Category Archives: Design

Take Me Downtown

I have a new favorite television series and it has me wanting to be British.

If we could live across the pond, you can bet I would want one of these:

Balmoral Pram by Silver Cross

A girl can dream anyway!

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Design, Gear

Break the Bank! {These diaper bags are worth it!}

Why is it so hard to find a good diaper bag?  You can carry an oversized handbag and be fine, but those pockets designed specifically for changing pads and bottles are just so darn nice to have! And, it’s not like we can all be like Rachel Zoe and have Alexander McQueen send us our very own diaper bag. And let’s face it, a trendy diaper bag can come with a high price tag.

But let’s admire these pricey pieces anyway…

Lots of famous ladies carry this Not Rational leather bag.

Gretel Bag Available at Saks Fifth Avenue

And then there’s Prada

Prada Baby Bag available at Bergdorf Goodman

I always like a Burberry bag.

Burberry Hobo bag available at Neiman Marcus

Or we could all be like Gwyneth and carry this Kelly Hermes bag as a diaper bag

Just remember, pricey isn’t always better! And really, why break the bank when there are babies to spend on?

On the more (kind of) affordable side, there are still some good options….

I love this bag from Longchamp, which I think could totally could work as a diaper bag!

Cosmos bag in Distressed Leather

Cosmos bag in Distressed Leather

Storksak bags are great and usually reasonable. This one is actually on sale right now for $80.00

Emily Canvas Bag

Oh, Charlie! How I love you! (The Charlie bag from Timi Leslie).

Project Nursery, Charlie bag by Timi and Leslie pinned via Alison Koenig

Better yet, design your own bag with Deyitta on Etsy

Leave a comment

Filed under Design, Gear, Planning, Pregnancy, Resources

Nursery Design 101

I have been wanting to write this post for quite some time. I will say first I learned most of my knowledge of decorating from my sister, my friends Linda and Carlyn, and the Domino Book of Style.  I am definitely not trained in design and therefore no expert, but here are my tips. Feel free to comment and add your own.

1.  Start collecting photos and ideas of design elements that are meaningful to you, that you love and are inspired by.  I use an actual binder but pinterest is another great way to do this.  It’s so fun to research the web, blogs, magazines and other friends brains to get ideas!

2. If possible, find some kind of focal or design point (or points) that you want to work around. This can be a particular color palette, textile, painting or piece of furniture (etc.). For me, when we started working on Gray’s nursery, it was a particular picture my sister-in-law painted and a fabric I fell in love with. It’s okay to plan your nursery in a style/palette that is similar to the rest of your house.  You don’t have to have the typical “themed” nursery.  Think about your particular style…are your more traditional, modern, cozy, bohemian, elegant, eclectic, etc?  Do you want to include these elements in your nursery? I love the idea of having a piece of art that you just love become your main focus of the design scheme.

Kim Schuessler painting available at pryorfineart.com

(Like if we ever have a girl, I already know I will want an adorable Kim Schuessler painting for her room!)

3. Make a plan-a floor plan and a furniture plan.  There are only a few necessities for a nursery, namely a crib and some form of changing table. And then there are the niceties, like a plush glider, dresser, rug, etc.  You need to know what you need and have room for in the space.

4. Set a budget. You don’t want to fall in love with a crazy expensive piece of furniture or a Madeline Weinrib textile if they are out of your budget.  For our nursery, we were on a pretty tight budget.  BUT you can be creative. For instance, I always wanted the Stokke crib. I loved that it was oval and different from anything I had ever seen.  So, I found one that had been used once and was discounted.  Also, when walking in to my (most) favorite baby boutique, I noticed they had a staged a nursery with matelasse curtains.  They looked something like this:

Picture from lilsugar.com

Then, I remembered my mom had some from our old guest room. They were in great shape and worked perfectly!  I honestly took a million shortcuts to save money, most of the furniture was from IKEA (great place for kids furniture) and I really think the room turned out great!

