Design by Estee Stanley via Remodelista
Here we go! Let’s show you around this joint!
I’m starting with the kids’ bedroom. Sorry if you think that’s lame. But I’m hoping this room will undergo some big changes soon (before Christmas) so I’m starting here. Maybe starting at the front door would make more sense… Meh. Whatever.
Here’s how I’m gonna’ do this: show you the room first, then give you an idea of what I am doing, plan to do or dream of doing “some day”. So dream with me, eh?
As you may remember from my planning, there will be two kids’ bedrooms - a boys’ room and a girl’s room. But after an emotional summer for my kids, and a much later than planned transition into our house, we decided to keep M and L together for now. I think the plan is to have them in their own rooms by Christmas. ish. (I’ve learned that in any year a new baby is born you need to add a lot of “ish” to your timeline.)
The plan long-term is to have two single beds in there for the two boys. When Baby E moves in, though, he’ll obviously have his crib for a while.
Like most of the rooms, this room has a big beautiful big window, which I love (and wouldn’t trade). But it has it comes with its challenges. For example, bunk beds would cover part of the window if we tried to squeeze them in there. Thus, the low single beds.
The window also obviously lets in tons of great light, which I love. But this is not what you’re going for in the napping stage of life with Little People. So this room is the only one that had its window treatment up before we moved in. I used Jenny’s (second) tutorial for making a roman shade out of mini blinds.
I was scared of trying it, but it ended up not being too hard. It helped that I decided to do an outside mount roman shade (for style, and for light-blocking purposes). This reduced the need for straight sewing and exact measuring - my two biggest weaknesses with sewing. The shade works reasonably well, but the window is really big (5 feet across) and the cheapy blinds I got from Walmart aren’t super strong/well made. I used a heavy material (a drop cloth, actually), and so it’s a little clunky to pull the blind up. But it works, and I’m happy with it. I still plan to create a simple matching pelmet box over where the blind is mounted, which will finish it off nicely, I think.
Now, I’ve just shown you four pictures of the same wall. You know why?
Bam! Here’s the other wall. Thrilling, I know.
Yes, this is a small room. But, a.) I like small rooms for kids because I want to keep the room mostly for sleeping and dressing (and maybe I’m a really mean mom, perhaps?), and b.) This room has THIS:
That, right there, is a walk-in closet in my kids’ room. It goes way back and has a big bank of built-in shelves too. It wasn’t on my radar for what I wanted in a house, but the floor plan we worked from had it already… and why would you argue with that? So because of the big closet it means that beds are all you really need in the bedroom area, which is pretty nice.
This will be the boys’ room (likely), and the look will be sort of “preppy hunting lodge”. (You know, cuz’ THAT’s a thing.) I’m going for a bit of a Ralph Lauren/Tommy Smythe vibe with the decorating.
- I have some very cool art to hang, and I can’t wait to show you soon.
- Some swing-arm sconces (plug in) are slated to go on either side of the window.
- I have an antique dresser (not the one pictured in the mood board above, but rather a much-less-precious one). I’ve painted the dresser a dark green and my dad put in metal drawer slides. I just have to line the drawers and decide whether I’m spray painting the hardware or not, and it should be ready to go.
- I’m going to upholster those headboards (post to follow). I splurged and went with that great navy plaid that I wanted.
- I bought some great grey ticking stripe sheets sets at Target (you can see it on my son’s bed, right), but need to sew a bit more bedding (throw pillow covers and a duvet cover, which is nearly done). I’m also hunting for some good wool blankets, preferably tartan.
- I have some shelves to go up the wall beside the door to hold storybooks (similar to the picture ledges I used in our condo nursery).
- Beyond that it’s all little accessories and organization.
- For this room I don’t have much in the way of long-term plans. It’s a pretty straight-forward little box. And long-term changes will depend on the preferences and needs of the boys living there. I would, however, like to change the light fixture at one point. For now it’s a plain little flush mount. But no rush on that one.
In my goal to establish the kids’ rooms before Baby #3 arrives, I’ve been collecting some bits and pieces along the way. Here are a few of the goodies:
For Little L:
(Please take a moment and appreciate the background carpet and wallpaper in this picture. :) That’s the old house on the farm that we store stuff in.)
