Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Room size: 11 ft. x 12 ft.
When we received Melissa Nobb's Room Tour Submission we were quite impressed with her daughter Eliza's vintage inspired room. Not only is it lovely and cozy with lots of pretty feminine touches, perfect for a little girl, but the shear volume of antiques and vintage items is certainly awe-inspiring.
If you love antique-filled spaces with a shabby chic feel, then read on. And even if you don't gravitate towards precious spaces, you'll still want to see Melissa's lovingly (and hard earned!) curated space that she's created for her daughter.
How would you describe the look and feel of this room? What decor styles did you draw from?
A friend told me it’s like stepping into a life size “I Spy” book. There is so much to look at and it’s definitely visually stimulating. But I also feel like it is cozy and comforting. The room pretty much created itself. I painted the walls blue when I was expecting Eliza to match some Pottery Barn Kids crib bedding I had purchased. The bedding is long gone but the wall color has remained. I had no decorating plans but just kept adding more and more things that were eye catching, vibrant or unique.
You have accumulated quite the collection of vintage finds for Eliza's room. For how long did you collect these items? Did you start long before she was born?
Even as a child I’ve always loved vintage items. A few things (a doll suitcase, the Humpty Dumpty lamp, and the Old Woman in the Shoe print) were given to me by my mom, after a little pleading. I started doing a lot of resale shopping about 16 years ago. But the collecting picked up even more shortly after Eliza was born. She is the youngest of my five children. So I’ve used vintage shopping as a respite from the daily tasks of motherhood.
What are your favorite places to shop for vintage?
Estate sales, church rummage sales, garage sales, flea markets, even the curb. I try to avoid antique stores and other places where you pay a higher premium.
How long did it take you to get Eliza's room "just right" and finished, or is it always a work in progress?
Nothing at my house is ever finished. Her room is full for now, but if I find something I love, I’ll add it to the room and possibly take something else out. I get bored pretty easily so we are always in a constant state of change!
Are some vintage items off-limits to your daughter due to their fragile nature? Which vintage items does she enjoy playing with?
She can pretty much play with whatever she wants. But I do get a little nervous when she has friends over. I try not to have them play in her room. Most of the items in her room aren’t a novelty to her any more so she doesn’t really want to play with them. But when other kids come over it can be a real problem. I often hear her telling her friends, “Don’t touch that. It’s an antique.” Or, “We can’t play with anything in the cabinet, they’re old and fragile.” There are several things she does enjoy playing with; the doll related items, old card games, and she especially loves her little pink and purple vintage camera. She also loves to store ‘treasures’ in the suitcases next to her bed.
Did you face any challenges while decorating this room?
Space was an issue. I kept finding things for her room and the question “Where will you put that? There’s no room left!” kept coming from friends and family. “Oh, there’s plenty of places left,” I would assure them. And I just kept adding.
Do you have any tips for our readers that are interested in creating a vintage-inspired room or nursery for their child? Tips for vintage shopping in particular?
Don’t limit yourself to a particular theme or color scheme. If you find something you love, get it and you will find a way to work it in. The best way to find vintage items is to go out and look for them! Saturday morning is the time, and local garage sales or estate sales is the place. Some weeks will be a bust, but other weeks you’ll come home elated with your fantastic finds. That’s the part that is fun...the hunt! If you know you want a particular item, shopping on Ebay or Etsy will usually help you find what you want, but you will probably pay a little more.
What is your favorite piece or element?
That’s a tough one. I like so many different things, which is how this room became so full! One thing I really treasure is a doll suitcase that belonged to my mom, then my great aunt before her. I remember it fondly from my childhood. My mom knew how much I wanted it. So a couple of years ago, she gave it to Eliza for her birthday. But my favorite piece in the room is probably her bed. I bought it at a garage sale. No one wanted it because of it’s odd size. That’s exactly what I love about it. It is larger than a toddler bed but not as big as a twin size. I had a mattress made for it by a local mattress company. It’s the perfect size and so unique.
If money were no object, what would you buy for this room?
Well, there really isn’t any room for anything else! But I would put in hardwood floors. And if I had the Pottery Barn Kids retro kitchen I would find a way to fit it in!
- paint: Benjamin Moore, misty blue (bottom) steel blue (top)
- window sheers and hardware: Pottery Barn Kids
- rug: Pottery Barn Kids
- bedding: Target (Simply Shabby Chic)
- armoire and bookcases: Target (Simply Shabby Chic)
Thanks, Melissa! Be sure to follow Melissa's blog where she shares more of her vintage home.
(Images: Melissa Nobbs)