Take a look at the original nursery makeover post
Well January is rolling on as grey and miserably as ever isn’t it? I hope you’re all surviving the first full week back into the daily routine?
I was thinking back to this time last year, and it struck me that we managed to decorate two rooms of our house, pretty much from scratch, within the space of the January slog… and while I was heavily pregnant (I mean my involvement was limited but still, I was there directing and pointing and shouting ‘over a bit, no other way, no back a bit’). Rather impressive really, considering my usual attachment to my duvet and a large mug of tea during the first month of the year. I guess the thought of a baby coming in the near future had us in a permanent state of organised fear (if we organise enough before their arrival, maybe it won’t be so scary when they actually arrive?). Of course, it didn’t help in the slightest and she turned our lives upside down regardless but hey, at least we had a good distraction in the lead up!
Anyway what I’m trying to say, is that January is actually a great time of the year for decorating and all things interior – tasks which don’t require too much of your brain power but yet keep you busy through the rainy weekends and relight that creative spark that might have been lost within a box of Celebrations over Christmas. With that in mind, I thought it would be a nice time to share some more pics of E’s nursery, as we’ve slowly been making a few changes to it since she officially ‘moved in’ around 5 months ago and started spending a lot more time in there. It’s one of my favourite rooms of the house, and it’s wonderfully bright, colourful and fun – the perfect antidote to grey January.
How we updated our nursery once our baby arrived
It’s hard to think back now to a time when we didn’t know who Evie was, whether she was a boy or a girl, what she would look like and who she would be. Her funny ways and cheeky personality are so much at the forefront of our lives now that I do sometimes wonder what on earth we did with ourselves before we had her to run after/talk about/look at/laugh with (the answer of course is that we had time to decorate two rooms of our house in one month, watch films from start to finish in one sitting and go places that didn’t need to be ‘baby friendly’ but I’ve entirely forgotten those luxuries!).
But there was a time, and we initially decorated our nursery without really knowing who would be sleeping in there in six months time. To see what the room looked like beforehand and how we transformed it originally, you can read my first post – a bright and colourful nursery reveal – which also includes a little vlog of our progress. I mentioned in that post that it did feel a little strange decorating before we’d met our baby and knew their likes/dislikes and personality, but at the same time the organisation freak within me really wanted it to be in some way completed before our baby arrived. And well, let’s just say that today, I’m very grateful for that – need to organise – part of my personality, because I have no doubt that we’d still be living with that magnolia box room full of stray belongings almost a year down the line if we hadn’t started when we did.
So despite getting the room ready ahead of time, our plan was always to revisit it once our little one arrived and add more personal touches and practical pieces as time went on, which is exactly what we’ve done. Until we decide we need to move E out of this room altogether, I think it’s one space in the house which will never really be finished. As she grows up, so will the room. Pictures might change, new toys will be added, newborn essentials swapped for toddler essentials, favourite colours added, and so on. An ever evolving room if you will.
With Evie now approaching 11 months, this is where the room is at currently and the updates we’ve made. I hope this can provide you some inspiration for adding personality to your own nursery, or child’s room, as their little personalities grow.
Pink and Gold
Choosing not to find out the gender of our baby meant that we originally kept the room fairly neutral, using grey and white as base colours and adding injections of bright shades which could suit either boy or girl. For the most part we’ve stuck with this colour scheme as Evie is such a bright soul, really suits yellows, reds and greens, has a colourful wardrobe and reaches for the brightly coloured toys every time. She’s not an overly girly girl (so far) but a few subtle girly touches made the room feel more suited to a little lady. Accents of pink and gold within ornaments, plant pots and picture frames allowed the space to feel less anonymous. I picked up the pink hangers from Ikea, and with a few of her pretty party dresses hanging up, a wee girl’s room was born.
New furniture (and hidden storage)
Towards the end of last year, we made a slightly bigger change to the room by switching some of the furniture, and something so simple as adding a new chair, really did bring a whole new dimension to the space.
We decided to swap the vintage rocking chair which was in this corner previously for this gorgeous wicker basket chair from the BundleBerry collection at QVC. The rocking chair had served a good purpose in those early days, when I’d go sit in that room during the day as a way to break the monotony of sofa to bed, bed to sofa. I’d rock Evie to sleep while singing nursery rhymes and when the sun shone in on us in the afternoons, it was a lovely little spot to snuggle in. When Evie began sleeping in her own room at 5/6 months, I’d spend the majority of my nights rocking away in that chair, feeding, soothing, singing, and dozing a little myself. But as she got older, the need for a nursing chair reduced. Now, I no longer breastfeed, we rarely feed her in the night unless she is truly unsettled, our days of rocking a tiny bundle to sleep all night long, are (for the most part) almost behind us (please don’t let me have jinxed that!!), and during the day there is ZERO chance of getting her to sit and snuggle with her parents when there is fun activities like sofa cruising, remote stealing, cupboard emptying and TV hijacking to enjoy!
