Posts Tagged ‘playroom’

Caroline’s Nursery

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

Caroline’s nursery is not actually a nursery. It’s really not even Caroline’s right now, since it’s full of toddler toys and doesn’t have a crib. But it does have nice carpet, a very comfy nursing chair, lots of pretty colorful things and a big closet full of little girl clothes. I’m pretty excited about the room in general, since in about a week I’m going to be staring down the barrel of taking care of two kids on my own (I have been SOOOO spoiled with E home and my mom here) and a fun place for all of us to hang out is going to make that a lot easier. Plus it will be PERFECT for play dates. Who wants to come over?!

Welcome!

My mom wrote “Caroline” in place of “Baby Girl” on the chalkboard tray before we brought her home.

View from the door

This room really needs to be painted. The paint is like primer, totally flat, and there are a zillion scratches and chips and scrapes on the walls. But I sort of figure it’s only a matter of time before someone colors on them in permanent marker anyway, so painting it now would be an exercise in futility. Also, I freaking hate painting.

From behind the glider

My favorite corner

The chair is from Babies R Us (this one is better than the defective one, but the seat is ALREADY kind of lopsided so I don’t recommend it, no matter how comfortable it seems in the store) but the ottoman came with our old glider that’s still in Little Evan’s room. My mom recovered the ugly beige with one of the cute fabrics I bought. Curtains are Ikea, pillows are from Target, blanket on the chair was a gift from my friend Amanda, tutu (hanging on the wall) and ribbon mobile are two of my craft projects.

Man, those moldings REALLY need a coat of paint. Yikes.

Here’s the most important nursery planning tip ever: BUY A DRESSER INSTEAD OF A CHANGING TABLE. Or at least buy a changing table with drawers. Those open shelves are useless. This one is from Ikea and it’s just the right size. Lamp and shade also from Ikea. If you can’t read the banner, it’s actually Charley Harper Flash Cards spelling out “Caroline” held on a ribbon by wooden clothes-pins. There mirrors were on clearance at Target for $1.25 so I bought 4 (the other two are on another wall) and painted the frames in bright colors to match the room. I hung them at toddler-height so Little Evan can play peek-a-boo with himself. (p.s. The child sized broom courtesy of a toddler who felt it REALLY belonged in this picture.)

The wall behind the main door

The floor pillows are my FAVORITE thing about the room. The fabric on top of the front pillow is what inspired the color scheme and the pink and orange fabrics were from Caroline’s baby shower. I’m terrible at sewing but my mom is AWESOME and after I tracked down some nice big fluffy pillow forms (Ikea! $6.99! It was cheaper than buying poly-fill!) she whipped these right up for me. Now they’re perfect for lounging around on the floor during play time. Mirrors are the other two I bought at Target and the baby hats/bows/booties are all just hanging on a ribbon with clothes pins. I went a little clothes-pin-crazy in here.

TA-DA! This is where the whole room started. So in case you were wondering, the theme of the room is orange, pink, green, blue, brown, birds, nature, vintage, nursery rhymes, and transportation. I have a hard time making choices.

I bought a yard of this fabric at Ikea. But it wasn’t at my local Ikea, it was during my super awesome fantastic amazingly amazing trip to Minnesota so it’s extra special. The frame was another freebie from after a garage sale that I spray painted orange.

Toddler play corner

Built-in book shelves. Please note my awesome variety of pretty much every book series ever written for children. And maybe one TOTALLY CHILD INAPPROPRIATE book by Edward Gorey.

Evan is in love with his little table and chairs (a Christmas gift from his grandma and grandpa)

Other stuff in this corner: Lamp & shade, easel, and abacus from Ikea. Animal shaped bins are from Target, various plastic toys from EVERY PLACE IN THE WHOLE WORLD THAT SELLS TOYS.

He really wanted to be in EVERY picture.

The canvas on the wall was super cheap at Target (on clearance, less than $5). It was bright and happy and figured I couldn’t even MAKE something for less. The table my doll house is on is actually an old dining room table from Ikea (this one, purchased by E at least 7 years ago, painted by me 5 years ago) that he shortened the legs on to make it toddler height. Hanging toy storage in the corner also from Ikea (they should really pay me commission or something for plugging their stuff, right?) The rocker Little Evan is sitting in was my mom’s when she was a child. It had an unfortunate run in with her dog that left it a little worse for the wear but it’s still functional. Plus it means a lot to have vintage stuff like that used by my kids.

