Name: Belinda's Shared Bedroom
Location: NSW Central Coast, Australia
You may remember when we featured Zak's black and white nursery a while back. Zak is the son of Real Living web editor, Belinda Graham. Well, when we heard Belinda was expecting her second and putting the finishing touches on what will be a shared bedroom/nursery (at least for a bit), we had to see what she'd come up with this time, and we were not disappointed!
We know a lot of you share rooms with your babies, and since we are currently working on our own shared room, we were particularly eager to see what Belinda had come up with. Well, her space, she admits, is large, a lot larger than ours. Originally two rooms, they ripped out the walls to create this one large space when they bought the place. But there's still plenty of inspiration here for those of us with smaller rooms to work with.
First, the color palette: like Zak's room, you'll find lots of touches of black and white set against muted tones of white, beige, and brown. The result is a calm space that feels clean, simple, and suits either little one or adult.
Belinda writes of the style: "I've never liked commercial merchandise and typical baby/kids stuff, so try to keep things clean and simple with neutral colours, stylish artworks and a few out-of-the-ordinary pieces. As this is a combined bedroom/nursery, I wanted it to blend in with the rest of the room. Plus, I think it's nice to decorate properly once they're a little bit older so you can create a room that matches their personality."
Every item in this room feels carefully chosen. Instead of a shelf of ugly dolls (nothing wrong with that), there are baby shoes and a little teddy bear. Belinda told us that rather than buy a lot of new stuff, she mostly created things herself: "I didn't really buy anything new - just some Etsy artwork and wood initials/flourishes - and painted, revamped or created things myself such as the chalkboard canvas of my pregnant belly, framed wallpaper sample, little felt Bambi motif on the cradle and stencilled window. It's nice to have personal touches you won't find in other homes or catalogues! " That chalkboard belly is one idea we might have to steal!
The chest of drawers was another DIY project Belinda worked on herself. "I personally think change tables are a waste of money - no matter how good a storage solution they may be once your child is no longer in nappies, they still look like change tables! So I popped a really comfy change mat on top of a chest of drawers that I painted white. I stole the wallpaper idea from a house tour I saw on Bloesem Kids blog. I was originally going to wallpaper this back wall, so had a whole heap of samples lying around. Once the babies have outgrown this, I'm going to keep it as my dresser - I love it!" We love the idea too!
As for the rest of the room, Belinda gave us some descriptions of the cradle, wardrobe, and artwork:
• This cradle used to be turquoise! But I dosed it in white paint. I'm huge on decorating in black and white for newborn babies - it's the best colour combo as it's all they can really notice for the first few weeks due to the high contrast. But I didn't want to do too much, so I kept it simple with a felt Bambi silhouette and butterfly cut out of a book page.
• The wardrobe is on loan from Belinda's brother-in-law. I thought it was the perfect place to display my baby bump! I drew my pregnant silhouette onto a chalkboard canvas a few months ago as a nice reminder of a happy pregnancy. I added a mix of grown-up pieces (vases, candlestick, frame) and cute baby things - sheepskin booties, picture and a lolly jar filled with baby socks! You really can display anything if it's done in an unsual way.
• There's a photo wall above the TV. A mini photowall I can add to at any time: I popped up a mix of family, wedding and baby pics as well as some pretty Etsy illustrations. Frames don't have to be the same colour, shape or size. In fact, I like them a bit of a mix - as long as there isn't too many variations, just about anything can work! Rules were meant to be broken... To fill an empty space, I covered some canvases in extra fabric and wallpaper samples and propped them against the wall.
Lots of useful tips and inspiration here. As of yesterday, the little one who will join Belinda and her husband, who they've been calling "Pud," had not yet arrived- even though their due date was June 5th! We wish Belinda and her family the best as they await Pud's arrival any moment now!
For more inspiration, check out Real Living Magazine and Belinda's Blog.