I feel like it was forever ago that Penny’s nursery was my office/our guest room. If you’d like a reminder of what her room looked like before we found out we were pregnant, you can see a very “real life” version of the space here. There was no styling and definitely horrible lighting in those photos but they will show you what we started with.
Designing Penn’y nursery was so special, obviously! This was my first baby/children’s space that I have worked on and I enjoyed every bit of it. There’s something about children’s spaces that are unlike adult spaces - there are more opportunities to be a little more carefree and whimsical. I had especially enjoyed layering in some family heirlooms that offered just enough sweetness.
Let’s dive in, shall we?
Like any design project, I approached this space by identifying what the overall vibe was going to be — light and bright walls, not super girly or “baby”-like and definitely just enough whimsy to lend an adventurous and playful side. So I put together these ideas on an inspiration board to make sure everything was looking cohesive and the way I wanted it to be. You can review the inspiration board in this post here.
all photography by Janelle Carmela Photography
Penny’s room is a pretty good size for a nursery. There’s enough space for her furniture to fit without it feeling too crowded, but like any nursery you have to allow space for a glider/chair likely paired with some sort of footstool. So if you’re working with a smaller space, it’s best to determine where the glider and footstool will best fit first since they may take up the most space in the room.
We love her glider. It’s so comfortable and perfect for lots of snuggles, reading, feedings, you name it! If I’m being honest, I had strong feelings about the style of the glider. There are many not so stylish gliders out there and I knew I wanted something that wasn’t bulky and looked like it could be used in a space that wasn’t a nursery for when our needs change in years to come. We have it in the performance basketweave natural material/color-way and so far so good! When working with children’s spaces, you really want to opt for upholstery that is durable in ideally some sort of performance grade. The natural color is not too white nor too yellowy and it has the prettiest little shimmery flecks in it. The texture is an added bonus that will help it wear well over time.
The little side table that I paired it with was used at my childhood home and I think it might actually be my grandparent’s. It has scuffs and some solid signs of wear but I think it adds some character. : ) And the footstool was Pete’s grandparent’s which I reupholstered and painted…and by reupholstered, I stapled some new fabric over the existing fabric. That counts, right?
I love that we were able to make use of these older pieces not only because of where they came from but because they offer the right amount of “soul” when mixed with some of these newer, more modern pieces like the glider and her bookcase. Side note - I can’t seem to find the link to her bookcase. I got it from Land of Nod which is now Crate & Kids…maybe they just discontinued it? Hmm….
The dresser used to be mine from a few years back. I scored this old and somewhat rickety beauty on good ol’ Craigslist years ago for I think $25. I painted it (back when I first got it) and added new hardware once I decided we’d use it for Penny’s room. I love that this piece also plays into the old mixed with new theme.
We scooped up the round mirror and rug at HomeSense on a total whim and I am equally obsessed with both of them. The mirror is by Uttermost which I can’t seem to find online but the area rug is by Loloi and it’s the Zharah style in the raspberry/taupe color-way. I found it here on rugsdirect.com.
God, I love that dresser. I love the older than old casters, the drawers that don’t quite close all the way and the squeaky noise they make. My best piece of advice when working with older pieces of furniture is to embrace the imperfections. A squeak or scuff is not the end of the world.
It was important for me to create easy storage solutions since our apartment is tiny and we all know babies come with a few things. ; )
I found this black shelf/hook unit on Facebook Marketplace for $20. I gave it a fresh coat of matte black spray paint and called it day. We hang things like her hats, her bath towel, hoodies that she wears when we go out, etc. This makes it super easy to keep things we regularly use, easily accessible.
I styled her bookcase with things like art that used to be in my office, stuffed animals and hand-knit booties that were gifted to her. The sweetest.
Her crib is the Stokke Sleepi Mini and we love it! Penny is just two months old and is already getting a bit big for it so we’ll be getting the extension kit soon, which will make it a regular sized crib. I think I’ve been saying we’re getting the extension kit for at least 2 weeks now but I’ll admit it, I’m definitely in denial that my baby is growing. I thought we’d be able to get more time out of the mini size but P was born long and is already over 23”! Homegirl did not get the height from her mama, that’s for sure.
The mini size is great though and because we have such a small apartment (640 square feet to be exact!), we’ve used her crib from the start. I did not use a separate bassinet for our bedroom because the mini crib is small enough to fit in our room and because it’s on wheels, we can easily move it around and through the doorways. It’s pretty freakin’ sweet. I’d highly recommend it for folks that have smaller apartments.
I created a mini gallery wall on the wall above where her crib will go (she’s still in our room and I can’t bring myself to move her to her own room just yet…I totally thought I would not be like that either!!!). I used inexpensive art from Jenny’s Print Shop (my fav source for downloadable art) and objects that we thrifted/found on our babymoon in Bermuda. Wow, that feels like a lifetime ago…
Well, that’s a wrap on Penny’s nursery! I love this little room so much and it’s by far the most finished and well thought out space in our apartment which makes me laugh. Hah! We’ve lived in our place for almost 5 years and while most people would say our apartment is quite put together, it’s kind of far from that in my eyes. Maybe because the home of a designer/decorator is never really “done”. ; )
If you’re interested in seeing more our of life with baby in tow, be sure to head on over to my Instagram where I share how I keep our home organized and functional with all of the new baby stuff. It’s not easy but it’s fun to have all of these new mini projects to work on as we transition things in, out and around our digs.
Anyway, I’d love to hear from you so please drop any comments or questions below and I’ll be sure to follow up!
Thanks for reading!