Gender-Neutral Teen Bedroom Ideas That Aren’t Too Grown-Up

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The teen bedroom: It's a place of sanctuary and escape, the first place teenagers can call their own — and design however they like. Today's coolest Gen Z bedrooms are gender-neutral, with neutral backdrops that are a little bit grown-up (no more kids' decor) but still leave room for creativity and self-expression.

Here are a few teen bedroom ideas we love; take a look, then put your own spin on them:

1. Include inventive storage.

Most teen bedrooms need plenty of storage — but this can be an opportunity to get clever. Do as architect Elizabeth Roberts did in this Brooklyn refuge and build out a bed platform and wardrobe that creates the feeling of a lofted room within a room. Can't custom-build? Buy a loft bed with sneaky storage already fitted below.

Get the look: South Shore Furniture South Shore Asten Loft Bed With Desk, $999.99

2. Stick to a neutral palette.

Keep the palette neutral: Think earth tones like soft grays and charcoals, dusty blues, greens, and browns, as seen in this bedroom by Shea from Studio McGee. A timeless palette will lend a sophisticated feel to any teen bedroom idea — perfect for youngsters looking to get away from "kid" styles and try out a more grown-up aesthetic.

Get the look: Fuiloro Upholstered Platform Bed, $1,080.99 - $1,360

3. Create a place for display.

Instead of hanging framed artwork up with nails or thumbtacks, create wall decor that can be changed up whenever the mood strikes. Cable systems and grids with clips or old-school bulletin boards are striking ways to display photos, clippings, cards, ticket stubs, and reminders. Just think of it as a real-life pinboard.

Get the look: Dormify Hangit Photo Display, $20

4. Add a reading nook.

Every teen bedroom idea needs a secluded nook for studying, escaping with a book, or kicking back with Netflix. If you don't have one built in, you can make one with a bright floor cushion, mix-and-match pillows, and a contrasting throw.

Get the look: Urban Outfitters Rohini Daybed Cushion, $159

5. Display your favorites.

Make your favorite possessions and hobbies — the things you're most passionate about — part of the decor. Mount guitars on the wall, wrap the room in shelves for all your books, or hang up your extensive hat collection. Not only will it look good, but it's a good way to keep these items from cluttering up the floor. Winning!

Get the look: HomeDo Natural Wooden Coat Hooks (set of two), $9.88

6. Add greenery.

A sure way to liven up any teen bedroom idea? Add houseplants. If you want to go all-out, mount a DIY plant display. Or, just add a cute planter and with greenery to your desk or dressing table (even an easy-to-care-for succulent). It'll add a bit of energy, when you're pulling an all-nighter studying.

Get the look: Urban Outfitters Areaware Stacking Planter, $64

7. Invest in grown-up pieces.

Sure, teen bedrooms are often filled with trendy finds and of-the-moment, sometimes somewhat disposable furniture. But it's also the perfect time to start investing in a timeless piece or two. Whether it's a family heirloom that's passed down or a midcentury-modern classic, it'll be something you'll want to keep over the years, even if your style changes.

Get the look: France & Son Three-Arm Spider Sconce, $918.95


Annie Quigley is a freelance writer, editor, and poet whose work has appeared in Remodelista, Food & Wine, The Wall Street Journal, and elsewhere.

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