Paris to Provence: 20 Stylish Family Room Ideas From Around the World

There's no doubt that the way you decorate a home changes when you have children. Suddenly, that sharp-corner coffee table has to go, delicate glass vases need to be displayed away from small hands, and furniture has to stand up to the rigors (read: spills and stains) of everyday life. 

That doesn't mean family homes have to compromise on style. The properties on family-friendly rental site Kid & Coe are proof that form and function can work hand in hand. "We are really choosy when it comes to adding homes to the site," founder Zoie Kingsbery Coe tells MyDomaine. "They are all hand-picked because they are family-friendly, in a desirable location for family travel, and because they have a certain sense of style." We mined the site's 1000+ listings of homes around the world to discover the best family-friendly design ideas. Here's exactly what we learned along the way.

a white-walled living room
Kid & Co

Seek Symmetry

Keeping any home pristine is challenging, especially if you have kids. Fake a tidier space by styling furniture symmetrically to create a mirror effect. It'll always look considered and neat, no matter how many stray toys are on the floor. 

Paint Brick Walls

Painting a room white is an easy way to instantly elevate it. Update your space by giving a red brick wall or pitched roof a coat of fresh white paint, and pull back the blinds to let the light reflect off the walls. 

an open plan living room
Kid & Co

Go Industrial

An industrial design might be considered cold to some, but it's surprisingly kid-friendly. Polished concrete floors are easy to clean and look better with a few scuffs, while mix-and-match furniture can be easily updated as your sense of style changes. 

Consider an Open-Plan Layout

Open-plan homes make it easy to keep an eye on young ones. Watch them play in the living room while you prep lunch in the kitchen.

a white-walled living room
Kid & Co

Blend Indoor and Outdoor Spaces

This British home blends indoor and outdoor spaces with a huge glass accordion door that can be opened on warm days to let fresh air and natural light inside. 

Whitewash Floorboards

Fresh, whitewashed floorboards give this family home in Primrose Hill, London, a fresh base. The bright floorboards make the space feel larger and allow the owners to add color via the warm-wood furniture. 

Family Room Design Ideas—Sage Paint
Kid & Co

Make a Fireplace the Focal Point

Trying to encourage more family time? Rather than style your living room around the television, focus on the fireplace. It'll be more inviting and subtly encourage social interaction, rather than staring at a screen.

Choose a Calming Color Palette

The living room should feel like a retreat from the stress of the outside world and everyday life. Opt for soothing colors like dusty sage, which was one of the most popular colors on Pinterest in 2018. 

Family Room Design Ideas—Miami Home
Kid & Co

Choose Furniture with Curved Lines

Family-friendly furniture can be stylish, too. Opt for sofas and accent chairs with curved lines and in soft fabrics, like the owners of this Malibu home did. Linen is a great sofa fabric that will get better with age. 

Use Area Rugs to Protect Flooring

Protect neutral carpet from spills with a strategically positioned area rug. This large black-and-white stripe rug hides stains and can be replaced with time. 

Family Room Design Ideas—Spanish Home
Kid & Co

Opt for a Statement Ceiling

Worried about investing in statement furniture when you still have young kids? Instead, focus on the ceiling. This home in Barcelona, Spain, has a stunning exposed brick roof that draws the gaze skyward. 

Choose Perspex Tables Over Glass

Clear perspex is a great alternative to glass. It's durable, doesn't scratch easily, and won't smash.

Family Room Design Ideas—Pink Paint
Kid & Co

Style a Gallery Wall

The best family rooms reflect those who call the space home via sentimental objects and photographs. Give your room personality by styling an eclectic gallery wall with your favorite family photographs and artworks the kids have made. 

Shop Midcentury Modern Furniture

Searching for well-designed furniture that's also child-appropriate. Midcentury modern design is a great trend to incorporate at home as it usually features chairs and coffee tables in curved lines. Textured fabric like performance velvet is surprisingly hardy. 

Family Room Design Ideas—Traditional Home
Kid & Co

Let Light In

Struggling to pinpoint why your family room doesn't feel quite right? Make the space a bit more inviting by replacing heavy drapes with sheer linen curtains or removing them altogether. Let the natural light stream in to instantly change the mood. 

Decorate with Greenery

Houseplants don't just enliven a space and purify the air—they're also a great way to teach your kids how to care for a living thing. Buy a plant and watering can for your little one and show them how to water it regularly and watch it grow. 

Family Room Design Ideas—Blue Feature Walls
Kid & Co

Style a Mantelpiece and Shelves that Are Out of Reach

Nervous about styling a coffee table or console with precious items? Turn your attention to surfaces that are out of reach, like a mantelpiece or high shelves. The owners of this Parisian home chose to put breakables like vases and urns up high, and decorate low coffee tables with books and plants. 

Browse Thrift Stores

Thrift stores are a great place to find affordable pre-loved furniture and vintage steals. Bonus: you won't be precious about pre-loved items and will be able to tell if they wear well with time. 

Family Room Design Ideas—Vacation Home
Kid & Co

Shop Multipurpose Décor

Choose furniture that services more than one purpose. These half-sphere wood stools can be used around the dining table as extra seating or side tables by the sofa. 

Add Wheels

We spied a genius dining table hack in the Cape Town home shown above: The owners have added discreet wheels to each leg so that it can be moved indoors or outdoors. It's an ideal trick for open-plan or vacation homes. 

Related Stories