Playful Den Nursery

Playful Den Nursery

It’s Playtime

Play expert and mother of three Emma Worrollo has a runaway success with ‘The Playful Den’ and shares advice for bringing fun into the nursery.

 

Emma is a parenting a goddess. Big statement you might think but she is a Play Expert which means she is a parenting goddess simple! All kid’s need is safety, love and playfulness in their lives. If you tick the first two boxes but struggle with the third, then you need to follow her and check out her blog The Playful Den. She runs her own business with offices in London and New York, mother to two fun loving kids and one gorgeous baby boy Scout.

I could easily go way off topic with Emma and dive into building a business, parenting, home décor, moving near the beach, being a mermaid and more. But I will focus on why you are reading this; we want to hear about her nursery design and maybe some newborn parenting advise for good measure. 

RB – When you found out you were expecting Scout, how long was it before your thoughts turned to the nursery?

EW – About 10 seconds because I love a room project, haha. But in reality, it wasn’t until I was about 7 months along before making any proper plans or purchases (I think it took me that long for me to believe we were having a third baby!)

RB – Is the nursery you have now what you first imagined or did you make some changes along the way?

EW – It’s quite different, but then I expect that. I am an ideas person and usually tend to have too many ideas in my head. I need to go through a process of sifting through them until I find the one that’s really singing to me. At first I had this obsession with the colours of the Fruit Salad sweets from a pick “n” mix, I really thought those would be the final colours, but they’re now not in the scheme at all. The room did however end up being inspired by the aesthetic of candy shops, so that must have taken there. That’s what’s cool about following your curiosity; you end up in the right place eventually.

RB How does Scout’s nursery compare to Phoenix’s?

EW – We were in a rental when Phoenix was born so we didn’t really do anything other than buy furniture and put prints up as it was a temporary flat. 9 years later settled in our home and more experienced, when designing Scout’s room I was really thinking about the toddler stage more than the new born days. Ultimately the baby stage is quite brief, which means I was thinking more about the practical needs of caring for a baby but equally about the room being suitable for story time, carpet play, low down surfaces and toy access.

Chloe Spillet, new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine

“My dreams and goals are getting bigger all the time. I’ve always been a very ambitious person,

sometimes it doesn’t pay off but when it does the feeling is amazing!”

Chloe Spillet, new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine

RB – Did you find out the sex or did you keep it a surprise, I can’t remember?

We did but didn’t tell anyone. I wanted a surprise but the big kids couldn’t wait! I think it helped them get ready for their brother (especially Indy who wanted a sister! She had plenty of time to get over that not happening!)

RB – When you designed Scout’s nursery where did you begin? What led the design?

EW – I started with those Fruit Salad colours and just started pinning from there. I usually start practical and choose the furniture required for the space and then move onto the details of the aesthetic. This is because I can get really carried away with concepts and I need to make sure I’ve ticked the boxes for practicality and am in budget with the main pieces before moving on!

As I moved through my ideas I noticed I was leaning into lots of Miami imagery – we’d been there in the summer when I was in the early stages of pregnancy and I was really happy with a Miami inspired palette so ended up with the idea of ‘Miami Sweet Shop’ as the theme circulating in my head.

I found clear acrylic domes for toy storage and book ledges as these gave me a sweet shop feel. I’ve later realised the colours i’d chosen simlar to those in the Honey Dukes sweet store, if you’re Harry Potter fans like us you’ll get it.

So much of my inspiration comes from places we visit, it’s like a memory mood board forms when traveling. You don’t even realise it’s happening, but it’s all there in your subconscious and when designing it can pour out.

RB -Do you mood board or Pinterest, or do you start with the first piece of inspiration and take it from there?

EW – I usually have some spark first and organically follow my nose. I like to pin abstract pictures of colours being used first rather than loads of images of the room type, that can sometimes box me in or limit my ideas if I go straight to finished rooms.

RB – As this is your third nursery to create what have you learnt that would really help first time parents?

EW – Definitely to think slightly older than a baby. I think baby décor dates very quickly. A child’s personality really starts to spark quite early and I think it’s nice to have something with a bit of the bubbliness and boldness of a toddler ready for them to grow into. This means looking outside of typical nursery décor for inspiration that can be very muted, mostly animal based and if that’s not what you really want don’t be afraid to do something different, there are no rules really, yet with nurseries it can feel like ‘this is they way you have to do it’. I really don’t think that’s true, do what suits your family aesthetic and vibe.

