Grown Up Girl’s Room

By Kate Riley April 7, 2010

There are those years when your kids are growing up that they really want to be in charge of the décor in their room.  And that’s important.  And ya gotta respect that. 

So for years and years, my stepdaughter was in total control of her personal space until something happened when she turned 17 – she was ready for a grown up girl’s room, and I was invited to help !  OMG, are you kidding me ?  I get to collaborate on the new space?  For real ?  Pinch me !   I was honored and delighted to lend a decorative hand. 

So it was out with the tween decor and in with the girly glam.  We finally got around to hanging some pictures and adding a new chandelier last weekend, so we deemed the space officially ‘done’.  Here’s a tour of the new and improved grown up space for my girl !


tween before


cg grown up girls room


cg headboard and bedding

My girl loves turquoise so that color stayed put !  We bought her this chair and desk from Pottery Barn many years ago when she was much smaller.  It’s such a great set so we decided to keep it but give it a more sophisticated look. 


desk before


So I added a mirror above, then recovered the chair seat, and added a ruffled pillow.


cg hutch chair mirror


cg frame tulips curtain

cg shelves and boxes


cg starfish


Here’s the other side of her room ‘Before’:

Note: Surfer Girls Rip

surfer girls rip before


cg bed and gallery

Surfer girls still  rip, just in black and white photography (top left).  That’s her learning to surf at age twelve, we were so proud !  *sniffle sniffle sigh* 

I framed some of our favorite photos of her growing up, and even her puppy when he was little – that’s her most favorite.  :-)

headboard and gallery

And the silver leaf lamp was last week’s finishing touch. 

cg end table and lamp

The botanical print bedding I found at Overstocks many years ago – it worked so well in the room so it stayed – she loves it because it looks ‘Hawaiian’.  Accent pillow from Bed Bath & Beyond.  

cg bedding


In fact the bedding worked so well, that I found some Graham & Brown wallpaper to match it.  What are the odds that after buying that bedding three years ago I’d find  complimentary shimmery wallpaper to match the bedding?   Pinch me again!   So I gave her a framed wallpaper accent behind this white hutch that I refinished in oil based paint for her last year. 

cg wallpaper and chair


This wallpaper makes me swoon – I want some for my room now ! 

I also wallpapered the back of the hutch that holds all her special things. 

cg graham and brown wallpaper

Isn’t it gorgeous ?

I debated whether to hang anything over the bed, and I’m still not sure.   If we find something we might, but we’re liking the simplicity of nothing right now. 

cg chandy and bed

cg turquoise bedroom

So that’s the spin around her all grown up girl’s room.  My girl works so hard at her academics, sports and volunteer commitments, so no one could deserve it more !  We’re just so very proud. 

Next time, I’ll share all the little projects that went into transforming this space, plus sources.  Cheerio, lovelies.  Hope you like it as much as she.  :-) 



  1. Love this room!! I want my master bedroom to look like this! Can’t wait for all the details! like the paint color? It is beautiful!

  2. Wow she is one lucky girl!! You guys did a great job. I wish I could make you my live in decorater. I have zero creativity when it comes to it.

  3. oh my goodness kate, you’ve outdone yourself, her room is gorgeous – what a transformation!! i wish i had been so lucky to have a room like this when i was in high school…who am i kidding, i would love to have this room NOW :-) you’re incredible!

  4. This is absolutely gorgeous! So exciting you got to help! It really is lovely. I just posted a chair reupholstered in almost that same fabric…maybe the same? Not sure, but close. Great minds and all… -shaunna :)

  5. That is such a beautiful room! I want it for MY room! Great job on everything…I can’t say that I even have a favorite thing about it…it just flows so well!

  6. Just beautiful!! I love all the details…especially that pretty chandelier…it is the exact one over my kitchen sink. ;) Love it!! That wallpaper…so beautiful! It is a grown up girls room and a space she will enjoy! Great job!!


  7. It’s perfect! Beautiful and sophisticated, with a hint of pure fun! I love your blog! Thanks for sharing your knowledge and talents:-)

  8. This is absolutly beautiful. Looks so elegant.
    I have a decorating delema on my blog, maybe you can help me :)

  9. All I can say is WOW! She will be the envy of all her friends for years to come! That room is beautiful, and though I’m a few (ok, more than a few) years away from 17, I’d love that room to be mine! Congrats on such beautiful work!

