Cora’s cute and quirky nursery

I’m slowly learning that time is now very different. BC [Before Cora], it would take me say, 45 minutes to tidy the apartment and get myself ready before heading out the door. Now? Multiply that by 4 and you’re starting to get close. Between feeding, changing, predicting how much to bring with me, getting myself ready, getting Cora ready, feeding Cora again, dealing with explosive situations and then actually leaving the apartment, I’m glad I have very few scheduled things these days. One thing I have been hoping to do, you know, when I have a spare minute [😑], was to properly photograph the nursery. Though it’s not entirely finished, it’s been at this stage since the week before Cora was born. So yeah. Getting things done nowadays takes time. Even if it’s just taking photos. Baby steps?

Our spare bedroom is quite small and I didn’t want to leave anything to chance, so I did what I quite embarrassingly love doing – I measured everything and made a little mock-up of the room on Google SketchUp. Here’s the design I decided on a couple of months ago … 

Before I bought anything or decided on a design detail, I did a mock-up of it in the space. I imported Pantone’s ‘Lunar Rock’ paint swatch before committing to it, drafted a combination of fancy and plain knobs for the nursery dresser before buying them, did up a rough placement of artwork and shelves before hanging them, decided whether or not a secondhand chair would fit [which, as you can see, none have just yet], what kind of rug would look the best, what would be the best placement for the crib – everything. Everything was decided on in SketchUp. I find SketchUp so helpful for making decisions digitally so you don’t have to make a disaster in real life. It was only today that I looked back at my plans and realised how close the room is to what I had hoped. I’m quite proud of that!

The room felt a bit stale when I was finished so I added a string of Christmas lights up and over the curtain rod to help make the room feel warmer and … funner. I really love Christmas lights and used to have them hanging up in my bedroom as a teenager throughout the year. When I first switched them on  in the nursery for Robert, he was so surprised by them and really impressed [thanks to the dark curtains, you can’t really see them when they’re off]. 

There are a few major pieces I have still yet to get. One being a proper bin [I’m currently putting dirty diapers into a plastic bag that hangs beautifully off one of the knobs on the dresser] and the other being a chair of sorts for the corner of the room. To give an idea of space, I put our buggy roughly where a chair would go, but I have yet to find a really great one secondhand to reupholster.
I also have a good few pieces of artwork to hang [like my baby prints by Bill & Coo.!] and some more fun pieces to perfectly place, but for the most part, this is Cora’s nursery. I feel like I say this in every blog post but if we owned our apartment, there would be so much more I’d do to the nursery. But we don’t. But I’m still so happy with our cute and quirky nursery. 

Nursery dresser makeover!

It  really feels like things are moving at a snails pace these days [myself included], but things are finally getting ticked off my to-do list. One of them being the nursery. Between appointments and classes and endless lists of what to do and get, there’s so much involved in getting ready for a baby. And once you get everything struck off your list, you start thinking of more things you should do. My lists are reproducing. Or sometimes you just want to lay the hell down and nothing gets done for a day or two. Do I sound complainy? I really don’t mean to, I’m just glad things are finally starting to fall in place!

Back when I first put some ideas together for transforming our spare bedroom into a nursery, I wanted to source as many secondhand items as possible. So when we were looking for a dresser / changing table, I took to and found a perfect sized one for €45 …

It  was a standard dresser in relatively okay condition. I knew I’d be painting it as there were already a lot of different wood finishes in the room – walnut crib, faux pine floor, some other faux wood on the built-in wardrobes and then the chicken-fat orange wood around the windows, the combination of them all together just wasn’t working.  

Since our spare bedroom / nursery is a fairly dark room and the dresser would be going under the window [potentially blocking more light from the room], I didn’t want to go with anything too wild or dark on the dresser. When it came down to it, I wanted to keep it light and bright. I still had some leftover white Rustoleum paint from updating our bedside tables this time last year, so on went 5 even coats of plain white paint all over. I thought of doing a faux marble effect again, but quickly changed my mind as I didn’t want to overdo it.

As for the details on the dresser, I kept it relatively simple. I spent about 2 weeks looking for the perfect hardware for the drawers. I found these black rose knobs and backplates on Etsy [which I don’t think is a genuine Etsy seller and is probably a warehouse of sorts, but welp. I couldn’t find them elsewhere and I really wanted them so I got them]. I thought they were a perfect mix of whimsical, dainty and a little bit gothic. I decided to order just two knobs for the top drawers and went with very simple knobs for the rest of the dresser  as I didn’t want to overkill it [I found perfect budget-friendly untreated pine knobs in Woodie’s that I painted matt black]. 

