Updating Your Home with Decorating Ideas that are Perfect for a Busy Family


For those of us with kids, pets and busy schedules, our homes can often feel like a congested space filled with clutter, rather than the beautiful home we’ve always imagined.  It sometimes seems like an impossible feat to maintain a tidy and organized house with so many toys, books, shoes and mail everywhere!  However, with some simple decorating ideas from the experts, you can transform your house into a neat and family-friendly environment for the New Year.


One of the biggest challenges of living with a busy family is keeping surfaces like counters, walls and floors clean and free of clutter and messes.  The key to overcoming this challenge is to start with the right surfaces!  Try some of these ideas for family-friendly decorating, from the floor up.


Choosing the right flooring can save you a lot of time and energy.  For a high-traffic area in your home, you should opt for either a durable hard surface, like tile, hardwood, laminate, or vinyl or carpet that is specially designed to resist stains and spills. 


There are stylish, comfortable and functional carpets for all the rooms in which your family lives.  Good Housekeeping carpet, which is made with a unique fiber called Resista, represents a terrific solution for busy families.  Carpet made with Resista actually repels stains, so it is easy to clean and will retain its color and softness much longer.  And Relax, It’s Lees®,  offers families a new kind of carpet for the hectic world in which families live.  It offers the perfect blend of fashion and performance.  Lees features Ultra 25® with Scotchgurard Protector for groundbreaking stain protection and ExtraLoc® backing with double the density of standard carpets. Technical innovation plus a broadpalette of colors and styles will help you achieve your creative vision and not have to worry about spills!  These are both great options for families with kids, who often track in dirt on their shoes or tend to spill their food.  There are also hard surface flooring styles that are great family-friendly options. 


Since kids tend to walk around with sticky fingers, you should also opt for a wall treatment that will stand up to your family.  Look for a type of paint that is designed specifically for kids.  Most hardware stores carry styles that can be wiped clean and will withstand moisture. 


The right flooring and wall treatment will make cleaning up much less time-consuming, but what about all the clutter?  We also have some great tips for staying organized in every room in your home.  These ideas will help you get a great start on clutter!


§  Organize your entryway.  Your mudroom or entryway can often be one of the most disorganized areas in your home.  This area tends to collect shoes, coats, mail and bags from every member of your family.  The best way to combat this clutter is to add shelves, hooks and racks to your closet to make sure that everything has its own place.  Try placing hooks lower on the wall so that your kids can hang up their own coats and book bags when they come in the house.


§  Choose the right furniture and flooring.  In a room that’s used by the family every day, choose furniture and flooring that are easy to care for.  Opt for furniture made with durable fabrics and choose a pattern or a neutral tone that will camouflage wear and tear from your kids.  Save the more luxurious fabrics for an accent pillow or a throw.  Fabrics like chenille or crinkled velvet will give the room a more formal feel, but are still more durable than something like silk.


Choose flooring that is easy to clean or that hides dirt.  It’s easy to clean up spills and messes from a hard surface like ceramic tile, hardwood, laminate or vinyl.  Plus, these surfaces are generally scratch, dent and wear resistant, which is perfect if you have small children who may drop toys or books on the floors.  For a more comfortable room, try carpet in neutral tones or a multi-colored style that will hide dirt and wear.


§  Add storage in a playroom or child’s bedroom.  The best way to hide toys, books and other clutter is to create lots of extra storage space in a room.  You can use something simple and inexpensive, like stacked plastic bins for smaller toys or a colorful bookshelf for larger games and toys.  An over-the-door organizer is perfect for holding shoes, stuffed animals and sports equipment.


§  Keep your collectibles out of reach.  It’s a common problem that many parents face: you want to display your grandmother’s china and other family heirlooms, but you’re too afraid that one of your kids will break them.  The answer to this dilemma is to strategically display your favorite antiques and heirlooms out of the reach of your kids!  Try hanging china and old photographs on the wall above a mantle or on a high, free-standing shelf.  Or choose a stable curio that you keep locked.  These options will allow you to enjoy these collectibles, while ensuring that your children aren’t tempted to touch them or knock them over. 


§  Hide the clutter with storage pieces that look good and serve a purpose.  If your kids are used to playing in the living room or a central area, the plastic storage bins probably don’t match the décor.  There are plenty of options that double as a beautiful table or shelf and the perfect storage space.  Look for an antique trunk to use as a coffee table in your living room – this can be used as a storage space for games, toys, pillows and extra blankets.  A side table with drawers and doors can hide small toys, your kids’ favorite DVDs and miscellaneous items.  For larger things, like an oversized stuffed animal or big toy, try an old cabinet.  You can display photographs or place a nice lamp on the top of the cabinet, while keeping toys, games and books out of sight in the space below.     


Although maintaining an organized household with a busy family can prove difficult, it can be done with creative storage ideas and the right materials, with simple ideas like these aimed at striking that balance between function and form, a functional living space and an attractive home! 


For more family-friendly decorating ideas, visit


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