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colorful mid-century modern nursery inspiration

20 Oct

Leaves and Vines bedding, BirdsHaveFlowers, Etsy

I just had to create an inspiration board based on an amazing discovery I’ve made this week.

Whether you’re in the market for baby stuff or kid’s decor, you must check out this AMAZINGLY adorable bedding available in the BirdsHaveFlowers shop on Etsy.  When not playing in her band or hanging out with her two toddlers, Rebecca, the proprietor of BHF, custom-sews sheets, bumpers, and crib skirts with the fabric of your choice.  I’ve found her personal aesthetic (and her own fabric selections and suggestions) to be really beautiful and in line with what I’d want for myself.    You can buy a set of two sheets, one bumper, and one skirt for around $250-$275 (it depends on the fabric… see here) which, to me, is a great price for a unique and defining piece of decor. (I’m sure she can do the same thing for toddler beds.)

A while back, I created this inspiration board (above)  featuring an eclectic/mid-century style design, and it got a great response.  So I thought I’d do a similar thing again.   But this time, I truly believe that every piece I’ve included can work on its own.  Truth is, most of us aren’t starting from scratch, but we all could do with a beautiful new clock or wall treatment to spruce things up.  All the items featured below are mid-century inspired, from actual vintage to having vintage-like accents.

mcm mood board (click for PDF version)

1.  Walls.  How full-on do you want to go with the color thing?  If you said to yourself, yes! more color!, I’d recommend something like this Banana Yellow shade from Benjamin Moore.  Personally, I think I’d either do a very light grey or an eggshell white on the walls.  You’ll avoid any fear of overdoing it and it’ll help the colors elsewhere in the room pop more brightly.

 2. Crib.  This is my most favorite piece of nursery furniture in a long time, courtesy of my buddy Esther over at Buy Modern Baby (thanks, lady!).  She discovered this gorgeous item at the Dwell booth (yes, the bedding people) when she visited the ABC Kids Expo this year in Vegas.  See her link here for more details.  I only wish they had it when I was building Fionn’s nursery…

3. Chalkboard tiles. A new discovery of mine but available for a while now from Pottery Barn (the regular one, not the kids’ one).  The tiles are 20″x14″ and $34 each.  But they’re having a special promotion online – now you can get four at once for $15, for about $20 in savings.  I would do one of two things with them – either place them high-up (above a dresser, for example) as ‘decor,’ or mount them width-wise across one of your walls at toddler-height for an inspiring play space.

4. Vintage educational posters. Aren’t they great? From the wonderful folks at Grain Edit, available at Etsy for $37.50 each. 

5. Woven Poang chair.  IKEA’s really upped the game lately with their Poang series.  If you’re not totally into the idea of spending hundreds of dollars on a glider, this kind of chair would not only save you some change, the new webbing design would suit a retr0-modern-styled room beautifully.  I personally think the rich forest green is gorgeous and a great complement to the background field on the bedding.  Find it here for $99.

6. Wood-slat blinds with custom tapes.   Now, this may be a personal quirk of mine, in the same so-old-school-its-new-again vein, such as the red-painted studies and ornate chandeliers of Brooklyn Heights brownstones.  But I can’t help but think it’d be super cool to outfit a kid’s room with these sturdy wooden slatted window coverings, accessorized and personalized with fabric ‘tape’ in a coordinating color as the bedding.   There are tons of places where you can find these blinds; I checked out the “Window Blinds Mall” for a price quote.  This particular company offers tapes in great colors like a flamingo pink, a canary yellow, and “Alice Blue.”  And for a typical 32″x60″ window, you’d pay around $100, then add a few more bucks for the tape.

7. George Nelson “Fernando the Fish” clock.  Just adorable, in perfect colors for both boys and girls.  $150 at Hive Modern.

8. Kartell FL/Y lamp.  Available in so many fantastically bright colors, you can’t go wrong. (Of course, if you want white or black, they’ve got that too.) The greatest selection I found was at Velocity Art & Design, where you can find them for $293 each.

Got any favorites of your own that you think would fit well in this room? Rugs? Dressers? Artwork? Let me know!

birds everywhere

12 Oct

I’m typing this from my desk at my new job.  (It’s lunch hour, btw).