  10. WOW! What a difference! I’m only 22. Please say you’ll adopt me and give me an equally beautiful room to live in.

  11. Stunning, this room is just so pretty and sophisticated. Can you even imagine having such a special room at such a young age? Love the wallpaper, the headboard, the chandelier…well, basically everything! Janell

  12. What a beautiful room. You did a great job. Love the bedding, headboard, colors, wallpaper…all of it.

  13. That was my dream room that I never had. I am sure she LOVES it! You do such an amazing job. Love your style. And thanks for the tips on painting kitchen cabinets, we just got done painting ours and learned a few things too :)

  14. LOVE LOVE LOVE her room. My favorite….if I only had to pick one… the wallpaper inside the china hutch that matches the wall. I LOVE THAT IDEA!!!! Great job!

  15. HELLO! Stunning!! It looks like a tear sheet from a magazine! I would have adored that room at 17, my room looked nothing like that. LOL. It sounds like she really deserves it and and she’s lucky to have you as a mom. Most teens want things their own way, but this is proof that collaboration and deferring to mom’s wisdom, talent and design style can really create a goregous space.

    I’m going to link to you in my upcoming post on my favorite posts at the moment.

    Thanks for the eye candy! :)


  16. What a lovely room! I’m in loved with that headboard! Did you make it, or buy it somewhere?

  17. Wow what a gorgeous makeover! I’m just about to start rehauling my spare bedroom (not so much a rehaul actually as I haven’t even started) and that turquoise is giving me some serious inspiration. I wish I had a room like that at 17, she’s a lucky girl to have such a cool stepmum!

  18. Heavenly Sanctuary! It looks so peaceful and serene, a nice place to spend time.

    Thanks for sharing, and your girl, well good for her working so hard. It is something to be proud of and to share with the world.

  19. The colors, the fabrics. Everything is just so beautiful. I absolutely love the headboard too. Did you do the headboard yourself, if so I’d love a tut (unless I missed it – sorry!) Also love the framed wallpaper wall. It makes it more of an art piece than an accent wall. Love!

  20. Absolutely stunning! What a wonderful, calming, cozy, and beautiful refuge for your girl. I look forward to seeing how you put it all together!

  21. Stunning! What a beautiful transformation. I love that you honored and worked with her wishes and likes and created something that is uniquely hers and so beautiful.

  22. WOW. I absolutely love it. I’m going to show this to my daughter who wants her room redone this summer. (she’ll be 16 in like 30 something days). Beautiful!!!

  23. My eyeballs are popping out of my head, this is so stunning. I’d move into this room in a minute….great job, magazine worthy.


  24. Wow! You have done the most amazing transformation! I love it! Everything is so beautiful. She must be so happy. They grow up to fast!


  25. Absolutely beautiful! Just lovely. She must be so thrilled with her made-over space :) My 8 yo’s room is getting a ‘clean sweep’ and makeover while she’s at camp in August. I’m going to try to get some coherence in there, somehow. Dinosaurs and Harry Potter are an awkward combination at the moment.

  26. I want that room for *ME.* ;) I love the color scheme, it’s fresh, soft, soothing, but the turquoise is still fun. Can’t believe the wallpaper find…that’s great! The little touches like the Mason jar filled with fresh tulips and the little seashell accents are great. You did a good job of making the room more sophisticated, but youthful at the same time.

  27. I do love it! In fact, I would love for it to be my room. I love that you kept the same wall color and bedding. Just goes to show that accessories can really change the feel of a space!

  28. WOW!! That is SOOO beautiful. When I was a teenager, I called my room “my corner of the world”. What a wonderful sanctuary for a teenage girl to come home too. The room is so amazing, but I can also feel so much love went into it. Thank you so much for sharing.

  29. Oh my goodness- I just love it. Wish I had done something similar in my master bedroom- but too late now. At least for another year! Good job- thanks for blogging- I love following your DIY’s!!

  30. Love, love, love! It’s a beautiful, peaceful room, and your daughter is very lucky to have her very own personal decorator! :) I love the pops of pink, and the ruffled pillow on the chair…swoon…

  31. Love the room! I’m looking for a shelf exactly like the white one — where did you find it?? Thanks!

  32. I’m so jealous! That room is absolutely gorgeous! Bravo to both of y’all. I can’t wait to hear more about the projects!

