In an effort to make sure Little Man didn’t feel like I had ripped him from the coziness of his nursery and crib. We decided to implement Operation Big Boy Room. I figured if I could make his new room really exciting and “cool” (in a 2 year old’s eyes) he may not resent the arrival of his baby brother. My first challenge was to come up with a “theme”. Now when thinking about your toddler’s room theme you are really thinking, “what can I walk in and see over and over again that I am going to be able to tolerate?” For me that elimated any “character” themed room. I just didn’t think I could walk in every monrning at 6:00 a.m. to be greeted by Elmo’s sunny face day (that automatically causes that annoying high pitched laugh to run through my head without warning) – that would have ended at some point with a sledge hammer hole in our wall, or at least visions of that. Aside from avoiding violence, I wanted it to be a room that could grow with him and would not need an overhaul every 6 months as his obsessions changed.
I first decided on a Pottery Barn quilt that was themeless itself that I could use throughout his childhood after all, Pottery Barn antyhing is more of an investment than a purchase. I chose one that had bold primary colors (orange, lime green, blue) and was a patchwork variety and built the rest of the room around the quilt. We chose the Madras pattern. http://www.potterybarnkids.com/products/madras-toddler-bedding-blue/?pkey=btoddler-bedding. Then I simply matched up some pillows from varoius home stores.
I thought the alphabet was a theme I could live with on a daily basis, after all I already live with the alphabet as an intergral part of my daily life. I also thought it would be fun for him. As an added bonus (that I would love to take credit for but simply can’t because it is an uninteded bonus) I have started using it to teach Little Man the alphabet. Every night we go over the letters he has learned in pre-school and he can point them out to me. We use the colors of the letters to talk about and learn colors as well. I ordered the letters from Rustic Pines Designs, http://www.etsy.com/listing/152228476/wooden-alphabet-letters-set-unfinished?ref=shop_home_active&ga_search_query=alphabet. They arrived in about 10-14 days and as a warning: they are not painted when they arrive. I ended up purchasing the matching paint colors from Home Depot and purchased them in the small sample size containers. Each letter needed 2 coats. I laid the letters out to decide which letter would be which color to ensure I didn’t have the same color side by side.
Hanging the letters was a challenge. I had to wrangle hubby into helping with this project and we made sure we saved it for a time when Little Man was enjoying QT with his grandparents. After all this involved math and I needed my whole brain for that. We taped off a block over the bed that was the size we wanted the project to be and I started placing letters. Since the letters are different sizes I did not use exact measurement to make them “look” the way I wanted. It was more of a trial and error process. I used the suggested foam mounting tape to hang them and was able to move them around as needed to get the exact look I wanted. This mounting method has proved successful as none of them have bounced off the wall onto Little Man’s head in the middle of the night.
We have some other inspired additions to his room that I will include in coming posts; stay tuned so you can see the final product. Here’s a picture of the alphabet collage. (Note: The D, N, button O, R and X are painted with a stain not paint to give them a rustic look.)