Hey guys! It’s Brady, and today is a very good day because 1.) It’s my birthday and 2.) I am taking over the blog covering all things nursery and toddler (with Emily’s blessing, she is in Iowa after all). Don’t worry I am not expecting, but I had so much fun pulling this project together (for my sister) that I practically have that pregnancy glow (just without the baby bump). Let me give you a little background before we get started. Stokke reached out to us (you know, the Norwegian makers of the famous Tripp Trapp Chair that Emily has used for both of her kids) to highlight their modular furniture system, Stokke Home. It is a well designed modern line that allows each piece to adapt with the child as they grow from baby to toddler, so before we even had a child or project in mind that it could work for Emily and I immediately said YES. The brand is one that we have always loved so it was a great excuse to not only showcase Stokke but give a much deserving room (and small human) a makeover.
Around that same time my sister moved up to Los Angeles with her husband, newborn baby and toddler from Laguna Beach. I asked her if she would be interested in a sponsored room makeover and she immediately said “YES, do you need to come over now? I can be home whenever you need me, and you can do whatever you want.” She was obviously as excited as we were and not only did it become the perfect room to makeover for a very deserving family (mine), but gave us a great place to create original makeover content for you featuring a brand we love. I mean look how cute these children are.
Let me introduce you to Sophie – she is half monster and half pure perfection – although some days I am not sure which is more prominent. To say that I am absolutely obsessed with that little girl is a complete understatement, so creating a new room for her was something I could not be more excited about. The room before was not bad by any means as you can see in the pics below, but it definitely did not feel pulled together, cohesive, or a room where Sophie and her parents would want to hang out. It was white, generic, and had some good elements going on but nothing that made it feel special or fun for a growing girl. A lot of the items that were in there before were hand-me-downs from family members and friends or were quickly purchased to fill the room when they moved. So, everything was fair game and they were ready to start over.
When I first started the project I had a very official business meeting with Sophie and her mom, and Sophie had two requests, 1.) pink, and 2.) a swing. Little did I know that she would be more opinionated than her mother on every single element of that room. Speaking of mom, she added to that list: a grown up toddler bed, somewhere for Sophie to read every night, a better light blocking solution for the windows, and some more functional pieces for both clothing and books so that Sophie could start learning how to put away her own things. With that in mind, I went to work designing. The bed (which I wish came in my size) and dresser were the first two elements in the design plan and served as the jumping off point for the rest of the room.
Both the bed and dresser are simple, classic and completely modular which meant that she could grow with each piece. With their new modular line all of Stokke’s pieces not only work together but can be added to or adapted as the child’s needs and sizes change. They grow as the child grows, making them perfect pieces to have throughout their childhood. The home crib (which is more like an epic playhouse/crib/bed/best place in the world to hang out) can easily be turned into a toddler bed which is how I used it. It was the perfect piece for her to finally graduate from her old crib to a big girl bed – and what little kid doesn’t want a miniature play fort complete with a roof and curtains in their room, and if you are looking for the ultimate fort they even make a tent for it that has walls, windows, and a roof. I think I grew up in the wrong generation because all I got was a hand me down bunk bed, a terrible brother to share my room with and my grandma’s afghan. Fortunately the brother has made a full 180, which we are all thankful for. But, less about me and back to the design of the room. We moved her old hand me down dresser out of the room and transferred most of the items she didn’t need every day into the closet and replaced it with this dresser which was smaller and a better scale for both the crib and the room.
Because every child needs an oversized wicker giraffe in their room, I used this 5ft beauty my sister and I picked up at the Long Beach flea market a few months back. Sophie has grown quite fond of it and insists on giving hugs and kisses to it every night before bed. If only she insisted on giving those to me instead of me having to bribe her with fruit snacks to do the same. I digress. Directly behind it is a custom Jane Denton piece that I commissioned for the room that turned out so beautifully and could not have made Sophie happier. I am not sure she understood what I meant when I said “custom needlepoint,” but the color pink she definitely understood as she screamed “It’s PINK!” as I was pulling it out of the packaging. Speaking of pink you may have noticed that I did a color blocking on the walls in a very soft pale pink (Sweet Pastel by Valspar). Painting 3/4 of the way up not only brought in her favorite color without it feeling like she lived in a bottle of pepto bismol but also plays a slight trick on your eyes immediately drawing them up and making the room feel taller.
I also added this leaning blanket ladder so that she can easily pull them off when she decides it is time to tear the room apart and make forts – which happens more often than you would think. Basically anything that I could do to become the “fun uncle” all while making my sister’s life harder when it comes to clean up time is what I did for this room.
For her bed I wanted to play a bit with pattern and echo the stripes that are in the rug. A quick tip that I learned from Emily – when it comes to mixing and matching you can mix both pattern and color but it does get tricky and busy when you bring too many colors and patterns into the mix. So, rather than mixing a bunch of of different colors I kept it pretty tonal and allowed the variation of pattern and different textures to visually bring interest to the bed.
On the dresser I used this lamp to echo the dark blue from the rug. It helps to bring some cooler tones into the room and keeps the variation of color peppered around the room so that the space doesn’t start feeling too washed out and tone on tone. On the wall I installed this copper circular mirror from Bloomingville which I now officially want for my own apartment. I wouldn’t suggest putting your makeup on with it as you might over apply the bronzer, but it is a great way to bring some color into your room in a modern and simple way.
