One of the things that every parent rushes to get ready for their first child is the nursery decor and despite having a whole house to renovate while I was pregnant, we of course were no exception. This room had the added bonus that underneath 4 layers of wallpaper that was standard for the house, the wall had been covered with a PVA adhesive layer which we (or rather, my very patient husband) painstakingly scraped off.
I wanted the nursery to be gender neutral, and to be a calm, bright, but relaxing place to be. It’s a small room with boxy dimensions, so needed some consideration to keep an airy feel. I chose a grey colour scheme, choosing Farrow & Ball’s classic Cornforth White for the walls, and added brightness through pops of yellow. Although Farrow & Ball aren’t normally my preference, I really like Cornforth White, (which is confusingly a pale grey) it works really well in our south facing room – not too cool and not too warm either.
Like many first time parents, we made good use of Ikea for our furniture. We originally had the Gulliver changing table set up which was great for ease of changing when Max was small, but as he’s got bigger I now change him in the bathroom and instead we’ve reclaimed the space for a Kallax storage cube. This is perfect as the yellow cubes hold a vast amount of stuff – we use one for all of Max’s bedding, and another just for general toys. It’s also another space to create a little vignette – I love these wooden elephants that we picked up from a stall at Winchester Christmas market, and the star circus light (super cheap from Not on the High St)
Despite Max being more of a toddler now, we’ve left his felt owl mobile in it’s original position above the changing table. This was one of my most loved nursery purchases – I’m a sucker for felt and it’s just so cute, I can’t bring myself to take it down! This was from BeeJanie via Etsy and was customised for our nursery colours.
We don’t have space for a wardrobe in this room, so we needed a good size chest of drawers that would fit in the alcove space – enter the classic Hemnes! I love the Hemnes range – we have it in our bedroom as well and it’s just perfect for storing loads of clothes in. It also has a large top which makes an ideal area to display Max’s books, as well as the vintage globe I picked up to show him the world! I love these rainbow bookends from M&S.
I also love the Ikea picture rails for creating little displays. I’m using them in Max’s room to display his favourite books and create a little themed display. We have a huge array of soft toy animals that I like to use as props in his favourite books – Dear Zoo is made all the more exciting by his soft toy friends! (Thanks to Elsie Pop Designs for the hand crocheted frog addition to our collection!) I’ll admit to being a bit of a perfectionist here, as I didn’t like the stained white wood finish to the picture rails, so I painted them properly matte white with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.
We also installed the Gro Company’s Gro-light, a light fixture that fits over your normal light fitting and means that the first click when you turn on your light switch gives the room a dim, night-light feel, rather than the full-blown daytime light. A second switch puts the normal light on. This is such a simple invention, but genius for parents who are in and out of their child’s room at night and don’t want to be putting on the ‘big’ light all the time.
On the whole I’m pleased with what we’ve achieved in the nursery. I’ve always felt it was an awkward space that potentially might feel quite cramped, but I find it a calm and relaxing place to be. I’m making the most of loving this space now, before the time comes when Max demands garish cartoon characters all over the walls!