We had moved from three bedrooms to four, and so this room was also the only one in the whole house that was completely new to me.
I was excited!
As such, I finished decorating in here fairly quickly.
And then moved on to the more difficult task of making old items fit in a new space and promptly forgot how much I like it in here.
Ford's room was used by the previous owners as an office. Day one in the house was spent removing the plastic countertops attached to the walls. My dad and Mark refinished the floors. And after a few weeks, we had beadboard installed.
Ford is the only one of my three who's gender was a surprise on delivery day. Thus, the room began with gender neutral bones that I eventually man-ified after his birth.
For the foundational decorations, we found a white modern, hipster crib on craigslist (gasp, I bought a used crib), chose an aden and anais bumblebee crib sheet from amazon, and bought new curtains from Target (that I first saw hanging in the home of the girl who I bought the crib from). The patterned chair was an impulse purchase from the Pottery Barn outlet that I had spent years regretting until it found a home in this room. The dresser came from my father-in-law's mother, and it is just beautiful. The rug first laid in the family room of our 2nd home, originally from West Elm. The distressed bookshelf sat in my bedroom most of my life painted blue. In our first home as a married couple, my mom painted it black for our family room. When we went to refinish it for Ford's room, the blue showed through under the black and looked so awesomely intentional that we just decided to keep it as is. The effect is one of Mark's favorite contributions to our house. The yellow stool is from Home Goods and the pillows are Pottery Barn.
But I'm getting ahead of myself. I'm explaining the room backwards.
Actually, the inspiration for all of these decorations came from the room's central piece of art.
I have gifted all three of my children with a picture for their bedrooms, chosen while they were still in my belly. Samara's are a front and side angle of three-dimensional Degas' ballerinas made from paper and framed. Hudson's is a funny koala bear print picked up on an anniversary trip to Asheville weeks before his birth.
This particular picture I found in a fun gallery of a girls' weekend to Raleigh, NC with some sweet college friends. The artist's name is Jenn Hales and if you click on this sentence it will take you to her website. She has some great stuff for kids' rooms!
I just bought a print rather than the original (because of price, obviously) and then had it framed. I love this quirky picture. It reminds me of my three mischievous bunny rabbits and the fun they will have growing up together. I love the color palette, pale orange, chalky gray, light blue, small hits of black and yellow. I love that it's playful and innocent, yet doesn't scream baby. Finally, I love that I was with some best friends when I bought it and their opinions were part of the decision.
This picture hangs with prominence in the room and is visible from the hallway.
On the chair sits a crochet baby blanket gifted from some of our RUF students, a sweet name plaque from my aunt, and this beautiful picture taken just days after Ford was born by our good friend, Katie Taylor Deegan. Click here for her website.
On the other side of the room, hangs my favorite picture Katie took that day. The skin rolls on his arm are just too precious for me.
This 11x14 photo was simply finished in a Target frame and made to match another picture hanging on the same wall. They flank Ford's closet doors.
On the other side is a beautiful print done by a college friend's wife. It is part of a series that visually represents the growth of a Christian, and this last one in the series is a picture of the church. I gifted it to Mark for his ordination back in 2013. Find their art here.
So in the end, this display is meant to be full of childhood and fun with the wooden animal train found with my mom in an antique store in Pennsylvania, the quintessential sock monkey, and the Beatrix Potter books. The yellow lamp base was thrifted and topped with a Target shade. Finally, all the various knickknacks have sentimental value of some sort, reminding me of our parents, aunts and uncles, and grandparents. .
But this area also has a mesh of ideas and themes intermingling to create sort of story. It's about boyhood and travel, adventure and exploration. This comes out in the arrow, the airplane and these way-too-perfect old books.
I love the idea of Ford growing up to be brave and adventurous, strong, kind, and good. And at the same time, I recognize that it's easy to make such things entirely self-serving. How easy it is for a young man's heart to be swayed away from truth and towards his own desires. So just recently, I added this little verse from the hymn "Come Thou Fount" to the arrangement. It came as part of a set sold by Joanna Gaines from Fixer Upper. I have used others in various places throughout the house and have included them in gifts.
I wish I had a few more "big picture" pictures to show you, but Ford is sleeping soundly in his room, and I want to finish up here.
A few final thoughts about how I envision this room transitioning. Eventually, our hope is for Ford and Hudson to share a bedroom. Think bunk beds and blue and everything boy! When that occurs, this room will become a guest room. (Maybe a nursery at some point, but shhh, don't tell Mark I'm talking like this!)
The curtains, rug, chair, dresser, and lamp will all stay. A sleigh bed and new bedding will come in.
And though many of the distinctly "baby" items will probably find new homes, I am sure my guests will thoroughly enjoy considering my silly bunnies that set this whole room in motion.
Lesson Learned: It's easy to love a room that is full of artwork that I love.