When we moved to Jeddah over two years ago, and began to set up our very first house, I was addicted to flipping through google images and furniture catalogues trying to imagine how I would decorate my home. It seemed so easy at first, you pick a little of this, you contrast with a little of that and voila! You have home decor couture on your hands. But, when it came down to it, it really wasn’t that simple. There was a “budget”. Probably the last word you want to hear as you head out for home shopping. And so, dodging between mega sales and clearance racks I ended up buying a motley of utterly random, uncoordinated, frankly, ugly pieces of furniture sparsely thrown around my house.
It was quite depressing. Where it hit the hardest was in my kids room. In my pregnancy I had imagined an enchanted forest themed nursery, and now I was staring at bland white Ikea furniture. And the more I looked online, the more Google assured me that I needed a drill, expensive flooring, some planks of wood and a whole lot of expertise to transform this room into something better. But I was not ready to back down. Here’s what I did to get my enchanted forest nursery on a budget, and now you can get your dream nursery too!
Pick up that paintbrush!
I wanted an enchanted forest, so it only made sense to have one majestic and magical tree. But, you can paint whatever you like! Trees, birds, flowers, cartoon characters, the sky is the limit.
It’s pretty simple, you simply pick up any regular acrylic paints in the colors of your choice. Sketch out what you intend to draw onto a piece of paper, and then transfer that onto the wall using a graphite pencil. Don’t worry if you make mistakes, keep an eraser at hand! The paint will cover some mistakes too. Paint your object with your acrylic paints (use a smaller brush for the small spaces to keep the edges neat!).
Finally, purchase a bottle of acrylic “Gloss Medium” or “Gloss Varnish” (or even “Matt Varnish”, but I prefer the look that the gloss gives!) and paint over your dried acrylic with this to seal the paint and make it scratch resistant. And that’s it, you’re on your way to that dream nursery!
2. Make a reading nook
Reading nook. Castle. Den. Call it what you will, but it is essential for a successful nursery. Not only would it foster their love for reading, turning it into something delicious, but it would also encourage their imagination as they pretend to be pirates, or wizards, or kings and queens.
All you need is a hula hoop and 2-3 curtains of any color of sheer cloth. I chose net because it has an ethereal feel to it, that I was going for. You cut the hula hoop at one section and then thread the curtain through the hula hoop to make a kind of canopy. Then you tie ribbons around sections of the hula hoop. Tie the ribbons into a loop at the top to hang onto a hook that you can ask any carpenter to drill for you into the ceiling. I didn’t have a carpenter at hand so I used a bunch of those adhesive metal hooks to hang this canopy.
Trim or sew the edges of the curtain to get the length you desire. And last but not least, add a rug and a few comfy, themed cushions to make the nook comfortable! String some fairy lights or add some decoration to the hula hoop to make it even more eye-catching.
I added a little tea light in a lantern onto the shelf to add a more magical, forest-y feel.
I even added some glittery wall stickers behind the canopy to add a lovely backdrop!
3. The finishing touches!
Add a matching or contrasting carpet! I chose a play-mat with different landscapes and a road on it, for a dual purpose.
I hung a few things with ribbons onto the wall to look as if they were hanging from the tree branches.
I also made a cute little study corner with a bird cage shaped soft board and labelled the toy boxes to help my kids organize their art supplies!
And that’s pretty much all it takes!
So now you have no excuses! You’ve got to use these little tricks to conjure up the perfect playful bedroom for your little one. And let me know how it goes!