On this side of the room is where I put this hanging rattan chair to check off Sophie’s request for a “swing,” and her mom’s request for a place to read every night. Not only is it a fun place for her to hang out in, but it helps to bring some warmth to that side of the room and balance out the more modern bed and dresser. She is still learning that this new addition is more a chair than a swing so she can’t jump off of it or push her friends around in it like a crazy maniac when they come over to visit, but the look on her face when she gets to sit in it while Uncle Brady rocks her back and forth is worth every time I have to tell her she can’t swing “too hard” in it. Under the chair, I layered this thick sheepskin rug which makes the perfect place for cuddling with her favorite stuffed animals before bed or playing with her toys during the day. Do yourself a favor and grab yourself a thick memory foam rug pad like I did for both of these rugs. I promise once you step foot on them you will not regret the extra money they cost and if you have kids it makes for the perfect soft surface for them to play/fall/be maniacal monsters on all while staying safe. Oliva, Sophie’s little sister highly recommends it.
I also swapped out the tragically terrible vertical blinds for this woven roller shade and these linen curtains with a blackout panel behind them. Not only do they make the room feel way bigger and less like your landlord lives there, but they completely block out all light when it is time for those mid-day naps. A quick tip when it comes to curtains for baby/kids rooms. If you fall in love with a curtain that might not actually block out light but stylistically works with the room, grab a pair of these black out panels that attach to your curtain rod which will do the trick.
Number 2 on Sophie’s favorite things to do besides watching Minnie Mouse (which her parents allow every so often) is reading books. In her old room she had a few floating shelves that held her books. These were functional but not the safest, as she would constantly try to climb up the chair to grab whatever book she wanted to read rather than let someone else grab it for her. She is just at the age where she wants to do EVERYTHING herself without any help. So rather than see her climb up to those books and risk me having a heart attack, I brought in this bookcase which has both open and closed storage and lots and lots of accessible shelves for her to grab whatever book she wants to read and then put it back at the end of the night.
Another fun thing that she has now become obsessed with is turning on and off that little lamp I placed on one of the shelves. When it’s story time she immediately stops everything and tells me that she has to turn “light on.” She then walks over and flips off the room lights and clicks on this one and then says “ok now it is warm and we can read.” It melts my heart and makes me never want to let her grow up. You would think she is my own due to how obsessed with her I am, but I assure you she has two perfect, loving parents that have made it very clear that she is their child and not mine although I can come play whenever I want.
Just behind the door, I gave her a little dress up area to call her own because well, little girls love to play dress up. I attached this modular bookshelf to the wall and screwed a few large hooks into the bottom so she can hang her tutu’s, miniature rattan purses, parasols, you know the everyday necessities in the life of a 3 year old.
All in all, I couldn’t be more happy about Sophie’s room and seeing her start to discover every little part of it makes it all worth it. In case you are wondering how Sophie’s Scandinavian Big Girl room came together, we made this “style school” video to walk you through how we pulled the room together and how you too can bring in color, pattern, texture, and fun into a rather boring white room. Be sure to check it out and if you are wanting to “get the look” all the products and links are below.
Thanks again to my sis for letting me completely destroy her room for a few weekends, but I think these two look pretty happy if I do say so myself.
1. Crib Roof | 2. Crib | 3. Crib Guard | 4. Wall Color | 5. Bunting Banner | 6. Linen Curtain and Blackout Panels | 7. Woven Roller Shade | 8. Curtain Rod, Finials, Pleat Rings | 9. Hanging Rattan Chair | 10. Sheepskin Rug | 11. Woven Rug and Rug Pad | 12. Sweaterknit Pillow | 13. Yellow Velvet Pillow Cover | 14. Painted Wood Pendant Lamp | 15. Plush Ballerina Pillow | 16. Plush Llama | 17. Cloud Pillow | 18. Blush Marbled Stripe Pillow | 19. Grey Stripe Pillow | 20. Copper Mirror | 21. Dark Ceramic Lamp | 22. Dresser | 23. Rocking Horse | 24. White Table Lamp | 25. Framed “Malibu View No. 2” Print | 26. Framed “Spot” Jane Denton Piece | 27. Mini Library Bookcase | 28. Wooden Elephant | 29. Wooden Rhinoceros | 30. Wooden Giraffe | 31. Brass Round Tray | 32. Ceramic Cup | 33. Picture Frame | 34. Blue Bulb Light | 35. Woven Basket | 36. Cream Linen Stripe Pillow | 37. Potato Print Pillow | 38. Mustard Round Fur Pillow | 39. Plush Unicorn Toy | 40. Wood Bookcase | 41. Wood Accent Ladder | 42. Navy Knit Throw | 43. Yellow Stripe Throw | 44. Copper Baskets | 45. Wooden Blocks | 46. Pink Tutu | 47. Pom Pom Purse | 48. Pouf
***P.S. YAY BRADY!!!! Can you please design Charlie’s room because I AM STUMPED and I love this room so much. What a lucky girl and such a great uncle/designer. xx
After photos by the always lovely, Tessa Neustadt