The World's Worst Client - and one you can't fire
I’ve always wanted to write about what it was like from a designers’ perspective to create their own nursery. A year and a half later, I’m finally getting around to it, and right on cue, my son woke up from his nap as my laptop boots up. If you’re a parent, you understand, the struggle is real!
I have done full brownstone renovations, penthouses in Manhattan, and celebrity homes through my interior design firm in NYC. The sky was the limit in what I would design for my little man. I dreamed of sweet snuggles with my baby on a Mongolian fur rug, and everything in white. Spoiler alert… my son peed all over that Mongolian fur rug and the dog during my attempt of a newborn photoshoot.
When it came to making decisions, I found out I was my worse client. I went through 4 strollers before my son was born, and still am not sure I made the right decision… Yep, that was me!
Mix 9 months of planning, CRAZY hormones, and unlimited access to products, and you have a recipe for disaster. Luckily my husband was smart enough to just let me do my thang.
I wanted to have my nursery done by the time I was 8 months pregnant, so I knew I needed things ordered around 3-4 months prior. Picking the first piece that everything else would be based from was the hardest part. But I had to think through each piece with more than just aesthetics in mind. Living in NYC, storage is crucial. I knew I needed a crib that had storage and a low rail, since I’m short. Plus, I already had wallpaper up since baby would be taking over mama’s office. This was the first key piece. I also was feelin the gender neutral woodlands theme, since it felt so warm and cozy
Photo by Cole and Sons
One of my favorite pieces in my house was a bone inlay chest that I imported from India. I’ve always been obsessed with this chest, and knew it would be special in his room with an add-on changing tray placed on top. Designers don’t believe in items that “match,” so this was a great focal point to the room that grounds the space and adds contrast.
Available at Curated Nest
I went into Etsy overdrive to make It special with handmade pieces including his mobile which was hand-crocheted. I’m pretty sure I had something delivered every day at one point… But the little things are what makes it feel so unique.
One of the biggest reasons I love his nursery is how functional it is. The crazy nesting hormones made me organize everything to a "T". My main goal was to access what I needed within an arm’s reach. Not hard to do in a small apartment, but that simply means not over stocking products, and using lots of containers with purpose. I mixed functional items with decorative, so it never felt crowded.
It doesn’t matter how amazing your nursery is if it’s not safe. With an adorable name, Baby Bodyguards, I put in a call and had a professional handle the dirty work. Every dresser, bookcase, cabinet was bolted and locked. Sure, we could have done it ourselves, but I love how they had years of experience as parents and professionals to show me what my little Houdini could get into or craftily knock over.
In the end, I love my son’s nursery. It’s a magical place to be in at 1 am, 4am, 7am… It’s a special place I created for him to grow and have his first memories, and it is a labor of love.
Tips from the trade to not be your worst nightmare
- Start with one piece that you love and design around it
- Think about longevity and short term. As annoying as the old saying goes…. “They grow in a blink of an eye” pick inexpensive items that you wouldn’t mind switching out over time with quality pieces that can grow with your child
- Mix a variety of lights in the room. Ceiling light for tasks and playing on a dimmer, table lamp for reading and calming down before naps, a night light that’s fun quirky and great for late night checks.
- Use a variety of containers for organization, even in drawers. Every minute saved = more time to catch up on BRAVO tv.