You also don’t need to babyify all aspects of the room, for example a large nappy bin is cumbersome and ugly. We just have a neat small Barbarita bin. Nappies only smell If you leave them for ages and we use nappy bags and empty it every other day – it’s much less intrusive and gross than the actual nappy bins! I also haven’t bothered with a changing table this time, we have a nice sturdy wooden change mat over the top of cot and it works perfectly without having to have a temporary piece of furniture which we don’t really have room for. I also recommend drawer dividers, baby clothes can get so messy so quickly in drawers as they are so small and hard to fold neatly, I love an organised drawer!

Babies are highly alert to contrasts so a big bold print near the changing area can really capture their attention, even more so than a mobile I think. The wall paper on ceiling hasn’t once failed in calming Scout down, he’s mesmerised! Equally, babies and young children love mirrors, it’s nice to have one up you can show them their face when you’re comforting them in their room.

RB – Top three places to shop for home interiors?

EW – IKEA, La Redoute, Made

RB – What are your three must haves for a newborn?

EW – Sleepsuits with zips, comfortable baby carrier, sheepskin to sleep on

RB – What are your nursery essentials?

EW – Organised nappy drawer, soft large night light, contrast prints

RB – Any final thoughts on products for new parents to think about?

EW – My top gifting tip would be to ask for a Tonie box. Much better than a baby gadget you wont get much use out of. It will read stories to your baby and last them until they’re much older, fantastic product I love them.

Chloe Spillet, new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine
Chloe Spillet, new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine
Chloe Spillet, new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine

RB – What are your top five tips for expectant mothers? Especially during lockdown?

1/Keep a check on your expectations, if you don’t overcook how idyllic you expect everything to be, you will always exceed your expectations rather than failing to meet them!

2/No one will tell you this, but humour is one of the most important gifts a mother can have. Watch comedy, find the funny in the craziness, giggle with your partner and take time to make sure you’re laughing at something. It really is the best medicine.

3/Showers and baths can be taken at any time, as can eating, its not a failure to do things out of routine, enjoy them and make them count whenever they come along and don’t worry too much about time for the first few weeks!

4/Be cautious with over consumption of news and turning to google every second. This will distract you from training up your intuition, which is the most important thing in a mother’s tool kit.

5/Do not rush your recovery. Consider yourself as someone with injuries who needs time and rest to heal. This will take weeks, do not try and speed it up, slowness is important, channel your inner sloth!

To find your playful side and to help harness your child’s, check out Emma’s blog and join her ‘parenting and thriving’ movement The Playful Den.

Colourful spaces….

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy's Nursery And More Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning and becoming a creative legend   Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went...

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy’s Nursery And More

Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning

and becoming a creative legend

 

Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went freelance 5 years ago and her rainbow and tiger adorning empire has grown from there, with recent product launches in John Lewis and Partners! With the arrival of baby Teddy and the Nursery Edition coming up I had to take this great opportunity to pick Eleanor’s brain about the Nursery and how she pulled it all together. 

“My dreams and goals are getting bigger all the time. I’ve always been a very ambitious person,

sometimes it doesn’t pay off but when it does the feeling is amazing!”

RB – When/How did you get into art and design?

EB – I studied art and design at college followed by a foundation course in Art and a degree in Textile Design. My dad was an artist in his 20’s and taught Art at degree level so it’s in the family.

RB – When you began designing is this where you imagined yourself?

EB – That’s a hard question to answer actually. I dreamt of it, but I didn’t ever think it would happen. I didn’t know how to make it happen. My dreams and goals are getting bigger all the time. I’ve always been a very ambitious person, sometimes it doesn’t pay off but when it does the feeling is amazing!

RB – What have the last few years has been like going from designing cards and prints with Frank on your lap, to having your own studio and seeing your first mug collection being displayed on the shelves of John Lewis and Partner?

EB – The last year in particular has been a whirlwind mixture of excitement and being terrified. Until I saw them on the shelves in JL myself I wouldn’t believe it. It’s been a big year of decision making and risk taking, so far it seems to have paid off. It really has been incredible.

RB – Last year you launched your first wallpaper collection for kids. Had this always been a plan of yours or did this come from customer demand?

EB – No, nobody was asking me for wallpaper. I wanted some cool wallpaper for my daughter’s room so I thought I’d design some.  Thankfully it’s been a big hit! I’m a trained wallpaper designer which is where I started, it hasn’t come from nowhere!

