All right, brace yourselves people because this is gonna be a looonnnggg post with A LOT of REALLY good stuff in it. Like literally 99.9% of this room was DIY-ed, which I am proud of, and happy it is completed & can’t wait to share some amazing DIY projects with you.
So, my brother & his wife bought their first house and it was definitely a fixer upper, I am still in an apartment so I have had the itch to do a room from the ground up: new flooring, paint, decorations, furniture… the works, for awhile now! It just so happened that they didn’t really have anything planned for their daughter’s room (My cute red headed niece Korra) and before I could stop myself, I VOLUNTEERED to remodel her room for them, with their permission of course. I definitely didn’t want to step on any toes, you never know if some people don’t want you invading their territory but my brother and his wife are probably the sweetest & nicest people you have ever met, like ever, and they happily agreed to let me have full control over what would happen with Korra’s room, and then I set on my weekend(s) warrior adventure of remodeling her room!
So it has been kind of a race against the clock as they are expecting baby #2 which we thought the due date was the end of November, but at the beginning of October their Midwife told them she is measuring ahead which meant the END OF OCTOBER BEGINNING OF NOVEMBER!! Korra currently still sleeps with them in their room (she is 15 months), so we really need to evict her to her own room before baby #2 is here keeping her up at night. I live an hour away and have a pretty hectic life working and taking care of my own 16-month-old… so I have been going home (my hometown where my parents & brother live) nearly every weekend trying to get this project done. Keep in mind with projects that everything always takes longer than you think, especially when you are DIY-ing the project down to the curtains, and room decor. I have hardly bought anything in it’s FINISHED state, like I’ll buy something at a thrift store with the intention of doing work on that as well, or buy the supplies at the craft store and assembling the project myself.
Yeah, I could have bought the decor or furniture brand-new and been done with it, but where is the fun in that! And I have saved A LOT of money, if you are willing to put the time and effort into it… the outcome can be amazing!
We wanted to have the room be pretty neutral as far as color scheme so we chose grey and white with decorations in gold, black and blue accents. For the most part we even wanted the bedding, curtains, and some of the decor to be gender neutral as well to be used by any of their children throughout time but we did do a few feminine touches just for Korra!
Here are the before pictures of the room for reference so you can see how dingy it was and how badly it needed a makeover.
Paint & Flooring
All right, enough jibber-jabber, I’m gonna dive right in and tell you the specifics of how I was able to accomplish this project on a $300 budget! The first thing we did was paint, we painted 2 coats of grey paint and 2 coats of white for the ceiling, baseboards and window trim. We also painted the door white. We already had white paint but spent about $20.00 on the grey paint. Next we pulled out the ugly green carpet and had to place some new subfloor on top of the old subfloor before laying our laminate. We spent about $50 on the subfloor and $130.00 on the laminate flooring to cover about a 10′ x 10′ area. The room is small which helps with the cost but this part of the project did take up the most of the budget.
The door is a very weird shape, it is cut specifically to fit there, the ceiling is quite low so replacing the door was kind of out of the question. But, when we removed the doorknob and the plate we found a pleasant surprise: 2 drilled holes! And we couldn’t put the plate back on because it was hammered on the side so the door could close & was hideous. I did some thinking and we wanted to see if we could find a new plate that would fit it but it is a very specific size so I decided to fix it in my own unique Jerry-rigging way. I cut two rectangles out of a cereal box to fit over the two holes, then cut down some small molding trim to frame it out, then glued them together and spray painted them gold! Wallah! No one would ever know haha, then we wood glued them to the door and put the knob back on. Each piece of decorative trim is only $3.68 for about 8 feet and we only used one. We are VERY happy with the outcome!
Crib: My Mom found this crib on an indoor yard sale page on Facebook for $5. The previous owners had cut off the legs to turn it into a toddler bed, so we painted it white and we were going to buy some bed risers but we actually didn’t hate the look and my sister-in-law is pretty short so it will be easier for her to get Korra in and out. Using an oil based paint will help the paint stay on longer and we did 2-3 coats.
