Friday, January 21, 2011

Hello, Playroom! I love you.

After many months of work, I am happy to announce our playroom is finally finished. Let's take a look at where we came from: the dated, dingy unused upstairs bedroom that nobody spent any time in.


It needed major brightening. When I was hunting around for the before pics for this post, I realize they were taken in AUGUST. Wow, this transformation has taken quite a long time. Such is life with a toddler (or ridiculous self-imposed gift-making challenges).


First things first, that blue shag carpet had to go. To replace it, I found three by three foot carpet tiles at a home discount store for a grand total of $233 and installed them myself.

I wanted the new space to be colorful, but the walls and floor needed to remain neutral so the space could function as a kid or adult bedroom in the coming years if necessary (without repainting). That said, all of the color had to come in through artwork and toys.

This second-floor room gets a fair amount of natural light, and I envisioned creating a bright white airy space. I painted the panelled walls Delicate White by Olympic in eggshell and used the same shade for the moulding and doors in semi-gloss.

This room is equal parts new, repurposed and handmade. In the new column, we have the carpet, the couch and a handful of smaller items. I was able to repurpose many items we already owned, like the former TV stand that is now toy storage, the play table and the vintage strawberry toy box (mine when I was a kid!), and I made most of the artwork myself.

Based on my choice of the beige/golden carpet, I derived a bit of color inspiration from this print I bought for Elise shortly after she was born. Her bedroom doesn't have a lot of pink. When I was designing her nursery, I didn't want to fall into the pink PINK pink.

But as time progressed, I began to think that the exclusion of pink was probably just as unhealthy as the overload of pink. Thus the pinkish color scheme was hatched with the addition of red to temper it a little.

Beyond the carpet and the couch, this room didn't cost much at all. I wasn't really trying to meet any sort of budget, but as always I tried to keep purchases cheap and to a minimum. Excluding the carpet ($233) and the couch ($425), all the extras cost around $250 total. That includes new window shades, the top-of-the-stairs metal baby gate, all the artwork and paint. Not too bad.

I am totally in love with this room. It's so happy! Kid rooms are so much fun to do.

You can read all about the progress of the playroom here. I'll have posts about some of the artwork and details in the next week or two (or three), but if there's something specific you want to know about, please let me know in the comments.

Projects shown in above photos:

Vintage yard stick growth chart
Weathered E wall art
Back-painted glass picture frame
Mod Podged bunnies
Colorful couch pillows
Playroom pillow do-over
$2 wagon makeover

The rest of the playroom projects posted since this original post (added 02/13/2011):

"I Like You. You're Silly." paintings
Ugly Craft Makeover: Birdie cutout
Festive paper scrap garland
Heart cutout wall art
Mod Podged clipboards for displaying artwork
Repainted end table
Chalkboard play table
Toy Storage
Linked to: Thrifty Decor Chick's Before & After Party


  1. I love it!!! I may have a piece of art that you'd like!

  2. I love your play room! It's so fun and sweet! I just love all the cool things you have on the walls :) When we have kids and our own house one day I would love to do something like this!

  3. Its awesome. I really love how the banner? really adds a punch of color. Looks good on your blog banner as well!

  4. Thanks for the nice comments, everyone!

  5. Can you tell me where the couch is from? I really love it!

  6. I just clicked over to another post and saw you found it on Beautiful room!!

  7. I am a little couch obsessed! Do you remember the brand or style name? I am just wondering it may be available elsewhere.

  8. Hi Kelsea, it's the Charcoal Brooks Sofa but it appears to be sold out on I have seen products become available again on overstock, so maybe just wait it out if it's really something you want.

    As the reviews state, it is very firm, but I find it comfortable and am happy with the purchase.

  9. Where did you get the Strawberry toy chest/bin? I had one like that as a kid and I just got a huge memory flash back!

  10. Hi Andrea, the strawberry was mine when I was a kid. My grandma held onto it and I was so thankful she did! My brother and I would take turns hiding in it and then pop out the top!

  11. Thanks Erin, I guess I'll have a new quest to find one on ebay :).

  12. Love the banner/garland, can you tell what it's made from or how you did it. It adds a great punch of color. Cheers

  13. Love the room can you tell me where you got the signs I like you, your silly?

  14. Hi Tracy,

    Thanks! I painted the I like you signs myself. It's pretty easy to do, if you want to give it a shot.

    I created a free printable based on them too.

  15. Did you make the little wooden barn that is attached to the wall (holding the miniature animals?) I love it and would love to see a post about making it.

    1. Sorry, I did not make it. It was a lucky $3 thrift find, probably originally intended for country knick knacks. I see this sort of thing a lot, but haven't come across any other barns. Maybe keep a lookout for something like it?


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