Chloe Spillet, new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine
Chloe Spillet, new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine

RB – When you designed Teddy’s nursery where did you begin? What led the design?

EB – My own head! I had my wallpaper in mind and then went with colours I love. I like an eclectic mix but thoughtfully put together. It isn’t quite there yet but almost!

RB – Do you mood board or do you start with the first piece of inspiration and take it from there?

EB – I always have a bank of images and artists I love as inspiration.

RB – You have a second kids wallpaper collection out now, was this always the plan or did it simply happen because you needed a design for Teddy’s room?

EB – A bit of both!

RB – As Teddy’s was your second nursery to create, did you learn anything from the first one that you did differently?

EB – Well they’re both different gender which is great so I really got the chance to explore different colours with both. I was really happy with Norie’s room, so I just went with gut this time too!

RB – What are your three must haves for a New-born?

EB – Patience, routine and faith that it will pass, or do you mean products? haha. Top 3 products would be a Ewan the dream sheep, a cosy blanket and plenty of muslins.

“Go with what you love and it will all come together perfectly.

If in doubt, don’t be too fussy with prints – keep it simple and bold” 

RB – What advice would you give first time parents when it comes to sorting out their nursery?

EB – Start with a colour palette and build on it. Go with what you love and it will all come together perfectly. If in doubt, don’t be too fussy with prints – keep it simple and bold.

RB – For your stunning nature and animal inspired designs – who or what inspires you most?

EB – I love botanical art, which I know is quite a stark contrast to my designs, but I honestly love the detail and am so in awe of the realism!

RB – Apart from your wallpaper, what is your favourite thing about Ted’s room?

EB – His cot! It was Norie’s and was from Cottage Toys. Expensive but worth it!

RB – If money was no object what would you buy for your nursery?

EB – A machine/robot of some sort to do the night feeds!

RB – Yes, good idea!

 

Chloe Spillet, new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine
Chloe Spillet, new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine
Chloe Spillet, new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine
Chloe Spillet, new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine
Chloe Spillet, new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine

To check out Eleanor’s wonderful products, take a look at her site here, currently only open on the weekends. Her wonderful mugs can be found here at John Lewis & Partners and if you want to check out her hilarious daily updates why not follow her on Instagram, she makes me smile every day.

Wallpaper Inspiration Station….

Australian Kids’ Interiors

Australian Kids’ Interiors

The Aussies have it…

 

Nicole Rosenburg from Little Liberty tells Rooomy all about

her passion for kids’ interiors.

 

Rachel – Why Design?  How did you discover interior design?

Nicole – I love being creative and imagining up ideas that haven’t been seen before. Design has no boundaries and that’s why I fell in love with it. With kids design you can really let your imagination run wild and work with colours in a different way you would in adult spaces.

Rachel – In design what are your top three loves?

Nicole – Colour, Personality and Fun, Originality

Rachel -When you interview your small clients what are the key questions you ask them?

Nicole – What are your hobbies, passions, favourite colours, ways you use the room, are you doing homework yet, how often you have sleep overs (if we need to include bunks/trundles)?

 Rachel – Do you have any rules?

Nicole – Don’t use too many colours in the room which over complicate the space – stick to 3 colours which will give your room a more cohesive calm feel.  We often like to add in a neutral colour to the room as well either white or grey.

Rachel – What have been some of your favourite projects?

Nicole – A nursery we did recently where we used a very dark edgy wallpaper and built a house structure over the cot. Also loved working on a twins’ nursery where the wallpaper was neutral but incorporated these great mid blue house bedheads for the cot which the twins can use later in life as bedheads!

Rachel – What has been your biggest challenge when designing a kid’s room/nursery?  Apart from storage, that doesn’t count as it is everyone’s bug-bear ;o)

Nicole – Sometimes when we work in a small space it’s hard to incorporate different zones into the space such as a sleep zone, chill out zone, study/creative zone. Also, sometimes tricky when people have unrealistic budgets!

“I enjoy there being far less rules and boundaries with kids’ rooms. 
Adults are more likely to try different things on kids’ spaces as well”

Rachel – How has Australia taken the lead on kid’s interiors?  What do you foresee being popular this year (2018)?