  33. wow! what an amazing transformation! any girl would love that space (including this girl!)

  34. It is a very, very lovely room! So relaxing and fresh. I could use it myself….
    Really, If I ever win a money price, I borrow you for a week and make you redecorate my home!

  35. Wow, this is beautiful! I love the soothing gray of the headboard and lamp mixed with the turquoise – very relaxing and pretty, but not cutesy. I would LOVE to have a room like this! Definitely going to file this in “inspiration” for one of our guest rooms :-)

  36. Thanks for all your sharing…It is all beautiful…It makes me believe that I can do this in my home…

  37. I ordered a sample of that Graham & Brown wallpaper, I haven’t decided for sure on it yet, but it’s definitely in the top 3! I love the shimmer! And it looks SO lovely…hmm. :) Love the room!

  38. That room is gorgeous! One lucky teenager you have there! I used to love warmer colors, but the more I see your transformations, the more I’m leaning towards using neutrals and cooler colors in my decor.

  39. It’s beautiful, Kate! I really like that you used some of the things she already had in there, too. Love the drapes and the B&W pictures you put up. The headboard is great. Sometimes it’s good to keep a wall empty and it’s good to wait rather than just put something up for the sake of filling a wall. Nicely done! I’m sure she just loves it!

  40. Fabulous job! If you’re looking for a suggestion for over the bed, to keep it simple you could do one of those rub-on wall quotes in a silver or dark blue color. Simple but elegant! I look forward to more projects from you!

  41. I love it! How absolutly perfect! You are very talented, and how great to be able to work with your teen! Love it as always!

  42. I’m in awe and reminded of the (horrid) movie Brewster’s Millions, “Marilyn? I could die in this room.” It’s so amazing.

  43. Beautiful. A space fit for a very special girl. And fit for your home. And how wonderful that you worked on it together. Congratulations on finishing this very special room.

  44. Oh my goodness, girl. You have outdone yourself~such a soothing, yet fresh room. I love the gray and silver touches, but those pink tulips in the turquoise mason jar? Oooo la la!

  45. This room just took my breath away. How do you do it!?!

  46. Stunning. I can’t stop looking at it. So calm and looks very luxe…what a lucky girl!!

  47. I want this room- It is awesome! What a lucky girl! Can’t wait to see how you did the wallpaper framed wall… what a great idea!

  48. oh Kate! it is just beautiful!!!! LOVE that shade of blue. So I totally used your tufted headboard tutorial this weekend & made one for our bedroom! I LOVE IT!! I just posted it last night-stop by if you have time and take a peek. And that chandy looks like the one i just put in my laundry room-did you get it a Home Depot per chance?

  49. Absolutely beautiful room. It’s my inspiration to do our bedroom. Thank You! LOVE your site! Thanks for sharing.

  50. PHENOMENAL!! Luv the curtains and the gray mirror da bestest (yea, i make up words)

  51. So lovely. Jealous. Can’t seem to get the grown up boys rooms to look like grown up boys rooms. Maybe it is the shear volume of dirty laundry they accumulate!

  52. WOW!! This is so stunning. What a very lucky 17 year old to have such a talented mom! This tranformation is amazing!

  53. I’m so glad you posted on her room makeover! Just your peep into her bedside table left me wanting to see more. You did a great job, I’m 29 and wish my bedroom looked like that. You have great taste and great ideas!

  54. Amazing! I love everything about it. The pictures by the bed — perfection.

  55. I think you must have one of the most beautiful homes I’ve ever seen! I love this gorgeous room. I love the colors!

  56. Absolute perfection for a 17 yo girl. Good for you for doing this room re-do, but, really, for being a great step mom. As one myself, I know that it’s tricky and confusing and oh-so-rewarding.

  57. I LOVE THIS ROOM. I just painted our guest bedroom almost this exact color, and was thinking of doing black accents. Now that I have seen the grey and silver with this color, I have changed my mind! Thanks for the inspiration!! :)

  58. WOW! I can’t wait for my little girl to grow up so I can attempt to do this for her. She’s only 2 1/2 so I’ll have a long time to plan. I love the colors and the ruffle pillow. I wish I had the same design eye as you to get every detail down. Just beautiful.