5. Think about  your color palette. (It doesn’t have to be pink, blue or yellow). Is there a specific color range you want or need to used based on any design elements you have picked out?  Or is there some flexibility?  It may be a good idea to start collecting paint samples and samples of textiles, fabric swatches etc. Include these in your design binder. Also, think about textures.  (Especially in the case of a rug, you don’t want something hard like seagrass).

6.  Narrow down your options. Make a list of the pieces you want keep based on your floor plan and budget.  See how all your choices come together. Think about important elements you might be missing.  Remember, things like lighting and storage are important in a nursery. (Babies seriously require A LOT of storage.  Baskets might be your new best friend!)

From DecorPad.com via AbsolutelyBeautifulthings.blogspot.com

7. Get to work!   You may even need to give yourself a time line.  I totally had nesting fever from 20 weeks on, but its a good idea to have things ready by week 32 or so. Remember, if you have to order something, it can take upwards of 6 weeks!  (like in the case of our glider!)

Happy Designing!

**Be sure to double-check safety guidelines as you plan your nursery. For instance, better not to put your crib in front of a window.  Also, did you know doctors are now recommending you NOT use a crib bumper?

Leave a comment

Filed under Design, DIY, Nursery, Nursery Furniture, Planning, Uncategorized

Birthday Bliss

Happy Friday!  My sweet Gray is turning ONE in just a few more months.  So, I have been thinking a lot about birthday parties.  Here are some ideas I just love from Pinterest and the blog world:

Surprise your little one with a room full of balloons on his or her day!

From Sweet Home Style via Pinterest

Or how about a balloon themed party?

From Hostess with the Mostess via Pinterest

Just pretty and sweet!

From Enjoy Cupcakes via Pinterest

A little lamb birthday

From Hostess with the Mostess via Pinterest

A precious birthday hat (worn by my sweet niece)

Available on Etsy

A birthday Banner

Available on Etsy

And of course, a smash cake!

Found on Lil Sugar

Can’t wait to share Gray’s first birthday with you! Until then, I will be trying not to go overboard!  For other ideas, check out these posts on a Superman party and a Farm themed party!

Leave a comment

Filed under Celebrations, Design, DIY, Planning, Resources

Stroll Away With Me

I have had strollers on the brain lately.  We have the most fabulous jog stroller but since Gray has outgrown his orbit car seat stroller we have been thinking about umbrella strollers and what not.  No decisions or purchases yet, but my search has led me to some great options.

1. My dream stroller, the Bugaboo Donkey.  It has room for your bags, or room for another baby. I am in love.

2. The Cybex Onyx…I like my cars to be German engineered, why not a stroller?

(Note: found this one at Cool Mom Picks, check it out!)

 
 
 
 
 

3.  Everybody likes the iCandy stroller. This one is lightweight, which is always nice!

4. Of course, the Maclaren triumph, its lightweight and popular.

5. And, a new discovery for me, Mamas and Papas the Trip- really I just like all the design options with their strollers. The Trip is lightweight and easy!

(Seriously, you have to go to their website and check these out!)

Feel free to comment on your favorites, or any I failed to mention!

Leave a comment

Filed under Design, Favorite Baby Products, Gear

DIY Headboard

My sweet (and handy) husband made the headboard for our bedroom and for our dear friend Juli (who will be posting later about upholstering your headboard).  This is an easy project that can save you tons of money, especially if you want an upholstered headboard like this one from Restoration Hardware for your little one’s room.

 

 

Here is how you do it:

 

Before you begin you will need to acquire some basic supplies:

From your local hardware store:

    • One (1) sheet of 3/4″ plywood
    • (HINT: plywood is sold in 4’x8′ (48″x96″) sheets, unless you have a pickup truck this is difficult to bring home. Most large, box hardware stores will cut these sheets down to size. I had them cut my sheet down to 4’x5′(48″x60″). This made it easier to transport and work with once arriving home. The height of the headboards I make are usually always 4′, this allows me to use one sheet of plywood and minimize the amount of cutting. The width is adjusted based upon the size of the bed, a width of 5′ was used for a Queen size bed. I recommend you measure the width of your bed before you purchase the plywood.)

