Because our married children live nearby, I knew a well equipped nursery would make their frequent visits with grandbabies more enjoyable. So years before they were born, which happened in typically rapid fire succession, I began collecting items for the room I had dedicated as the grandchildren’s nursery. The beloved, old, caneback rocker is the same one that rocked my daughter’s godmother, then my two babies. It was just waiting to come out of retirement to rock yet again.
Many years ago, Suzanne Sawko and I went on a fabulous road trip to the midwest, ostensibly to visit old college friends. From Florida, we drove back roads all the way and found antique shops that were heavily stocked and rarely shopped. What treasures we found!
We also hit barn sales, which is where I bought the vintage 1920’s sketch of a baby gazing at a bee. Our home was built in 1926 so its vintage gave instant appeal, but it is charming irrespective of its time frame. Another find was the hanging blue lamp which came from a very old farmhouse in Illinois. With all of our purchases, Suzanne’s van was loaded to the roof. When we headed back to Florida, we could not have squeezed in a box of toothpicks.
Yellow and blue seemed to be a pleasing and gender neutral color scheme so that was my starting point. The bluebird border really spoke to me, so the rest of the room was built around the bird theme, again a gender neutral focus.
When we knew our first grandchild, Laurel, was on her way, I began working on the nursery in earnest, gathering furniture, beginning with the essential crib. Ours is a no frills basic model, though it does have an under bed drawer which is very useful for storage of extra bedding.
For a change table, my handy husband converted an old computer desk. He attached a tray he built for the contour change pad. The sliding keyboard shelf is perfect for easy access to diapers and baby wipes. To the right, a white wicker basket lined with blue gingham hangs on the wall. It holds a variety of diaper rash creams and other baby lotions.
The dresser is stocked with pajamas, extra clothes for unplanned sleepovers, outgrown clothes awaiting new cousin owners, and clothes too large for today. Antique bonnets are displayed on bonnet stands.
There are too many items of sewing interest to discuss in one post. So I will detail them in subsequent posts, individually, with better photos. I am eager to tell you about the gingham dog and calico cat quilt hanging from the rack (which reader Millie Harvey is working on right now), the change table pad covers, the antique bassinet skirt window valance, vintage baby dresses on the twig swags, the story stool, child size rocker, custom crib sheets, etc. I hope you will find something of use or interest for another nursery.
Meanwhile, it would be wonderful to hear about other nurseries and what equipment was deemed essential, what items have been re-purposed for baby use, what items you have sewn. Please share with us.