June 26, 2019

The Reveal: Etta's Blue & White Modern Nursery

I still can't believe we finished the nursery just one day sooner than Etta decided to make her way into the world. It will be such a huge part of the running birth story she hears on birthdays and throughout life. That said, we can't blame her for coming early, because we're just as smitten with how the final room turned out and can't wait to show you around!

It's amazing to think we started this room back in April and here we are with a one-month-old, using the nursery in ways we imagined and making a few tweaks now that we're getting our routine down.

Before, we used this space as a makeshift walk-in closet since it's directly adjacent to our master bedroom. It's the smallest room in our house and I have to say, works perfectly as a nursery. It's also the least photographed, so the few "before shots" I do have involve older mirror selfies and random ceiling fan parts (hopefully you don't mind):

Here's that same view, now:

In all, we completely cleared out the room and gave everything from the walls, ceiling, and doors to the mantle and fireplace a fresh coat of paint. We brought in new furnishings and decor and installed new fixtures including the ceiling pendant, wall shelves, and window treatments. Right now we're using the closet for hanging her tiny clothes and as extra storage for stowing away larger baby gear and big box store diapering supplies.

Since it's a room we're both spending a good deal of time in, I wanted to create a space that felt welcoming, calming and somewhat of a minimal foundation that can evolve and grow right along with her as she develops her own personality and taste. We landed on an overarching neutral color palette of whites and blues with hints of brass and black, then subtly wove in two themes around rainbows and the fable, Tortoise and the Hare, since they both hold special meaning around the journey we made to meet this sweet babe of ours.

The Tortoise and the Hare fable was a childhood favorite of mine and mantra we held onto throughout the duration of our experience with infertility. Slow and steady wins the race is such an encouraging message of determination and perseverance — one that I think about often and carry across the other aspects of our lives too.

On my birthday back in November, Tim surprised me with this art print by a local Etsy artist. Even though we were 3 months pregnant at the time, I was too anxious to think about planning the nursery and it was his way of saying it was time. This piece of art was the very first part of the nursery and is still such a welcome reminder of the road we endured to get here. At our baby showers, we also received several sweet gifts with the turtle and rabbit theme that we've had fun decorating with as well.

Rainbows are such happy symbols of peace, acceptance and the brightness that follows after weathering a storm. Etta is our rainbow baby, for which we are forever grateful. The rainbows in the nursery are even more colorful reminders of just how far we've come and how much we have to be thankful for.

The woven textile rainbows were a gift from my Etsy family — they surprised me with a baby shower the last time I was in Brooklyn for work before Etta's arrival. They're made by fiber artist, Mandi Smethells, and are the perfect blend of fun plus elevation. Other favorite Etsy finds include Etta's BigStuffed pink whale, the paper flowers my coworkers made for the shower and the Moses baskets we've used as her bassinet and changing station.

The brass rainbow baby mobile that hangs above Etta's crib is one I'll cherish for years to come and hope she will too. I made it using jewelry supplies I had on hand and the design was inspired by a pair of brass rainbow earrings I'd seen recently on one of my favorite bloggers, Liz Marie Galvan (side note — Liz is a great person and inspiration to follow if you're looking for a positive voice surrounding infertility and miscarriage). The mobile was simple to make, but I just love how delicate and sophisticated it feels.

Another DIY that has our hearts is the book wall above Etta's dresser. It's by far the area with the most personality and the best part is, it can change and evolve with the swap of a book, toy or decoration. To create it, Tim installed two floating shelves that we off-centered with art and it's been fun using this area to display some of our favorite reading books. They're so easy to grab and curl up with Etta in the rocker for reading.

Other sentimental details include my own baby blanket that still has stitching on it from the grandmother I was named for and the keepsake rattle Tim's mom (who we named Etta after) gifted her.

A few final details like the art print above the mantle and side table next to the rocker arrived just after we shot the majority of the room (we'd had the print sent off for professional framing), so there are a few loose ends still to tie up. I also found one of the cutest hampers I've ever seen after quickly realizing how much tiny laundry stacks up with the arrival of a baby. Yes, I still have so much to learn.

We couldn't be happier with how the nursery came together, though, in the end, it's Etta that truly completes the picture. If you missed part of the process, you can catch up on all of the nursery posts (from planning to painting) right here.

Nursery Sources:


All of the images in today's post were captured by our talented friend and photographer, Ali Williamson of Alisandra Photography.

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