Fun Family-Room Updates

Fun Family-Room Updates
  • Opening Intro -

    For decades, the family room has been a bastion of traditional American life - always the first place to invite guests and the best place to make memories.

    Today, however, many families have become increasingly distracted by various technological gadgets and are now more likely to spend time alone in their rooms than with the other members of their household.


If you are contemplating to convert your family room to live up to its name once again, there are lots of ideas you can employ to make spending time in one place together seem much more appealing. From decorations to design, accessories to accoutrements, you can transform your family room into a place where everyone in the house will want to hang out, increasing the amount of time your family spends together having fun.

Bright, Bold Colors Set a Fun Tone

Believe it or not, your family’s reluctance to spend time in the designated family space may have nothing to do with their opinion of each other, and everything to do with the space itself.

While you may love the sophisticated look of your living room, your children may find it boring, stuffy and completely uninviting. So, if you want to create a space for the whole family, you need to consider the tastes of the whole family. If you have younger children, this can be as easy as adding bold, bright colors to liven up the space. Kids need constant stimulation, so a space that engages them visually and mentally will be more likely to draw them in.

Once your space is brightened up, you just need to fill it with activities that you all enjoy as a family, from puzzles to games to movies and arts and crafts.

Off the Wall Ideas (Or On It)

When you think about it, four sixths of any room is covered with walls, so why are you spending all of your time trying to fit activities onto the floor? With this in mind, some extremely creative moms and dads have utilized special magnetic primers to turn the walls of their family rooms into full time activity space.

Once a wall is magnetized, all manner of items can be applied to it, transforming your family room into an ever-changing den of artistic expression. Like Scrabble? How about a full-sized game utilizing magnetic pieces? Like art? Think of what you and your family could create on a daily basis using photos, posters and other images.

State of the Art Entertainment

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to sacrifice the adult appeal of your family room in order to lure in your kids. A well-constructed entertainment center can be just as visually appealing as a row of antique vases – you just need to know how to fit things where they belong.

There are all sorts of attractive furniture specifically designed to house big screen televisions, speakers and video game systems in ways that are both functional and visually appealing. So rather than drive your children to their respective rooms for quality time with their XBOX, keep the media center in the family room where you and your spouse can supervise and even participate in their technological antics.

Take the Idea Underground

Ask any realtor, and they’ll tell you that nothing is more important than location. So if you want to preserve the living room for more adult activities, consider relocating your family room to the basement. Basements usually have lots of space for active children to run around in, and the addition of carpeting, wall padding and couches will do wonders to promote comfort (and safety).

The best part about the basement family room is that you don’t have to make any compromises for outside guests. If you want a 20 foot sock hockey rink, go for it. If you want a massive sea of bean bag chairs, knock yourself out. The space belongs to you and your family alone, so enjoy doing whatever you want with it!

American Graffiti

Another family room idea that’s been catching on lately is the addition of “chalkboard” paint. Kids will spend hours drawing pictures to impress mom and dad, and even older children will appreciate the opportunity to show off their creative chops. Once the kids get too old to enjoy the fun side of the design, you can turn the entire wall into an erasable message center for family notes and reminders.

No matter what kind of space you and your family want to design, the important part is to engage each other and find a way to spend more time together as a family. While the types of memories you’re all building may have changed, they’re no less important today than when you were a child.

Richard Campen is owner of Archway Press, Inc., a website with 1000’s of custom house plans and blueprints for garages available for purchase from leading architects across North America.



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