Those of you who have been reading this blog for some time might remember waaaaay back to when I was planning a nursery at our old place for our little girl–who is now almost 3 1/2! I can’t believe how the time has flown by. Hers was the first nursery that I had ever designed and I had so much fun working on it. I also learned a lot a long the way that I want to incorporate as I start planning the next one (in case you missed that announcement, read this post!). For example, it is so very important to look at paint colors during different times of day and in different light. In my original mood board for her room I had decided to go with what I thought would be the perfect green and went ahead and painted the room:
but after living with it for a few months I very quickly realized that I hated it in anything but lots of natural light. The light in there in the evenings made it very eerie and not at all calming. Luckily I loved the color we had chosen for her closet and for the back s of the built-ins and I ended up re-painting her room that color when she was probably 7 months old. I never looked back:
I actually loved the color so much that I painted her “big girl” room at our new house the same color (and I’m still totally in love!).
I also learned a bit about my decorating style and preferences. I learned that I prefer a more restricted color palette than one with lots of colors. The original nursery plan had too much going on (green, aqua, some yellow) but once I switched the walls to aqua, I figured out that using variations on that color (darker teal, for example) gave the room depth but kept the overall feel calm and pulled-together. I also learned that incorporating a lot of neutrals also helped me achieve the look and feel I was going for. I used beige for the upholstery (and later white) and brown for her window shade, which I tied in to some of her bedding:
The final thing I learned is that you can make a bunch of mis-matched furniture look like it goes together if you keep it all white (this certainly isn’t a new concept, just one I’ve come to embrace!). In her original nursery, we had a new crib and two storage cubes from Land of Nod that were both white (pictured above), but the other two pieces of furniture in her room were thrifted finds. Her bookshelf I had picked up at a yard sale back in grad school for $3:
and her side table/nightstand we found in the basement of our building for free:
After painting both white, they blended in perfectly in her room. I used this same principle in her new “big girl” room which included the same side table, but also a new bookshelf (also painted white!) and my dresser from when I was a girl (that my sister had painted white years ago).
As I come up with a plan for the next nursery I’m trying to keep these lessons learned in mind (rather than go too far out of my comfort zone). Although I do like to push myself design-wise from time to time, I don’t want to do it with the nursery too much because it is a bit risky to do, and I want to make sure that come April this space is pulled-together, ready-to-go, and that I totally love it and feel comfortable with it. I want to be able to go in there and not worry about anything in the room except my new little one! I’m getting started on a mood board and hope to share it soon!