Tips on Making Your Room Look Cool

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    Guys Have Travel Gear

    • A teenage boy who likes to keep track of his travels has a whole wall dedicated to a map of the world with pushpins to mark places he has been. The map idea migrates to another map decoupaged over a central pendant lamp and then travels to flotsam and jetsam beached in shadow boxes and on shelves. Quirky Simpsons' characters and model cars share shelves with architectural models of world famous buildings, stacks of National Geographic magazines, globes, I Love New York and London underground map pillows and lots of travel books.

    Cartoon Tromp L'oeil

    • Primary color block painting turns a pared down room into an ultra modern design statement. The lower wall beadboard is painted shiny lipstick red to match a vintage rock star image framed against the white upper wall. The bed "headboard" is an ideal rectangle of bright blue paint on the wall behind the bed. Above the headboard is a fake pendulum clock, painted like a black and white cartoon but featuring a real clock face, glued in place and ticking away -- reverse tromp l'oeil.

    Heart on a Bulletin Board

    • The coolest girl in class keeps a visual friend board over her homework desk. Instead of schedules, notes and ticket stubs, familiar faces cover a bulletin board as wide as the desk. From dreamy heartthrob to childhood best friend, this teen has her life in pictures up on the wall. The odd rock star or to-die-for-dress ripped from a magazine is tucked in among the real celebrities, her extremely photogenic buddies. It's a cool look with all-white walls, spare white desk, clear glass desk lamp and a single note of bright yellow on an old wooden chair covered in a fresh coat of paint.

    Hide the Laundry

    • A large folding screen brings order out of chaos in a teen athlete's room -- or temporarily hides the mess. One panel of the screen features a blown-up photo of the room's occupant in the middle of a sporting event. The picture might be a triumphant tennis match, a swim meet, a touchdown dance or perfect form on a half-pipe. Big, industrial hinges attach the other screen, which is painted a solid color, graffiti-covered with permanent marker by teammates and sports a couple of hooks for tossing a jersey, a few medals or hanging an old tennis racket for show. Peeking behind the screen is strictly forbidden.

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