Some nesting periods start rather mildly, with the washing of baby clothes and assembling of cribs.
Others are a little more forceful, with packing up your bedroom and your nursery and informing your husband that you’re ready to switch the two rooms (at about 5:00 in the afternoon, when you ought to be getting dinner ready instead.)
The room that had been Elvie and Eldore’s shared nursery is the smallest bedroom in the house–it’s about 10 x 12, I think. I don’t have any pictures of it because I couldn’t ever properly finish it. There really wasn’t room in there for their furniture, and because I never exactly cleaned out the closet from our move, I didn’t have a place to put extra things…it was a veritable mess in there.
So we swapped with them–now their furniture fits nicely in the largest bedroom (which had always been my parents’ room when I was growing up and so naturally became our room when we moved.) And we stuffed our queen-sized bed into the room (a king would never fit in there–thank goodness I talked Jeremy into getting rid of our old bed.) And it was actually very cozy and comfortable, despite the size.
not quite good enough
The tough thing for me, though, was that I felt like the room was still the nursery with our bed shoved in it. There wasn’t really anything that made it feel like “ours”. It was painted a great neutral color (my favorite Daydream Haze from Valspar, which isn’t sold by swatch anymore but should still be in their computer system should you like to ask for it.) So it wasn’t that it felt especially childish. It was just still their room in my mind.
To capitalize on the small and cozy nature of the room, I had hopes of painting it a dark charcoal grey, but balked at the idea of having to buy paint. Now, I like to paint. A lot. But I did not want to buy paint. I don’t know, call it a crazy pregnancy thing.
I also wanted to move the bed to a different wall, which made coming in the doorway feel a little more cramped but gave the closet some breathing room, as the bed was pushed very close to it. I knew I wanted to put Beatrice’s bassinet in the closet, rather than trying to squeeze around it someplace else in the room. So I made Jeremy come move the rug for me, and then pushed the bed around myself to the other wall.
I found this image on Pinterest and really loved the look of this dotted wallpaper. Wallpaper is so expensive, though! But those dots looked easy. I could do that, right…?
I had some black chalk paint I was using for another project and decided to give the dots a try. I actually tried first in the (new) nursery with a paintbrush, but that did NOT work. I wiped the paint off before it dried, and no one was the wiser (except for Elvie and Eldore, who were watching me mutter under my breath.) For my second try, I used a Q-Tip and, feeling slightly more confident for the change, started in on new master bedroom.
The first tiny bit took me an hour to do. I kept stepping back, eyeballing it, trying to figure how to do the pattern correctly. That’s all I had time for that day, and I had to stop; that night while we were in bed, Jeremy peered at the wall and asked, “…Did you paint something, or is that mold?” Not a very good start, I guess.
The next section was much faster, and the next one faster than that. I estimate that the first full wall took me probably five hours to do, and then the rest of the room probably took about five hours total. I completed the task while listening to sermons by N. T. Wright, interviews with Jordan Peterson, and podcasts from Schole Sisters and The Circe Institute. I used many, many Q-Tips.
I started each segment of the pattern as one dot with a series of gradually larger U’s underneath it. At first I tried to kind of fan the dots out (if you look at the picture of the first section I did, you can see how the dots spread out as the U’s get bigger) but that didn’t give the best looking pattern. After that I kept the dots close, not spreading them out. I tried to change the cotton swabs fairly frequently as well, to keep a neater and rounder dot.
the finished product
My goal was to not feel like I was sleeping in my kids’ old room, and for half of a container of chalk paint (about $2.50), some Q-Tips, and about ten hours of “dotting”, I achieved that goal.
Everything else in the room are things we already had. I swiped the curtains from our old room, dug art out of the basement, and took our throw pillows back from the boys’ room. Oh, and cleaned off the dressers. That helped a lot!
I’m a pattern person and the dots are right up my alley. I’m glad I avoided having to spend hundreds of dollars on wallpaper (though it probably would have gone up much more quickly.) Our tiny master bedroom really feels like ours to me. Now for the next project: cleaning out the closet for the new baby!