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Archive for the ‘nursery makeover’ Category

So I’m seven months late. My bad. Things have been crazy around here. But I thought I should hurry up and share how Big T’s nursery turned out before we move in a few weeks.

Gender neutral giraffe nursery

As you may remember, I decided to go with a giraffe theme. I love giraffes and I thought they’d be cute for a boy or a girl. Since we didn’t find out Big T was a boy until he was born, this theme–Along with a touch of chevron seemed perfect.

His room is sorta a nursery and craft room combo, but he doesn’t seem to mind sharing. When we move he will have his room all to himself, so I may ditch the chevron sewing machine cover, or incorporate it into my craft room somehow. We shall see.

DIY Alphabet wall tutorial

This alphabet wall is probably one of my favorite parts of his room. In a last-minute effort I got a few of my friends tohether and we decorated all of these. I’ve seen sets for sale on Etsy but they cost a pretty penny, and none of them had all of the elements I wanted– A button ‘O’, a “Disney” ‘W’ and other colors I like.

Here’s a quick tutorial:

1. Search for a set of plain wood letters on eBay. I bought this set on eBay.

2. Get a group of friends together, preferably crafty friends who have a lot of paints and skills. Shoutout to my friends Laura, Hope and Melissa for helping me with these! They did all the super cute ones. Lil’ J also gets a shoutout for decorating the ‘&’ and  ‘X.’ She loved helping.

3. Gather a variety of supplies: Scrapbook paper and modge podge, acrylic paints, even fabric, to decorate your letters to your choosing.

4. Lay out the letters and strategize what colors you want where. I made a plan for my favorite letters beforehand, then made sure not to put similar colors or patterns next to each other.

5. Paint, glue, and modge podge like mad!

6. After the paint dries, modge podge the top for an added layer of sealing.

7. Hang and enjoy! I used double-sided command tape to hang them on my wall.

Ty's-Nursery28-copy

Ty's-Nursery17-copyI’m not sure if I’m going to re-hang the alphabet wall betters in his room, or hang them in the play room once we move. I’m kinda leaning towards playroom as it seems more appropriate.

Since his nursery also doubled as a craft room I tried to keep the spaces separate but organized. His white bookshelves store a few books as well as his swaddling blankets (we seriously have over a dozen of these gorgeous muslin swaddling blankets by Aura Weavers and Aden and Anais), baby wraps, diapers, wipes, and a low basket of soft toys for Lil’ J to reach for her brother.

My mom gave me the baskets on top of the bookshelves. They had pink ties that I took off and sewed my own giraffe-print ties. I also spruced up the plain brown canvas baskets by hot gluing some chevron ribbon I sewed into ruffles. At the time I didn’t know Leechie was a boy, but I figured it wasn’t too girlie. I still find it cute.

Giraffe gender neutral nursery shelves

I also used the same ruffle ribbon technique on the green baskets on the diaper changer. I bought them from Ikea for Lil’ J’s room but wasn’t using them, so here they went! I keep the large one stocked with burp cloths, and the small ones hold his bow ties, and socks.

I used the same diaper changer and dresser I had used for his sister (she got a new big girl dresser) , but took off the pink drawer knobs and ordered some chevron and brown ones off Etsy. Over there I also changed out his light switch for a cute one I found on Etsy. And I hung a second piece of whimsical artwork I found by Nidhi. She is amazing! I couldn’t buy just one.

Gender neutral giraffe nursery diaper changer Ty's-Nursery12-copyTy's-Nursery21-copy

His funky crib bumpers are called Wonder Bumpers. I won them in a raffle I donated to. They are reversible and the other side has a pretty blue damask design, but I thought the brown was more versatile for the gender neutral nursery theme I was going for.

Gender neutral giraffe nursery crib bedding 2

His amazing minky blanket is custom courtesy of Rocker By Baby. We are not a very “punk-style” “skull enthusiast” family, but Amber always manages to make the perfect item for my kids. Lil’ J still loves her mix tape blanket. But OH I forgot how soft her minky is. I need to read up about keeping it this way. He sleeps on it every night. I bought the boppy cover to match.

The adorable safari quilt was handmade by Big T’s great-grami. And the two friendly giraffes are sound machines that his sister loves to play with.Ty's-Nursery01-copyTy's-Nursery20-copy

His giant friendly giraffe kinda replaced the idea of a mobile. One of my awesome readers emailed me when she noticed it was on sale for 50% off one day on Amazon. So instead of it being $100, it was only $50. It’s cute, and gives him something to stare at. Soon enough I’m sure he’ll be trying to ride on it.

