Girls Bedroom: Before and After.

We went from this from this….DSC_2435

To this…

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I was hesitant to title this post and reveal  “after” pictures because it implies that I’m finished.  Overall, the girls bedroom has the bright, vintage/modern feel that I was striving for and the main design elements have come together. They are fortunate to have a separate playroom for playing, entertaining friends and crafting so it’s lovely that they have a separate, tranquil place to sleep. The girls have given it their seal of approval which is the most important thing since the client always comes first! As much as I love decorating, it is their space and I want them to delight in it. You can see from the pictures that I’ve moved elements around to illustrate how small and subtle changes can create freshness. It’s not a museum after all.


Closet interior.


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The room is indeed small. However there is a good sized hallway where I have placed an additional dresser and a much-needed bookcase. It also provides extra space for the plethora of tchotchkes and art we have acquired. Here are some shots looking down the hall towards the girls bedroom. How about that knotty pine door?  It’s a closet!  This home has an abundance of storage space. Note the built in drawers. I know. This hallway would have been characterized as a bedroom by NYC real estate standards.IMG_6498(1) IMG_6499

Based on my Pinterest inspiration pictures these are elements that I utilized.

  • Polka dots. I love the way pattern adds depth. This is a wall decal sticker set from Target. I used the dots in the colors and sizes I wanted and saved the rest for another project. Similar set here.
  • Vintage floral print wallpaper just wasn’t an option so I carried the theme over to bedding. The pink set I already had.  I found the other set at wait for it…Target! You guessed it. I think they complement each other quite well. Shop the sheets here.
  • Bright white walls. I want to paint all of my walls white!!! It is so fresh and sets the perfect blank canvas for any design scheme.
  • A mix of vintage and modern pieces. The white dresser, iron bed, sconces, floral bedding and vintage yellow chair contrast with modern lines of the Pink Ikea Malm dresser, the white bed with drawers and pieces like the eyelash pillow and artwork.
  • Rag rug. I actually scored this at World Market for like $20. It was serendipitous to walk in during their global rug Bazaar and see a pile of colorful limited supply rugs. After untying and laying out each one (they love me there) I decided on this one. I really think it works well. It doesn’t detract from the white floors and it is a nice colorful and unique accent. Similar, but pricier here.
  • Wood or organic element. The window bench functions more like a side table for the girls to share. It was on clearance at Target and I bought it like 100 years ago just waiting for the right spot to use it. Now if I could just find a spot for all the other bargains and special pieces I’ve collected that are gathering dust in storage. Similar, larger bench here.
  • Books, baskets, dolls and such. The girls chose the dolls that they wanted on their beds with them. We then arranged other dolls on shelves and the remainder traveled to the land of misfit toys. We organized the books on the bookcase in the hall with the exception of a few large and colorful ones that we stacked under the bench to conceal the trash bin and extension cords. I used a large white basket for laundry in the closet and placed jewelry, trinkets, belts and so on in decorative baskets from the Goodwill, which is a great place to get unique storage on the cheap by the way.
  • A little chair. We found this busted up mini Klismos chair in the trash when we were newly married and living in Brooklyn. I love the shape of the chair so much. We assumed that we would have kids “one day” so we carried it home, stored it for years and it eventually made the journey with us to the mini apple when we bid adieu to the big one. We had it restored and painted bright yellow for the girls.
  • Pink. Most girls I know like pink, as do I, but I prefer shades that are not in-your-face Pinky Pie all day and all night. In this case I painted the closet interior a bright but bearable pink that provides a vivid pop of color every time one reaches for a new ensemble.

And there we have it. Next up, guest room.

Thankful for: Old homes with character

Wanting: An unlimited decorating budget.

I’ve learned: If I don’t buy artwork when I first see it, it’s gone when I go back. So frustrating:(

A Two Playroom Household?!

4937de043f31d2dc6c40fb3e25a5ec02One of the (many) things on my list of priorities while house hunting was to find a home that had a contained play space. We found that and then some. Decorating what is now the playroom was the first project for me once we moved in. The challenge was making it look fun and inviting while being functional. Easier said than done when it comes to a room that is in constant use by little people with evolving interests and needs. The kids will always be growing and changing and their play space will have to reflect and encourage that development. Unfortunately,  my need to constantly fix, edit, change and re-organize stuff  has made the playroom project an endless source of  frustration for me. The beads, stickers, paint, costumes, trains, puzzles, essentially all the things that kids want to play with, were either being played with, needing to be cleaned up or just left out to drive me crazy. “Playrooms are supposed to messy and disorganized ” my husband says. Deep breath. We had talked about the idea of moving the playroom to the basement which is actually a good-sized usable space but I had two concerns.  What to do with all of the things that are currently being stored down there and do I want the girls alone in the basement while I work upstairs? Here’s the solution that I think will lead to everyone’s contentment. The playroom as it is now will serve as a place for games, dress up clothing, chalk board wall and concealed storage for not-in-use toys. The basement will become the free-for-all zone where we put the arts and crafts, work/play table, play kitchen, kid furniture, trains and beads, beads, beads!!! I swear there are a million beads in my house. Basically, the ground floor room, that I have to look at on a regular basis, will be an organized and functional play space where I can theoretically work on my computer. The basement playroom will be an open space to do arts and crafts, “cook” and serve food from the play kitchen and jam on instruments all without sending me into a dither.

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As far as my concerns. The creation of a second play area is forcing us to reevaluate our things and to do some purging. We probably don’t need to keep the majority of the stuff we have stored down in the basement and it’s yard sale season anyway so…that’s the first solution. The girls are now at an age where they can play together  without causing too much damage to them selves or each another. I would not have done this a year ago but I think they are ready for a little independence and I need to let them have it. It will be good for all of us.  Here are some amazing play areas that have inspired me.

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