When Jen Campbell, founder of the popular wedding site Green Wedding Shoes, and her husband moved into a new home, they discovered they had the perfect space for a playroom. Sienna, their three-year old-daughter, is a soon-to-be big sister and has a lot of budding interests. “Sienna loves crafting and coloring, playing with her princess and baby dolls, reading books and playing pretend,” Jen says. The must-haves for the room were clear — a spacious table she could color and craft at, storage for all her toys and games, and a place for the family to read together. The Cambells also wanted the space to be full of color and fun details for two little girls.
Who else to turn to but Target Home Style Expert, Emily Henderson?? “I’ve been a fan of Emily’s work since falling in love with her on Design Star, and I follow her on Instagram so I trusted her style. Plus, I checked out the Target Pillowfort collection in advance and loved what the line was all about, so I had complete confidence in her,” Jen says with a smile. Emily quickly got to work transforming the blank slate into a color-soaked, kid-friendly oasis. Today, she graciously gives us the scoop. AND, lucky you, we’ve got a first look at the exclusive video behind the transformation:
Hi Emily! The space turned out beautifully. What was your initial inspiration for the room?
I wanted to give the Campbells a functional playroom where Sienna could run around and play and be a kid, while still creating a space that is easy on the eyes and matches the contemporary style of the home. Their home had a lot of black, wood and white so while we wanted to add color, we also wanted the whole house to feel fluid. Luckily, the Pillowfort kids’ collection at Target offers a lot of pretty darn adorable pieces that made both Sienna and her parents very happy. Since they are having another girl I knew that I could go a bit more girly and pink, but ultimately ‘playful and cool’ were the goals.
Jen and Jason had an idea for the space, but Sienna clearly did too! How did you combine their wish lists in a way that would make all parties happy?
It was easier than it looked probably because the Pillowfort collection appeals to kids and grownups equally. And what’s great is that this is a collection that is meant to grow with the child, so Sienna can enjoy it for years to come without it feeling too young. In terms of the wish list, Jen and Jason really prioritized what Sienna wanted – an area for crafting, an area for reading and cuddling, and a space to just let Sienna’s imagination run wild. From there, Sienna’s wish was my command. Once the functional needs were checked off the list, then it was just a matter of adding in personality. I stuck to a playful pastel color palette then had a lot of fun shopping and styling.
For many families, the kids’ space is usually more bold and energetic than the rest of the house. What do you suggest to get inspired/get started?
Start with the items that you consider a must-have for the room – for Sienna’s playroom, this included a custom daybed, a table for arts and crafts, a teepee, and bookshelves for plenty of storage. We focused on pieces with simple silhouettes and neutral colors – brown wood and white — and then layered in accents to add some fun and personality. We stuck with a general palette of mint green and pastel pink, but incorporated lots of other colors through fun accents like the pillows and the daybed.
For other families, what are your top tips for making a space feel stylish and sophisticated, yet still remain kid friendly?
I always start by asking the kids what their dream room would look like. Once you know that, you can find subtle ways to incorporate it throughout the space. Your kid wants a spaceship-themed room? That doesn’t mean it has to come to life in every corner. Find a way to add whimsical pops of the theme – like an astronaut pillow or sheets with stars on them – while keeping the larger pieces in the room more neutral.
Letting your kids pick the color theme is another good way to get them involved and feel like the space is their own — Sienna ultimately wanted more pink in her playroom, so we incorporated that through pieces like the bean bags, book shelves we mounted on the walls, and small accents throughout the space like lighting and other décor.
Do you have any favorite pieces in the finished room?
I love the variety of pillows we included – most are from the current Target Pillowfort collection in stores now. The pillows are so easy to mix and match, and with most priced under $25, they’re also easy to update if Sienna wants to change it up. The white ceramic Pillowfort Flamingo Lamp ($39.99) is also adorable and one of my favorites. And then of course, I love the Pillowfort Teepee ($89.99), which is such a fun statement piece to have in your home, and kids love them.
As for Sienna? She loves the Pillowfort Teepee as well! Since the reveal, Jen often finds her there, curled up with one of her dolls. She also has made great use of the table, coloring there every day since Emily left.
Check out the exclusive video for a behind-the scenes look at the two day transformation: