Good Questions: My Nursery is Too Dark!

Good Questions: My Nursery is Too Dark!

Jun 15, 2007

Stephen and Lars are hoping for some advice: We decorated our nursery the moment we were approved to adopt a baby...back in October. And in Toronto in October, it was chilly, and we were loving deep maroon and green for the bedding, and pumpkin for the walls, and dark, warm, cozy colours as accents.

Our nursery design is based on the Mark Rothko painting Untitled #15 (shown, left). But now we know that we will be bringing our daughter home in mid-July, so we have two problems. How can we lighten this room up and make it summery, and how can we do that with just 4 weeks until it has to be complete?

This would have been so much easier if you had chosen Rothko's Green Red on Orange as your inspiration! But no worries...we have a few ideas, and surely we have some readers with smart solutions!

First up, the walls. Warm Pumpkin is a pretty deep wall color, and chances are, lightening that will lighten the whole room. We color-washed a room once that was inadvertantly painted too dark, by taking a creamy white paint, diluting it with water, and rag rolling it over the walls. Consult your local paint store for more exact details, but the end result is a color about 3 shades lighter, which may get you into a mid-orange range.

Bedding is the dark green and maroon stuff until September, when you will no doubt be craving the autumn colors again, and find something light and airy that picks up the orange on the walls. The Company Store's Aloha Print Bedding, maybe? We would also look at your room accessories - maybe swap out dark wood or pewter picture frames for white or nickel/silver, and if you have a rocker or upholstered furniture, maybe tossing a white duckcloth slipcover over it. There is definitely a little white in that painting, and we think it could be added to brighten the space.

If we had a month, this is what we would do. AT Readers, did any of you decorate a nursery in one season and then find it didn't work in the next? What can Stephen and Lars do to lighten up their nursery before their lovely daughter comes home?

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