High impact, low cost nursery


Welcome to Virginia’s fun and whimsical nursery! It is said that a baby’s true “work” is play. Through play, babies are learning about complex ideas that we as grown-ups take for granted.

I wanted to create a comfortable and fun space for Virginia to do this very important work that she needs to do, but to be perfectly honest, I also wanted a space that would be comfortable and enjoyable for myself to spend time in too. Lucky me, this is the second nursery that I got to design for Virginia! (Check out her first nursery here)

Why two nurseries you may ask?  For the first six months of Virginia’s life we were living in an apartment, but in January of this year we moved into our very own home! The first time around I had the luxury of time when working on getting the space just the way I wanted it.  Something that was in much shorter supply 6 months later!  Luckily, we already had the furniture and some of the decor elements made, it was just a matter of creating and installing the new decals, a process that was much easier the second time around.

So without further ado, let’s take a tour shall we?  To give you a sense of scale let me just say that this room is about 11 feet by 8.5 feet.  We’ll start with what you see first when you first walk in the door.


The statement piece is the floor to ceiling stylized deciduous tree on the opposite (west) wall, along with the adorable and over-sized woodland creatures.  Like in her previous room, this tree was made by cutting out shapes of contact paper and sticking them to the wall (for further information on this process, check out this post).  What I really like about these new decals is the boldness and simplicity of the white against the dark brownish gray wall.  It’s a wall color that I would never choose myself normally because I like really bright rooms.  but by adding so many decals, it really lightened and livens the room up.  To the left (out of view) is a bookshelf and to the right (also out of view) is her dresser.


As you turn to your left (toward to south wall), you will see the 3 dimensional foam core butterflies that my husband made for Virginia’s first nursery.  These are adhered to the wall with simple, double-sided tape.  I like that it looks like they are flying through the window in a swarm and out the door of her room (just out of frame to the left).



Although we didn’t have a very large budget to create this nursery, my husband and I don’t like to sacrifice style.  We love searching for the perfect pieces on Craigslist and at thrift stores.  Some items were kept from my childhood and are ready to have another life with our daughter.  Though this does keep our budget in check, it also goes along with the values of our family, which we hope to instill in Virginia from the start.  That goes not only for the furnishings and decor, but toys as well.  With very few exceptions, nearly all of Virginia’s toys are either handmade, vintage, hand-me-downs, or second-hand.

Now we’ll turn 180 degrees to face the north wall and the crib. To the right I created a little reading corner under a hanging lamp. This is also a favorite spot for evening snuggles and nursing. The folding disc chair (which I’ve had since my college years) replaced the rocking chair from the previous nursery for a couple of reasons. First, there just wasn’t as much room this time around, and second, we use the nursery differently than when Virginia was a newborn (she is 10.5 months now). Now that she is more mobile we spend the majority of our time in this room playing on the floor (as opposed to nursing).  As far as nursing goes, we mostly do that in our bed where we can lie down and have some quiet mommy and Virginia time, away from distractions.  I LOVE the rocking chair, so we moved that to the living room where it can get plenty of use.



This corner is still a work in progress. I plan on making some very shallow shelving out of recycled shipping pallets to display/store some of Virginia’s books along the short wall between the window and the closet door. The lamp shade, along with the one pictured on the bookshelf, were crocheted out of white cotton yarn.  Even Virginia’s crib sheets were handmade from vintage full bed sheets.

And making our way full circle, Virginia’s dresser is nuzzled perfectly between the closet door (left) and entrance.  Her impressive book collection was mostly acquired through the local library’s book sales, or as gifts from family and friends.  The owl fabric collage is one that I made a couple ago.



And when looking for the perfect container for Virginia’s collection of wooden blocks, this vintage Du Pont blasting cap crate which housed my record collection for years, seemed to be the perfect fit, proving that toy boxes can take many forms.


So how low-cost was this nursery?  Not including books and toys I calculate the cost just under $225!  Here’s how it breaks down.

Two rolls of Contact paper (to make decals)- $11
Foam core $5
White Lamp base, Goodwill $4
Cotton yarn for making two lamp shades $8

Vintage book shelf, Craigslist $25
White dresser, Craigslist $30
Crib (without mattress), Craigslist $100
Organic crib mattress, Target $80 (gift from grandparents) our cost $0
Disc chair, already owned for several years $0
5×7 Handwoven wool rug originally from World market, Craigslist $40
Child’s table and chair from my childhood $0 (table was handmade by my grandfather)


**This post has been added to Make it Pretty Monday on the Dedicated House, so go check out some other great links there!


1 Comment

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One response to “High impact, low cost nursery

  1. I guess I get to leave your first comment =)
    I’m a fellow blogger (http://thenewdaybringshope.blogspot.com/2015/01/my-most-viewed-blog-posts-of-all-time.html), I love a good deal, and I’m getting into DIY since we bought our own house. We have been TTC for two years now and I have considered the nursery a bit, I LOVE how you were able to do this for under $300! You can’t even buy a cheap nursery set for that and your nursery for your daughter is so cute and customized!

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