Strategies For Having A Stylish Home Even When Kids And Pets Are Present

If you're like many young parents with active children and pets in the home, you may be longing to give your interior living space a much-needed makeover, but are concerned that your kids and pets will undo your efforts in no time. Although it takes some doing to create and maintain an attractive living space when kids and pets are a part of the picture, it's far from impossible. The following are interior design elements that can help busy young families create home interiors that look pulled together and polished. 

Repurposed Wood Flooring

One of the first things most parents and pet owners give up is wall-to-wall carpeting. It's difficult to clean, and professional carpet cleaners often use harsh chemicals than can irritate children's skin, eyes, and airway passages — keep in mind that your little ones are much closer to the floor than you are. Repurposed hardwood flooring is ideal for families because it not only provides a unique, elegant appearance, but it also won't be harmed by family activities. Furthermore, you won't have to use any special cleaning products on it to keep it looking its best. Simply mop up spills in a timely fashion, keep it swept, and use a mild, nontoxic cleansing agent once or twice per month. 

If you like the look and added insulation of area rugs, consider using outdoor rugs inside your home in areas that are heavily frequented by kids and pets. These are every bit as attractive as their indoor counterparts and have the added benefit of being made from materials that are easy to clean — sisal or seagrass rugs that are commonly used on patios make great choices for indoor use because of their understated and elegant appearance. You can also buy rugs manufactured for use in high-traffic parts of the home. If you love the feel of plush, soft carpeting under your feet, place a luxurious throw rug in your bedroom and enact a strict no kids or pets policy concerning it. 

The same principle applies to fragile, heirloom pieces of furniture and art. Use them to embellish your private sanctuary instead of having them in communal areas. 

Semigloss Paint 

Flat paint is almost impossible to clean because doing so always seems to involves taking off some of the paint, and kids and pets always create smudges on walls and doors. In contract, semigloss paint is easy to wipe clean. Use paint with an eggshell or satin finish for a luxurious accent — these types of paint have the same easy-to-clean properties as semigloss paint. You can also create a faux finish using sponging techniques to minimize the appearance of grubby fingerprints and other grime. 


Crypton is a fabric that was developed by an interior designer to provide functionality and style to homeowners with kids and pets in residence. Crypton fibers feature built-in stain and odor repellent and optimal durability, and they are extremely easy to clean. They come in everything from vibrant, stylish shades to sophisticated neutral tones and are used in everything from furniture upholstery to drapes and bedding. As an added bonus, Crypton is recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency as having several important eco-friendly attributes. For instance, Crypton has been designated for the EPA's Greenguard Gold Certification, which means that the material meets certain rigid requirements that show the material produces low emissions of compounds and chemicals commonly used in household materials that can have a negative impact on indoor air quality. 

Please don't hesitate to reach out to your local interior design firm for more inspiration on curating an attractive, stylish home environment even though you're sharing the space with children and pets.