| |

Teen Boy Bedroom Makeover BEFORE

A Teen Boy Bedroom makeover for the One Room Challenge Spring 2022; sharing the before pictures and ideas and plans.

It’s time!

It’s been a year since we moved into this house and we have slowly been making a few changes here and there. It was pretty plain when we moved in, as we painted nearly the entire house white inside just to get in quickly and easily. Upon move in, we basically just brought our stuff over and set it up and got settled. A few rooms have had some decorative changes, but overall it’s looking pretty plain and a bit unfinished in some spaces.

So…. the time is ripe to start adding more character to a few of our plainer spaces, and we are starting with my oldest son’s bedroom this time!

I’ve done the One Room Challenge a few times in the past, and I love how the challenge pushes your limits as a decorator and homeowner. If you’re not familiar with the One Room Challenge (hereafter I’ll call it the ORC), I’ll bring you up-to-date. It’s a 8-week long challenge in which decorators, designers, and homeowners pick a space in their home to completely update. There are feature designers for each session, as well as many guest participants (like myself) who join in each week. You can read more about this event here. 

One Room Challenge Logo

Previously, I have tackled our youngest son’s room on two different occasions (in both of our last two homes), one of which was for the ORC Spring 2018. My oldest son, Leif, has been waiting patiently (or not so patiently) for his turn!

Here’s a before/after of Finn (our younger son’s) ORC room makeover from the past.


boy's bedroom before makeover project


surf style boys bedroom with large wave wall mural

We did a different challenge on Finn’s bedroom in our forest house, and gave it an update in just four weeks time.


boy's bedroom before makeover


adventure tween boy's bedroom makeover reveal with hale navy wall

You can see why his brother is a bit jealous and wants his own room makeover, right?

I’ve shared some more of my ORC reveal posts at the bottom of today’s article:)

What does this teen boy bedroom look like BEFORE (aka now)?

So… onto the challenge for this spring. As I mentioned, we basically painted most rooms white and moved in, got settled, and then lived in our new build home for the past year. While fairly functional, our oldest’s son (Leif’s) room is pretty boring and basic right now…

boy's bedroom before with grey bed and patterned rug

We have a rug that we brought over from our previous home but it’s fairly thin and starting to show a lot of wear. He would like something a bit cozier for his rug.

We picked up the bed at Costco prior to moving in last year, and he likes that. The nightstands are from our previous house as well, but they might stay as they are still serving his purposes.

teen boy bedroom before decor makeover one room challenge

On the other side of the room, we have some bookcases (from our previous house) as well as a large Ikea Farlov chair that we didn’t have room for anywhere else in the house. The corner floor lamp, footstool, and the curtains are all from our Forest House as well and they found a home in his room here…

corner of teen boy bedroom with Ikea farlov chair and ladder bookcases

three grey ladder bookcases in teen boy bedroom

His closet is quite large but basically unused at this point…

inside of closet in teen boy bedroom

On the wall beside his closet is his dresser and desk. He keeps most of his clothes in his grey Ikea Hemnes dresser that we ordered when we moved in.

I also recently ordered him this “Lommarp” desk from Ikea so he would have a place to do some work in his room (though he seems to prefer working at our dining room table).

Ikea Hemnes tall dresser in grey and Lommarp desk from Ikea in teen boy bedroom

It’s pretty bad… we haven’t even hung a single piece of art in here in over a year!

close up of Ikea Hemnes dresser and Ikea Lommarp desk in teen boy bedroom

Who is this teen boy I’m designing for?

If I think of Leif as my client, I have to tell you that his space does not at all reflect his personality. He is not this blah.

He’s a very active 14 year old grade 9 student who loves mountain biking, basketball, soccer, golf, and summer water sports. Leif is quite social and talks almost non-stop. He is pretty funny and goofy but also pretty determined and a hard worker when he wants to be. Leif tries his best at nearly everything he does in school and in life, and has a kind heart and easy-going friendly way about him.

What does he want for his teen boy bedroom design? 

That’s where things get a little trickier. Leif has always been pretty decisive when it comes to the kind of clothes or shoes he likes, for example, but is a little less sure about his room. He likes so many things that it’s hard to narrow down a focus, but we’re going to spend some time this week looking at pictures to figure out what he loves and what he doesn’t.

What is the plan for this teen boy bedroom makeover?

  • new paint colour
  • maybe wall trim/moulding?
  • probably wallpaper or a wall mural
  • new, cozier rug
  • some new bedding or decorative pillows to mix up what he has
  • art!
  • displaying favourite accessories
  • possibly a new bookcase
  • maybe removing or changing up the chair

What will stay in this teen boy bedroom?

Things that probably will stay (though I guess nothing is truly safe at this point):

  • the bed
  • the nightstands
  • the dresser
  • the desk

Teen Boy Bedroom Makeover Inspiration

A few rooms that I love and am taking some inspiration from are…

decorated teen boy bedroom with floor to ceiling board and batten wall paneling

I love this paneling and the fun, modern feel of this teen boy bedroom at Southern Revivals. 

design board for a moody masculine boy bedroom makeover

I like the moody, masculine feel of this design board from Rufus and Henrietta.

I’m thinking sports, adventure, the forest, moody colours, cozy, comfort, but fun. Can all that be in one space?!

I’ll share some more inspiration later in the week, and we SHOULD have our design plans formulated by next week! Wish me luck as I work with my 14 year old son/client on this one!

Previous One Room Challenge Makeovers:

Here are some of then other ORC makeovers I’ve tackled over the years…

modern boho farmhouse family room decor makeover

ORC Spring 2020: Modern BOHO family room makeover reveal 

primary bedroom with upholstered headboard and white wall paneling

ORC Spring 2019: Primary Bedroom and Ensuite Makeover Reveal 

surf style boy bedroom with large wave mural

Spring 2018: Surf Style Kid’s Bedroom Makeover Reveal 

primary bedroom makeover with upholstered headboard and floor to ceiling board and batten

ORC Fall 2016: Master Bedroom Makeover Reveal

living room makeover with white and blue and vaulted ceilings

ORC Spring 2016: Living Room Makeover Reveal

craft room storage using an old dresser and pegboard wall storage

ORC Spring 2015: Craft Room Makeover Reveal 

main bathroom makeover with hale navy walls and white paneling

ORC Fall 2014: Main Bathroom Makeover Reveal 

Let’s get this party started! ORC Spring 2022, here we come…


Similar Posts


  1. Krista, this teen makeover is just the motivation I need! We’ve renovated the entire upstairs of our new house and I’m just starting to turn my attention downstairs for our two big kids’ bedrooms (they’re same age as yours). Can’t wait to see what you do for Leif!

  2. My son has also been patiently waiting for his turn at a room makeover, so I look forward to seeing what you come up with! That inspiration room is gorgeous!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.