Dresser: The dresser was one that my brother & his wife already had that was given to them. We also painted it white with an oil based paint and really love how it turned out, it is super unique! I love the mid-century modern vibe you get from this dresser and the geometric drawers.
I played with a few ideas for the lighting, but in the end the house is kind of older and the budget really couldn’t afford to replace the old lighting, which has just a string pull to turn on the light for a light switch. We decided to make a cute DIY fixture to amp it up a little. Using some embroidery hoops, fishing string, hooks, fringe and hot glue we made a really cute urban chic chandelier for about $5.
Banner: I have seen these banners at Target all summer and kept thinking to myself how easy it would be to make one. This craft was the cornerstone to this room, it was the first decoration I made and really set the tone for the rest of the room. I bought some canvas at Hobby Lobby which can be kind of pricey but I just used my 40% off coupon and just got one yard for maybe $4. I bought some felt at 33 cents each, and I already have embroidery floss but it is also only like 50 cents each one. I had the fringe balls from my Mom’s stash of crap. I cut the shape of the banner with just a “v” at the end of the rectangle. I am kind of lazy when it comes to certain things and so I just ironed a hem around all the edges then hot glued them down on the back. If you want to embroider a word or phrase on the banner, do that before hot gluing fringe at the bottom or putting your tabs on the top because canvas is kind of thick and hard to sew through, in the future when I make more banners I am going to experiment with sharpies or paint pens to save time, embroidery was the longest part of this project. Then I hot glued on the fringe and mountain shapes. You can easily just fold over the top around a wooden dowel or stick & hot glue in place, that is the easier option but I wanted to show the stick more so I made little tabs. If you like the tabs I just cut strips of fabric out of the canvas and then ironed down the raw edges into a hem and hot glued them on the back then folded them in a lop and hot glued to the back of the banner. Then all you need to do is put the stick or wooden dowel through and tie some twine or string to hang it!
Chicken Wire Frame:
We had a larger gold frame with no glass or back on it that we wanted to use, so we just used some chicken wire, cut it with wire cutters and attached with a stapling gun. It was not hard at all! And then we used small paper clips to attach some cute prints that can be interchangeable. You can find really cute printables on Pinterest.
Urban Chic Dream Catchers:
This was one of my favorite DIY decorations in the room! I love the way it refers to a dream catcher but is a little bit more feminine. I used an embroidery hoop that was 50 cents from the thrift store, and I had a circle frame that was black that I spray painted gold. And then used some doilies and some yarn to suspend them in the center of the frame and the embroidery hoop. Next, I just cut varying lengths of tons of ribbon and lace to create a waterfall effect hanging from the frame and hoop, you simply hot glue to the back of them. Honestly I had all of this stuff on hand, I’m telling you my Mom has inherited a lot of craft supplies from her Grandmother and Mother. So a lot of the lace is actually vintage! But you can purchase embroidery hoops and doilies from thrift stores and you might even be able to find some cool laces. But you can always supplement what you can’t find at thrift stores from the craft store! I can’t imagine this project costing more than $10-$15 depending on supplies you have and possibly the scale you want to do.
Mountain Shelf & Shelf Decor:
I was very stubborn about this mountain shelf. I knew I wanted to do some kind of woodland/mountain theme from the very beginning and wanted to customize a cute shelf for this small space to incorporate an area for the baby monitor, some books and a place to hang some jackets, as well as some cute decor! This was literally the very LAST thing we did because it required to cut the mountain shape but it really pulled the room together perfectly! We already had the white shelf, so we just had to cut the mountain shape out of the same material we used for the subfloor, which we had extra of and it was probably about 1/4 of an inch. I first measured on poster paper the size of the back mountain shelf to use as a template for cutting. We painted everything white first and then used an x-acto knife to cut some snowy mountain cap shapes into some scotch tape, then painted the back part a light blue. We decided to leave it two tone to give it some dimension. I measured out where to attach the shelf to the mountain part and drilled some holes to help attach with screws. So we attached those two pieces first and then screwed the mountain backboard to the wall, and then drilled the hooks I got from Target for $4 into it as well so they could go straight through the backboard and into the wall to give them more strength. The decor was a few mason jars from the thrift store and we spray painted the lids gold, and filled one with acorns I found in my backyard and some pinecones I just gathered on a walk around my block! One of the jars has feathers in it and finally just some metal book ends we found that we spray painted gold as well!
