Thursday, November 18, 2010

Subject: The Nursery

Mel -

I hope you have some free time, because I have a lot to write about today! It may have taken me 8 months after Suz was born to send you the final pictures of The Nursery, but here they are! I cannot wait to show it off to you and tell you all about it, especially after we went back and forth with so many links and ideas and suggestions. Let me just say, I love the final product. I wanted something that was sweet and girly and classic, and that is exactly how it turned out. And, I think the room totally reflects Suz too - sweet, girly and classic. Enjoy!

Here is a shot from the door:

The room isn't very big, but it was the perfect size for a baby (they're small, you know?). I love how the room feels really cozy, with furniture encircling the entire room. The little alcove was the perfect spot for a changing table and I love that it is by the window. (I hate the mini blinds, so please ignore those.) I found out last fall that I was having a girl and I have to admit, I was a little bit inspired by Mad Men. (I felt bad for Betty Draper, though - we both thought we were having girls and it turned out only one of us was right!) I was really drawn to the classic look of the Jenny Lind style of crib and changing table and got real steals on both off Craiglist. I painted them both black, which was one of the most time-intensive projects I have ever taken on and several times I didn't know if I would finish. It didn't help that I was super hormonal and thus emotional - I may have cried once or twice when I thought I could not go on. And while I realize now it was nothing compared to actual labor, I do consider it one of many labors of love I have endured for this little girl.

Here is the before, during and after of crib painting:

And the changing table:

As I said, the changing table is also the Jenny Lind style and was originally white. I love how much open storage it has. The baskets are from Marshalls and not only are they the perfect size for stowing diapers and burp cloths, but the sides are low enough that everything is within easy reach. The buckets are from Lowe's and I like how they bring in a different texture to the room. Plus they are virtually indestructible and are nice and deep for holding toys, blankets and shoes.

Above the changing table hangs this mobile:

When I was 14 and in Switzerland on a band trip (see, being in band did have some perks) I saw it hanging in the window of a wooden toy shop. I immediately fell in love with it and bought it at once. I then hauled it all the way through Italy and back home, where it hung in my bedroom for the rest of my youth and finally made the move to my house when I was working on The Nursery. The colors match the space perfectly and I love the story behind it. Little did I know that when I bought it, it would one day hang in my daughter’s nursery! (Oh, and most importantly, Suz loves it too.)

Here is a shot of wall the door is on:

The chair is from Wal-Mart and I love it. I knew I wanted an upholstered rocking chair (versus a wooden one with cushions) but a glider was a little outside of our budget. This chair fits the space and the fabric is the perfect neutral color for Suz now or a boy in the future. The fabric has also held up really well. I would recommend this chair to anyone. It’s a steal price-wise and you order the chair cover separately in the color you want, which means it can be removed and washed. We did the Site-to-Store option so we didn’t have to pay for shipping and assembly was easy. The blanket on the chair was a shower gift and the little pillow in the chair was a gift from one of my aunts. It’s Humpty Dumpty and I had one when I was growing up, so I think it’s sweet to have in Suz’s room now.

I knew I wanted some kind of ottoman or footstool for this room, but I also knew that a big ottoman wouldn’t fit. I told my husband that I would find a cheap footstool somewhere for $10 and make it pretty myself. And that’s exactly what I did! Here’s the before:

The transformation is amazing, right? The fun thing about this little footstool is that the cushion is on hinges so there is a little storage area too. So cool!

Here are some close-ups of this wall:

The bookcase is from a vintage shop in town. It was originally white and cost me $30. I balked at the price a little bit, but when my husband unloaded it from the car and then carried it up the stairs after it was painted, he complained that it was very heavy for its size. Then a friend of mine came over with her daughter who was pulling up on furniture, and this bookcase did not even wobble when she used it to stand. So now I feel great about the price of this piece because I know it will last a long time and there’s no danger of it tipping. The lamp is by Shabby Chic and was on clearance at Target. I wore the ballerina costume for Halloween when I was 3-year-old and used a simple poster frame to mount it. I used a vintage bone dish as a container to hold pacifiers. The upholstered box was a shower gift – doesn’t it match the room perfectly? I love it.

The shelf is from Michael’s and was originally a wood finish and I painted it white. The S is a cardboard letter that I painted myself (I love all the hints of blue in the room – so vintage!) and the tea set was one I had growing up…I could not believe how perfectly it matched! The little top is vintage that a friend gave me as a “so happy you’re pregnant” gift.

And here is the room’s piece de resistance: the crib. My mom made the bedding...isn’t that so impressive? The fabric is Lucinda Blue by Maddie Boo and I found it the cheapest here. We used white seersucker on the bumpers and then my mom piped the bumpers in the same fabric as the crib skirt and used grosgrain ribbon for the ties. The poms are amazing and I think make a room that might otherwise seem a little too adult really whimsical and fun. I ordered them from the Etsy shop PomLove. I know you can make them, but at that point I was on Project Overload and could not handle the thought of searching for the perfect colors of tissue paper and then figuring out how to make them. I think I paid $25 for all five and got to choose the colors I wanted for each of the three sizes.

Next to the crib is this:
I picked up the chair at an estate sale for $10 and painted white. The paper suitcase is from Pink Loves Brown and is perfect for holding shower and pregnancy cards, ultrasound pictures and our little bracelets from the hospital – all the stuff you don’t know what to do with but you know you want to keep! The rabbit I had growing up and the prints I made myself. Here is a close-up:

I cut the silhouettes out myself using black poster board and then stretched fabric behind them. I think they’re really cute and fun for a little girl’s room.

The only area I’m kind of blah about is the dresser. I ordered a really cute lamp from eBay that was a white teapot base and a sage green shade, but it got destroyed en route and it was the only one the seller had in that color. Sad! The silver jewelry box is from my lovely friend Peach and the black & white box was a gift from some friends – they gave us cigars tied with pink ribbon to hand out to friends and family at the hospital. Jon was thrilled…that’s such a great gift for dads!

Phew! I think I covered everything. Like I said, I love how the whole thing came together and it was so fun to plan a room from scratch, start to finish. I had never done that before – usually I started with something – but once I had my inspiration (the fabric) and my vision (girly & sweet), I really got into it.

Have a fab-u-lous weekend!

P.S. My quiet, non-busy week has turned surprisingly busy and hectic, which meant no bathroom painting. I have bought the paint, though, so hopefully it will be a pre-Thanksgiving project next week!

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