Nora’s New Big Girl Room

posted by Andrea | 01/16/2014

after - window wall

After months of “dragging my heels” (a.k.a. I was doing lots of other things), I finally finished Nora’s new bedroom upstairs — after I found the bedding I liked for only $25 on Craigslist!

Nora has already taken a couple naps in the bed, and we’re working on sleeping the night up there — but let me tell you, it’s been a LOOOOOOOONG week and I’ve gotten little to no sleep.

We’ve already move EVERYTHING out of her old nursery so she has no option of sleeping down there (no looking back now!)

Even though there hasn’t been a ton of actual sleeping in the room, we’ve been playing up there (and the adjoining play room) for weeks now — so I’m thrilled that I can finally share the “after” pictures with you!

Here are a few pictures of some of the “details” — I’ll share the full-room before and after photos below.

This room really wasn’t a difficult project at all — I just didn’t want to commit to any specific color scheme until I found bedding I loved!

I just couldn’t stomach putting pink and purple princess bedding in this lovely white room — especially since Nora could care less what her room or her bedding looks like (and I’m totally capitalizing on this for as long as I can).

I searched and searched for bedding that I liked — and although I found a few things that were OK, they were so ridiculously expensive that I would never even consider purchasing them (again, because Nora could care less).

Finally, right before Christmas vacation, I hit the jackpot. A lady only a few miles away was selling a 1-year old, $200+ bedding set (she still had the receipt) for only $25! It was exactly what I was looking for — mostly reds and blues with a little hint of pink. No flowers, no butterflies, no princesses — just a fun stripe pattern that sort of looks like a quilt.

I went to pick it up the next morning, washed it all really well, and made the bed.

An added bonus to this bedding is that the navy “afghan” at the end of the bed (which just so happens to fit the color scheme perfectly) is a blanket Dave’s grandma knit for him when he was a boy. I was thrilled to be able to incorporate that in Nora’s room as well.

Oh, and if you’re wondering why we don’t have bed rails or anything to keep Nora from falling out of the bed, it’s because she’s actually been sleeping in a “big girl bed” since she was 10 months old… so she’s a pro :)

More About the Furniture:

Since my plan was always to keep this bed white (it’s an antique bed frame I’ve had for years), I was glad to find bedding with a little color. Doesn’t Nora look so small laying inside the bed frame? And don’t you just LOVE the frame!!!

We had a freebie armoire / dresser in an extra room that I wanted to paint red — along with a $10 side table I found on Craigslist last month and was planning to use for a night stand.

After two really quick coats of my favorite Awning Red paint (which just so happens to match the bedding perfectly), both pieces looked brand new — and I think they add a lot of color to the otherwise VERY neutral room.

night stand before and after

Other than the bed, armoire, nightstand, and chair, we really didn’t feel the need for much additional furniture. We certainly don’t need it for storage — and we figured Nora would probably appreciate the extra room to play and run around.

I might try to look for a rug for the middle of the room — but I’m holding off on that for now, just because rugs are really expensive and this new carpet is SUPER soft and comfy. The rug would basically just be for visual purposes and I’m not sure it’s worth shelling out a few hundred bucks. We’ll see.

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Now for the Before and After pictures:

I hope the very first thing you notice is how NOT purple the room is. I honestly have nothing against purple — just when it’s in mass quantities in my house :)

before - window wall

after - window wall

before - closet wal

after - side wall

Note: I’m purposely not showing the closet yet because I want to do a separate post about the fun stuff we have going on in her closet — as well as how we’re storing all her clothes, shoes, and accessories :)

before - side wall

looking out into the play room

after - door wall

Ahh… I’m loving the no purple! 

Dave and I actually did a lot of thinking about what color to paint Nora’s new room. We knew we definitely wanted super neutral so we could swap it out for a boys room or a girls room depending on our future needs — but we were a bit hesitant to paint the entire room white, as we thought that might be TOO neutral (if there is such a thing!)

However, after realizing that it would take forever to cut in around the ceiling, all the random sloped walls, all the trim, the closet, etc. we opted to just do everything white. This decision was partially for convenience sake (a.k.a. I was feeling a little lazy) but also to make the room look and feel even bigger. It’s already a huge room, but with all the sloped walls and ceilings, it started looking really “chopped up” to us when the ceiling and the walls were different colors.

We love the look of white everything — and if you’re wondering, we went with “Frost” by Behr (after a mini internal debate on my part!)

Oh, and lest you think we could finish even one project without a glitch… check out this picture.

Only hours before the carpet installer was scheduled to arrive, my dad decided to come over and cut out a huge chunk of the flooring since there was a large “hump” in that area. We just figured it was due to being an old house — but the floor boards were actually totally messed up.

