Wednesday, May 27, 2020

charley harper nursery

The nursery is ready for baby boy! Putting this together seemed to take FOREVER. With Dan and I working from home and having Mae at home full-time, there just aren't very many hours of the day to get things done around the house!

I knew that I wanted to incorporate some Charley Harper artwork/fabric into the nursery. (Probably before I knew I wanted a second kid.) I upholstered these valances in "Upside Downside" fabric featuring nuthatches and woodpeckers. Dan built the valances for me from pine 1x10s, and we followed this tutorial to upholster and hang them. I had BARELY enough fabric to cover both and ended with just a few square inches remaining. Fortunately, I was able to pattern-match even with my very limited fabric when sewing the seam at the center of each valance.

I painted the ceiling a bright white and the walls in Sherwin Williams Alpaca to coordinate with the valances. We put up a little piece of trim along the side of the room to separate the ceiling and wall. The rug is a bound piece of carpet (same as Mae's) ordered from a local flooring store. Behind the valances, I hung sheers for a bit of privacy and to match the other street-facing windows. We also hung black-out vinyl roll shades. This setup has worked well in Mae's room so far, so we copied it for this room. Don't my felt birds look perfect in this spot by the rocking chair??

Following a tutorial from We All Sew, I also made a little canvas throw pillow in this "Cardinal Stagger" print. The cover is removable with an invisible zipper, because I'm sure it's going to need washing at some point!

I was searching the internet for something fun and colorful to hang on the wall when I found this 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle featuring a Charley Harper line drawing. Mae and I had lots of fun assembling the puzzle together. I gave her little piles of matching pieces, and she was shockingly quick at putting them together! I ordered the custom-sized frame from Art To Frames, same place where got the frame for my Indiana watercolor.

I incorporated the colors from the puzzle into this Plaidish Quilt. I had the idea to make a plaid quilt a few years ago and was very excited to find that Kitchen Table Quilting had already done the hard work of designing a (free!) pattern. Obviously, I won't use the quilt in the crib, but it makes a soft, washable play-mat (and a fun room decoration).

I sized down the pattern, removing a couple rows and columns and cutting my shapes to 1.25", 3.25", and 4" instead of the sizes recommended by the pattern. The resulting quilt is about 36" x 50". I used Windham Fabrics Bedrock Collection ordered from Cali Quilt Co (same Etsy shop where I got the Kona solids for my Hold Tight Quilt) and Keepsake Quilting. I was again playing fabric-chicken here and ended with only tiny strips of some colors remaining from the fat quarters I ordered. It required lots of planning and left no room for error when cutting! Since a couple people asked after my last quilt post, yes I did pre-wash all the fabric before cutting and sewing (after serging the edges). Despite all the tiny pieces, this quilt top came together pretty quickly. I quilted it on my own machine with Hobbs 80/20 for the batting and a quilting cotton in the same cardinal print as the throw pillow for the backing. I swear by 505 basting spray. It's the fastest quilt basting method and the only one I've had good luck with keeping everything together snugly while I quilt. I also added a "Love, Mom" patch to the front with a little piece of leftover fabric from the nursery valances.

I knit this leafy baby blanket from Drops Cotton Merino in the colorway Pistachio. This is the same yarn I used for Mae's baby blanket, and it has held up well to lots of snuggling and several trips through the washing machine. This is my 3rd time knitting this pattern, and I still love it!

I also knit a little newborn hat to coordinate with Mae's. I used leftover Rowan Wool Cotton 4-ply in the colorways Sea and Dark Lime. Who knows if this baby will actually need a hat, being born during the peak of summer heat, but it was a quick little knit!

Finally, this room has no closet, so we installed a hanging rod into the nook next to the dormer window. Eventually I would consider adding doors to make a little closet, but for now I'll just enjoy looking at the cute baby clothes hanging here.

The nursery is ready but I still have lots to do to prepare for baby boy! Dan and I sorted through Mae's old clothes and washed all the bottle parts. We also got the infant car seat and swing put back together this week. I still need to stock the changing tables and wash a bunch of clothes. Less than 5 weeks until my due date!

Details for the leafy baby blanket and newborn hat available on my Ravelry page.

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