More than a year ago, I started getting really excited about designing the nursery. I think my discovery of Ohdeedoh and Inhabitots fueled my designing-for-baby fire. I started seeing fabulous, creative nurseries and children's rooms featured on Ohdeedoh and eco-friendly, modern designs in furniture, clothing, toys, and other products on both Ohdeedoh and Inhabitots.
I already knew then that I wanted to create a gender-neutral space for baby that wasn't pastel in color, but I also did not want a nursery-in-a-bag design purchased from a department store or Babies-R-Us. I'm still sticking with this plan and I'm thinking that I don't want to know the sex of my child until after he or she is born. I may change my mind on this one, but I know I want to create a space that is not overtly boy or girl. If I have a girl and she decides that pink is her favorite color, we will then paint the walls, furniture, etc... pink. And if it is a boy and he wants pink I have no problem with him having a pink room.
I want to design a colorful, playful, unique space for my baby that will take him or her into toddlerhood and maybe even to preschool and beyond. Seeing all of the great rooms and products on Ohdeedoh and Inhabitots had provided me with a lot of inspiration and shown me that creating the nursery of my dreams is possible.
I quickly became fixated on creating a woodland-themed nursery, a theme that is very popular right now. I love animals for the nursery, and I love the idea of using animals that can actually be seen (or that at least exist) in my part of the world. For example, squirrels, owls, songbirds, foxes, rabbits, etc...
While browsing through the baby items on Etsy, I found this beautiful bird quilt at Tanneicasey that was made using calico fabrics from the 1970's (the opening photo is a close-up of the quilt). It is colorful, features some woodland critters, and it was made using vintage fabrics, which makes it an eco-friendly option. I bought it immediately, and it has guided the design for the nursery: I will combine the woodland theme with a primary and secondary color scheme that incorporates vintage calico/patchwork fabrics circa the 1960's and 1970's.
Etsy, Ebay, and local thrift/antique stores have provided me with an ever-expanding collection of items to use in the nursery, including vintage fabric, vintage framed crewel artwork and kits, and other accessories.
Someone with sewing skills will have to help me turn these vintage fabrics into pillows, curtains, floor cushions, etc...
I outbid a couple of people on Ebay for this cutie. I can't remember how much I bid, but I know it was under $15. It is a vintage sew-and-stuff pillow. Maybe with a little guidance I can sew and stuff it myself. It is not really a woodland creature, but I love cats and the baby will have to interact with the cat that is roaming our house.
How cute is this train? The fabrics are perfect. Each section of the train snaps together to the next, so this can even become a toy for baby later. I think I got this on Ebay for about $10.
I could not resist this colorful afghan at less than $4 at the thrift store. It is in good condition and doesn't have that terrible, musty smell a lot of linens found in thrift stores have.
As you can see, I went a little crazy with the vintage crewel and embroidery. Three of them are kits, and I cannot do needlework to save my life. My mom and aunt are both good at cross-stitching (my aunt can knit as well), so hopefully they will contribute their skills. I am at least going to attempt to learn before it is all said and done.
I picked up this chest of drawers along with a matching dresser at a thrift store a few years ago for only $75. They were in our bedroom until last year. I plan on stripping the paint (could be lead in there) and refinishing them with white, environmentally-friendly paint. I don't know if I will paint them entirely white or maintain the brown, woodlike finish on the tops and legs. I've even considered encasing everything but the drawers in brown. The dresser will also serve as the baby's changing table.
Now I just have to clean out that room so I can move ahead with the design.