A few details...

1. Vintage airplane mobile (my brother’s when he was a baby) It plays “Fly Me To The Moon”
2. Bebeh feet!
3. Vintage fabric birds hanging in the window over the doll house
4. Beautiful hand-made teether from Little Alouette. LOVE LOVE LOVE everything from Amy’s shop, plus she is an extremely nice person (I met her at The Creative Connection). I’m sitting on my hands right now to keep from ordering this little owl shaped teether. Or just getting three for $35. But Caroline can’t even see her hands yet so it seems a little excessive. For record, I’d get the owl, the hippo and the fawn. Just, you know, FYI.
5. Vintage tea cup from my Aunt Susan
6. Vintage dress (mine when I was little) hanging on the wall. Too pretty for the closet!
7. The “LOVE” sign is a wood cutout I bought for $1 at Joann’s and spray painted with a little help from some blue painter’s tape. The bird has a pull string that makes it play music and flap it’s wings (vintage from my childhood).
8. Easter ducky (also from Aunt Susan) sitting on nursery rhyme books from the baby shower

Thanks for visiting!

So in the end, it’s not really a design-magazine worthy kind of space but I’m totally in love with it. Better yet, the kids seem to really like it.

Oh my God, saying “the kids” sounds so weird. I have KIDS.

If I missed the source for anything you’re wondering about, let me know and I can tell you where it came from. Full disclosure: the two or three Amazon links do go through my associates account so I get like, 4 cents or something if you purchase the item by clicking through my link.

Related posts:

Animal Baby
Goodbye Twenties
Wordless Wednesday: Fresh Baked Baby Hats Edition

Baby Sandy’s Nursery: Vintage Bib, Ribbon Mobile, Chalkboard Tray

Thursday, November 11th, 2010

Since the new “nursery” is more of a playroom than an actual nursery (I’m still debating whether or not we’re buying a second crib – so far, “no” is winning) I’m way less interested in making it perfect than making it fun and functional. At the same time, I feel sort of bad that Baby Girl is going to be forced to share her space from the very beginning with an older brother so I’m putting a lot of effort money thought into special touches just for her. I mean, it’s SUPER AWESOME that we’ve already banished most of the ugly, plastic, music playing toys to the second floor, but it also means a pale pastel princess color scheme is totally out of the question. Good thing I was already into the idea of bright colors.

Instead of boring the crap out of you with hundreds of individual posts explaining every step of each project, I’m going to do them in weekly (bi-weekly? monthly? OMG it can’t be monthly because I only HAVE a month left to finish all of this DEEP BREATHS DEEEEEEEEP BREATHS) round-ups.

Project 1: Find a way to display the vintage embroidered bib my mom saved from my (her?) childhood

framed vintage bib DIY

I *think* it’s a cow surrounded by flowers. Or maybe a vase. Or maybe I’m still high on spray adheisive.

Since the bib is sort of pastel and the room is mostly bright, I wanted a bright frame to put it in.

framed vintage bib DIY

Green frame from Target: $6.99, tiny fabric squares: free from my swag bag at The Creative Connection, but I’ve seen them at Joann’s for a few bucks a pack

Then I used the spray adhesive to stick the little squares to a piece of off-white cardstock.

framed vintage bib DIY

I KNOW YOU ARE SO AMAZED RIGHT NOW.

Then I put the bib on the fabric/paper and popped the whole thing in the frame.

framed vintage bib DIY

And now I have a lovely, girly, almost-free piece of art for the new nursery

Project 2: DIY Ribbon Mobile

I did not come up with this idea, not by a long shot. A Google image search for “ribbon mobile” brings up tons and tons of slightly different versions and it’s not like you NEED instructions. But I learned a few things in my attempt so I’m going to post a tiny how-to.

DIY Ribbon Mobile

I only ended up using the larger embroidery hoop and even though I did spray paint it yellow I didn’t really need to. You don’t see enough of the hoop for it to matter.

DIY Ribbon Mobile

Figure out how long you want the mobile to be and cut ribbon to approximately twice that length. DON’T go out of your way to make it perfect, since the uneven lengths is what makes it sort of whimsical

I discovered that the thinner the ribbon, the easier it was to work with. I actually gave up on the wide orange kind because it kept coming unlooped. The grosgrain mid-sized ribbon also worked very well once I figured out how to tie it. I originally bought a bunch of ribbon at the fabric store but found MUCH cheaper options at Michael’s – 50 cents a spool with tons left over.

