Ethan's Bright Birch Tree Nursery

My Room

Name: Ethan (2)
Location: Alexandria, VA

I was quite attached to Ethan's birch tree nursery in our old house. It was where I 'nested' during my pregnancy, where I saw my mood board visualization come together, and where Ethan rested his tiny head for his first six months. I painstakingly painted beautiful birch trees on the walls over a rich robin's egg blue - it was perfect. But then we moved.

We moved to Old Town Alexandria in Virginia and into a rental house with all-white walls. I thought it would be so hard to recreate our beloved "Birch Tree Nursery". I thought at first the white would bother me. But there is something about the old wooden floors, exposed beams, and details of the new place that make the white walls seem okay.

Therefore I was challenged to add the robin's egg blue and rich orange colors to Ethan's nursery without paint. Using fabric-covered cornices, handmade bunting, decals, and artwork I was able to drum up a space that would keep my Peanut cozy.

The birch tree and bird decals were a set I bought from NouWall after days of scouring Etsy, looking for the perfect birch trees. I really wanted to paint the trees right on the wall, but decals seemed like a better option since we are renting. They arrived quickly and just as pictured, all at a cost of around $100. The trees are a dark gray color, the leaves orange, and birds turquoise. I actually painted the birds with a robin's egg blue acrylic paint so they would match. I didn't think it would work, but it did!

The cornices were a snap to put together and cost about $20-25, making them an inexpensive addition to the room. The chair was my absolute favorite purchase out of all the nursery gear...how often do you get to buy an orange chair?? Okay, yes, it was pricey. BUT, we've used it every day for two years and it's super comfy. I feel like our snazzy chair is really showcased in the new room, front and center. I love that it's a glider/rocker so pinched fingers or toes are not a concern. A foam cube covered in a fun, soft flannel material made a perfect ottoman. Ethan likes pounding his hands on it and I like putting up my feet during story time every night.

My other favorite part of this room is the shelving 'collage' above the chair. I wanted to feature the beautiful books my parents kept safe for us since my childhood--through about seven out-of-state moves. Just glancing at a book brings a flood of memories. I LOVE reading them to Ethan. Throw in a few photos, stuffed owls, and a big letter 'E' painted robin's egg blue, you have a very eye catching display that adds a lot of color and interest to the room.

I made a lovely mobile out of card stock. Ethan loves it, and I love that it is modern and artsy while still serving its purpose. Crazy what some fishing line, wooden dowels, and card stock will get you! I'd say this came together for less then $10.

For more "art" I updated a needle point piece (done by my mom before I was born -- we reframed it), framed some pretty orange and blue fabric in quilting circles, and added some sweet puppy tail hooks.

Our Old Town abode is really feeling like 'home'. I decided before we moved here that even though we were renting, I was going to treat the house like it was ours. Especially with Ethan's room! The Peanut has to have a fun nursery. So while we act with discretion when it comes to permanent changes like paint (even though we were given the okay by our landlords) we're going to need a big bucket of spackle to fix all the holes in these walls.

Source List:


  • Crib: Babies R Us

  • Mobile: DIY

  • Chair: GoodWorks

  • Bunting: DIY

  • Dresser/Changing Table: IKEA

  • Side Table: Target

  • Bedskirt: DIY with fabric from Fabricworm.com

  • Lamp: IKEA

  • Tree Decals: NouWall

  • Owl Decals: Tweet Heart Custom Vinyl

  • Window Cornices: DIY with fabric from Fabricworm.com

  • Wall Shelves: The Container Store

  • Name Box: DIY with wood pieces from Michael's

  • Alphabet Wall Hanging:DIY by my mom

  • Diaper Pail: Bed Bath & Beyond

  • Puppy Tail Wall Hooks: IKEA via Ebay

  • Ottoman: DIY using a foam block from Hancock Fabric

  • Owls in Windows: DIY by my friend Maddie

  • Rug: IKEA

Thanks, Becky! Readers, you can visit Becky at Preparing for Peanut.

(Images: Becky/Preparing for Peanut)

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Lauren is a writer, DIYer, and Etsy addict living with her family in her tiny work-in-progress home in Pennsylvania. When not blogging, she can usually be found chasing around one very spirited little three-year-old and snuggling her new baby girl.