Children love it when their bedrooms have a theme that represents their individual interests and allows them to express themselves visually. If you have a child who is an avid sports fan, particularly NFL football, then there’s several simple ways to give their room a makeover on a budget. If you’re like most people and you can’t afford to simply circle every item in a catalog bedroom set, I’ve got some helpful ideas to get the most decor out of your budget!
Get Your Child Involved
The trick is to make your child an integral part of the decorating process without giving them any options you can’t afford. Spending an afternoon with your kid at the thrift store is a great way to bond, especially if you can find some old retro toys that you used to play with that you can point out to your kid. I know I’ve seen old NFL trading cards on more than one occasion, and you might even find an old team jersey to hang on the wall.
Get Ideas from Catalogs – Find Bargains at Discount Stores
When trying to put together a boy’s bedroom, catalogs can come in handy but often get pricey, which is why it makes more sense for parents on a budget to be a bit thriftier with their decor spending. The good news however is that websites like Craigslist and Ebay can be a lifesaver and can even help you find rare or out of stock items for cheap. If I can’t find a particular item at the NFL’s official website and store, I make sure to sweep through Ebay because chances are someone has the item I’m looking for.
Simple Design Ideas that Make a Big Difference
- Paint the walls with team colors – Start with the team emblem and paint it to be the centerpiece so it’s the first thing you see, then work your colors outwards from there. Use painter’s tape to paint horizontal stripes with two or more colors depending on the team. Try covering only half of the wall from middle to bottom with wallpaper to save on budget. You can still paint the sections of wall that don’t have wallpaper with team colors.
- Use decals on windows – It’s not hard to find NFL decals of players and team logos, you might even be able to find some at a flea market if a vendor sells sports memorabilia. Official NFL curtains can be bought, but you can also hang towels over the window to give it a locker-room feel.
- Mix and match bed covers – If an entire NFL bedding set is out of your budget, try mixing the colors of your sheets, blanket and pillowcase to emulate the team colors. For example, if your child is a Giants fan, have a blue blanket with red pillows and white sheets. If you’re handy with knitting, you can also knit up a throw blanket with a logo if you’re fancy.
- Make a football shaped rug – Get a strip of brown rug and use a piece of chalk to draw out the shape of a football, then use fabric glue on any old pair of white shoelaces to make the football lacing.
- Frame drawing board on the wall – Get a small chalkboard and draw X’s and O’s with directional arrows to simulate a coach’s drawing board, then frame it on the wall. It’s a cool and unique alternative to artwork!
- Hang important news moments – Capture victorious moments with news printouts and tack them to the wall! You can encourage your child to scan the newspaper for clips worth cutting out.
The Bedroom Theme that Never Gets Old
Because football is such an enormously popular sport, the NFL has placed a logo on nearly any decorative item you can think of over the years. It’s really a wise idea to check thrift stores and the salvation army before you hit the retail stores, because you never know what cool sports items you can find that someone didn’t want anymore. You could even find old Madden NFL titles for the Playstation video game consoles, just to complete a collection. Look to shows like Design on a Dime which focus on home makeovers on a budget to get inspiration.
The great thing about browsing eBay or thrift stores is that you never know what you’ll discover for a bargain. Even at antique stores you can discover a retro Coke machine that would look great next to a cardboard cutout of your son’s favorite athlete, and most local places will haggle on prices, whereas retail stores are set in stone.
Author Mike Kelley, aka Captain Mike, is a boat owner and father of two, having earned his maritime degree in 1973. He has taken part in oil spill cleanup jobs and has a passion for teaching Coast Guard courses to help senior seamen become Captains. When he’s not busy teaching, or enjoying time with his wife and children, Mike works on his site, http://www.menshideaway.com where he shares info about designing the ultimate man cave.