I’ve hoped and dreamed of an upholstered French headboard for-EVER. So the fact that this sweet little one came up for sale on UsedRegina right when we were ready for it, for a good price, from the sweetest lady I’ve ever met buying used stuff? Golden. So excited for this beauty. It’ll get a coat of warm white spray paint, and some upholstery.
I’ve already got the fabric I’ll use to upholster the headboard - a pretty floral from Waverly.
And more fabric! The key to the whole room - yellow polka dot for the drapes. L loves polka dots. Also, I love hearing her say “polka dot”. (Or should I say “poh-ta dot”?)
Literally as I wrote the post on art for the kids, I purchased these botanicals off Etsy, from a great little shop called Early Bird Sale. They arrived super fast and are in immaculate condition. I think they’re perfect, and just hope I can find the right frames…
I got this dresser for a steal, and it’s totally the style I was looking for. But to get it for the price I did, I had to commit to buying it before I saw it in person, since the seller brought it in from out of town. Truth be told I’m not sure the drawers are ready for everyday use. I’ll do what I can and get my dad to look at them.
If it does go in L’s room it’ll be painted either a creamy white, or perhaps a paler hue of the sea foamy/minty colour from the headboard fabric. AND I have the sweetest little glass knobs that I bought on clearance from Anthropologie ages ago that will be perfect.
If it doesn’t go in L’s room I have a few other ideas of places throughout the house were it could go as a little bureau/console-type deal. We’ll see. And if it doesn’t go in L’s room I have a crazy idea that I’ll have to mull over for a while… Maybe this spindled etagere?
I’m thinking it could be sweet painted yellow or mint green (or maybe white) with baskets on the lower shelves for folded clothes (the closet in the room is a good size, so I wouldn’t need a ton), and the upper shelves for books and display? It could be super cute. And my little L could totally get her inner stylist going at an early age. OR it could be a major magnet for clutter and knick-knacks and drive me crazy. Plus, I don’t even own this piece. It’s sitting over at the old house, and I’d have to check with Grandma… but it may be an option.
And for the Boys:
This dresser. It’s so good. Sturdy old antique with a lovely wood tone, and just right lines. I’ve already detached the mirror since that makes it too feminine, I think, and because this will sit beneath their window. It needs a bit of polish on the edges, but I’m debating - maybe I should keep the patina, since two little boys are bound to rough it up some more? Hmmm… maybe this dresser won’t last long in their room, now that I think about it… ;)
A CHANGE PAD?
I snagged this large shallow basket from Urban Barn on clearance. I plan on making a little pillow to put inside and I’ll use it atop the dresser for a change pad. Can you see it? No? Trust me. I’m 94% sure it’ll be awesome. ;)
THE BEST NIGHTLIGHT EVER
This globe is something we’ve had for months now, but I don’t think I’ve shared it on the blog. I’ve wanted a globe with a light in it for ages. Mostly because of my warm-fuzzy love of the movie While You Were Sleeping. I had been scouring ebay and Etsy for illuminated globes for a while, but never bought one because I wasn’t down for paying 100+ dollars plus shipping. Finally on a whim I checked UsedRegina, and lo and behold - this perfect one for $15! Wahoo!
It gives the just-right glow to be a nightlight, but can be displayed prominently too.
Also, Little M loves it, and has a remarkable ability to remember the names and locations of countries, which is fun. Though I’ll need to purchase a current map soon so that he’s not learning about Burma and the USSR.
I’ve mentioned this painting before. It’s a vintage paint-by-numbers. I love the colours and I love the kitsch. And it was cheap, which is also what I wanted. It’ll hopefully be a collection of vintage-vibe art in the boys’ room.
And that’s what I’ve got so far! I’m so excited to bring everything all together… One day.
Dreaming of Little L’s room gets me very excited. It’s going to be so darn pretty.
Cue swelling happy music: I did manage to snag the little French headboard I’d been eyeing, so I plan to paint it white and upholster it with some DIY creativity.
Unfortunately I snoozed too long on that curvy little dresser in the inspiration board above. I found it on Kjiji, I paused, and it sold. Too bad, because it has great brass casters and the cutest little keyholes on the drawers. But I’ll hunt down something like it: antique-y, sturdy, but not too precious, because I want to paint it a yellowy cream colour.