I’m glad we could fix the problem in time… but since I was literally sweeping up the crumbs as the carpet installer was walking upstairs, it did make for a mildly stressful afternoon!

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Cost Breakdown:

** The below figures do not include the cost of the actual room renovation (new carpet, new window, new door, new trim, etc.) — just the items in the room and the materials used to decorate the room.

White Paint and Primer = $250 — apparently covering purple with white is expensive

Bed Frame = $0 — from a friend several years ago

Mattress = $0 — from Dave’s parents (it’s quite new — they just upgraded their guest bedroom to a queen)

Bedding = $25 — The comforter, dust ruffle, pillow shams, and decorative pillows were all a set I purchased from Craigslist.

Sheets, blankets, and pillows = $45 (but I used a Target gift card)

Cordless Black-out Blinds = $45 (on sale at Home Depot)

Bench = $0 — we got this as a wedding gift, but it was from IKEA

Armoire / Dresser = $0 — from friends a couple years ago

Night stand = $10 on craigslist

Awning Red Paint = $0 — I already had this in the house

Poäng Chair = $0 — we already had this chair from IKEA and weren’t using it

Kids Rocking Chair = $0 — we already had it

Tent and other toys = $0 — all gifts or toys we already had

Shelf, picture frames, and other decorations = $0 — all things we already had in the house

So besides the paint for the walls, we only spent about $125 for all the furniture, bedding, decorations, and accessories! Not too bad.

Now if we could just get Nora to realize that it will be super fun to actually sleep in her new bed instead of just play in it :)

I’ll be back next week with the full closet tour + tips on how I organize all her clothes!

What do you think… do you like the white walls?

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65 comments

  1. Melinda

    01/16/2014

    I love the white. I have always liked white walls and about 5 years ago painted all my walls taupe. To be honest just because it was a popular color. I never really liked it, so last summer I went and painted every thing white again. Now I’m back to being happy. I think it was more stressful picking out a white then a color. I couldn’t believe the amount of white shades there are!

    I have to say, you have got to have “law of attraction” going on for you. I am amazed at what you find on craigslist. You seem to always find exactly what your wanting!!! But I’m sure you look for a long time before you do. But still love it! I need to be more patient. :) It all looks lovely!

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    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Melinda! We live in an awesome area for Craigslist — however, I’m pretty diligent with my searching. I usually have a short list of things I’m looking to find and I do a quick search for 5 minutes or so almost every night. This way, I can jump on any new deals right away!

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  2. Sheri

    01/16/2014

    Love the room. If Nora won’t sleep there, give me a call and I will sleep there! It is so inviting! I love the picture of Nora with her babies all in bed.

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  3. Kristen @ Joyfullythriving

    01/16/2014

    Another room well done! The white looks very nice. I had forgotten how purple your walls were! Yikes. Why do people paint like that? I can only imagine how much primer and paint it took to get the walls looking nice and clean. I hope Nora enjoys staying in her lovely room (and bed!) soon…and for years to come!

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  4. Julia K

    01/16/2014

    Another greate “dekker-ation” project. Well done guys !

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  5. LJ

    01/16/2014

    Love your style, the room looks great! Just like Nena said – “super cute!!”. Can’t tell from your pictures but if you haven’t already I would recommend securing the dresser/armoire to the wall. It might be something tempting to climb up or into…there have been many tragic accidents involving furniture falling on small children so feel compelled to pass that on –
    http://www.meghanshope.org/

    Such an exciting time, sending lots of happy wishes your way!

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  6. Diana from SC

    01/16/2014

    Ok, are you displaying pictures using clothes pins attached to a board in Nora’s room? Tried searching for the diy on your site but could not find it. Think that would be a neat way to change out pictures. I really enjoy your blogspot and the projects you all do. Enjoy the stories and pictures of Nora.

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    Andrea Reply:

    Yes :) It should pop up right away if you search for “photo display” or anything “photo” related — that’s weird! Anyway, here’s the link to the DIY project — it was SOOOO easy and free :)

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    Diana from SC Reply:

    I found it….just needed to get the words in the correct order. Thanks,

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  7. Tonya

    01/16/2014

    I absolutely love Nora’s new bedroom. I think you did a terrific job!