Since getting my hands on Emma’s Tangled Hawkmoth wallpaper, I immediately knew I’d be lining the drawers of any future nursery dresser with it. Unfortunately we can’t hang wallpaper in our apartment [boo, renting], so into the drawers it went. It works so perfectly and I love seeing peeks of it underneath all the tiny baby clothes. I want to line ALL OF THE THINGS WITH IT NOW.

As for the feet of the dresser, I’ve not done anything just yet with them. I’ve left them unpainted as they were, which in a way kind of makes it look like the dresser is floating [I know, a stretch] but I’m hoping to either swap them for different feet or just take them off entirely. 

I should also say sorry for all the tightly cropped nursery pictures – it’s really to spare your eyeballs from seeing the madness that lurks to either side of the nursery. Soon, though. Soon it should be finished! Considering baby is now finished cooking and I’m 40 weeks [and 4 days], but I think [see: hope] later this week baby will make her debut. Fingers crossed – but not legs. Legs are anything but crossed 😉

Picking paint for the nursery – Pantone FTW

A few months ago the lovely people at Fleetwood Paints offered for me to try their new Vogue and Pantone ranges. They didn’t have to ask me twice! I unfortunately couldn’t decide on a paint for a long time thanks to suffering from a serious case of indecisiveness my entire pregnancy [hence things being so quiet around here too]. After much thought I decided grey would be the best hue for the nursery. Grey not only goes with every colour, but when it comes to us eventually moving out, grey is neutral so I won’t have to repaint the nursery. I headed to our local Fleetwood stockist, MRCB Paints on Thomas Street, and got started. 

I took my time picking a grey. I have to say, the staff in MRCB were so helpful, especially re: my constant indecisiveness. It’s no wonder they won best Home and Design Shop for 2016! They deserve a patience award solely based on all my visits.

Our apartment is north-east facing so it gets very cold and unusual light throughout the day which I had a feeling wouldn’t make choosing a paint easy. I’d visit MRCB, pick a few tester paints, paint some patches throughout the nursery, let them dry, view the paint in the morning, afternoon, evening, good and bad weather and if I wasn’t 100%, I’d go back to MRCB, pick a few more testers and do it all over again. I think it took me 4 weeks to pick the right shade of grey, but I was fine with that as I didn’t want to rush into anything. Here’s one corner of samples to give you an idea of my thought process …

1. ORIGINAL WALL COLOUR – it doesn’t look half bad here, but the original wall colour was a weird washed out pink / brown / beige disaster. It complimented absolutely nothing about the room. So, no. 
2. PANTONE ‘NIMBUS CLOUD’ – I was so excited to get started I nearly bought a 2.5L tin of this paint. Luckily I didn’t as Nimbus Cloud turned out to look quite cold and blue in the nursery due to the light the room gets. It’s hard to tell from this picture, but trust me. Paint doesn’t act normally in this room. 
3. VOGUE ‘KENSINGTON DEEP’ – I wanted to see what a darker grey would look like, and for this room, a darker grey didn’t really work.
4. PANTONE ‘LUNAR ROCK’ – just one tone deeper than Nimbus Cloud, I was hoping this would be the right mix of warm and neutral grey. And luckily, it was perfect!
5. VOGUE ‘GOTHENBURG DEEP’ – we grabbed a tester of Gothenburg Deep along with Lunar Rock to see what a pinker hue would look like, but we both loved Lunar Rock once the final testers went up. 

Throughout the room I had at least 3 more test patches in different grey hues, but I didn’t want to bombard you with very slight differing increments of grey. So I’m not going to. The important thing is that we got there in the end. Pantone’s Lunar Rock = perfect. 

That weekend I put two coats of Lunar Rock on one wall in the nursery. As I was finishing, my parents called and offered to paint the rest of the room / save me and my hips [yay PGP :/], so thank you Mom and Dad DIYer for painting the rest of the room!

I’m beyond delighted with how Pantone’s Lunar Rock turned out. It’s such a warm hue without leaning too heavily towards a specific colour. It goes so well with our second hand walnut crib [more details on the rest of the room soon!], compliments the flooring and wooden wardrobes, and works beautifully alongside burgundy, pink, green – basically every other colour I’ve added to the room. A huge thank you again to Fleetwood for offering for me to try your new collection and to MRCB for all your help and copious patience. 
Since painting the nursery last weekend things have been moving quickly and I’m so excited the more it comes together. After all, T minus 3 weeks until bebe arrives! 
DISCLOSURE – while this blog post is not sponsored, I did receive this paint free of charge from Fleetwood via MRCB. I only work with brands and companies that I like and of course, think you will too. Thank you for supporting the companies that support The Interior DIYer.