My house is quirky in a lot of ways. As we’ve gone room by room to fix up our 1900 home in Des Moines, IA, my husband Austin and I realized there are things that have to be left alone and loved as-is. One of the oddities is the small, 9×9-foot bedroom that has four doors and is the only access point into our largest bedroom. When we first toured the house, we saw its potential as a nursery someday, but could see it working well as my office for the first few years we lived there.
It was the only room in the house with wallpaper, thankfully, but that wallpaper was applied directly to the plaster walls so the process of removing it involved clothing steamers, plaster knives and getting the paper backing off bit by bit. My friend Layla and I spent a weekend in February in the humid, tiny room, prepping the space to be my office. I was traveling the next two weeks and Austin made it his goal to have the space ready for me to set up as my office once I got back.
He patched the plaster in places that needed it, sanded and primed. While I was away, Austin put up crown molding and then asked me for paint colors. Since a lot of the larger spaces in our house had gotten the white wall with white trim treatment, I wanted to be bolder with this space. I chose a terra-cotta and a creamy peach to be color-blocked on the walls. By the time I returned from my work trips in early March, I was able to get settled into my new office. A week later, I found out I was pregnant.
Since I was early in my pregnancy, I got to enjoy the space as my office for a few months but as pieces of furniture for the baby started to arrive, we began to transition the space into the nursery. Several people asked us what the theme for the nursery was going to be and really, we were just excited that the main design element would be the modern color-blocked walls. A bookshelf I already had with white metal sides and light wood shelves helped direct the furniture style but other than those elements, there’s not much of a theme. It’s a beautiful space and I think I love being in it even more than if it had a traditional nursery theme because the space was originally designed to inspire my own creativity. Our little girl is due in a week and I hope that as she gets older, she loves the fun walls as much as I do. —Lauren
Photography by Austin Day
Image Above: Thankfully this room didn’t have much wrong with it when we moved in. The peeling corners of the textured wallpaper made me want to rip it down before turning the space into my office. It was more work than I expected since the backing was well glued. Spending the time transforming the walls last winter made for easy work when it was time to transition the space into the nursery this fall.