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/HGTV) - When it comes to offering a sense of security to our children in an uncertain world, familiarity in the home is key, starting in their bedroom, where simple consistencies in surroundings -- added to a healthy routine -- can make a big difference.
Here are some tips for decorating your child's room from Professional Home Planner Jack Thomasson, one of the lead designers of the HGTV Dream Home
2013 on Kiawah Island, S.C.:
* Linens make the bed -- and can be more important than the bed itself. You know your child better than your child knows himself. Select a duvet or comforter in a simple pattern and color that is suited to your child, but not childlike or themed. Add a complimentary solid-color coverlet or blanket. Two sets of quality, comfortable white sheets and four (yes, four) pillowcases, and you're set for years with proper linen rotation. And don't forget about the pillow itself. Consistency in pillow firmness or softness can contribute to familiarity.
* Comfort colors. Pick a wall color that complements the linens you've selected, but make it a comfort color. Nothing too bold. And make it a rental-friendly paint color, which means that it would be acceptable in a rental situation where bold wall colors may not be permitted. A calmer color is better for resale, too.
* Line of sight. Getting into bed at night might be the only time your child sits still all day, and what you hang on the wall directly in front of their bed can leave a lasting impression with positive benefits. Use this wall to hang a piece of artwork with a calm and peaceful image, but not a childlike one. If you can invest in a piece of original artwork here, or create something personally, it may be something that they hold onto forever that will bring comfort to their home into adulthood.
"Other accessories can change as your child grows," says Thomasson. "By keeping the basics comfortable, calm and consistent, you'll create an environment that helps them feel content."
For families who may be moving into a new home, heed Thomasson's advice: Prepare the kid's room first. "This will send a message that they are your priority," said Thomasson. Paint the walls with a familiar color, make up the bed in the very same way that you always did, and hang their special artwork. So, even if nothing else has been unpacked, the environment will feel familiar, bringing comfort and a sense of security from the very first night.
You can enter the HGTV Dream Home 2013 Giveaway Dec. 28, 2012, through mid-February. To learn more about the HGTV Dream Home 2013, visit www.hgtv.com/dreamhome