Surrounded by contact lists, org charts and presentation decks, it’s quite a different thing from the ‘playground-nap-lunch-errands-playground-nap-snack’ cycle I’ve become accustomed to over the past year.  Needless to say, by the time I get home from work, I’m friggin exhausted.  So here’s the plan.  We’ll aim for one post a week (I’ve yet to figure out what day that’ll happen, and if it’ll be consistent to that day).  So bear with me, and please check back periodically for new inspiration.  And as always, reader suggestions, questions or tips are well welcome.

Concert poster, Doves at Sasquatch 2009

And as I’ll be surrounded by news of eggs, chicks, hens and other poultry-related issues on one of my new accounts at the agency, I thought it’d be great time to return to this ever-popular nursery (and toddler room) motif.  Above, one of my absolute favorite concert posters by Andrio Abero, a limited edition silkscreen for the Sasquatch 2009 festival (Incidentally, see Fionn’s Sasquatch poster by Invisible Creature here.  It’s out of stock, but I believe the 2010 version is available).  Buy the poster here, it’s a steal at $25.

multimedia birds by Dolan Geiman

I just discovered this artist named Dolan Geiman.  I think he may be a big deal… his work was featured on FFFound! and a handful of art blogs.  Personally, I’m not a huge fan of the ‘found material’ school (Joseph Cornell is a notable example, if you’re curious check out his work), but this piece grabbed my attention.  It’s not cheap ($400) but if you’re a starting-out art collector, it could be a compelling part of your new collection.  Find his work on Etsy.com (where you’ll also be directed to his website and blog).

Chicken puppet, seewhatimade, Etsy

Baby bird crochet rattle, blue moon crochet, Etsy

On a slightly different note… I couldn’t resist including these two little guys.  At top, the chicken with the most personality is available on Etsy from the seewhatimade shop, for $10.  At bottom, a perfect itty-bitty gift rattle by blue moon crochet is available for $5 in lots of different colors.  Get a craft nest from Michael’s and fill it with an assortment of these tiny chicks.

Oeuf poster, Bad Circle, Etsy

Lastly, and perhaps in terribly bad taste, here’s another poster I really loved.  Created by Bad Circle, it measures 16×20.  Like many artisans now selling their wares on Etsy, 10% of your purchase will go to charity … in this case, helping  children in Chiapas, Mexico to go to school.  At $12 (unframed) you really can’t go wrong.  Place it side by side with a mod Who poster and you’ve got yourself a clever juxtaposition there.

sincere flattery and flag bunting

5 Jun

Olivia's room

Fionn's room

Browsing Ohdeedoh yesterday morning, I discovered a very interesting room tour; it’s the first one to feature exactly the same poster, crib set and arrangement of those items as in Fionn’s room.  It could be a total coincidence.  Or it could mean that someone actually liked Baby Daley’s room enough to want to have some of the same stuff.  And that’s really cool.

So in that vein, I wanted to share with you an amazing nursery decor trick that I’m just dying to ‘borrow’ myself.

Craft paper bunting, The B-line

If you haven’t heard of Amy at the B-line, please check out her blog.  It’s a beautiful and impressive website, apparently an offshoot of her Etsy business.  I believe she’s just had a baby – so the blog (and Etsy store) aren’t currently up-t0-date.  (Amy, if you read this, I’m hoping everything’s going wonderfully for you!)  I discovered Amy through her nursery photos posted on Flickr.  But they’re also featured on the blog, where you can read all about the amazing nursery she crafted and created – especially the bunting, made from scrapbook paper, contact paper and spray adhesive.

Frog made of custom-designed fabric

This woman does everything. Designs her own fabric (via Spoonflower – an amazing company that lets you do just that), makes jewelry, pillows, stuffed animals, wall decorations, among other things, and that’s when she’s not teaching during the day.   I love this frog – and check the pattern!

So onto finding cool bunting inspiration elsewhere.  I’ve uncovered three items, two from Etsy, and one from IKEA, all of which are interesting takes on the triangle flag theme.

1. Flags and garlands made of vintage children’s books

Sailor by Dick Bruna

Dr Seuss bunting, Richard Scarry garland

Bunting by LeJeune, Etsy, $8-$22

Alexandra LeJeune of Sydney, Australia, creates what she calls vintage storybook bunting.  She takes children’s books from the 60s and 70s, cuts and then sews them together with cotton tape.  I absolutely ADORE the Sailor images, and Richard Scarry is one of my favorite children’s book illustrators of all time.

