Meet Zoe Gilpin; a qualified interior decorator, content creator, mum of two, and the creative brain behind The DIY Decorator.
In 2015, with a little more time on her hands as her first child gained independence, Zoe started sharing her love of affordable decorating on Instagram. With over 15 years’ experience in visual merchandising, interior decorating, and real estate and product styling, Zoe’s aspirational yet achievable content resonated with homemakers and retailers alike, resulting in her once-upon-a-time hobby transforming into a platform filled with inspirational moodboards, detailed DIYs, a robust service offering and so much more.
Zoe’s goal is to bust the myth that home decorating is expensive, and to bolster the fact that it should be fun, not overwhelming. Lucky for us, the savvy decorator let us quiz her for some helpful advice on styling the perfect (and budget-friendly) kids bedroom. Keep scrolling!
Hello Zoe! Before we get into the nitty gritty of styling the perfect bedroom, we’d love to know what inspired you to become an interior decorator, and how you managed to turn it into a career?
I was always that creative kid. From a young age I loved arts and crafts and making things. As I became a teen, it was my bedroom that was constantly being changed and moved around. So after high school I delved into studying for my diploma of interior decoration, and here I am 16 years later still doing what I love! I've always had a passion for DIY and affordable decorating and have been lucky enough to share that via The DIY Decorator.
How would you describe your personal style when it comes to design and decor?
I am a very cohesive decorator. I love creating spaces that flow not only in my own home, but for clients and projects too. Repeating tones, textures, patterns and shapes is my signature style and what I love doing best.
What do you think are the key elements every parent should consider before designing or styling their child’s room?
It’s all about making smart selections that can grow with their child, and that they won't have to be constantly replacing (and wasting money on) over the years. My tip is to use neutral base pieces for furniture and larger items in a kids’ space, and then bring in colour with their toys and less expensive decor items that can easily be replaced without blowing the budget.
That’s a great tip to keep in mind when making those major purchases! Do you have any recommendations for choosing those base pieces?
Smart purchasing when designing the space! Purchasing furniture pieces that aren't specifically for a certain age group, but ones that they can use throughout their childhood. And then changing up their decor pieces as they grow which will be kinder on the hip pocket in the long run.
Are there any particular trends emerging in the bedroom right now that you think our readers could easily integrate into their homes?
We are really seeing colour being brought back into bedroom spaces which is lovely to see! After seeing neutrals used for a while, the colour injection is a nice change of pace. Especially as the weather warms up! For people unsure of how to bring in colour to a space, take it slow and start by adding coloured items such as decor pieces or cushions. Or be bold and bring in a colourful art piece to really add wow factor.
On that note, are there any big dos or don’ts when it comes to colour?
I think what's most important is that people use colours that they personally love. Not just following trends. If you love a certain colour, use it! I am a big fan of colour on a wall, but adding it in via artwork, floor rugs, homewares and soft furnishings can still add impact and interest to a room.
How can we incorporate our child’s favourite colours or characters into a room, without going totally overboard?
Speak with your child and ask them what they want! Add in elements – whether it's a colour or a theme they love – to the room to create a space that is a reflection of them and what they love. You don't need to add too much to a space for a child's room, so concentrate on adding in the colours of the scheme in either a wall colour, wallpaper, floor rug or decorative pieces. Plus a few key theme pieces if you are going down that design path.
What should be hidden (or tucked-away!) in a kids’ bedroom, and what should be on display?
As much as I love a perfectly styled room, I also think it's important that we remember that it is a child's space and so we should be catering to their needs in it. Consider packing away toys they don't play with often in some clever storage options, but also leave their favourites out on display so they can play with them, and because those pieces are a representation of them in their room.
And finally, we have to ask; what is your favourite mor-stor piece right now?
I love the Printed Storage Tubs! Not only for their colourful designs which are a great addition to a space, but also because of their versatility. Great for toy storage or to use as a hamper for dirty clothing.
For more advice from Zoe, follow The DIY Decorator on Instagram at @thediydecorator, or head to her website, here.