Carnival Dreams

A couple of years ago I bookmarked this gorgeous wall paper from Catherine Martin for a friend of mine who is in love with all things Circus/Carnival.  My guess is, if you have been hanging around shelter and design blogs for a while, you’ve been there, seen this and most likely bought the T-shirt.

Don’t get me wrong…it is still cute and I still lurve it more than life itself…but lately I’ve been on a more sophisticated nursery design kick.  So when I saw these ABSOLUTELY-GORGEOUS-CARNIVAL-PRINTS from Irene Suchocki at Eye Poetry, I just knew I had to make an inspiration board for a sophisticated, carnival nursery.

Here’s my take on the sophisticated, carnival nursery (PS – you can click to make it larger)…

As a base for the room I would totally use FLOR’s Round Button tiles in Red.  Other ‘base pieces’ include the Skylar Crib from Pottery Barn Kids in white/espresso, a really fun Eames Rocking chair like this red and white one found at Alibaba and Heellloooooooo-lover…this amazing, mirrored glass dresser from Anthropologie.  For a touch of whimsy, I would do an installation of paper lantern shaped spheres like these from Martha Stewart…but I would add in some other elements like this fun, vintage style hot air balloon from Loopy Mango.  I also fell in love with this little, silver elephant and think it would look amazing on a bookshelf.

After I made this collage I found the perfect piece to tie it all together.  Imagine the crib against the wall with the gorgeous prints above the crib and this awesome piece from Urban Outfitters.

I know, I know…it isn’t that practical to have a large, marquee light above an infant’s crib…but I still like it and I think it takes this room to the next level.

What’s your favorite carnival element?

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Getting Something Off My Chest

We had a gorgeous, antique chest in our living room that both my husband and I loved.  It was gorgeous and old and had tons of character and was multi-functional; acting as both much needed storage and extra seating space.

So what happened to it?  Well, it got moved upstairs to our bedroom when we put up our Christmas tree this year.  And it just so happens that my dorm-room-grandma-chic-minimalist husband who would live with just a rocking chair and a bed pushed up against the wall if he had his druthers, LOVES the chest up in our bedroom at the foot of our bed.  Not one to argue the one time a year my husband actually makes a design decision that I also love, I have acquiesced and the chest is now permanently staying in the bedroom.

Of course, that means that we have a gaping need for a new chest in our living room.  As previously mentioned, it not only acts as extra seating but is instrumental in corralling the mess of toys our son has collected over the short 18 months of his life.

We did some online searching last night to look for a bench and didn't really see anything that struck our fancy…then we remembered to check out the "kid" sites for all of our old favorites: Pottery Barn Kids, RH Baby and Child, Land of Nod, etc…and while we saw a couple of options that would work great, I think we both were still holding out for the possibility of finding something with a little bit more character.

 

 (above – from RH Baby and Child and Pottery Barn Kids, respectively)

Ever the armchair shoppers, we checked out eBay and Craigslist to no avail…until this morning when I remembered my good friend Etsy.  WHY do I always go there last?  Just one quick search brought up so many beautiful, original options.  Like this one from Etsy seller Todd Manring.  The trunk is made from reclaimed barnwood and he will customize it with any stenciling you want.

 Also from Todd are these beautiful 22x22x22 cubes.  These would be much more versatile in the space and could potentially fit around our bay window like faux banquet seating.

 

Of course, there is no shortage of cedar chests on Etsy, but this one from TNGWoodcrafters is particularly pretty.

 

I also really liked this coffee table option from Modern Rust.  I particularly appreciate that you can use the flip up storage for items that you don't use that often, and then potentially store baskets underneath for easier access storage.

 

Modern Rust also makes this versatile storage bench that we could use at the foot of our bed and potentially move the original chest back downstairs.

 

I was so pleased (as always) to find so many great options on Etsy.  It's a little bit like having a flea market with the best hours and easiest parking ever!

What was your latest Etsy purchase?  And while I'm asking questions…am I the only one with a husband that actually cares about how the house is furnished?

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