Over his bed I also hung a very elaborate, very detailed vinyl tree that I finally finished taking the last sticker off of yesterday. I went the cheap route and got a $50 one off eBay that was split in like 100 different pieces that I had to puzzle together. If I get another I’ll definitely shell out the extra cash to get one that I can pull off in one or two pieces.

Also above his crib is the giraffe piece that inspired me to go with the giraffe-themed nursery. I love it!

Ty's-Nursery13-copyTy's-Nursery19-copy

And in the craft side area of the nursery I have a rocker chair I thought I’d sew a cover for, and for the foot stool, but instead I just draped with a crocheted chevron throw I ordered from a local woman. For the foot stool I just literally wrapped some extra fabric I had around the cushion it. It works!

Giraffe and chevron themed craft roomTy's-Nursery27-copyI wanted to tie in a bit of safari on my craft desk, and I fell in love with this elephant lamp. Originally I thought I’d do an elephant-themed nursery, so I’m glad I still used a bit of that in the end.

What do you think? Love it? I really do! My daughter’s was decked out with lots and lots of pink but I loved going the gender-neutral route here, and I think the whimsical giraffes really fit my sweet boy’s personality. I’m not sure how long we’ll keep it yellow and brown but I plan to set it up similar to this after the move. He’ll have more space though since it will no longer be a nursery/craft room combo. Perfect timing too cause my little big guy thinks he wants to start crawling.

Update: We’ve moved and our popular alphabet wall is now in the playroom.

DIY Wooden alphabet wall letters tutorial. #playroom #nursery #disney

Here’s where everything is from. If I’ve missed something you’re wondering about, let me know!

Chevron curtains/ iDecorateWithPillows Etsy
Vinyl tree/ eBay: Design4Wall
Giant giraffe/ Melissa and Doug via Amazon
Giraffe sound machines (big and little)/ Cloudb
Wonder Bumpers/ Go Mama Go Designs
Minky giraffe blanket/ Rocker Bye Baby
Minky booppy cover/ Rocker Bye Baby
Giraffe artwork: Savannah & Up and Away/ Nidhi Chanani Etsy
Custom white picture frames/ Ebay: Tabby7
Plain wood alphabet wall letters/ eBay: Anyshka_2
Elephant Lamp/ Carters via Amazon
Light switch cover/ ModernSwitch Etsy
Popup baskets/ Ebay (beige), Ikea (green) and Walmart (brown)
Diaper changer/ Craigslist
Drawer knobs/ Whimzicality
Polkadot burp cloths: HeartlandShop Etsy
Chevron throw blanket/ Handmade locally
Sewing machine cover/ YellowFarmHouse Etsy

Operation Nursery Makeover is in the works once again. It’s quite different trying to do a gender neutral theme though, and this kiddo is also bunking up with my craft space for now. I have a wall for my sewing machine, fabrics and whatnots, and the rest of the room is pretty much for baby. I bought new white bookshelves that would match the room and my plan is to use the space for organizational bins and space. Forgive my Instagram highlights for now. Pretty pictures to come once it’s all done!

If you couldn’t tell, I’m going for a whimsical giraffe nursery theme. We’re kinda in the beginning stages.

A friend gave me a bunch of newborn diapers her son already outgrew, so I emptied one of my wicker baskets I was using for fabric storage and turned it into diaper storage. We’re planning to cloth diaper again but I won’t say no to free disposables. I’ve also gathered all of the soft swaddle blankets I could find and organized them in a “blanket bin” ha! Same with towels for now. I’m planning to get a couple more bins to store stuff in, and I may decorate them with a giraffe decal of some sort.

Lil’ J donated some of her books for the shelves too (without me even asking, sweet thing) and I’ve got a new Sugar Sweet Baby wrap ready to go.

I’m SUPER excited to hang these art pieces I just ordered off Etsy. I’ve been eyeing these prints for months and I finally decided they’d be perfect in this room. Nidhi Chanani is a very talented artist in San Fransisco. I could look at her work for hours, and I’d bet Pixar would hire her in a hot second. She has several pieces featuring joyful safari animals so it was hard narrowing it down but ultimately I picked these two because I can’t stop smiling when I see them. Now I’m trying to find some cute but subtle frames to put them in, and a vinyl tree or tree branch to put on the wall beside them. The nursery makeover couldn’t begin until the toddler room makeover was underway. We moved Lil’ J out of her crib and straight into a twin canopy bed which she is loving. I did just add a rail to the side after she fell out twice. … Oops.

