For several years, my mom and I have tossed around the idea of starting a home decorating business. Decorating is something we both love to do, and what we love even more than transforming our own homes is to help someone else work out their decorating kinks. But going into business with family?
I think that was the holdup for both of us. Did we really want to put up with each other's quirks?
Well, after having my mom living in our house for four weeks before, during, and after Jude was born, the answer is "yes." We work well together, and are close enough to tell each other our real opinion . . . if they differ we let each other know, and then work it out.
Coinciding with our decision to go ahead with our decorating business was an opportunity for me to makeover the current "Infant Crying Room" at church. My proposal was approved in mid-October and I picked up the church credit card and went to town! My right-hand man for the redesign? Mom!
I had taken a survey a few months earlier, and the general consensus was that people wanted a restful calm environment, with a preferred color palette of blues and greens . . . and maybe a little bit of an ocean element.
The before . . .
The current crying room was not very functional, with only two chairs, both of which were not very user friendly for nursing an infant.
Priority #1, good seating area that met the needs of nursing mothers. This was to include privacy for those that desire it in a room that is the walk-thru to the sound booth.
Priority #2 was to lighten the space up overall. There is a LOT of dark trim in the room that could not be painted, but the amount of contrast going on was not restful.
Priority #3 was light and sound control. The only light source in the room was an ancient ceiling light, and while there was a speaker for listening to the service, there was no volume control.
After spending a few weeks ordering products online, maxing out my resources in Auburn and South Portland, and sewing up a storm, today was the day! A great bunch of folks volunteered to come bring all the bits and pieces from my house to the church, put the furniture all together, and move it all into the room. Below you can see the final results . . .
Priority #1, a seating area with privacy! The new wooden changing table is not seen here, but is directly to my left from where I took the picture. Moving that made room for a seating area with a privacy screen on a wire that can be pulled across to close off the back two chairs.
The paint colors weren't a big change as it is still blue walls with white wainscotting, but it was freshened up with Benjamin Moore "Bali" on the walls and one shade lighter carried up onto the ceiling. The change to white wainscotting instead of ivory really brightened the room up. Also, the flat paint doesn't show the imperfections as the glossy did previously.
New to the room was a white ceiling fan and light combo (adjustable by remote control), as well as floor and table lamps. As for the sound, a volume dial was hooked up to the current speaker . . . Priority #3, check!
I purchased the fabric for the curtains from the Fabric Warehouse before I did anything else . . . I loved the stripe, and how well it worked with any color scheme. And Waverly fabric on sale for $4.98 a yard? Can't beat that deal!!!
I found the fabric for the pillows at the same store a week ago, and had to get it. It gives the pillows a custom look, but the total cost for all the fabric, lining, and thread was less than $100. Fabric panels from the local box store would have cost more, and would not have had the unique look.
I think my favorite thing about the window treatments is how painting the cornice box and hanging sheers along with the drapes completely minimizes the dark wood trim. Priority #2 addressed!
The sand dollar art was my nod to the ocean. The lines cut in the frames ($3 apiece at Christmas Tree Shop) mimic the lines of the wainscotting, and the green background repeats the green in the curtain stripe and rug. All I had to do was paint the glass green with paint I already had, and hot glue the sand dollars on . . . which I also already had!
Another piece that I found for the room was this mirror. When I found it at Home Goods, the finish was rustic wood, but a $3 can of spray paint worked it right into the decor. My favorite thing about it? The trim is made up of carved letters and numbers! A bit of whimsy for an infant room.
When the room was all put together and everyone else had gone home, I sat in the chair on the right, pulled the privacy screen across (I know, everyone was gone but I wanted to test it out!), and nursed Jude. We sat and relaxed for half an hour before going home, and let me tell you . . . it was good!
Special thanks to my mom, the other half of Inspired Interiors, for her help and encouragement. We're a good team, Mom!
Want to hear more about our decor and staging business? Check out our website here.
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