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  8. Dana

    01/16/2014

    Very cute, I love the bedding! And you are braver than I am to put such a light-colored carpet in a kiddo’s room…

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  9. Jeanine

    01/17/2014

    Beautiful room! We painted our bonus room with sloped walls all white as well, and it really does look so much better than colored walls with a white ceiling, just a nice cohesive look. Praying for a good night’s sleep for all! I have to tell you our story though. Our master is on the main floor with all other bedrooms upstairs, and our daughter is 10 years younger than her three brothers. For the life of us, we couldn’t get her to sleep in her room by herself once she was out of her crib and could leave her room. She ended up sleeping in a recliner in our room for ten years (I know!) We comforted ourselves with the knowledge that if she had still been in Vietnam, she would have probably been sleeping in a room the size of our bedroom with her whole family! The moral of the story is don’t put a nice comfortable chair in your room! However, I would encourage you not to die on this hill. Maybe meet Nora halfway (not literally), and let her come down (hopefully quietly) if she wakes up in the middle of the night and sleep on the couch in the living room. I’m afraid she may grow to resent the little brother who will soon be sleeping in her room if you don’t give her options to sleep closer to you.
    The other thing I would recommend is the book, “Spirit Led Parenting” by Megan Tietz and Laura Oyer (sp?). Hope this helps. I do pray that you all get the rest you need!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Jeanine!
    I guess I should have clarified — Nora LOVES her room and loves being in her room. She has never expressed desire to go back to her “old room” and is excited to get the “old room” ready for baby brother. She thinks it’s super cool that she has a new big-girl room with all her new stuff and her new bed.

    The issue with sleeping is not the new room — just sleeping in general :) She NEVER sleeps… serious! She has never slept through the night once, she stopped sleeping in her crib when she was only 6 months old, she wakes up constantly all night long, etc. etc. We’ve been to therapy, many different doctors, tried many different natural and medical options that were “sure” to work… but nothing.

    Basically the ONLY way she will stay sleeping is if either Dave or I sleep in her bed with her ALL night long — and we’re to the point that we just won’t do that anymore. I could care less if she sleeps on the couch, on a mattress in our room, in her own room, where ever – I just don’t want to have to sleep WITH her squirmy body next to me waking me up all night long :)

    Oh, and yes, I’ve totally read the Spirit Led Parenting book. It’s actually the ONLY parenting book that even remotely resonated with me — and the only one I’d ever recommend to anyone else too! Love it!

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  10. Sandy

    01/17/2014

    She’s one lucky little girl.

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  11. Alissa

    01/17/2014

    Very cute room and VERY cute Nora! She is a blessed little girl! White is almost more fun than color because you can change themes without repainting! Even though we live 1,000 miles apart, I think of you often when our (almost) 3 year old crawls in bed with us in the middle of the night because of whatever reason he won’t sleep without one of us beside him. (and I just leave him there and sleep on the couch bc {yawn} it’s not worth the battle!) This actually doesn’t happen more than once a week, for which I am thankful, but I think of you all that deal with it on a nightly basis! Bless your heart!! It IS hard and restless and not always easy to keep the right perspective. But every once in awhile I think of the day he’ll be on his own and it makes the nights not quite as bad. (but they don’t get any shorter!!) Hang in there! I pray God will give you the strength you need to face the challenges of the day and night! You have the most important job in the world!! :)

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  12. Kim

    01/23/2014

    I love the room! The one thing I noticed was there aren’t curtains. The reason I noticed is because when we moved our 3 young girls to an upstairs bonus room, they were bothered by the dark windows at night being uncovered. I bought curtains and it wasn’t an issue. Not sure if that would help in your situation, but maybe it’s worth a shot? Good luck with Blessing #2 :)

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Hey Kim,
    You probably just missed it — but I mentioned the cordless cellular black-out shades in the cost break-down. I never put curtains up in any of our windows because I don’t like curtains :) We use the black-out shades for all our bedroom windows and the bedrooms are literally PITCH BLACK even in the middle of the day.

    Oh, if only Nora’s sleeping issues were that simple of a fix!

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    Kim Reply:

    I did miss it :( Sorry I couldn’t be of any help! Hope things are good on your side of the state – I live in Saginaw Bay region and I love the snow, just wish it was warmer for the kids to go play in it :)

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  13. Cara

    02/27/2014

    Where did you get your carpet from and do you know the name of it? Thanks!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    The carpet was from Advanced Interiors in Jenison, MI (not sure if you’re from West MI or not). The name of it is Maybrook Shell

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  14. DanielleD

    08/08/2014

    How have I just found your wonderful blog? I just subscribed & love your style :) I’m getting ready to start my daughter’s Big Girl room, could you tell me who made this adorable bedding ? Maybe I can find something similar if I can search by the company. Thanks

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Danielle — so glad you “found me” and thanks for subscribing!

    The bedding we got for Nora’s room was from Craigslist, but it was originally from Kohl’s but I can’t find it on their website anymore. Their is a tag on it that says “Big Believers” but I’m not positive that’s the brand name. Sorry, that’s all I know!

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