DIY Ribbon Mobile

You would think randomly choosing the color order would make life easier, but instead I spent far too long worrying there was too my orange or pink in any one section

In theory, all you have to do to secure the ribbon to the hoop is hold it double, wrap the end where the ribbon is folded around the hoop, then pull the ends through until it’s tight. But with anything thicker than 1/8th inch ribbon, it’s hard to pull it tight enough to make it stay – and I was NOT looking forward to gluing each one individually. So what works is after you pull the ribbon through the loop end, take the free end and pull it through the loop again on the right side. It makes sort of a little knot without changing the way it looks too much.

DIY Ribbon Mobile

Ta-da! Beautiful, one of a kind ribbon mobile for the nursery

Project 3: Chalkboard tray as door sign

I used to collect vintage trays and display them as wall art in my living room, so when I saw a chalkboard tray in the Pottery Barn catalog I thought it was a super cute idea. And one that is obviously so ridiculously easy there is no way anyone should bother to buy the one from PB for $200 (sadly, I can’t find the tray online to link to, but it was in the Thanksgiving issue.)

diy chalkboard tray

Supplies: totally NON-vintage tray I bought for 10 cents at church rumage sale, chalkboard spray paint, ribbon, Tacky Glue

Yeah, you don’t need a step-by-step for this.

diy chalkboard tray

One day, we’ll pick a %^&# name, and I’ll write that on the sign

I’m going to hang it on the door.

Now I’m going to go spray paint some more stuff in my dining room. Because I’m sure that is AWESOME for the baby.

Related posts:

Pati-OMG
Pinterest Living Room Makeover
Caroline: 10 Months

Baby Sandy’s Nursery: Inspiration

Wednesday, October 6th, 2010

Is there anything better than Ikea?

This is just the tip of the giant Swedish iceberg

I bought a yard of Ikea fabric while in Minneapolis to use as “inspiration” for the new nursery/playroom but I’m already changing my mind about it. It’s very…yellow. And the green is sort of a split-pea-avocado shade that may be too modern for me. It does have adorable birds and a fantastic amount of orange so I’m hesitant to trash it, but it may end up as a single throw pillow instead of the main color scheme.

I’m sort of shocked at my total NON-desire to do Baby Sandy’s nursery in pink and purple and crystals and ruffles and flowers. I want primary colors and clean lines and shapes and animals and have no plans to paint the almost-white walls and beige-yellow moldings. (And not just because I hate painting, especially trim.) My taste in nursery decor has pulled a total 180 in the past year and a half. Maybe I’ve been looking at too many nursery tours on Ohdeedoh. Or spending too much time stalking Morgan at The 818.

For example, if I had had a girl the first time I think I would have gone TOTALLY overboard with the nursery theme.

Like this. Only PINKER. With a giant chandelier.

Or this one. Only SPARKLIER.

OR THIS ONE. Which I will admit is pretty cool. Really cool. I kind of want to go to there.

I think it’s good I came to my senses for Baby #2, don’t you? (My husband may have just pulled a muscle from nodding too hard.)

So here’s my question: BESIDES Ikea, where should I be shopping for nursery stuff? Pottery Barn Kids is…boring. I get the CB2 catalog but none of it is very baby-friendly. Same with West Elm (and holy over-priced end tables Batman!) Should I just start stalking Craigslist with a passion?

P.S. So we actually WENT to Ikea Sunday and I bought…none of the above. I did buy this:

EDLAND dresser

It is MUCH paler gray in person and will match both the yellow & beige walls & carpet and that fabric I’m growing to like more and more every time I look at it. Plus, it’s huge. I’m going to put it in Baby Evan’s room for now (to solve our current NO DRESSER problem) and move it into the new nursery once we get our renovations done.

I also bought the easel I’ve seen approximately fourteen different people blog about this month, with a chalkboard on one side and a white board on the other PLUSĀ  giant roll of paper you can pull over it for crayons. Baby Evan is a little young for it still (did you know chalk will write on almost any surface, including your own face? BABY EVAN DOES) but I mentioned it at least forty times as we walked through the store and E wanted me to shut the hell up likes buying me things I want.

Next time, I’m going to mention the moose rocker.

Related posts:

Weekend Fluff
Duck, duck
Once Upon A Potty
Get Adobe Flash player