Nicole – Australia has definitely found its place in the kid’s Interiors market.  The original soft furnishings, bedding and kid’s décor in general is so fantastic in Australia – there is a real booming trade now and I don’t think it’s going away – lucky for us.  We have a trade fair here called Kids In Style which showcases some of the best kids interiors on offer – it’s a great way to source some amazing product and we always enjoy going to it! I think wallpaper is still going to be popular in 2018 with new local companies popping up all the time! – I think we really need this in the UK.  We’re covered on the babies shows but there’s a definite gap for Kid’s Interiors – Come on then Rooomy, get on to it – Yes, LOL!

Rachel – What is your dream project?

Nicole – A room with no budget! Then I could let my imagination run wild!

Rachel – What mistakes are your clients regularly making with their interiors?

Nicole – Adding in too many items which makes the space looks messy, cluttered and frantic. Also filling each wall with something is a real no no – space on a wall can be ok! Also, not thinking enough about space and buying furniture without really measuring out the items before they buy. – Yes, I learnt the hard way that for bed for example you need to measure on the floor not wall to wall due to the skirting board!

Rachel – Do trends come in to play as much with kid’s as they might with adults and the rest of the house?

Nicole – Yes, kid’s rooms definitely have trends and colour trends! We often see popular wallpapers (such as the Mrs Mighetto wallpaper) being used over and over again in spaces.

Little Liberty Interiors is a Melbourne based interior decorators, run by Nicole who knows all too well that children’s bedrooms are fast becoming a creative extension of the family home.  Nicole is most passionate about producing calm and happy yet fun spaces that are a reflection of the child’s individuality and desires.  See more of her work here www.libertyinteriors.com.au

Equally Inspiring…

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy's Nursery And More Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning and becoming a creative legend   Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went...

Otis’ Nursery – Jungle Theme

Otis’ Nursery – Jungle Theme

Call of the Wild

 

Rooomy asks Amanda Cotton about creating

an animal theme nursery for the arrival of little Otis

 

RB – When you suspected or found out you were pregnant, and you’re becoming a mum for the first time, roughly how much time do you think passed before you were thinking about what would be happening in the nursery?

AC – We had IVF to have Otis so the dream of having a child of our own was something we had wanted for a long time. I started planning his nursery soon after the 20-week scan, when things started to feel more real.

RB – Where did the jungle theme idea come from?

AC – There’s a hotel in LA called the Beverly Hills Hotel which has this amazing palm printed wallpaper. I’m a bit of a wallpaper addict, so when I found one similar from Milton and King I just thought this could really work as a jungle theme. Plus, we love animals, and hope this rubs off on Otis.

I always think nurseries/kids’ rooms work well when they have a theme, or something to centre the look around- whether that’s a theme, or a big piece of furniture. It also helps with baby shower gifts..ha!

Jungle Themed Wallpaper, Gender Neutral Nursery Ideas, Leaf Print Wallpaper

RB – Once you had the theme sorted, how did you develop your ideas? Any tips for mums to be?

AC – I wanted the cot and changing table to stand out from the white panelling in Otis’ room, so I opted for a Stokke hazy Grey Sleepi cot and dresser with changing top. I love the Stokke range, as its very much designed to see your baby through their childhood years and isn’t just for babies. The Sleepi cot can be extended when Otis is bigger and the centre panel can come out, so he can get in and out himself when he’s big enough. I’m all about keeping the cost down in the long run.

My tips for mums to be would be… Choose the cot and the changing table first. The cot is usually the centre point to a nursery, but by adding a large soft toy, canopy or painted dresser you can change the focal point.

Having a theme helps to narrow the focus on wallpapers and accessories. I went with a jungle/ safari theme for Otis’ nursery.

Babies love colour and pattern, so be creative with the décor and have fun with it.

RB – How old will Otis need to be for you to allow him to choose his own décor?

AC – Ha! That’s a good question. We will see. I’m sure I’ll eventually give in and let him choose comic book bedding and matching wallpaper, but for now I’ll enjoy making the big decisions.

Leaf Print Wallpaper, Jungle Themed Nursery, Gender Neutral Nursery Design

RB – If Money was no object, on the market now, what have you seen out there that you would love to buy for his room?

AC – I have just seen that Pottery barn kids have launched in the UK, and they have a collaboration range with West Elm where they created a cot and changing table in their signature mid century design. They also have a cream cot with brass legs and a honey comb texture on the sides. It all very dreamy.

They also have a lovely elephant rocking horse that I’ve got my eye on- plus it fits perfectly with his jungle theme.

RB – What would you advise new parents to really invest in for their nursery?

AC – I’d invest in a cot which has a moveable base, and I’ve also found our changing table essential. Don’t under estimate the luxury of changing your baby while standing up, especially if you suffer from back ache. I would also recommend getting a comfy chair for nursing/feeding. Otis has only just moved into his room, but we sit here every evening reading a book and having a bottle before bed.

RB – What are the Zebra, Lion and Elephant called?

AC – The Zebra is called Brian, the lion is called George and the Elephant is called Simon (and the giraffe is called Geraldine). The heads are all from the fabulous Fiona Walker.

Leaf Print Wallpaper, Jungle Themed Nursery, Gender Neutral Nursery Design

RB – What are your three favourite items in the Otis’ room?

AC – The giraffe! Our lovely neighbours bought this for Otis after he was born. It’s by Melissa and Doug which you can buy from Argos. He really makes a statement in here.
The green velvet chair (from homesense). Being velvet isn’t essential, but I love its vibrancy in colour. We had this chair in our bedroom before I found out I was pregnant and it just fitted perfectly in here. It’s also essential for Otis’ bedtime routine of book and bottle.
(A little fact I’ve discovered- wet wipes can clean most things and have been really handy getting any milk spills off the velvet.)
The huge rug (From La Redoute). The rug covers most of the floor in Otis’ room which is brilliant now he loves to roll and do plenty of tummy time. It was my husband’s idea to get a big rug as we have wooden floors throughout our house and I’m so pleased we did.

RB – What has surprised you most about yourself on becoming a mum?

AC – How bloody hard it is. I think I was a bit delusional and had all these preconceived ideas of starting a business on maternity leave, or at least having loads of time to write my blog. The truth is I have less free time now. I’m always hearing about these super mums who start-up businesses on their year off. I have no idea how they do it? I have massive admiration for full time, stay at home mums now.

 

Leaf Print Wallpaper, Jungle Themed Nursery, Gender Neutral Nursery Design

RB – Otis’ nursery is incredible, he is going to love moving in their soon. To the onlooker it is perfection, but we all know for the creator that’s not always the case. Is there anything you’d do differently?

AC – Otis has been sleeping in his room for the past week now, and is doing 10-12 hours a night. Although, naps are whole different story.

I want to fit blackout blinds between the shutters and the windows but its currently proving difficult as there isn’t enough space between the sash window frame and shutter. This is something I would definitely consider for next time. Shutters look great, but they just not as practical as good black out curtains or blinds. Hence the day nap problems…

RB – What do you enjoy most about being Otis’ mum?

AC – I really can’t choose one thing. It’s an amazing feeling being Otis’ mummy. Just seeing his smile, and making him laugh is the best feeling in the world. Before I had Otis, I lived a fast-paced lifestyle. He’s taught me to slow down and appreciate everything for the first time again.

If you love this nursery and Amanda’s wonderful maximalist style then you’ll want to follow her latest project, coined “The Rat House”, what will she create for Otis next?  Check out her progress here on Instagram.  If you want to see more great nursery inspiration subscribe here for the Nursery Edit.

More Nurseries…

New Style Editor 2020

New Style Editor 2020

Rooomy meets Chloe Spillett,

children’s interior designer and

new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine

 

Rachel Burns speaks to Chloe about her style and

love of kid’s interiors and the best places to shop.

 

 

RB – When did your love of interior design begin?

CS – I have loved interiors for as long as I can remember. My mum has great taste and an awesome eye for styling, so I guess she influenced me from an early age. I was a 90s child so changing rooms also played a huge role. Still waiting for that show to make a comeback!

 

RB – What was your room like when you were kid?

CS – Well, my Mum was much like I am now so it changed a fair bit throughout my childhood! It was always very tastefully classic; Laura Ashley, broderie anglaise and gingham. Once `I was about 13 I was given free rein and I remember really going for it! Bright pink and orange everywhere. It was an absolute riot of colour and anything but classic!

RB – You’ve won two big comps now, ‘Under the Stairs’ at Grand Designs 2019 and The National Prize for “Styled by Be” Judges by Sophie Robinson. What did you learn from these experiences?

CS – The most valuable thing I learned is to have confidence in your own capabilities no matter the level of competition. I was up against many high esteemed professionals and influencers so both victories really took my breath away. It didn’t even enter my mind that I might be good enough to win either.

If you have a clear vision you just have to really go for it, and you’ll be rewarded in more ways than you can possibly imagine!

