See how this guest room was transformed into a toddler's big-boy room

This mom gave the room a kid-friendly makeover!
Sarah Winchester

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/ Source: TODAY
By Julie Pennell

When 4-year-old Henry outgrew his nursery, his mom decided it was time to move him into a bigger room in their Boston-area home. What was once the master bedroom and then a guest bedroom was transformed into Henry's brand-new big-boy room.

Before: The room was a guest bedroom that they no longer needed.Sarah Winchester

The new design speaks to Henry’s love of cars, robots and superheroes. It’s young, fresh, adorable and totally toddler-friendly.

Henry's mom, Erin Gates, an interior designer and New York Times bestselling author, was inspired by her son’s favorite things to create the room's look.

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“He has long said his favorite colors are red and blue, and that palette really reflects his bright personality,” she told TODAY Home.

After: It's Henry's new big-boy room!Sarah Winchester

Gates, the author of the blog Elements of Style, tried to involve him in the process — at least as much as she could with a 4-year-old. She mocked up three different designs and had her blog readers, along with Henry, weigh in.

“The scheme we did is the one he picked and most of my readers picked, too,” she said. “I also showed him some samples, and he really loved the star wallpaper, so that made the choice a no-brainer.”

For the things he didn’t have input on, Gates tried to make sure that everything she picked tied to him as a person.

“The splatter print fabric for the roman shades are an homage to his love of art class, the car photographs around the bed speak to his love of cars and trucks, and the abstract painting above the dresser sort of reminded me of Captain America's shield," Gates explained.

An important toddler-room tip from Gates: "Be sure to attach all larger furniture pieces like bookcases and tall dressers to the wall for safety."Sarah Winchester

To toddler-proof the space, she chose a wallpaper that’s not only a fun design but is made from vinyl grasscloth, so it's nearly indestructible.

“It's like having a coating of Teflon on your walls that you can wipe down easily,” she said.

Other tricks included adding an upholstered daybed given his penchant for jumping around and off things, roman shades to avoid any issues with dirty hands or trying to pull drapes down, and an antique Persian rug, which may seem fancy, but the busy pattern and wool construction mean that it hides everything, Gates explained.

The antique Persian rug may seem fancy for a kid's room, but its pattern and texture makes it good at hiding messes.Sarah Winchester

Get more design inspiration from Gates at her blog and in her latest book, "Elements of Family Style: Elegant Spaces For Everyday Life."