  59. I wish MY room looked like this when I was in high school! Instead, I made it all Asian themed, but fairly poorly at that. I want this for my room now, though. I think the hub would like it, too. It’s very clean and crisp. Just how I want it to feel when I wake up every morning in a dark basement bedroom~

  60. That is gorgeous. I am sooo jealous. I want that room! You are amazing. Please come over and help me “fabulous-up” my house! Thanks for inspiring me!

  61. This is so beautiful! I with my teenage room had been this nice. The colors are great, and I love that the hutch almost looks like it doesn’t have a back since it’s wallpapered the same as the wall. Gorgeous!

  62. Can you tell us about the pretty window treatments? I love the softness and sophistication of the colors you chose…nice job!

  63. Absolutely beautiful! You missed your calling….you should be an interior designer.
    Or….maybe you are! Would you come and decorate for me?!

  64. What a redo! I am so impressed with all your ideas and creativity. You mentioned about leaving the space over the headboard empty for now – I agree! It’s nice to have a place for the eye to “rest.” Thanks for sharing – I enjoy your blog a lot and am going to try your window covering plans from the master bath post.

  65. Absolutely fantastic! You both did a fabulous job getting this room updated to her liking. I love it for myself!

  66. There are are so many decorating blogs to choose from nowadays and in a lot of ways they have replaced our beloved magazines that have gone away BUT your blog truly is sensational! Your talent blows me away and your style so elegant yet comfy. I applaud you for your talent and I also realize that even though you probably won’t get around to visiting my little ole blog, I just wanted to let you know that your home is fabulous!

  67. You are seriously amazing and talented! She is such a lucky girl. I am very inspired to do some redecorating of my own now! :)

  68. Absolutely, positively stunning!!! You have such a talent!!! This is seriously a dream-come-true bedroom!

  69. You are both so lucky to have each other! I know a lot of love went into this room. Job well done!

    Are you already planning a dorm re-do when she goes off to college? :-) Think of the possibilities? Thank you for sharing your gorgeous photos & congrats on your beautiful work!

  70. Gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous!!!!! I’m in awe.

    I linked to you on my blog the other day. Boy do I wish you lived closer!

  71. If it is possible to love a blogger, I love you. Yours is one of my favorites blogs and always the one that I look at first. Such beauty in this room. No words to describe just how beautiful it is. Lucky girl she is!

  72. Sooo beautful and serene…. what a wonderful palce for a 17-year old girl to relax and refresh! Just one question… where is her clothing storage? I see the hutch and closet, but am wondering where she stores her clothes (or is it just my 8-year old has too many clothes already?) :-)

  73. Im not sure if you mentioned the wall color or not.. but I would be interested in its name. My little room “needs” to be redone.. well not really but I painted a mural when I was preggers and now I need to change it. I wanted to do turquoise with silver and green accent pieces.. and I love that color you have on the wall. Any info would be great!

  74. The room is STUNNING! I’m so envious of everything, even the amount of sunlight! I’m 26 and I don’t even think my room’s as sophisticated. You’re such an inspiration, thank you for sharing!

  75. CG, I love your home. Yours in my #1 favorite site. I so wish I lived in Northern California again so I could use your talents and hang out in the wine country. Your trip post are drool worthy. I keep telling my hubby when the kids get older and are off to college, that’s our first couple trip.

  76. The wallpaper in the hutch makes it look as though there is no back – which is brilliant! It really lends an airiness to what would normally be a very heavy looking piece of furniture.


  77. Kate, it’s just beautiful!! Wow, just a perfect room for a teen girl, I can def. see your hand in it. Love, love the wallpaper, in fact, I’ve got my eye on some lime green & white & I’m thinking about using it in my office nook on one wall.

    OUtstanding job, my friend! You really know how to put a room together, every single detail.

  78. Kate, the room is SO BEAUTIFUL! I ran through the post twice, drooling. You did an amazing job, and she’s so lucky to have a mama like you.

  79. This is such a gorgeous room. Would love to see how you did the chair. I have some barstools that are similar and would like to reupholster them in the same way. Any pictures?

