Tiny House Kids Room Project: Almost Finished

We've spent the last six months planning and executing our big bedroom overhaul, and it's finally just about finished. The final two pieces of the puzzle came together last week as we finished building the custom toy storage unit we designed and got our new heater installed.

When we were planning how best to fit everything we wanted into the bedroom, we scoured our family stores for any piece of furniture that would fit in the narrow space at the foot of the IKEA KURA loft bed while also holding the hand-crafted doll house my aunt gave my girls last Christmas.

As far as we could tell, this exact piece of furniture didn't exist, at least not in our price range. So we did what we always do and DIY'ed it. This is something we've come to expect from living in a small space: the perfect piece of furniture or fixture or fitting often just doesn't exist. We've built a toddler bed and lifted a loft bed and designed a trundle and hacked a baby gate (it was sad and pitiful, but it got the job done) and built a much nicer baby gate out of actual wood when the first one bit the dust. Now we can add a custom toy storage shelf to that list as well.

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It worked out that the doll house and our play kitchen are almost exactly the same size, so we designed the storage unit to hold them both. The kitchen is not very tall, and I was happy to lift it up a little higher for the girls to continue to enjoy as they grow. I will admit that it's a little too tall now, but we have a little step stool that helps Sweetheart, and kids grow quickly! In the meantime, it's easy to lift the kitchen down when they want to play with it.

I knew that we needed more storage for the kitchen toys and the doll house accessories, so we decided to create room in the storage unit for four fabric cube bins, and I'm especially pleased with how that part of it turned out. The shelf above is also perfect for the bigger kitchen items as well as some of Sunshine's little odds and ends that otherwise didn't really have a home yet.

We chose to paint the sides white and leave the horizontal surfaces natural wood to try and tie the other furniture in the room together. The KURA bed we were generously given was already painted white, and the IKEA bookcase is a faux birch finish, so the toy storage unit helps make it all go together.

I'm happy with how it turned out, but I'm most pleased with how much more our girls have been playing with some of the toys that they often ignored before. It's amazing what the simple act of creating more easy access to things can do for a child's creative play.

The second addition to the bedroom this past week was our new heater. For nearly a decade, we used a very nice wall heater that my grandfather gave us shortly after we bought our home. Due to the furniture arrangement in the room, this heater always had to go up higher on the wall that we preferred, but it kept the room more or less comfortable even on the coldest winter nights, though the rising heat often left the lower half of the room feeling somewhat chilly.

When we put the loft bed against the back wall, we had to take down the heater. This was actually one of the biggest issues with our new set up because the space we had available for a heater at that point was quite tiny, and the old heater would no longer fit in the room on any of the open walls.

Enter the Envi heater by eheat. It fits perfectly in the only space left that would fit a wall heater. We have only had it installed for about a week now, and the last few days have been unseasonably warm. Still, I've been very impressed by how well it heats the room so far. It's hard to believe that it's only rated for 475 watts. I plan to write a full review on the unit after we've had time to test it out more thoroughly.

And with that, our bedroom upgrade is pretty much done. There is still one wall left to paint, but we probably won't get to that until at least the spring. I also have some decorative pieces to hang. I would eventually like to buy a little folding table for the girls to sit at, but I haven't found quite what I'm looking for yet. I'm really hoping we won't have to make it ourselves. At least we know that's an option if the need arises!

This whole process has been a lot of work, but it's also been so worth it. By condensing the sleeping space, we opened up half the room for our girls to have their own dedicated play area, and the giggling and creativity I have witnessed emanating from that part of the house over the last few months have made it all worth the effort. I'm so glad we decided to give our daughter the room she was so excited to have.

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