Family Fun Room

All out of ideas? Step inside this amazing space. Creativity flows freely here.
Katie Snowden

This pretty project area in Newnan, Georgia, looks like something seen through a kaleidoscope. Add to that some clever bulletin boards, bright lanterns, and smiling faces. Sisters Hillary and Mary Grace Bridges catch a case of creativity every time they enter this whimsical, hardworking wonderland.

From So-So to Oh-So!

After messy homework assignments and cluttered creations cramped their style for years, parents Jon and Amy decided to act. They reclaimed their kitchen table and made an outdated bonus room into a fresh space that inspires.

Designer Lindsey Gragg of Panoply Interior Design was charged with creating the all-in-one study, play, and craft area. Hillary and Mary Grace were able to add their own personal touches along the way. They thumbed through magazines for ideas and, with the help of design proposals from Lindsey, chose the room’s energetic colors. “The design wouldn’t be what I would choose for my personal zone,” Amy admits. That was the point, she adds. “For me, it’s too vibrant. For them, it’s perfect.”

Where Brainstorms Are Born

The Bridges divided the space into three areas: a study zone, an activity zone, and a craft zone. Much to their surprise, the study zone contains a cure for homework hate. Each daughter has her own desk with a computer and plenty of tabletop space. Thanks to the openness of the area, Jon and Amy can easily get involved with schoolwork and also monitor Internet use.

The activity zone features a dressing table, mirrors, shelves for toys, and a trunk filled with costumes. Here, Mary Grace and her friends enjoy after-school hangout time. The large floorspace is a perfect stage for showing off dancing skills and Barbie dolls.

A table with a 48-inch laminate countertop brings Hillary and Mary Grace together in the craft zone. Sturdy aluminum stools are just right for sitting to tackle projects requiring a little more time. For quick fixes, the girls can stand at the counter-height table to do their work. The room is outfitted with drawers, shelves, and cabinets to house art supplies.

Three Ways To Take on Creativity

  • Treat sloped ceilings like walls. If Michelangelo can do it, so can you! Drawn from motifs in the dressing table fabric, a flower mural by artist Mike Shepard adds top-notch charm to this space. (Wall appliqués from www.uppercase living.com would also do the trick.)
  • If you’re dedicating a room to creativity, unleash your inner artist. It’s okay to mix and match colors in a kid’s craft room--we recommend it. The Bridges went with Sherwin-Williams paint colors Lime Rickey (green), Invigorate (orange), Fountain (blue), and Dragon Fruit (pink).
  • Regular bulletin boards can bore. These from Pottery Barn Teen combine different materials to create versatile memo and picture ports that are also eye-popping art pieces.
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