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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Simple Measures Help Make Children’s Rooms Fun, Exciting

Lynn Gibson Correspondent

The law of entropy is best observed in a child’s bedroom. Order quickly breaks down into chaos as school papers mount, stuffed animals multiply and “treasures” overtake free spaces.

Parents can regain order in their youngster’s bedroom with some simple projects to create attractive and useful spaces, provide educational opportunities and artistically organize their stuff.

And, remember, creativity flows freely on cloudy days like we’re experiencing this winter.

Ro Logrippo, a designer who specializes in children’s spaces, discusses several bedroom ideas in her book, “In My World: Designing Living and Learning Environments for the Young” (Wiley Publishing, $24.95).

Shelves, for instance, are an easy way to alleviate congestion, writes Logrippo, while providing a new level of enjoyment for kids. “If shelves are within a child’s reach, they encourage play because contents can be rearranged.”

Shelf arrangements also can add to a room’s scenery.

“Consider a horde of stuffed animals,” says Logrippo. “Heaped in a corner, they look like a plush zoo run amok. But lined up on a long shelf as a cuddly menagerie, the creatures form a peaceable kingdom.”

Shelves come finished or unfinished and can be decorated with wallcovering, fabric or paint.

Here are several more ideas from Logrippo’s book, achievable for $25 or less, to add spark to your child’s living space.

Purchase an outdoor wood planter box and paint it to match the room’s decor. Fill it with stuffed animals.

Hang a giant initial of the child’s first name on the wall and encircle it with toys which begin with that letter.

Use scraps of wallpaper border from your child’s bedroom to detail a plain “treasure” box.

Make colorful wall borders using bath sponges (of animals or characters) lined up in a row.

Add a warm touch to the bedroom by replacing a clear light bulb with a colored one.

Hang a large piece of clear acrylic behind a child’s work area to serve as a back splash as well as an art display or message center.

If rooms of two siblings have back-to-back closets, cut a child-size door between the closets to create a secret passage.

Personalize a kid’s room with his or her name spelled in peel-off letters.

Give posters and pictures more substance by spray mounting them to inexpensive foam core board cut to fit the image.

Use fluorescent paint to detail the ceiling with glow-in-the-dark stars.

Hang a long shelf above the window to display trophies, stuffed animals or collections.

Teach a lesson in geography by making a wall border of small flags from several countries.

Create an art display area by suspending a nylon-coated cord between two walls or posts. Art projects can then be draped and taped over the cord.

Replace a closet door with canvas that becomes a fort’s lookout once small openings are cut in it.

Purchase a sheet of cork board and cover it in colorful fabric to serve as a bulletin board or art center.

, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Drawing

MEMO: The Family Track is a weekly column of notes and information for families. Send items to Lynn Gibson, Features Department, P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210-1615, or fax (509) 459-5098.

The Family Track is a weekly column of notes and information for families. Send items to Lynn Gibson, Features Department, P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210-1615, or fax (509) 459-5098.

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