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Noah’s Nautical Nursery


This nursery was designed for my son Noah. His sister had this room and all its furniture first (I have a project here called Little P's nursery where you can see it). I decided to use all the same stuff but change it with a new color scheme and aesthetic.

Design Inspiration

My inspiration for this nautical nursery was to create a nautical theme without using the traditional colors of Navy and Red. I wanted something bright and unexpected that would also go with the turquoise wall color.

Decorating Style

My decorating style is's vintage meets color meets modern. A classic mixer-upper!

Project Details

The first item I decided on was the roman shades. I chose a sort of preppy yachting stripe but in a lime green. I ordered the fabric and had them made by Windows by Melissa; The rest of the room design evolved around those shades; since they are a focal point. I then chose the rust-orange striped rug (Dwell Studio) to contrast the shades. I knew the patterns were very strong so I decided to go with solid colors for the crib, changing pad, and glider.

Lastly, we chose the accessories that went on the walls to give it the nautical and preppy touches. Chris caught the Dolphin fish hanging over the crib in Bermuda 24 years ago. It's been hanging in his parents' house in his original bedroom so we reclaimed it and put it here. Don't worry, it's secured very tightly and expertly! We then found buoys, a life preserver, a ship steering wheel and a cool seagull hand-screenprinted poster by Wayne Pate. The green whale decal completes the look. I tried to keep the accessories to the orange and green theme where possible. To add interest between the windows, I found some white wooden letters for Noah's initials at the craft store. I spray painted them with a glossy pumpkin orange color. I suppose they add a preppy factor to the space? I'm not very preppy so it's hard to say!

I needed a nightlight of some sort and I remembered my parents had a light-up globe for us kids while growing up. Luckily, they still had it stored away! It was just what I needed to fill the space in the corner under the whale to add some interest. At night, it adds a low peaceful glow. Perfect for feedings and diaper changes without being too bright!

I thought there was a lot of white going on in the space. I wanted to add a more nautical dark wood color here and there…evoking an old fashioned ship. The steering wheel was a start. So I added a dark basket hamper and found a matching magazine holder to use a trash can. The lamp and dark wooden base once belonged to Chris' beloved grandmother. I added a new shade and lined it with some green ribbon decorative tape (for interest).

The rocker/glider decision was tough. I wanted lime green. But most places didn't have one that was affordable to us. But I didn't want a neutral color like most chairs come in. So, we went with orange in an affordable style. I was disappointed to find, when the chair finally arrived, that the white piping it was supposed to have was also orange. Oh well. I didn't want to send it back and wait another 2 months for it to be fixed so we're living with a solid orange chair. No biggie, I suppose. Sigh. The white piping would have added that preppy edge I wanted. Hmph. I added a lime green pillow to break up all that orange. It's a comfy spot for feeding, reading and snuggling and that's what I care about most after all.

Wall color: #618 Benjamin Moore "Robin's Nest" (we painted in 2008, so I don't know if it's part of their program now?)
Crib: Oeuf (we got it as a gift from my in-laws when our first little one was born)
Dresser: IKEA Malm Dresser (we covered the drawers in a natural seagrass wallpaper I scoured online for. Can't remember the source for the wallpaper now though! sorry)
Bookcase unit: IKEA Expedit
Glider: Buy Buy Baby
Roman Shades: Windows by Melissa, custom creation (she was great to work with!)
Striped Rug: Rosenberry Rooms
Changing Pad cover: Buy Buy Baby

Crib Bedding: Carousel Designs (they make custom crib bedding and you can choose any combinations of things! Love the website and the swatch came within 2 days!)
Toys in Crib: Both the Fox (the large version) and the Monkey rattle came from Bla Bla.
Willow Hamper and Magazine Holder: Pier One
Light up Globe: Storage at my parents' house. It's from my childhood, so all kinds of countries are on there that don't exist anymore. U.S.S.R?
Whale Decal: Little Lion Studio

Life Preserver: Nautical Decor Store
Ship Steering Wheel: Nautical Decor Store
Dolphin Fish: Chris caught this Dolphin fish in Bermuda 24 years ago now
Seagull Screenprinted Poster: by Wayne Pate

Buoys hanging in corner: Nautical Decor Store
Wooden Initials on Wall: Michael's Crafts
Lamp: Family heirloom, shade is from the craft store and the ribbon tape is by the Martha Stewart line at Michael's crafts
Toys on Bookcase: Blue knitted bird rattle: Bla Bla, Little green car and little red fox pull toy: Grasshopper store

Favorite Items

My favorite item in the room would have to be the big green whale decal by Little Lion Studio. So fun!


Choose your wall color and then 2 more accent colors that work with it and with each other. If you have a favorite item in the room (artwork? Crib design style?) to be the anchor, you can base the rest of your design around it according to look, feel, and color.