BIG news! We had a baby last month and we're loving being new parents. I'm proudly designing rooms with sleepy eyes and spit up on my t-shirt. We love this little guy and enjoyed crafting a space just for him. Okay, maybe not just for him. We all know new mama's spend lots of time in nurseries, so I must admit that I probably enjoy some of the design details more than he ever will.
Anyway, it’s been a while, friends! Welcome to our very own baby’s nursery!
Before getting started, it’s important for me to share where we’ve been and what we’ve been up to lately. The past ten months have been unique and it’s been hard to find time to write and reflect. I learned I was pregnant the day Hurricane Harvey hit here in Houston. Everything was closed and the roads were blocked, but we did manage to make it to Cracker Barrel in our friend Phil’s XL truck. By XL I mean the tires are taller than me.
When Houston flooded, I doubted my ability to serve the rescue and recovery efforts. With no medical or emergency rescue training, I felt as though I had little to offer but still wanted to help in any way I could. It was soon after that I realized something: homes. The memories. Their possessions. The places where they feel safe. Gone. While material items can be replaced, the feeling of ‘home’ is something we all need to feel secure. That’s when I knew that there was an outlet for me: flood renovation. We partnered with William David Homes and also Seven Mile Road Church to restore homes (more on this one day in the future). The families we got to work with will always be so special to me. They are so strong!
All of this is to say that this became a top priority this year and was worth every second (even with a giant pregnant belly). It did leave little time for writing, though. I’m excited to catch you up to speed on what we’ve been up to lately!
I tried to find ways to select pieces that will last a while but wouldn’t break the bank (because diapers cost money. As does college). Priorities, am I right?
Here’s the scoop:
For starters, this room was originally turqoise. It had belonged to an awesome teenager whom we had the pleasure of meeting! When we moved here we changed the walls to a neutral beige for Bryan’s office. He got to have his ‘corner office’ for about one month before we found out we were expecting a baby. Time for another color change!
I love neutrals, always have and always will! There’s something special about a light and airy nursery. At the same time, the color navy wouldn’t leave my mind. Navy is classy and a versatile color, but I didn’t want all of the walls to be painted dark. Our solution was 3/4 high board & batten paneling. Bryan and his friend, Tom, conquered this project together. I was there only for moral support. The white paneling still lightened the room and made the space feel more open, while the navy packed a great punch of contrast. We used Simply White (satin) and Hale Navy (flat) from Benjamin Moore. We used satin so we could clean off any future crayon art projects on the wall :).
Let’s talk about this rug. You want to know the glorious thing about it? I can take it outside and spray it down with a hose when it gets dirty! It’s an indoor/outdoor rug but isn’t prickly. It feels like an indoor rug. Winning! This is actually the underside of a rug. The top side’s pattern was too busy for the room so we simply flipped it over. It was a great clearance buy from Land of Nod (now Crate and Kids)!
Moving on to the bookshelf area. I don’t know about you, but I can’t get enough of the navy & brass trend these days. It feels like an old library and I love that. I found this Visual Comfort light at a Habitat for Humanity ReSale shop at a fraction of the cost! It sat in a cabinet for a year before I had a place for it. The Bible verse below is one that is special to us. It also has our son’s middle name within it! We just typed this on engineering paper and had it printed at Office Depot. The shelves are filled with special books we were given, framed shower invitations, and beautiful ceramic British soldiers by Tricia Lowenfield Design (we still have more of her wonderful art to display)!
Other details throughout the space include a classic dresser with brass knobs, a linen rocker/glider, handmade quilts, and art that is special to us: a Blakely Made letterpress print from my best friend and a Washington, DC pennant because it’s where we met.
My advice when designing rooms in your home: use pieces that MEAN something to you. Don’t just fill it with ‘filler art.’ Wait until you find the right pieces of furniture, art, and decor that truly reflect your personality and stir up sweet memories from your life.
If you’re about to design a nursery, I do have one good hint for you! Look beyond places that market themselves as ‘nursery’ items. It’s great to blend things together that are geared for nurseries and things that aren’t. For example, it’s imperative to have a crib that meets safety standards, so you can’t really stray away from nursery goods in this regard. However, art, pillows, lighting, and so on are great to find elsewhere (as long as the materials are safe). Secret: you will probably save a lot of money, too!