Interior Designer Vern Yip Shares His Top Tips for Family-Friendly Decorating

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Photo credit: David A. Land
Photo credit: David A. Land


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When it comes to creating your family's home, "you can absolutely design spaces that are stylish and reflect your personality without worrying too much about spills and stains from kids and pets," says Vern Yip, interior designer, HGTV host, and author of Vacation at Home. The trick? Making the most of modern materials.

“These days, modern high-performance materials mean families can have a beautiful home that’s also kid-friendly. You can have rugs made in any size from Stainmaster’s durable ‘Nylon 6,6’ material, which is stain-resistant and surprisingly inexpensive. Upholster furniture with soft indoor-outdoor fabrics, which look great and are also easy to get marker or chocolate out of, even in lighter colors. For kitchen countertops, opt for white quartz, which is a durable alternative to marble.”

Photo credit: David A. Land/emanating from Design Wise
Photo credit: David A. Land/emanating from Design Wise

When selecting pieces for kids' rooms, "pick furniture they can use long-term, so you won’t have to update pieces every few years," Very says. "It’s better for the environment and your pocketbook, and kids will naturally add their own touches in the form of art, toys, or collections over the years."

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Teaching kids to take good care of their spaces and things is also important. “My mom had an incredible eye for design and taught me the difference between something that was simply well-made versus something that was a masterpiece by letting me handle delicate pieces, even as a kid," says Vern. "Of course I broke my fair share of stuff, but being allowed to interact with beautiful things on a daily basis helped me develop a sensitivity to them and was so influential in honing my design eye. Now I encourage my kids to do the same.”

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