I also got her a new dresser which I’m in LOVE with. I found it at Ashley Furniture. I thought for sure it would be over my budget since I’d come across plain white dressers for a hefty price, but with delivery and everything, I got it for well under my budget, didn’t have to assemble it, and I even added the mirror to the order. The mirror hasn’t come yet, and funny enough Lil’ J has been asking where her mirror is, so I think she’ll be excited when that arrives in a couple weeks.

Lil’ J is getting really excited for the baby, but I can tell she’s also a little curious about how this is all going to work out with her. She’s breaking in some of the baby toys, and getting me to hold her every chance she gets… Which is getting harder and harder these days. She dozed off on my bump the other night and I thought it was the cutest thing. Especially since she really rarely falls asleep on me anymore. And finally, here are some take-home outfits in the works. I’m making two versions, one in case Leechie is a boy, and one if s/he is a girl. I’m also making a coordinating one for Lil’ J. Can’t wait to get it all done. Time is FLYING. You can make your guess if Leechie is a boy or girl in our free pool here. Winner gets $50!

I’m getting REALLY excited now that it’s down to the wire. I definitely have more things to do that time to do it. Not just as home but especially at work gearing up for my leave. But there’s something calming knowing that either way this baby is coming, and everything is going to be ok. I’m so excited to meet the little guy/gal, and lately I’m thinking I really have NO CLUE what the gender it’ll be. Before I thought I wouldn’t be surprised if it was a boy but now I’m starting to think it’s another girl. Who the heck knows! Less than 6 weeks til D-Day!

Earlier this year we bought a new high definition TV. I get free cable and free HDTV and my husband couldn’t stand not having a high definition TV to watch it on. So after months and month of begging and saving we invested in his new favorite toy.

But standing it it’s way was our old TV… Flat screen, HUGE tube in the back. Weighing over 200 pounds for sure. My husband was so eager to get rid of it, he asked me to put it up on Craigslist in the “free” section. I did. Bad idea.

All of three minutes later I got a swarm of calls from people, one after another asking if I “still had the TV” …Well yea, I just listed it. I’d get 3 new voicemails while I was one the phone with one person asking for directions to our house. Text messages as well. Quickly I realized this wasn’t the way to do it. I should have asked for at least $25 or something to weed people out.

One old man I talked to I could hardly understand because his country accent was so thick. He proceeded to tell me how he rem embed his first TV, and the experiences he’s had with his recent TVs. I pulled the phone away from my ear for a moment so my husband could hear part of his life story, and we muffled our laughs about the hilarity of this experience.

I took the listing off and made it a race between two people to come and get it. One guy lived down the street and got there long before the other left his house, so I called to let him know not to worry about it. He was upset… Apparently he wanted this TV for his mom who’s TV broke or something.

I’ve had my fair share of Craigslist experiences. It’s a great tool, when used correctly, but you can get burned too.

Once I was so excited to buy a set of leather couches only to see another couple walking away with them just as I arrived at this guys house… Who I drove an hour to meet and buy the couches from.

Other times I’ve scored big on an item I would have paid 5 times the price for at a retail store.

But never had I had an experience quite like one of my most recent ones… In my search for the perfect nursery dresser.

I was nearly nine months pregnant and eager to put all of Lil’ J’s clothes in them before she arrived. I just knew she was going to be early (joke was on me).

See, we don’t have much room in the nursery, so we didn’t want a changing table. Instead, I’d been looking for a nice-sized-dresser that has a wide top so it can also double as a changing table once I throw a cushion on top. Delta, the company that made the crib I own has a great one!

I started searching and found the perfect dresser. Delta Canton Espresso Dresser. Matched the crib perfectly, was new in box (so I could transport it in my car) and they were only asking $100.

I wrote to the lister and asked about the dresser. He still had it! But he said it was more “cheery” than “espresso” colored.

“That’s ok!!” I wrote back.

He was out of town until Sunday… That’s ok! I’m off Monday, great, we’ll buy it then.

Sunday I write.

No response.

I call. Leave a message.

No response.

I probably should give up at this point because he’s probaby some crazy Craigslist person anyway who was just disappointed after I said I would bring my husband along to pick up the dresser, who knows. But I didn’t stop.

I wrote again, and again. To my credit, I would have stopped but he still had the listing up, and every time I searched for another dresser that one would come up and I’d get SO excited for a split second… Then remember it was the jerk who keeps ignoring me.