  80. AMAZING!! I thought your project office was incredible, but this is way up there as well! I love, love the ruffle pillow. Where did you get it or how did you make it? I’m trying to find a similar one for my daughter’s nursery. :)

  81. Beautiful. You gave me inspiration. We are in the process of updating my 2 year old’s room. I want to skip the toddler stuff and go straight towards the grown up girl stuff!

  82. Love the room. It’s very calming. And it could really work for any age. Great inspiration!

  83. Awesome…where’s the headboard from? I didnt see where you mentioned it. :))))

  84. That is beautiful. Everything looks perfect. Her puppy looks jus like ours–so cute. She is a lucky girl.

  85. I love this room. We did one of our guest rooms very similarly. Everything is pretty much perfect, but I’ve been seeking a small chandelier. Yours is perfect! Where might I find one like it?


  86. What a gorgeous and serene room! It’s like a boutique hotel room! I can’t get over how much the color seems to change with the silver accents. It looks so different. Your personal touches and sweet comments about your dd really made me smile! You are a great mom!

  87. Are the curtains from Target, by any chance? I’ve been looking at some very similar to that and if they’re the same ones I’m going to snatch them up today! Beautiful room!

  88. I just stumbled on your site and am loving it! I am off to have a look around! Thanks for the inspiration.

  89. OH MY GOODNESS – it is ABSOLUTELY beautiful! Those pictures and that headboard and that comforter are my favorites!!!
    You did such a good job.

  90. This is perfectly lovely! I would love to have a bedroom like that now, and I’m sure Husband wouldn’t even mind. You did a fabulous job, and I can’t wait to see how you did some of those makeovers, especially filling the cushion part of the chair. Thanks so much for sharing!

  91. FABULOUS. So fresh and sophisticated–your daughter must be thrilled!

    I’m off to explore the rest of your blog…love what I’ve seen so far. :-)

  92. The room is BEAUTIFUL .. inspires me to WANT to make some changes in my OWN rooms. The only thing I say .. actually was the 1st thing to catch my eye in the 1st pic .. the bed is AGAINST the little round table .. surely the bed could be moved over an inch or two .. just so it doesn’t look as if the round top of the table is on top of the bed covers.

    Great job .. would prob have never used the color scheme, but LOVE the softness of it! Do you work for hire?

  93. I love the shade of paint on the walls. I think you mentioned that the paint colour stayed, but so you remember the colour name/brand of the paint?


  94. It looks amazing you did a great job !
    So refreshing and chic your stepdaughter is a lucky girl !

  95. Ever since I found your blog 2 days ago, I haven’t been able to leave my computer. This room is beautiful. Did you paint the mirror above the desk or did you buy it that way? I have a mirror I would like to paint a similar color if you know the paint brand/color? Great job! Looking forward to seeing more of your work as I check out your blog.

  96. Where did you purchase the silver frames for your step-daughters room?

    I love how it turned out! So peaceful and stylish!

    ~ Ali

  97. OMG you really are a decor genious and godess! Love this room so much! Making me wish I was 17!!! You daughter must be so happy in this room! Cudos to you!

    Natascha xoxo

  98. Hi Kate, I haven’t been following you for very long so after reading your latest post I followed the link to this one. Can I just say – THANK YOU!!! My daughter LOVES Sky blue and it as been so difficult for me to find something for girls with only blue and white. I’ve shown her the pictures and she says a resounding YES! Although this design is a little too old for her, you have certainly opened up a lot of ideas for me.

  99. I LOVE this space! I would love it for my own space (as a grown up mama of two). So soothing, simple and beautiful. Great job.

  100. BEAUTIFUL!!!! what an inspiration!!! I love looking at your reinventions, creations and make-overs!!! Ive been aimlessly looking at all this new furniture that I need to buy for my home, because Im in desparate need of storage for my childrens room, my kitchen, laundry and lounge that was going to cost us about $10000, now…there is nooooo way i am going down that road….im going thrift store shopping, hardware shopping (to get me all the bits and bobs – thanks to your DIYer’s Tools guide) and i am transforming my drab to fab…oh im sooo excited!!! im soo grateful you have invested your time to share your transformations with us all..Your a GEM!!

  101. I love this room i’m redoing my room myself and I was going to go turquoise and white with purple accents and just wondering what color is your carpet white or cream?

  102. Does anyone know the specific paint color used on the walls of this room? I love it but unfortunately can’t locate the name of this beautiful shade of turquoise. Thanks!

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