Monday, February 10, 2014

Update on the nursery

The last few days I've been feeling so heavy and tired so I've only been able to do light projects around the nursery. Two things that I've completed are artwork above the diaper changing dresser and DIY valance/curtains.

The dresser use to sit where Emily's toddler bed is now but have moved it next to her bed instead for more room. The space above it felt a little boring so I added some free artwork that I made with some left over craft/metallic paper. I did have to buy two new frames from Aaron's brothers for $25 total. They had a buy one get one for one penny deal. I already had one frame so I only needed two more to complete the space.

Here is a better angle without so much glare. We have a really big and bright window in that room so its so hard to take pictures from certain angles. The colors are a lot lighter in person. The pink is almost a pale pastel pink. The letters are a medium brown color.

I also wanted to mention a little about the brown plastic weave basket below that I got at Homedepot for $9. Its a great size for baby/toddler clothes and plastic making it so easy to maintain. Our old basket was fabric and that didn't last very long. Then I had a cardboard box there for a very long time because I couldn't find anything that I really wanted to buy. Finally that wall is complete. Dresser was a DIY project a long time ago.

Next project that almost had Binh and I end up in a divorce was the DIY valance/curtains. Long story short, I bought two cheap rods for $3 each (here's the link) and Binh couldn't hang them up. Finally my dad hung them up which is probably better since it took him under 20 minutes to hang both up. 

Here are some terrible pictures. Its just impossible to take pictures of a large window with the sun in the background. 

In this picture you can see the Agen chair from Ikea that I just bought for the nursery. The chair is the perfect size for the room, super light so I can move it around, and very affordable at only $35. I still need to make a cushion for it with some left over brown fabric but that will be for another day.

Here's the view I get from outside of the living room. I'm slowly injecting pops of pink in the nursery. The main colors are pale gray, robins egg blue, brown, with bits of light pink. With Emily being the first girl, everything was pink everywhere so I think I got a little bored of seeing pink everywhere. This time around, I wanted more gender neutral colors.

Total cost to make and hang the valance and curtains were about $40. Not super cheap but I want to mention that our ceiling height is not standard. In order to hang curtains from the top of window to the floor it would take 108 inch curtains which are hard to come across and very expensive. Plus I also hung the valance and curtains for very cheap ($6 total). Considering real curtain rods alone usually cost $25+.

First I found some cheap white faux silk curtains at DD's discounts for $10 a pair. I picked up two. One for curtains and one for the valance. I had one panel left over so I made Emily's DIY headboard/bumper.

List of other supplies needed but not pictured here are cheap dollarstore white cardboard ($1 for two boards, I used three), light pink pom pom trim from Joanns for $5 with 40% coupon, pink and white polka dot ribbon to make three little bows, and two cheap $3 curtain rods from home depot (link).


1. First I cut out a template using regular paper taped together. I didn't know what design I wanted so I just took a large round lamp shade and make half circles and taped them together. Then I folded one curtain panel in half lengthwise and traced my template over it. Trim off the extra and stitch the fabric together and flipped it over. 

2. I used the same paper template as above and cut the dollarstore cardboard for the same shape. Set aside.

3. I added pom pom trim to the bottom and bows to the top for interest.  Here it is without the bows and no cardboard backing. When I hung it up I realized that the white fabric was too light and I would be able to see the second curtain rod if I hung it across too low. Hence I came up with the white cardboard backing from Dollartree. It was a great idea because it made the whole valance look sturdier and have more shape.

4. Stitch the cardboard together with the valance. Make sure to leave about one inch of cardboard sticking out on top. The extra cardboard will be folded down and taped onto the rod. See next step.

5. Hang the valance up with clear packing tape. LOL. Since the backing was cardboard and the rod was metal, I discovered that tape worked well to keep them up.

6. Hang the second curtain rod right above the bottom of the valance. I only had to buy basic 85 inch panels to complete this project so that saved me a lot of money.

7. Extra step: I lined my curtains with some ikea twin flat sheets. Sheets were $4 each. Its so hard to find light blocking white curtains but lucky we have the blinds and the curtains are lined so it helps a lot. When the curtains are pulled no sun will touch my babies but a little light still comes through.

8. Since I lined the curtains I decided to redo the bottom hem because it was only two inches tall and I like 4 inch for a more custom look. Thats just me and I'm sure no one will notice but I like it better.

Here are two updated pictures from night time. Colors are way off but you can see the curtains better. 

Other pending nursery projects include DIY canopy for Emily's big girl bed, artwork above Kaley's crib, and DIY butterfly mobile.

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