                •  One (1) 2×4
                • One (1) tape measure
                • One (1) circular saw
                • One (1) jig saw
                • One (1) speed square
                • Wood screws (1.5″ long)
                • One (1) can of spray adhesive
                • Sheets of a medium and a fine grit sandpaper
                • One (1) nail
                • String, 2′ should be plenty
                • One (1) Drywall saw or any sharp serrated blade
                • One (1) Long level
                • One (1) Power Drill
                • Optional: Chalkline

From a fabric store:

    • Fabric of your choice
    • Upholstery foam (the thickness will be your preference; however, I usually use 1″ thick foam as I have found it to be suitable and it is less expensive)
    • Staple gun
    • Optional: Batting, Decorative nails, buttons (if you wish to tuft your headboard, the following design is NOT tuft)
Other:
    • Graph paper
    • Pencil

Now that you have all of your supplies, you need to decide on the design and shape of your headboard.

  • First draw out a few designs on graph paper.
    • With this particular headboard, I started by drawing a scale sized rectangle. I use graph paper with larger squares, to scale it down I allow each square to represent 6 inches. By drawing the design to scale I can easily transfer the measurements to plywood so that it is symmetrical.
    • I recommend finding the center line of your rectangle and measuring everything out from the middle.
    • Basic geometry will apply. To make curves in your design, first find the radius of the circle you would like to use.
    • A basic headboard design I made can be found here: Headboard Design
  • Once the design is on graph paper and you are happy with it, you need to begin to transfer it to the headboard. The same principles for drawing it on the graph paper will apply, but now everything will be measure to scale.
    • REMEMBER! Measure twice, cut once.
  • Begin by making sure your plywood sheet is the appropriate sized rectangle. If you did not have it pre-cut at the hardware store, you first need to cut it to the appropriate size.

  • Find and mark the center of the plywood. I used a chalkline to mark these points, its an easy way to get straight lines on a larger surface.
  • Begin to draw your design on the headboard.

  • To make curves, I used string, a nail, and a strong pencil. The curved section at the top of the headboard is semi-circle with a 6 in. radius.
    • Measure 6 inches down the middle line and mark that point with a pencil.
    • Measure 6 inches to the left and to the right from the point you just marked
    • Hammer in a nail approximately half way in the middle point.
    • Take your string and create a loop that the pencil can fit in.
    • Wrap the rest of the string so that the length from the nail to the pencil is six inches (Make sure you keep the string tight at all times!)
    • Starting at either the left or the right point, begin creating a semi-circle by keeping the string tight and moving around to the other point.
    • Work slow. If you don’t end on the other point adjust your string and try again.
  • Once the design is on the plywood, begin cutting it our using a jig saw. Again work slow, I start at the top and cut it out in sections.
  • Measure the height from the floor to the top of the mattress. This will be the needed height of the legs. I usually subtract an inch or two because I like the bottom of the headboard to sit just below the top of the mattress.
  • Once you have the length of the legs you want to add 6 inches. This additional six inches will overlap the back of the headboard and provide you with surface to screw into the headboard.
  • Cut the 2×4 to get two legs that are of appropriate length. I cut the legs  in this project to 26″.
  • Measure six inches down from one end of the leg and make a line.
  • Set your circular saw so the blade will only cut 3/4 inches deep.
  • Starting on the line, make multiple cuts up the leg to create a notch that is 6 in. high and 3/4 in. deep.
  • Now use sandpaper to sand all the edges.
  • Using a small brush clean the surface of the headboard.
  • Spray the surface of the headboard with the strong, adhesive.
  • Place the foam on top of the headboard, put heavy objects on top of the foam while the adhesive dries.
  • Using the drywall saw, cut the excess foam from around the edges.
  • Once the foam is set, flip the headboard over and screw the two legs into the back of the headboard with four (4) wood screws in each leg.
  • Once the foam is on, you may then begin to attach any batting or fabric. Use a staple gun and make sure the fabric stay tight, this is usually at least a two person job. We used a standard staple gun from a hardware store; however, I have been told that air powered staple guns work remarkably well for this type of task

Here is a picture of a completed headboard with a different design.

