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Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Finally - here it is! Mr. Man's room. Back in September, I posted some "sneak peek" pictures of the room ideas, and promised an art installation covering the window. . .

The little guy on the right was my inspiration for the room - I got this totally 70's owl card for my first birthday (it wasn't even retro at the time!), and my mom, who never throws anything away, passed him along to me in a giant portfolio documenting every little piece of my childhood. (She was a scrapbooker before there was even a name for it.)

(I found the alphabet print in the middle of the picture at the cutest shop on Etsy. Perfect for this room!)

Then we chose this orange for the walls, after collecting lots of paint chips and spending weeks narrowing them down, with different strips taped up all over the walls. (When you're thinking about committing to a paint color, it's super-important to see it on the walls it's going to live on in all different lights. The Nester has a post here that is much more thorough and eloquent on the subject of choosing paint.)
Here's my post where I talk about why we did the scallops 3/4 the way up the walls. I'll give you the short version of the post: scallops were easier than painting the whole room.

So this window was the big challenge.
It got even stickier when I realized that I really wanted to put the crib right in front of the window - that that was the best place in the room for it. We got a curtain rod at Hobby Lobby (with the 40% off coupon, of course) and climate-control curtains from Target. The curtains are fantastic - they really do keep out a lot of the cold, and they block all the light. A bonus for middle-of-the-day naps. So the regular rectangle-shaped part of the window was taken care of. The half-circle part of the window was a bigger challenge. Why not just hang the curtain rod at the ceiling and cover the whole thing? Check out the tops of the walls - they angle in near the top, so a curtain rod as wide as the window couldn't fit at the very top - it would still reveal the top four inches of that blasted half-circle!

We ended up getting a big sheet of foam core board at Lowe's and slicing the half-circle pattern with a steak knife. I bought two cheap plastic tablecloths in the most neutral pattern I could find and glued them on the front and back. Up close, it looks like straw. Who makes these tablecloths? Why straw? That's not appetizing!

I used a quilt pattern that has adorable applique owls, and just made them out of scrapbook paper instead of fabric. Then I embellished them, because that's what I do. And it won't be very long before I can't use things like glitter in the decor of my son's room. So I'm getting it in while I still can.

I cut out branches and leaves, arranged them across the tablecloth-covered board, and glued everything on. I tried to arrange them according to which owl I thought would get along best with whom. Yeah, I even overthink craft projects. But the owls don't have names. That would just be silly.

We were lucky - once we got the thing done and popped up into the window, it stayed there. Which is a good thing, because I had no idea how in the world I was going to secure it. And it's too big to fall into the crib and suffocate the baby. I've thought about every possible scenario of my decor going rogue - I think we're safe.

That's right, boys. I've got my eye on you.
So after the bright walls, my goal was to keep everything else as neutral as possible - brown and cream bedding, simple accessories. . .
What's that you say? With the curtains open, it looks like this bedroom is located approximately one block from the sun? Exactly.
I love this lamp. It has a very 70's vibe, and the color is fantastic! The inside of the shade is the same lime green as the lamp base. I found it on sale at I.O.Metro Home - the best place in Northwest Arkansas for random, awesome furniture finds. I wanted to get things for Mr. Man's room that will work in different contexts - I didn't want to end up with two rooms full of nursery-only stuff that I'd have to replace once the kids were older. I think this lamp would be great in a living room, and I think this brown-on-brown chair and ottoman will probably live in my bedroom one day.

More decorating with not-necessarily-little-kid stuff. This print is actually from an old calendar - that's a great place to look for cheap wall art. When calendars go on sale after the beginning of the year, I keep an eye out for pictures or illustrations that speak to me. They're great if you just need one piece, or do a collection of 6 in matching frames - a big visual impact for very little money. Like this collection from Crate & Barrel:

You could buy these six prints for $369. Or you could do the same thing with calendar pages for, like, $90.

But I digress. Back to the owls.
He's my favorite. Don't tell the others.

That's the room! And it only took me seven months to finish it! :)


  1. One of the cutest I've seen, and I used to do kids' rooms "for a living"--except I certainly was not earning a "living"! LOVE the owls. They are so cute. And I spotted the lamp before you mentioned it in the post and thought, "Great lamp--not to "baby-ish." So, it appears we are thinking along the same lines. Hope you guys are doing great.

  2. Mel, you crack me up! I LOVE the room...the owl piece is creative. The Etsy shop where you found the alphabet print was where I found an inspiration for a canvas for Hallie's room. Love it creative. You have a gift. Oh, and by the way, the chocolate chip cookies are INCREDIBLE. It's taking lots of self control not to eat them all at once. We enjoyed having Penny...she's so sweet.

  3. I totally LOVE this! Fabulous job! I'm so happy to see my owl print in there - they fit right in :). I love the scallops on the wall....maybe that's what I should do for my kids' playroom??? I love it so much. Thanks for giving me a shout out! :)

  4. Hi, Mel. Hurrah, I have discovered your delightful blog. This is one of cutest nurseries I have ever seen. The owls are terrific, and please don't get me started on that lamp. I, too, enjoy paper crafts, yet I found myself completely stumped when it came to covering these tricky windows. Seriously, I'm in awe of this room. Bravo!