When we wrote in A Millennial Manifesto, “Don’t hold back your creative side for fear of rejection or ridicule. Create something!” we didn’t anticipate taking these words to heart when it came to decorating a nursery. Spoiler alert: we did.
Sure, we could have made a pre-packaged, manufactured, stereotypical room for our baby. But instead, we embraced this opportunity to express our creative side.
Along the way, we had our doubts about our vision, but we stuck with it and ended up with a room we are proud of.
The nursery was previously the second bedroom in our little townhome. We used the space sparingly to store hand-me-down furniture, display our diplomas and keep Declan’s clothes someplace other than Erica’s closet.
To put it frankly, the room was bare and boring.
The focal wall was the first thing we attacked.
We definitely knew we wanted to paint one wall and leave the rest white – this would leave the room bright and airy and we wouldn’t have as much to paint over when we moved out. Erica found this great idea on one of her favorite blogs, A Beautiful Mess, and we adapted it for our baby’s nursery by adding a pop of orange color.
Next, we furnished the room with light wood furniture from IKEA. The light wood allowed us to mix and match different pieces from IKEA and still keep the room cohesive. We love the simplicity of both IKEA’s style and ease of assembly (not all baby items are as easy to put together). Trust us folks, IKEA is the way to go.
To fill in the wall space, we collected a variety of decor pieces from Marshalls, Etsy, Darby Smart, and even made some homemade ones. We didn’t go for a specific theme; we went with what connected with us.
For example, the two lyric posters are from songs with special meanings to us. The moose head has no special meaning. We just thought it was fun.
While in Ireland last summer, we bought postcards from the Aran Islands to use in the nursery. At the time, we had no idea how they would fit in (at the time, we weren’t even pregnant!) but we knew we wanted to incorporate a bit of Ireland without using cliche shamrocks.
One final piece of advice: don’t be afraid to stand up for your vision. You might get questions, you might get blank stares. But people do want to help make the nursery special, so providing them with the right direction is key. For us, it meant requesting neutrals (whites and creams) so we could supply the accents we wanted.
If you’re interested in what we used to fill the space, here are all the items from the nursery:
IKEA SNIGLAR crib
IKEA GULLIVER changing table
IKEA STUVA wardrobe
IKEA MALM dresser
Gold side table from Target two years ago
Sheepish Sheets from Land of Nod
Orange quilt from our old roommate/best friend Karin
Mobile from IKEA
Play mat from IKEA
Lyric prints from Etsy
Moose head from Darby Smart (we spray painted it gold)
Lanterns from our wedding
Hampers from Home Goods
Storage containers from Home Goods and Marshalls
Celtic postcards from Aran Islands
Cross stitched alphabet made by our friend Kelly