If you have questions, feel free to contact me and Tyler (hubs) or I will try to help you!  Good luck!

Leave a comment

Filed under Design, DIY, Nursery Furniture

Moving On Up

The Farrell twins have officially moved into a big kid room and boy are they loving it!  Their momma is loving it too as I had another opportunity to design a room with style.  Before even getting started, I needed a plan.  As I have mentioned before, I have boy/girl twins which can get tricky when trying to incorporate color schemes and gender neutral hues.  With the help and guidance of a designer, I decided to create more of a boy’s themed room and make my daughter’s side a bit more girly as necessary.  Eventually, she will move into her own room and we can go all out for her.

I only had a few requirements for the designer.  I am a sucker for a big monogram so that was a must.  And I wanted bold colors and classic designs.  Well, she did not disappoint.  Check out a few pics from the twins room:

Darling and classic bedding from John Robshaw Textiles.  Walls are painted classic Benjamin Moore, “Navajo White.”

Love this “gent’s” bed skirt in red

These lovely animal prints were a great find on one of my new favorite sites- One Kings Lane.  It is hard to tell but they are framed in black bamboo.  So cool!  And love that they are not so “kid-ish” that I couldn’t eventually use them elsewhere in the house.

Check out these cute lion bookends from Serena and Lily.  Functional and handsome.  I am on the lookout for some vintage children’s books but for now, I have these Museum of Art books as a place holder.   Also, this is a PBK dresser that I had painted in Benjamin Moore “Cloud White.”

And finally, look what just arrived in the mail today?!  This area rug from West Elm in flax.  I haven’t had time to set it up in their room yet (needing my hubby’s help) but it will be so nice to have something soft.

A few more decorative items to come but in my book, simple is best…especially with two 2-year old toddlers!

1 Comment

Filed under Design, Favorite Baby Products, Multiples, Resources

Happy (late) Thanksgiving! Hope yours was full of joy with family and friends, ours sure was!  Of course, I am most Thankful for these guys:

  (Picture by Michelle Marie Photography)

The only thing is, I kind of find myself wanting a vacation from our vacation!  Cannot believe there is just one more day left of our break!  Why does time fly so fast?

Anyhow, I think I have mentioned before how much I love LOVE the blog A Cup of Jo by Joanna Goddard. I mean, she is just so cool and inspiring!  Especially when she talks about motherhood and her son. It is a must read if you are soon to have a baby, or if you live in NYC ,or if you are female and under the age of 80!  I especially adore the design of her little man’s nursery, and because she is so nice, she said I could share it with all of you!  This is just a teaser, so check out the full post here.

Seriously, how cute is this?  The sailboat mobile had me at first glance! Plus, I think the crib is from Wal-Mart.

Have a lovely rest of the weekend! Stay tuned for winner of first give-away.

Leave a comment

November 26, 2011 · 7:33 pm

Stocking Round-Up

A few weeks ago while my husband and I were on our way to dinner, I tried to turn on some Christmas music. He was quick to remind me that it wasn’t even Halloween yet and therefor completely inappropriate to listen to Christmas music.  Well, good thing Halloween is over because the holidays are on my mind!  It is, after all, the “Most Wonderful Time of the Year!”  My first mission is to find the perfect stocking for our sweet baby’s first Christmas!  Here are my favorites so far:

Wool Stockings from Garnet Hill

 

Stocking from West Elm

 


Connect the Dots from Land of Nod

 
 
 
 
 

Lovely Stripes from Horchow

 
 

Fuzzy White from Anthro

We chose these!  Fun and colorful from Rikrak on Etsy

2 Comments

Filed under Celebrations, Design, Resources, Uncategorized

Pinterest Love

From Traditional Home

From Decor Pad

1 Comment

Filed under Design, Multiples, Nursery, Nursery Furniture, Planning, Uncategorized