It felt time for a change and so the rocking chair found a new home in the hall upstairs, and Evie got this lovely grown up basket chair, which I ADORE. We then added two of these lovely metal storage trunks (in a lovely bright yellow, but also available in blue, turquoise, black, red and white), also from the BundleBerry range, which fit that awkward space next to the door perfectly, and provided us with some great hidden storage. Storage being something we never seem to have enough of since having Evie – so.much.stuff. These trunks have alleviated some of that problem with the large one housing all of E’s old clothes which we’re not ready to part with (packed up in handy vacuum bags), and the smaller one holding all of her blankets (something you start to build quite a collection of with a newborn).
the Bundleberry range is the new homeware collection designed by Amanda Holden for QVC and I’d highly recommend a peek if you’re searching for quirky, modern and affordable pieces. From chairs, to side tables and even a drinks bar which I’ve definitely got my eye on, there’s lots to fall in love with.
Personalised Details and keepsakes
I have a slight obsession with anything personalised for Evie, and this is probably what makes up most of the new additions to the room. I simply can’t resist adding E initial items and anything with her name on. One of the first things I bought for the room after she was born was the ‘E.V.I.E’ wooden initials from Jojo Maman Bebe. Originally I’d planned to put them on her door but found I quite liked them on her shelf above her clothes instead so the gold lettering was then also bought from a local independent gift shop near us. Before she slept in the room, these were tied over the cot, but once her hands were in reach of that, we moved them onto the door.
We have also been very lucky to receive some beautiful personalised gifts from friends and family. My extremely talented and creative friend handmade the beautiful wooden initial blocks you can see dotted around the room, and another friend had the framed E made for us with Evie’s date of birth attached. Such special pieces that she can treasure.
Certain keepsakes have also made their way down the family ladder – the silver boot money bank was a christening gift given to me as a baby, and something I loved growing up so I wanted Evie to have it too, the Nursery Rhymes book is a beautiful copy given to us by Stu’s Dad and his wife – too pretty not to be on display – and the polar bear was the first teddy she was bought, from Stu’s Mum.
And generous gifts make up much of the character of the room – from her first pair of shoes to her first Barbie and her first pair of wellies (Hunter’s no less – what a lucky girl!).
The pictures and wall hangings we originally hung have remained the same, but of course we’ve added some family photographs and personal memories too. From her first scan photo to beyond, and we’ll keep adding along the way. It’s a small room with limited wall space so I’m a bit stuck for where to add more pictures but for now I’ll just keep filling the windowsill and top of the chest of drawers with frames. Now that there’s no longer a changing mat up there (we actually NEVER changed Evie on there), we’ve freed up a lot of space for display.
A Cosy Rug
And finally, we replaced the small sheepskin rug we had previously with this much bigger and much cosier colourful number. With the floor being laminate, we found the room got really cold in the night and were searching for ways to keep the heat in and make the space cosier. Having a rug which fills more of the floor space has been a great solution – not only do I enjoy the soft cosy feel on my feet when having to pace the room at night, but it’s helped massively in stopping the heat from disappearing through the floorboards. We picked this one up from Culture Vulture Direct and are really happy with it.
The Next Steps…
So what’s next for the room? Well as I mentioned I’m sure it will continue to evolve as Evie grows up, and perhaps we might change the colours, furnishings or pictures within this next year. The one change I’m hoping to make soon is switching the handles on her chest of drawers and side cabinet to make them a little more interesting. I’d like to swap them for something quirky and gold instead of the silver. I thought about gold bows, which I did find on Etsy but then worried that might be too girly and wavered. Ideally I’d love to find something animal related so if you’ve seen anything or know where to shop for affordable drawer knobs/pulls do let me know.
Following that, I’d love to revamp the chest of drawers completely with a fun paint job, and fixing up the gorgeous vintage wardrobe I found for her is also on my 2018 to-do list – although where it will fit in the room is another matter!
Also, if you’re wondering where all the toys/books are, and why it appears that we have nothing in this room that a baby might actually like to play with… it’s simply because this room is just far too small to double up as a playroom and although we sit on that chair and read occasionally, all of the playing is done downstairs. Rest assured that our living room has now been taken over with plastic, singing objects which we trip over constantly and small wooden dominos which we forever find under cushions on the sofa!
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Are you in the process of decorating/updating a nursery? I’d love to hear any other tips for allowing a room to grow with your child!