Child's name: Lila, 2
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Room size: 100 sq ft.
As a photographer it's important to have a good eye, but Andrea has drawn on this same talent in her daughter Lila's sublime bedroom. An eye for exquisite color and an eye for turning the simple and ordinary into something truly beautiful.
Andrea is the woman behind the lens of Pink Sugar Photography in Alberta, Canada and she's also a busy, creative mom. We're in love with her daughter Lila's room and excited to share it with you:
How would you describe the look and feel of this room?
My hope is that it looks like a happy space, perfect for dreaming.
What is your favorite piece or element?
I'm really happy with how the ribbon wall and the wall gallery turned out, as those two projects definitely took the most thought and time to execute; however, my favourite piece in the room has to be the little standing mirror. Lila loves playing dress up and the mirror is the perfect addition to that little space.
What was your biggest decorating challenge or obstacle?
Probably the size of the room -- it's pretty small so there isn't a lot of room for toys or storage furniture. Thankfully her closet is fairly large so we store most of her clothing and essentials in there, and we have a separate play area in the house where most of her toys and books are kept.
How did you settle on this shade of grey?
When we moved into our home just over a year ago, the first thing I did was paint the whole thing a few different shades of grey. After sorting through a ton of swatches, I chose a few favourites and got samples from our local paint store. I painted large pieces of poster board and we moved them around to different rooms at different times of day to see what worked best in which space. This particular grey looked too blue in a lot of the house, but worked really well with the light in Lila's room.
There are lots of things at a child's eye level and it seems clear your daughter must do a lot more than sleep here - what does she think of the room?
I'm not sure she has an opinion yet on décor style, but she certainly seems to enjoy being in there, and she definitely loves her dress up area and reading nook! We spend a lot of time with wings on in front of the mirror, and reading books in (as well as climbing and jumping off of) the little chair :) She's also quite proud of her artwork that hangs by her chair and often points out that "[she] draw-ed that".
The ribbons on the wall are gorgeous - was putting them up as simple as it seems?
Thank you! And yes, super easy – I just held each ribbon flush with the ceiling and used pins and a hammer to hang them. The widest ones have two pins each and the others have one.
Can you tell us about some of the diy projects?
After I decided on the ribbon wall, I knew I wanted to tie those colours into the other spaces in the room, so I used the same ribbon to make the hanging ruffle balls, the growth chart, the mini bunting for the reading nook and some framed art for the wall gallery.
I noticed you have a lovely portrait gallery of Lila in her room - any advice for how to choose which photos of one's child, from among the hundreds (or thousands!) a parents takes, get framed and hung?
I think one of the most important aspects of choosing which photos you might like to display, is having your photos organized to begin with. If you are trying to sort through thousands of photos and have no idea what is where, it's going to be next to impossible to find what you are looking for. Making a point of naming folders appropriately when you create them, and trying to flag favourites within each folder as you go, will help you narrow down your options immensely.
After determining the layout of the frames (I spread them out on the floor and rearranged until I was happy with the design), it didn't actually take a ton of time to choose which images I wanted to use. For this particular display, I knew I wanted variety: a mix of candids and portraits, images from home and on vacation, a variety of close crops and wider shots, some black and white and some with a neutral(ish) colour palette (so as to not clash with the rest of the room), so I just went through the folders that I knew contained what I was looking for and picked out some favourites.
Do you have any advice for parents creating a room for their child?
Don't be afraid to step outside of any "rules" you may have created for yourself. I never thought I'd be one to use pink in a little girl's room, but she loves the colour and I'm really happy with how it works in the space. Also, keep your eyes open wherever you go – you never know where you might find something great. And lastly, have fun!!
If money were no object, what's your dream source?
I like to pick up things here and there so I can't think of one particular source that would be perfect, but if money were no object I would definitely have a US post office box near the border, and a driver who would go pick up packages for me! There are still so many stores and websites out there that don't ship to Canada, or if they do, they charge insane amounts for international delivery and duties. I would love to have access to lots of goodies that we just can't get here!
We recently dedicated a week to photography, can you tell us about your website, Lila Was Here?
At the end of December, I was looking over my personal photos from the past year and realized that while I'm photographing other people all of the time, I was slacking when it came to my own family. With that realization, I decided it was time to start pulling out the camera, documenting our life and creating art on a daily[ish] basis. Hopefully when Lila is older, she'll enjoy seeing what we got up to when she was small, and in the meantime, our friends and families seem to enjoy their daily peek into our life!
The project has been so fulfilling that I've become a big advocate for regularly documenting family life, so I'll throw in a little pitch here: Whether you have a camera phone, a DSLR or just a pencil and paper, take a few minutes here and there to document what is going on around you – everyday life is beautiful!
Paint: Sherwinn Williams Ashes
Crib/daybed: AP Industries Element
Chair and ottoman: Homesense
Mirror: Little Colorado
Hamper and dress up bin: Umbra
Ribbon: The Ribbon Retreat
Lamp and chandelier: IKEA
Letter wall hooks: Anthropologie
Hanger: Etsy seller lilafrances
Thanks Andrea and Lila!
(Images: Pink Sugar Photography)