Finally I gave it one last shot and wrote him this honest email.

“Hi Tim,

Me again! I noticed you still have the listing up for the dresser and every time I search craigslist it haunts me. I wanted to see if you want to get rid of it and be $100 richer while also making a preggo very very happy to finally have a dresser for her nursery. Please just let me know if it’s gone or whatever one way or another so I can stop torturing myself! Thanks! Jennifer”

No response. But a few days later the listing was deleted.

It was a sad ending… At that point, but I ended up just putting up a “Wanted” listing for what I was looking for and got a GREAT deal on exactly what I wanted!
I got this pretty white dresser that goes perfect in the nursery. But I turned it from that to this.

dresser knobs

In all of ten minutes, by switching out the drawer knobs with fancy snazzy ones from Kids Decor Inc.

dresser knobs

So the moral of the story… I’m a little crazy when it comes to getting what I want. I can kinda be a psycho. But sometimes when that means finding killer deals for my daughter, it’s worth it (a week ago I got a $155 swing for $50 and she LOVES it!).

Like what I did with a dresser it took me months to find? Jazzy up your kid’s room with adorable decor from Kids Decor Inc. Get 15% off your total order at the store using code: “BMM15”.

Everyone who comments on this post before October 1st at 11:59pm will be entered to win a $40 gift certificate to Kids Decor Inc. If you follow them on Facebook or Twitter, you’ll get an extra entry! Good luck!

So… The crib is up, mattress in the bed (still has the wrapper on it though), we have a dresser, I made the mobile, her name is hanging in adorable modge podge letters made my yours truly, and I have some beautiful wall art hanging above her crib with a cute vinyl saying once again created by *clears throat* this mama right here!!

What I'm Making Monday

I got a bed skirt to go under the queen bed that’s in the room, and I’m making some throw pillows that match the crib bedding that’s COMING TODAY! And curtain valances I made for the bed (tutorial for pillows coming soon… If I ever finish them).

I got some wall shelves for a corner of the room and I hung them up Friday, and I am refinishing a toy box I bought for $20 on Craigslist.

It’s safe to say the room is coming together from [wanna be] Man Cave to Nursery, it’s really transforming! I blogged about my husband’s love/hate relationship with my redecorating on my Parenting blog, so check that out too, comment if you can pretty please!

But there’s still some things I’m working on. For one, I’m still trying to figure out what to do with this high ledge in the room. It’s so high and there’s so much white between what’s below on the wall and up on the ledge (I’ve put a few teddy bears up there so far) that I feel like I need more up there.
I’m thinking of adding maybe some baskets, and big blocks or something… But I think I need something more drastic… I may even*gasp* paint the wall above the ledge/shelf as an accent wall. Maybe I’ll paint it green or yellow. We’re renting so I’m hesitant to paint but I really am not sure what else to do, but she said we can paint if we want (though me way have to paint it back). I also worry about getting up there… I’ll need a ladder or something and this could be dangerous in my condition.

Now on to something else I added to the nursery recently… I’m cheating a little on this week’s What I’m Making Monday cause while I MADE it… Sorta, some ordering was also involved.

I had seen posts and tweets about this company called Modern Bird Studios. They have a very–well–modern type of art that’s beautiful for your home.

When they contacted me and asked if I wanted to try it out I was soooo indecisive on what I wanted. I knew I wanted something personal, but something that would still go in the room. I worried their contrast look wouldn’t go with my whimsical theme… Boy was I wrong!

Since I like butterflies I asked if they could take this picture I took of a butterfly during a date with my hubby, and convert it into a piece of art. Originally we tried pink and brown. But once I figured out the colors of the nursery we decided to go with pink, green and white! They were so professional, polite and QUICK! And they sent me examples every step of the way!

They shipped them to me in the best protective shields. Really, there was no way I was gonna get a scratch on those things, it took me about 20 minutes to unwrap it all! But I was SO impressed when I got them out and set them side by side. Look how it turned out!So sturdy, beautiful, unique PLUS I took the photo! I think that adds a nice personal touch, knowing I took that picture and it turned into something so pretty and personal for the room, plus it all matches. But the nice thing is they also have pre-designed series you can see on their site, with beautiful pictures you can choose from with flowers, and other wildlife.

Then, wanting to add my own little flair to it I added these bows and hung them on the wall!It’s an illusion though. There’s a nice stand on the back of the picture so it’s actually hanging by that and a nail, then I added the ribbon and taped the bows to the wall (hehe, sneaky I know). I can’t wait to show you the nursery all together once I get it all finished. We’re getting there!

