Beautiful Budget Nursery

Sunday, December 4, 2011

When I was a little girl my Grandma had a great big stuffed Winnie the Pooh that I slept with when I stayed at her house. We went through some rough times back then, so suffice it to say we stayed at Grandma's quite a bit.

Sadly, the stuffed bear itself is long gone. But for me, Winnie the Pooh came to represent the safe, comforting home where all my happiest family memories were made. Hence, it's not a stretch to understand why I did both my children's nurseries with a Pooh theme.  My only wish is that Grandma could have lived a little longer to see them.

Money's tight for everyone and we're no exception, especially with Bear's therapy bills and medical bills from this difficult pregnancy. I'm proud of the lovely space we managed to create for the new baby on a modest budget. So many people have asked to see pictures of the nursery when it was done I decided a post was the easiest way to share them, and to provide further details for those who have asked me about specific items.

And for those who asked how Bear handled the change, and how I pulled this off when I've been so sick with this pregnancy... the answer to both is a little bit at a time over several months.  Our primary concern was Bear and his tendency to struggle with even small changes in his environment. By letting him participate setting up the space every way he reasonably could, he's accepted the new room remarkably well - to the point of enthusiastically showing off his "baby brother's room" to visitors.

*Indicates item was a hand-me-down from Bear's nursery or otherwise repurposed from somewhere in the house.

Crib and changing dresser* - The set was a hard won Craigslist find. When I was pregnant with Bear we spent weeks scouring the baby furniture listings and more than one crib was sold out from under us moments after we made an offer. Some days we made 3 hour round trips only to find the items in such terrible shape we passed on the purchase. This set was priced a good bit higher than most secondhand baby furniture we looked at, but was in perfect condition and still cost less than half what the dresser alone would have been new.

Wall mounted shelves* - The ubiquitous $20 Lack shelf from Ikea. They were part of the guest room decor.

Bookshelf and toy shelf - Your basic flat pack bookcases. These particular shelves came from Target. Bear has the same (in a different finish).

Fabric tote bins - Standard issue Target storage totes, about $6 each.

Nursery rocker* - This was our one splurge 4 years ago when we were outfitting Bear's nursery (and given his sleep challenges, worth every penny). After deciding on the style we liked, we shopped around a lot until we found one for about 50% less than retail at a downmarket strip mall outlet. It was hard to convince Bear his storytime chair was going to leave his room, but thankfully a few months ago he started wanting us to read his bedtime story sitting in bed and that eased the transition.

Pooh crib set* - A gift from Bear's baby shower. I wasn't going to waste money on a new one, so the new decor had to take it into account.

Pooh lamp* - $15 impulse purchase when I was decorating Bear's nursery 4 years ago.

Pooh quilt clips - $13 impulse purchase from eBay. I was endlessly frustrated with finding a good way to hang the quilt in Bear's room, and these Winnie the Pooh clips were such a charming perfect solution I couldn't resist.  

Pooh soft blocks - $7 impulse purchase at TJ Maxx.

Vintage framed Blustery Day album* - The album itself is from my husband's childhood, and it still plays. The frame was a $5 wood album frame from a craft store; I painted it white with some leftover paint I had lying around the garage.

Reading lamp* - Was the bedside lamp when this was the guest room. It was maybe $10 at Ikea when we bought it several years ago.

Chocolate brown blackout drapes* - These were also in the guest room, but I bought them in this great neutral knowing I'd like to use them in a nursery someday. Bear had terrible problems sleeping and blackout drapes were the answer then; it made sense to get them ahead of time for this baby. They're from Bed, Bath and Beyond. I waited until I had enough 20% off coupons to get all 4 panels, then I bought them separately to get the maximum possible discount.

Winnie the Pooh Wallpaper Border - I strongly dislike the overly bright saturated colors in the Disney Pooh designs and was frustrated to discover my Target no longer has pastel classic Pooh decor in the store.  I shopped around a lot and was ready to give up when I stumbled across this one on Amazon. 

100 Akre Wood wall decal - The find that inspired the color palette for the nursery.  I was in love the moment I saw it, and felt like $25 was reasonable for such a large piece that serves as the focal point of the entire design.

Paint color (top) - Home Depot, Behr (or possibly Glidden?) in Oyster
Paint color (bottom) - Home Depot, Martha Stewart in Bay Leaf