DESIGN: Baby Alice's Nursery

When we found out we were expecting a baby almost two years ago, we were excited to turn this tiny little room off the kitchen in our 1950s ranch house into a nursery. And by tiny, I mean TINY, it is about 7'x10'. We picked a butter yellow color to lighten it up and immediately planned a trip to Salt Lake City to visit IKEA. Okay, so we kind of used the baby's nursery as an excuse to get our IKEA fix, since I missed it so desperately since our move from Minneapolis the previous year.

Of course, IKEA's furniture is made for small spaces and for those of you who haven't yet made the pilgrimage, GET YE THERE. I can no longer find our exact crib on their website, but this one is similar in design and cost (ours was around $129). It also converts to a toddler bed, which is ideal. I wanted plain sheets and neutral bedding, which was a bitch to find at the time, so I opted for solid colored sheets from Babies-R-Us (about $6 a piece) and a light blue and white gingham bumper pad from ($30).

The pink nightstand, the white shelf above it, and the white book rack are thrift store finds (less than $5) that Eric and I spray painted. The baskets of toys and books came with gifts in them at my baby shower, and the crib CD player was a baby shower gift as well. It took me a while to find the lamp I wanted, especially on a budget, so I ended up buying the shade and lamp separately, at Walmart and Target (lamp $9.99 and shade $7.99). The darling birdie clock on the wall was on clearance at Urban Outfitters downtown Boise for $9.99.

The best part of Alice's room design, however, is the vinyl wall art designed by my friend Geoff Beard, based on the Urban Outfitters clock and some great books on modern Japanese graphic design. It is removable, though I intentionally chose a design that could grow with my girl. This was Geoff's baby gift to Alice so it was free, but similar original mural designs can cost a pretty penny.

We bought the matching dresser to the crib at IKEA, as well as the changing table attachment to go on top (about $100). It can be removed when we no longer need it and function as a regular dresser. The blue door hangers ($15.99 each) came from Babies-R-Us and hold esentials like diapers, wipes and burp clothes. The darling felt animal mobile also came from IKEA ($4.99).

We bought the lampshade and hanging contraption at IKEA to create a little story nook in the bedroom ($20 for both). The pink rocker was a garage sale steal at $3. Eric painted it bright pink to match and my stepmom recovered the chair pads in a matching blue and white gingham fabric. There is also a large closet in this room that we built shelves into for blankets and toys. I think it is a fun and funky example of converting a teeny space into a whimsical and lovely little room.