You can find out more about Modern Bird Studios by visiting their website, following @Modern_bird on twitter or “Liking” their Modern Bird Studios Facebook Page.

I went a totally different route with some of my photos, since I was going for bright, colorful, and “nurseryish” but look at these other GORGEOUS styles for your home!

Want a beautiful piece of art just for you!? Right now, you can BUY a work of art from Modern Bird studios and get 15% off until May 30th. Use code: “BABYMAKING”

And you can take your chances at WINNING a 12″X12″ canvas art from Modern Bird Studios! That’s a $215 VALUE!

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Visit Modern Bird Studios and in the comments of this post let me know your favorite color combo and what picture you’d get for your home.

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Be(come) a GFC follower of my blog
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*People who have won a giveaway from Modern Bird Studios before aren’t eligible to win again*
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Contest Ends May 23rd at 11:59pm
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I was given the canvas pictures for free for conducting this review. I was not compensated in any other way for writing the review, opinions expressed are mine alone.

In an effort to make myself more crafty, and also brag a little about some of my accomplishments, I thought it would be fun to make Monday my craft-related post day. It’ll also hopefully be a fun way to see other crafts out there that I haven’t heard of and that I’d like to maybe try (or buy) when others link up and share their skills.

As part 3 of my Operation Nursery Makeover, I made a wall decal for Spawnie’s Nursery.
Trading Phrases contacted me a couple of months ago about their beautiful wall vinyl designs. I checked out their nursery designs and found a perfect Wall Vinyl Decal for Spawnie’s room!
It says “With a Butterfly Kiss and a Ladybug Hug, Sleep Tight Little One, Like a Bug in a Rug.” I thought since her room is butterfly themed, and I call her my little bug it was PERFECT.
They were really nice and suggested I get color samples so I knew for sure it would match our room. I did as they suggested and narrowed it down to three greens and three pinks, they sent me a postcard with little stickers of the vinyl’s color and I picked my two favorite.
Shortly after I got the vinyl in the mail all rolled up nicely in a tube, and was ready to get to work! But I had a dilemma… Our walls are a little lumpy, “textured” I guess is the correct term. The nice people at Trading Phrases told me it would still work, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized I didn’t want to stick it directly on my wall. I remembered a project I did once for my living room and got an idea!
First, I bought some wood at Lowe’s, I bought a big piece that was 4 feet long, by 2 feet wide, and got it cut down to 17in wide (the size of the vinyl). It wasn’t thick… About 1/4 of an inch.
I got home and painted it with two coats of brown, and a coat of sealant. You can get sealant at any craft store, and it’s not too expensive… about $5 for a bottle that should last awhile.
I made sure to get the sides and everything real good, and then I waited for it to dry.
Now it’s time to get the vinyl! … See where I’m going with this? One thing I like about Trading Phrases is they sent two pieces of “practice vinyl” with smaller phrases so I could get the hang of how to peel the papers and stuff before I did it for real… Good idea cause reading the instructions were a little confusing at first, but after I tried it a couple of times on the bottom of the my door for practice, I got the hang of it.
Now it was time to lay it out on the wood. Since mine came in two parts I took some time to mark where I wanted each piece to start and stop. Since the wood was practically the perfect size I had to make sure no words were falling off the edge.
I got it lined up and put down the first part.
Then the second part! And then covered both with another layer of sealant. I noticed there was some blank space in the bottom corner of the wood, and normally on the wall I think it would look fine, but since it was plain brown there I decided to spruce it up a little with some paper butterflies I had left over from the butterfly mobile I made. Then… TADA!!!!
What do you think? See, now the whole point of this meme thing is to get encouragement so don’t let me down!
I’m really happy with how it all turned out, and the best part is I can take it with me when we move!
If you DO put it on the wall, it’s way easy to take off just by peeling, or adding a little heat (with something like a blow dryer) and peeling.
Want to try this craft yourself? Trading Phrases has offered to donate this wall decal to one of my readers!! It’ll come in black 24in X 11in, it’s over a $39 value! And if you want to add it to a plaque, now you know how!! Want to get to know Trading Phrases better? They’re @TradingPhrases on twitter and they have a Facebook Fan Page.

Hi! I’m Jennifer Borget

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I'm a part-time journalist, full-time wife and mother striving to make the world a better place and inspiring others to do the same. This is the space where I share my journey in making the most of every day.

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