
An architect with a taste for unconventional living spaces creates a small house at lofty heights with a starring view.
June 21, 2016
young guns 2016 emerging talent marjan van aubel london cwai ming ng current window
Marjan Van Aubel makes technology a little more natural.
June 21, 2016
urban pastoral brooklyn family home facade steel cypress double
Building on the site of a former one-car garage, an architect creates his family’s home in an evolving neighborhood of Brooklyn.
June 20, 2016
Modern Brooklyn backyard studio with plexiglass skylight, green roof, and cedar cladding facade
In a Brooklyn backyard, an off-duty architect builds a structure that tests his attention to the little things.
June 20, 2016
the outer limits paris prefab home living area vertigo lamp constance guisset gijs bakker strip tablemetal panels
In the suburbs of Paris, an architect with an eco-friendly practice doesn’t let tradition stand in the way of innovation.
June 20, 2016
amaroso40040
When a garage damaged by termites had to go, a studio emerges.
June 19, 2016
the blue lagoon iceland geothermal spa hotel water visitors
The famed geothermal spa outside Reykjavík, Iceland, is entering a major new phase—paving the way for the area’s first five-star hotel.
June 19, 2016
heaven on earth maya lin topography what is missing california academy sciences wood video
A new monograph by Rizzoli explores the memorial project by the renowned artist.
June 19, 2016