I plan on buying an affordable task lamp for her bedside, and I’ll likely spray paint it yellow. I love the way the utilitarian lamps juxtapose with the girly beds in these inspiration pictures.
I’ll likely include a pair of lamps on top of the dresser in the future (when the surface no longer needs to be a change table) too. For those, I’ll look for a used pair that I’ll spray paint, but may buy new if I find the right colour for the right price. I may actually want something a little more modern looking than the pair in the inspiration board to keep things fresh and young. And while we’re on the subject of lighting, down the road I’ll be keeping my eyes open for a sweet chandelier to replace the overhead fixture in her room.
The goal is to make the room sunny but not in-your-face, sweet but not frilly, country but not cliche. And, you know, make a room my little girl loves being in. :)
Plans are coming together for the boys’ room.
It’s sort of got a preppy hunting lodge man cave thing going on.
(For someone who mocks TV designers’ cheesy theme titles for their designs, I sure do come up with my own gems. Oh well. At least I didn’t use the words “zen” or “glam”. Anyways… back to the mini-man-cave)
It’s got a decidedly manly vibe that I think is fun and cool. After all, Little M is three going on thirty. (Or some days, more like sixty). I’m thinking a little bit Ralph Lauren and a little bit Tommy Smythe and a little bit farmhouse. Some wood, some plaid, some stripes, perhaps some caramel leather…
I am completely in love with the dresser I scored on UsedRegina. It’s a lovely wood tone and has great hardware, so I’m keeping it as-is, just removing the mirror it came with, polishing it a bit, and lining the drawers.
I plan on sewing the roman shade (Gulp! Wish me luck!) out of a drop cloth for some nice rough texture (and cheapness), and maybe adding some ribbon trim.
I’m waiting for fabric samples in the mail, so I’m not entirely sure if I’ll go with the fabric on the mood board for the headboard - though I do love it. There’s another fabric that is more of a tartan (top left) that is cheaper. But I just worry that plaid upholstery is too 1992 for me! And I found some great plaid comforters at HomeSense, which, if I decide to get them I may opt for a more subdued ticking stripe on the headboard. But right now I kind of want to put ticking stripe EVERYWHERE in this house, so I’m trying to strategize the best places to put it.
So though there are many more decisions to make, I really feel like I’ve got the vision nailed down, and that’s exciting. And I think I could love this room for a long time. (Music to my husband’s ears.) And my boys could live in it for a long time without outgrowing it. But not til you’re 30 boys. Sorry.
As I’ve let the design plans for the kids’ rooms simmer in my brain, I’ve been surfing Etsy for art that might work for their rooms. I’ll have to hit up some used book stores and thrift stores before ordering anything online, since much of what I’m looking at is vintage bookplates and posters. I like the vintage route for art since it is affordable, beautiful, unique, and adds so much character.
For L’s room I already have the Month by Month prints from Sarah Jane Studios. I bought the little notecards long before I even had kids because I loved them so much. So I’ll definitely be putting these in her room somewhere.
I also want to play with florals in her room - because where else can you do this with abandon than in a little girl’s room? I often call her “Sweet Pea” so I’ve been on the hunt for vintage seed packets or books or illustrations of sweet peas, like this one:
Or perhaps a botanical print like this one:
And wouldn’t those yellow sweet peas look lovely paired with these little yellow butterflies?
(Both prints from Early Bird Sale)
She also adores animals, and has a particular affinity for puppies (one of her first words) so I’ve been searching out dog breed illustrations like these:
For the boys’ room vintage maps are such an easy go-to for art. They’re interesting, beautiful, educational, and still pretty neutral.
M has some ideas of his own, though. He’d really like some superhero pictures in his room. And though he’s never watched anything Avengers-related, he’s obsessed with them and has a few toys and colouring books with them. I kind of cringe at the thought of something character based being featured, but this minimalistic poster is pretty cool:
Though I’m not sure he’d find that sufficient. Another route I’ve considered is framing vintage comic books. (Though it’s quite the hunt finding one that looks cool, features his favourite characters, yet is without anything scary or any scantily clad women on it! Sheesh.)