2.  Bunting, illustrated

‘Bunting’ original illustration by Moonbeam Ice Cream, Etsy, $35

An original illustration by Edinburgh artist Kathryn Sutcliffe, this drawing is one of a kind — a real pen-and-colored-pencil piece of art.  And if I had somewhere to put it, it’d be mine.  If someone doesn’t buy this drawing within the next day or so, I’m afraid my PayPal trigger finger might get a bit twitchy for it.

3. Bedding textiles

Vitaminer Vimpel twin duvet and pillowcase, IKEA, $10

I couldn’t not mention this cute (and cheap) child’s duvet set, sold at IKEA.  Don’t know how well it’ll hold up after a few washes, but it’s worth a go. Start with this piece, and you’re room’s all figured out for color, too.  Basically, it’ll match any bright/primary shade – get a red rug and paint a wall sunshiny yellow, and the rest of the brightness can come from all the toys on the floor.

esther's recommendations: butterfly mobiles

5 May

Just a quick post tonight (we’ve had a long day).  After my most recent post, my web buddy Esther made a few butterfly suggestions of her own.  (By the way, if you don’t know Esther, and you have a small child (or one on the way), open a new browser window NOW.  Her website, titled buy modern baby, is a fantastic resource and buying guide for parents who love modern furnishings and design.  She also maintains a great blog, where she does shopping roundups, introduces new discoveries, and creates room collages and inspiration boards.  I honestly don’t know where she finds the time and I envy her!

Anyway, I adore the butterfly mobiles she’s recommended.  So without further ado:

The Original Butterfly Mobile, LilaGraceDesigns on Etsy, $60

This is the mobile that started them all.  When I began blogging, I remember seeing a do-it-yourself tutorial on one of the websites- which I will go back and look for.  I suppose you could create your own, if you’re enterprising enough or deep enough into nesting-induced craziness.  For my $60, I’d rather support an Etsy businesswoman – with whom you can correspond and select your own colors and/or shapes.

 Flensted butterfly mobile, available at Genius Jones, $48

Flensted swallows mobile, Design Public, $28

I freaking love Flensted mobiles.  In fact, we had the swallows mobile (above) hanging over Fionn’s changing table until very recently, when he discovered that paper birds are fun to swat at and especially fun to pull down.  But I deem it a success that they lasted for a full eight months of changing time.

Origami butterfly mobile, RoundhouseDesigns on Etsy $45

But this one is my absolute favorite.  I love how the delicate origami butterflies (here shown in pinks and stripes, but available in multiple color combinations) are balanced on the bamboo sticks, and how clever the design is overall.  As with most of the items on Etsy, these are handmade and one-of-a-kind.  I think I want one for my own bedroom…

Night, everyone.

esther’s recommendations: butterfly mobiles

5 May

Just a quick post tonight (we’ve had a long day).  After my most recent post, my web buddy Esther made a few butterfly suggestions of her own.  (By the way, if you don’t know Esther, and you have a small child (or one on the way), open a new browser window NOW.  Her website, titled buy modern baby, is a fantastic resource and buying guide for parents who love modern furnishings and design.  She also maintains a great blog, where she does shopping roundups, introduces new discoveries, and creates room collages and inspiration boards.  I honestly don’t know where she finds the time and I envy her!

Anyway, I adore the butterfly mobiles she’s recommended.  So without further ado:

The Original Butterfly Mobile, LilaGraceDesigns on Etsy, $60

This is the mobile that started them all.  When I began blogging, I remember seeing a do-it-yourself tutorial on one of the websites- which I will go back and look for.  I suppose you could create your own, if you’re enterprising enough or deep enough into nesting-induced craziness.  For my $60, I’d rather support an Etsy businesswoman – with whom you can correspond and select your own colors and/or shapes.

 Flensted butterfly mobile, available at Genius Jones, $48

Flensted swallows mobile, Design Public, $28

I freaking love Flensted mobiles.  In fact, we had the swallows mobile (above) hanging over Fionn’s changing table until very recently, when he discovered that paper birds are fun to swat at and especially fun to pull down.  But I deem it a success that they lasted for a full eight months of changing time.

Origami butterfly mobile, RoundhouseDesigns on Etsy $45

But this one is my absolute favorite.  I love how the delicate origami butterflies (here shown in pinks and stripes, but available in multiple color combinations) are balanced on the bamboo sticks, and how clever the design is overall.  As with most of the items on Etsy, these are handmade and one-of-a-kind.  I think I want one for my own bedroom…

Night, everyone.