 

RB – Do you think there are some discernible differences when approaching the design of a kid’s room compared to the rest of the house?

CS – I think this really depends on the brief and the desired outcome. Many of my clients have wanted longevity from their children’s spaces and so from that point of view you almost have to treat it like any other room in the house. Of course, from the child’s point of view their priorities are usually that they want their rooms to be fun and exciting with a sense of adventure and escapism, so it can be a challenge to strike a balance to ensure both parties are happy! To tick all the boxes, I always aim to keep adaptability in mind. I try to think about how the space can evolve with the family as they grow, without losing its identity. 

RB – With colours being such a huge part of your work have you ever designed a monochrome room? Would you try and talk your client round?

CS – It’s true I live for colour and I think it’s a really great tool for inspiring and motivating young people, but I still think my personal sense of style is rather fluid. I really love to change it up and in the past I’ve definitely been drawn to monochrome. The client should always be at the centre of the design process so if its monochrome they want then its monochrome they get! That said, I’d probably advise them that to do Monochrome justice you have to fully commit; not always easy when children come with so many nick knacks!

RB – What is your dream project?

CS – My absolute life goal is to design for DIY SOS. It’s on my vision board and one day I will make it happen!

 

RB – If money was no object and you could buy your girls anything for their bedroom or playroom, what would it be?

CS – I’d really love to design an all singing all dancing installation that’s out of this world and commission someone to build it for me.

 

RB – Three top places to shop for kid’s rooms?

This Modern Life, Bobby Rabbit Kids and H&M

 

RB – What’s next for Chloe Gets Creative?

CS – Ahhh who knows?! It’s absolutely terrible business ethic but I’ve never really been one for devising plans. Life is unpredictable; we have all been awoken to this in the last few months and I truly believe it’s far more important to just enjoy the journey. I’ve gained an absolute tonne of experience over the last few years and I’m stoked about all of my achievements so far. I think positivity is the best recipe for progress and success and I’m happy with the way things are going for CGC and equally excited about future possibilities.

RB – What has been your favourite project to work on?

CS – Ooooo that’s a real toughie, I’ve loved each and every one of my projects I really couldn’t pick just one. Grand Designs Live has without a doubt been a highlight, not only because of the prestige of the exhibition but because it was unlike anything else I had ever done before and I met some amazing people! I’ve also designed spaces for children in very vulnerable situations so I will always hold these projects dear, it felt wonderful to think I’d brought some sunshine to their lives. Then of course there are the rooms I have designed for friends and family as well as my own children. They are all special to me.

RB – Who or what are some of your design inspirations when thinking about kid’s rooms?

CS – It’s such a cliché thing for a designer to say but literally everything! Design is always at the forefront of my mind so if I’m immersed in nature, watching TV or a film, travelling, whatever I may be doing, I’m always thinking about ways to add value to our indoor spaces that are new and innovative.

 

RB – Where do you like to hang out in your spare time when you’re switching off and relaxing?

CS – I am loathed to admit I am one of those irritating people who rarely sits still, I find it quite hard to switch off and I’ve pretty much always got a project on the go. I don’t really relax as much as burn out and then rest until I’m raring to go again! Lockdown has really been quite pivotal for me, as I am sure it has been for so many of us. I have started to discover new territories both metaphorically speaking and literally; There is a fair bit of countryside locally and we have been enjoying some really lovely family walks. Oh and gardening! I really love to be in the garden with my family. Despite all the worry and suffering surrounding this new phase in our lives there’s still plenty to be thankful for; I’ve found a few good, new, happy places.

RB – Your style is fun, smart and colourful, what has influenced this most?

CS – I’m a firm believer in creating your own sense of style. As you can probably imagine my Instagram feed is full of children’s interior related pages. There are thousands of beautiful rooms on the ‘gram but there is also a lot of repetition, I get a real kick when I discover a space that makes me stop in my tracks. I want my designs to have that impact on other people; a space people have never seen before. I really try to think outside the box.

 

There you have it, a great introduction to our new Style Editor, I am thrilled to have Chloe on board.  You’ll be able to see Chloe’s debut Style Edit in the next issue of Rooomy, out in a few weeks, the Nursery Edit.  If you’d like to check out more of Chloe’s work check out her site Chloe Gets Creative. 

For more interviews with other amazing creative minds take a look below and if you want to make sure you get your hands on th Nursery Edit, you can subscribe here for free.

