Small Space Make-over: A Teen Boy's Bedroom

Children's rooms are always fun to renovate as you can go a little more crazy, but when they start to hit their teens it's time to reign it in again and create something a little more grown-up. My stepson Albin, is 16 and spends a fair amount of time in his room (sometimes I think I hear him talking to himself but he's actually gaming against friends (in my mind, gaming is still Horris Goes Skiing on a ZX Spectrum circa 1984 so you can understand why this gets confusing!). When it comes to interior decorating, Albin has a fairly laissez-faire approach (understatement!). As long as he can sleep, study and play on his computer / watch football, tennis, baseball or WHATEVER is scheduled at the time, he's as happy as Larry (I'm still wondering who that is?!). Despite Genevieve Jorn and I being give free reign to design his room (which measures 7.7 metres square / 82 square feet), we were keen to ensure the look reflected his personality, run items from my wonderful make-over sponsor Danish homeware brand Nordal passed him, and ensure he had everything he needed!


Teenage Boy's Bedroom checklist*

Bed + reading light
TV and gaming console
Shelving for books
Storage for sports equipment
Desk with task light + drawers
Clothes storage

*according to Albin!


Photography: Bettina Holst / Coco Republic / IKEA

Floor plan

I really wish I had a 'before' picture (totally forgot to take one) but if you can imagine all white walls, no shelving and a slightly ripped poster stuck on the wall using sellotape you're on to something!


The tour

A 200 cm bed perfectly fitted the width of the room - with enough space for a TV, placed on a narrow wall mounted shelf, at the end. Layers of textile in the form of cushions and a rug (all Nordal) and the blue-grey wall colour (S 7010-R90B Ambience by Nordjö) helped to add a cosy feel. 

Simple wooden shelves were painted in the same colour as the wall and mounted higher up for extra storage. Gen and I love a corner gallery wall (remember this one?!). This ensemble includes a Happy Mondays print, and an old drawing by Albin. He can easily add to the gallery over time too. A wall-mounted reading lamp helps to light up the corner after dark (in a small room, wall mounting items help to free up floor space).

From left to right: Satin Pothos plant from a local flower shop, and grey and blue cushions with lovely fringed edges, a patterned rug and lampshade from Nordal.

Since Albin is often at his Mothers he doesn't tend to store a lot of clothes at ours, so we decided to do away with the wardrobe to create more floor space. A clothes rack (from IKEA) with storage underneath works as a great replacement and doubles up as a bedside table.

We couldn't place the desk in front of the window because of the big radiator. However, it still gets plenty of natural light in the corner. Right now a big palm adds a splash of colour to the corner of the room but we could add a wardrobe in it's place if needed. PS Loving the tassles on the rug!

I found the desk chair in a local second hand shop (imagine how excited I was?!)- it's originally from Hungary, and perfect because it's still relatively ergonomic (it swivels and the height can be adjusted). As you can see from the picture, I still need to sand down the seat and re-varnish it - Gah! Where does all the time go?!

My sister took the framed picture of Albin, the man and I many moons ago on a beach in Falsterbo. I love it as it was such a happy, sun-kissed day. There's a good chance we might just be replaced with a signed picture of Zlatan Ibrahimovic imminently though! The Nordal library lamp was moved up from our sitting room

And here he is, looking pretty happy with his new room, I must say...

... and perhaps wondering why I swapped his Malmö FF poster for an Arsenal one (out of shot) - kidding, England was a much better match!

I hope you liked the make-over as much as my stepson! In case you're looking to do something similar, here are a few of the items we picked:

1. Library table lamp
2. Dark blue cushion cover
3. Black wall lamp
4. Cotton quilt bedspread
5. Fabric lamp cover
6. Graphic canvas carpet
7. Natural cushion cover

*Find a webshop stockist near you here (Europe only).

If you are wondering about anything else just give me a shout in the comment section below and I'll do my best to help!

Come here for a home tour? You might like to check out the Danish, Swedish and Norwegian home tour archives.

Have a lovely day!


Photography / shoot styling: Niki Brantmark, Interior design direction / styling: Genevieve Jorn

This make-over was made possible with the help of Nordal. All design, styling and words are my own and I only ever work with brands I love and think you will too. Thank you for supporting the companies that make fresh content possible.


  1. We really do love this! The colours, the clothes rack, the tassles, it's great! But, we have to ask, why not go for a vertical radiator to create even more space? We're obviously not admonishing you for your amazing work, but more, trying to convince you that in the future, if you were to make any further adjustments to this room, you could perhaps consider a vertical designer radiator...��

    1. Thank you! I'd love to change / move the radiator but it was a little out of budget for this make-over. One day... :)

  2. Love what you did! And so fun to see your stepson in the room. Accent walls done wrong feel so disjointed, and done right have such a great impact. (I need to find a spot in my house I can do one right!)

    1. I am so colour shy so you can imagine how nervous I feel about accent walls. But now that I've started I can't seem to stop! They seem to have a knock on effect (if successful!), making the next room look bland in comparison!I'd definitely say go for it!

  3. So beautiful. Can I ask please what is the dark accent color? It is awesome!

    1. Happy you like it! The colour is S 7010-R90B Ambience by Nordjö :)

  4. SUPER!! And just the ideas I need for my graduating 18 year old. His room needs to transition. Is the bed on the floor or a low profile frame? Thanks and happy weekend

    1. Happy you have found some inspiration for your own son! It’s a standard single bed from Ikea on legs. I might change it it a 120 cm wide bed though (since he’s taller than me!).


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