June 8, 2020
One of the most exciting personal projects I’ve done this year is designing our son’s little nursery. For a girl who has worked with flowers all day every day for the past three years, getting to design a boy nursery was way outside my typical wheelhouse. But it was also JUST what I needed to get a fresh dose of creative juices flowing.
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It’s no secret that I love neutrals so I chose to not really have a “theme” for his nursery. Instead, I decided to work on finding the perfect blend of textures and incorporating lots of thoughtful details that represent what we want for him and what’s important to our family.
The first thing we did was PAINT. When we moved it our house, this room was already a nursery but with a 90’s safari theme and awful dark green trim. Three coats of primer and paint each and we erased all traces of that ugly green trim and transformed it to clean white trim. For the wall color, I chose Sherwin Williams Eider White. It’s a very light grey with just a touch of warmth. It’s amazing what just paint can do to transform a space.
Our next project was the closet. The whole room is only 8×12 and I knew I needed to make use of every square inch to have a functional nursery. Last year, I watched one of my favorite bloggers turned personal friend Katie Lamb transform many of the closets in her house into extraordinary spaces. The existing closet spanned the entire width of the nursery and was a completely blank space, so I asked my husband and father-in-law to create a custom built-in closet from scratch. It took them one day to build the frame for it, and it took me about 4 days to caulk, prime, and paint it into the glorious custom organizational space I had been envisioning. It was tedious, uncomfortable work at 28 weeks pregnant but WELL WORTH it!
Our next project was a much simpler one (mostly for our sanity haha!). Growing up, I LOVED to read. We actually didn’t have cable and that was before the days of Hulu or really anything on the internet. Consequently I was reading full novels by the time I was in third grade and my love of reading never stopped! It’s something I credit to my creative imagination today and I want the same thing for our baby boy. One of my big priorities was starting a little library for him and we plan to read to him early and often. We created DIY art shelves to house all the books myself and our family and friends bought for him. It was a simple, cheap project: it cost around $30 for both shelves and only took an hour or two one evening to complete.
Our final big project was something a little out of my comfort zone: color! I wanted his room to gently scream boy. For three months, I agonized about finding the perfect smokey grey-blue wall to create a board and batten wall behind his crib. After pinning literally every grey-blue color on Pinterest, I finally decided on Benjamin Moore “Smoke.”
We created the board and batten frame work with inexpensive primed MDF boards from Home Depot. In total, the boards cost around $40, a few tubes of caulk cost around $8, and 2 quarts of the paint cost $40. Pretty inexpensive for a beautiful statement wall!
Next, I moved to decorating. MY FAVORITE part! I wanted to keep everything rather simple and minimalistic because that’s just my personality – a ton of “stuff” on every wall or surface visually stresses me out. So I chose a cozy rug, new modern ceiling fan, and multi-function side table from Amazon; beautiful organizational baskets and luxurious grey black-curtains I had been eyeing from Target; we DIYed the sign over his crib; and I found a few miscellaneous toys and decor pieces from Hobby Lobby, Magnolia Market, Home Goods, and Target’s Hearth and Hand line.
I love this rug from Amazon SO much! It’s much more affordable than the Pottery Barn version and it’s held up perfectly through lots of vacuuming (our two huskies love to lay on it). You can find it here.
I replaced the old 1980’s frilly fan with this more modern fan. Not only was the price tag very fair, but it also moves 3x’s the air that our old fan did (and much more quietly too).
These blackout curtains from Target are the best I’ve ever found. My husband works midnight shift and we’ve gone through our fair share of failed blackout curtain purchases. I would say these are 99% blackout and they look much more high end than the price tag would suggest.
I wanted a side table for the long nights I would spend in this glider and decided on this double duty storage nightstand. When I first got it, all the blankets and swaddles were folded and rolled perfectly, but let’s be real – this is more what it looks like now (or even worse ;). Some of the reviews say it’s hard to put together but I put it together in about 15 minutes at 36 weeks pregnant….and I have zero skills at putting furniture together.
After finding all those main decor pieces, I moved on to the cute little details. This little dog stuffed animal from Amazon is adorable and the pillow is from the kid’s decor section in Hobby Lobby.
These baskets have been a dream for keeping all the baby odds and ends organized. I bought several of the largest size of these baskets for closet’s long top shelf and threw all the diaper packages we received from our baby shower in them – such a cleaner looking space with all those tucked away.
This tractor was from the fall 2019 Target Hearth and Hand line – there’s a special place in my heart for any neutral colored child toys and anything designed by Joanna Gaines. Although it’s not sold anymore, I’ve noticed she chose a toy train for the winter line and I hope she continues to add a new toy for each season!
My husband is a police officer for a city with two K9 units and I wanted to add in just a little touch of that to Jase’s nursery. These two stuffed animals are little replicas of the current dogs used by his department, and Argo actually was the star of our gender reveal. His handler’s family stuffed boxes with pink and blue balloons and Argo sniffed out of the box with the blue balloons for us to open and find out. (Let’s be real though – he wasn’t sniffing out colored balloons. He was sniffing for a strategically placed bag of marijuana specifically used for his weekly training sessions. Hahaha!)
We live in an age where it’s not trendy to have personal touches or photos in home decor – but I believe it’s so important to have your home surround your family with personal touches. It should feel like home, not just a perfectly decorated house. Even if it’s just little stuffed dogs that your son will treasure and play “police” with someday.
This little toy truck is from Magnolia and I can’t wait till the day he’s old enough to be zooming it down our hallway.
This giraffe was a last minute impulse buy from Home Goods. I wish I had a link for it because it’s adorable but ya know how Home Goods works. It’s the perfect compliment to the cream and black rug!
Here’s a little surprise: I bought his crib and glider used from friends. I think it’s important to acknowledge in this world of “swipe ups” that it’s ok to stick to budgets, prioritize purchases, and not always have the newest item on the market. Buying a crib and glider new would have easily equaled the amount I spent on this entire nursery, and I knew that wasn’t a good financial decision for us this year. By buying them used, I paid less than half of what each item costs brand new.
So that’s the full reveal of our little boy’s nursery. I’m so proud that we actually finished one of the rooms in our house 100% (you 95%-er’s know exactly what I’m talking about!). I love that he sleeps under this sign that we made for him every night. I know, I know: he can’t read it but I love that such truth is spoken over him as he grows up. And it’s a great reminder for me when I’m struggling to get him down for naps that he’s here for a much greater purpose than I could ever imagine right now.
We love you, baby boy. Don’t grow up too fast, ok?! Mommy wants to enjoy this nursery for a good, long time.
Product Sources Recap:
Ceiling Fan: Amazon
Side Table: Amazon
I am His Sign: DIY’d
Pillow: Hobby Lobby kid’s section
Stuffed Dog: Amazon
Giraffe: Home Goods
Tractor: Fall 2019 Target Hearth and Hand Line
Toy Truck: Magnolia Market