Interviews

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy's Nursery And More Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning and becoming a creative legend   Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went...

Room To Bloom Creator

Room To Bloom Creator

Rooomy meets Ursula Wesselingh,

Kid’s Interior Designer

 

Rachel Burns speaks to Ursula about her signature style for kid’s interiors

and how Dutch design differs to British.

 

 

RB – Ursula, when did your love of interior design begin?

UW – I’ve always been intrigued by people’s homes, and as a child I had strong ideas about what my room should look like. Professionally, I entered interior design about 15 years ago or so. Following a redundancy, I enrolled in an interior design course and before the year was over, I was offered a job at an architectural practice. It felt like coming home and I’ve never looked back.

RB – We share the same view that children’s bedrooms are a huge part of their childhood/world. What was yours like? And how has this affected the work you do today?

UW – My bedroom was hugely important to me. It was located on the top floor of our farm, overlooking the garden. I have fond memories of a blue and white scheme that I created with the help of my mum. We found a “white” (cream) carpet offcut, some blue and white fabric that my mum made into curtains (I still have them), and blue and white wallpaper. We then also painted my bed and drawers blue. Finally, with some tractor paint that I’d found in one of our barns, I painted all my knick-knacks that didn’t fit the scheme blue… matchy-matchy.

I suspect that through my work, I recreate my childhood in some way. Style wise, my work has a modern rustic undertone, which probably goes back to growing up on a farm.

RB – How do children’s interiors in the UK differ compared to the Netherlands?

UW – In the Netherlands, kids’ rooms get quite a lot of attention – parents put a considerable amount of effort into making their children’s rooms look beautiful, and there is a wide choice of stylish and affordable furniture and decor available. To illustrate the point, Dutch interiors magazines always feature a few photos of the children’s rooms alongside the rest of the house – something you still see very little of in the UK, though now there’s Rooomy!

RB – Do you think there are some discernible differences when approaching the design of a kid’s room compared to the rest of the house?

UW – Hmm, “no” is the short answer. I mean, designing a kitchen or bathroom is very different to designing a child’s room from a technical point of view, but all the same elements are there: analysing the opportunities and limitations of a space in relation to the objectives, and coming up with solutions to achieve those – through the use of light, colour, finishes, space planning, etc.

RB – What’s been your favourite project to work on?

UW – Haha, that’s a tricky one to answer – I’ve enjoyed working on so many. I guess generally speaking my favourite projects are for clients who are fans of my signature style – the ones who phone up and say “I love what you do, please come and sort my children’s rooms out!” I really like the collaborative process and it’s just much easier and enjoyable when you are on the same wave length.

 

RB – Who or what are some of your design inspirations when thinking about kid’s rooms?

UW – I’m generally attracted by Scandinavian and French inspired styles, a mix of simplicity, period details, pretty pattern and subdued colours.

 

RB – Where are you continuously drawn to for its beautiful interior?

UW – Not one place really… I am very happy to stay in well-designed hotels, and can spend hours analysing why things were done in a certain way – to great amusement of my partner.

RB – Your style is calm, soft and comforting, what has influenced this most?

UW – It’s hard to say really, it’s just what I do. I think calm and comfort are a good base for kids to venture out from, and come back to.

RB – How do you feel about bold vibrant rooms? Do you ever have to turn down projects because clients taste is too different to your approach?

UW – I don’t dig bold and vibrant rooms at all, I just couldn’t handle staying in one myself. Luckily I tend to attract clients who love my style, so I don’t have to turn projects down on that basis.

RB – What is your dream project?

UW – I’ve seen this very small room in a church that is being used for a play group – a beautiful, tall space full of character that is wildly let down by the decor and furniture in there. I’m itching to turn that into a beautiful place to play.

RB – What mistakes do you think parents are regularly making when decorating their kids’ rooms?

UW – Playing it too safe. I think it pays off to do something special, to go out of your way to create something beautiful and memorable. That doesn’t have to cost lots of money – imagination and attention go a long way.

RB – What most excites you about your future?

UW – Continuing to attract clients who love my style, keep growing as a designer, and who knows, develop my own line of children’s décor.

If you love Ursula’s style as much as I do the go check out her site Room To Bloom.  She will also be sharing a glorious new nursery in the Nursery Edit out later this month, to make sure you receive your copy you can subscribe here for free.

For more interviews with other amazing creative minds take a look below.

Interviews

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy's Nursery And More Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning and becoming a creative legend   Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went...

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