Toddler Room Update: Stage 1 (aka Working with What You’ve Got)

Remember how less than 2 weeks ago I said how I couldn’t wait to rip apart Jack’s room… but thought that I would probably do it in two stages so that we can ask for some things for Christmas?

Well, I’m sure that it will surprise NONE of you that I decided to break out my hammer and start changing things over the weekend. What WILL surprise you is that I mainly just used what I had sitting around the house and spent less than $30 on buying new stuff. It’s amazing what a little switching things around can do!

Let’s refresh your memory with some “before” shots:

IMG_2361 IMG_2360 IMG_2359So what did I do?

Well, first off I ripped that sad excuse for a pennant off the wall. I swear when I put it up I kind of liked it, but over the months it just started to look crappier and crappier until BAM I ripped it down with my bare hands while Jack stared at me from the crib like I’d lost my mind.

Once the pennant came down, I switched around a few of the existing picture frames. At this point I haven’t replaced any of the artwork, but in Stage 2 of this process I plan to get a few new prints off of etsy or make them myself.  In place of a couple of the pictures, I hung a mirror that has been sitting in a closet gathering dust (it came as a set with the bathroom vanity we bought here).


The café curtain was also a victim of my pennant ripping fury, so I found a pretty new pair of curtains at Homegoods for just $20 to replace it. While I was there, I also grabbed some more curtain clips for $5. They ended up being a little larger than the existing ones, but you totally can’t tell unless you stare at them. And honestly, who stares at curtain clips anyway?!

window viewIn a perfect world, I’d also upgrade the curtain rod to something with more presence… but I decided to save my money and try to live with the one we have for now.

The star lanterns came from Joanne’s when they were having a 70% off sale a few months ago. I wasn’t really sure if they would end up in this room or somewhere else (like maybe the sunroom) but they look super cute over the crib.

IMG_2387The only other change I made was that I dragged in an unused lamp and put it behind our reading chair so that I could actually see the words that I’m reading (over and over and over again). In this shot, you can see where two of the picture frames that previously lived over the dresser ended up too. Eventually I’ll switch out the artwork with something more robot-y and maybe add in a couple little frames like the “love” one on my room board post.

IMG_2385I decided not to bring in the orange carpet from the kitchen, because it doesn’t really feel necessary now that I’ve made a few tweaks to the room.

This teeny tiny makeover took less than an hour. LESS than an HOUR and I went from sneering at Jack’s stupid room design to loving it so much that I walk past and ogle it multiple times a day. Now THAT’S a good use of an hour, right?

So there you go, a quickie little change that puts a smile on my face. Have you switched anything around in your house recently? Do you want to buy like 100 of those adorable stars and hang them in your own room like a fairy wonderland? Because I kind of do.

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My Toddler Room Idea Dump

I’m feeling the redecorating itch.

I’ve never truly LOVED the way I threw Jack’s room together, but didn’t have time to paint the room (or even really give any thought to the design) before he surprised us with his early arrival. So, I’ve just lived with the poopy brown wall color and sparse design. I mean, I don’t HATE it… but it could be a lot better.

I figured I’d just throw together a room board of a bunch of things I like to decide which direction I’d go in. At first, I was thinking of doing a full robot room theme, but decided that I’d probably get sick of that within a few months. Instead of going into full theme territory, I’ve decided to just pick some main colors and then just decorate with the idea of FUN.

toddler room board1. This is the crib we already have (from Target). I like it a lot because it can be changed into a toddler bed and then further down the line turns into a headboard for a queen bed.

2. We already have a lot of blue upstairs (our master is a deeper blue and our hallway bathroom is a brighter blue), but I’m thinking of a moody gray/blue for Jack’s room to play off the grassy green carpet.

3. I’m in love with this fill-able lamp from Target ($45)and want to fill it to the brim with matchbox cars (or cheap ones from the dollar store).

4. Who doesn’t want a robot pillow (from Land of Nod for $14)??

5. This rug (from West Elm a couple years ago) currently lives in our kitchen… but it might look great switched to Jack’s room. Of course, then I’ll have to find a new kitchen rug…

6. This West Elm pillow just makes me happy ($44).

7. This Ikea dresser is the one that we already have and it works perfectly as a dresser/changing table.

8. I am OBSESSED with this quilt from Land of Nod with stripes on one side and whales on the other! ($79)

9. Orange dotted crib sheets from Babies R’ Us ($15)… cute or too much when put together with the stripes?

10. Assorted etsy artwork that I’d love to hang in a collage (all sources on my pinterest page).

11. I picked up three of these fun stars from JoAnn’s on clearance. I’m thinking that they might look cute hanging over the crib? Or maybe hanging over the reading nook?

I’m thinking of doing the makeover in two stages. The first will be with items I already have around the house that I can mix into the room. I’m also going to add in a few inexpensive items that will make a big difference, like new curtains.

Stage 1 ideas:


Okay, first off the jungle pennant HAS to go. It just screams PINTEREST and also seems a bit babyish for a toddler room. As for the pictures, we have a mirror leftover from our green bathroom project, so I’m thinking of removing two of the frames and adding a large square mirror instead.


The picture is coming down (and moving across the room). For the curtains, I’m thinking of extending the curtain rod further on each side and hanging full-length curtains to make the window look bigger and much more interesting since there isn’t much on that wall. As for safety, since the curtains will be on clips if Jack yanks on them they’ll come right down without harming him or my walls. Maybe something like this or this?


The two photo frames from over the dresser, the one from by the window and some random frames living in storage may be added to this wall. I’d love to purchase some of those etsy prints from the mood board, or even make our own art for a few of them. This lamp NEVER gets used because it’s hooked up to the same switch as the fan (which we use for white noise). We have an extra tall lamp in another room that I think would work if I dragged it behind the rocking chair.

Stage 2 ideas:
For stage two of the process, I will definitely be getting my paint on. I’d love to do a light moody gray/blue on the walls to make the trim and accessories really pop.

For the rest of the accessories, I think that if I can be a bit patient they would be great ideas to add to Jack’s Christmas Wish list. So, instead of getting more toys or clothes we can ask for the Land of Nod quilt that I’m slobbering over and the fillable lamp. How fun would it be to get a crapload of dollar store cars and fill that lamp with them?

Of course, I’ve never been very good at waiting. So there is a chance that I might just rip the place apart next week, repaint and bring in a bunch of new stuff…

Do you get the redecorating itch every so often and want to change EVERYTHING in a room? Are you wondering why the previous owners picked grassy green for the carpet in this room when every other room has neutral carpeting? Because I kind of am…

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