One item I’m totally kicking myself over not purchasing is this 1921 Canadian flag. My kids really like flags, and they might find it cool that pre-1960’s our Canadian flag was actually different. This flag is linen, it’s cool, it’s patriotic, it’s historical, it’s beautiful - what a treasure! But I waited, and it sold, and I can’t find anything like it online (for a decent price). Darn. Seriously kicking myself.
This old bookplate is pretty cool, but given its age it’s missing a lot of provinces and actually has the old Saskatchewan flag, which may annoy M or confuse my kids as they learn. So I’m not sold on it. And really I just want that old linen flag.
I obviously won’t be getting all of this, but the hunting sure is fun…. We’ll see what I end up with!
I mentioned awhile ago that I’ve been dreaming of the design schemes for the bedrooms in the new house. For the most part I’m trying to reign myself in when it comes to decorating plans. I know that:
A. You should live in a house first. Let it inspire your direction for colours, furniture placement, etc.
B. “Brand new house.” Unfortunately those words don’t leave piles of extra cash lying around for decorating purchases.
C. Shortly after our move-in we will be welcoming Baby #3. I don’t know about you, but having a newborn eliminates me from productivity at anything for roughly 6 months minimum. (Hint: Expect blogging hiatus.)
But it’s also really hard not to get all excited. And a part of me would really like to establish some “done-ness” in the kids’ rooms over the summer so that it really feels like home for them. (And I discovered that this actually matters to my son, who has lamented how much he misses his old room in the condo the entire time we’ve had our temporary stay at The Pink House.)
So with some consultation (and a few veto decisions on my part. Sorry, kiddos), we’ve come up with the colour directions for their rooms.
I want it to feel like a yellow room without screaming YELLOW! This is hard to do. The trick to success with yellow (and red, in my opinion): no yellow walls, just accents of yellow. Keep the walls neutral. So the yellow polka dot fabric will be the drapes - providing the major sense that the room is yellow. It’s a nice buttery soft yellow, which is hard to find (most yellows I found were a more lemony hue or more golden.) L also asked for “boo and geen” in her room, so the warm aqua blue background on the floral with green, yellow and pink in the flowers is a lovely pairing and provides the vintage feel I want. I’m thinking the floral may end up as a headboard. With two patterns as bold as this being featured in large areas any other fabrics will likely be more neutral - yellow, cream or white solids, or small scale stripes or gingham.
I knew from the start I wanted yellow - it’s sort of my colour for Little L. Her name means “light”, and her disposition is usually so cheerful and humourous that yellow’s always been the colour I associate with her.
Some other gorgeous yellow fabrics I considered (but eliminated, largely due to cost)…
Isn’t this one so incredibly beautiful, yet understated? I’m still tempted to use it somewhere else in the house, but at $30/yard I’m not sure I can do it.
I knew I wanted a floral and that I wanted yellow. So this one also tempted me.
I reeeally love this large scale floral. It has the prettiness of a floral, but a not-too-girly colour scheme. And it pairs well with the polka dot. But it was $10 more than the floral I chose and had a more limited palette to work with.
For the Boy room M and I were in definite agreement that the main colour would be his favourite, “dark blue”. Navy is my go-to colour, and is a colour I’ve always associated with M. (OK. I realize I sound crazy colour coding my children. It’s how my brain works. Anyone else know what I’m talking about?!) But we aren’t exactly in agreement on the accent colour. He also loves orange, but I felt it would turn the room too modern, and good orange fabrics are hard to find. He also offered red for consideration - which I’m still open to - but didn’t want the room to turn too nautical (which I feel red might do). My sister-in-law recently decorated my sweet little nephew’s room with a nautical feel and I LOVE it (I’d love to show you some time), so I don’t want to be too copycat. Plus I’m really liking the way this deep spruce green looks in the mix. And I may or may not have already decided that green is the next baby’s favourite colour. ;)
M loves plaid (I find it so funny that a 3.5 year old has a favourite pattern) and I want a mix of fairly low key (not too graphic) patterns - stripes, plaids, herringbone, etc. Sort of what you’d see with mens’ suits. That navy ticking will likely be the roman shade and I would love to see that navy and white plaid on a headboard. We’ll see.
So that’s where I’m headed! Whaddya’ think? Anyone else colour-code their children? Man, that makes me sound super type-A and controlling. Really, I’m not. I’m not! At least 57% of the time. ;)