This was just a random project that wasn’t really planned, I saw this weird watermelon crate at the thrift store for 75 cents and I thought I might be able to repaint it to look like mountains. For 75 cents if it failed, I wouldn’t really be that mad! It turned out actually WAY cute and really added an extra touch to the room, we used it for some diaper cream, lotion, baby powder and tissues. I was going to use it for diapers and wipes but it was too small, and luckily they fit in the middle top drawer of the dresser and worked out better anyways!
There was some controversy among my family members about the rug… about it matching. It’s no secret I mixed A LOT of patterns in this room, but I think they all came together. So love it or hate it, I loved it so I didn’t care and didn’t return the rug haha! This rug was originally $28.00 at Hobby Lobby but I used my 40% off coupon and got it for $18.00 (if you have the app you can get 40% off of one item, once per day), I use it a lot. I felt the rug tied in with the curtains, the chandelier, the crib bumper, and the laundry basket. I needed some more black in the room and I loved the geometric pattern! Also, the space really needed a rug in my opinion! What do you think?
When I saw the basket, I needed to have it. It might be a little bit industrial in this space but I think it goes still. Not everything NEEDS to be one style and it can still come together. The basket was $14.00 at Wal Mart and has a matching smaller basket I was planning to use for the diapers and wipes but when I found the Mountain Crate… I changed my mind. Do you think I should have went with plan A?
I really wanted to get a cute fabric laundry basket for the room and found a cute cream and black striped canvas one on Amazon for $10.00. Also, we got some blue hangers at the dollar store to match the blue accents!
I found the crib bumper at the thrift store for $2.00 I was planning on covering the whole thing with fabric but I actually really liked the blue stripes and wanted to keep them but wanted to cover the boy-ish army side. We had tons of a unique black fabric on hand so we used that. This was the ONLY thing I had my sister-in-law help with, because she is an amazing seamstress, and I am not! She was happy to do it and attached it perfectly! I loved how gender neutral it turned out!
These adorable tree trunk sheets were on sale at Target for $7.50 and matched the theme and colors perfectly! I was so happy to find it! Also the little blanket was from the thrift store for $2.00.
Throw pillows can get real pricy real quick and are not that hard to make. We found the Moose one at the thrift store for $2.00 and I made the other two. I had to have the material for the mountainy one, I could not resist (Hobby Lobby) and it also matches the fabric I used for the changing pad, I LOVE it! I attached the tassels to both ends and filled with stuffing and done! The white one, I actually found the fabric at the thrift store for $1.00 for a bunch and the tassels I made myself out of yarn. I also found the Mama and baby bunnies for a total of $1.50 at the thrift store and could not resist those either!
As mentioned before, the fabric was found at Hobby Lobby. I found instructions to make a changing pad cover and it was actually extremely easy, I will be making a ton for myself and probably some as baby shower gifts in the future. You can find those instructions here. Changing pads can be upwards of $35 and then another $10 for a cute cover, I found mine on KSL for $10 including two white covers. They weren’t ugly but the dresser was white and I wanted a cute one so that’s why I made one. And now they have extras if they need to wash one! The cost of the cover was probably close to $10, the same cost of buying a decent one but I was able to personalize this one and I saved a lot of money on the actual pad so it was definitely worth it!
Curtains are extremely easy to make, I was able to get the material at Wal Mart for $5.00 and sewed them in about 10 minutes. I measured the window, cut the fabric with a seam allowance and enough space at the top to make a loop to hang them on the tension rod and yet another project completed! I used some twine to tie them up a bit to let more light in.
This project was so much fun and so meaningful to me that I was able to give back to my brother and sister-in-law! I enjoyed being able to have complete creative freedom and create almost everything in this room from scratch. You couldn’t buy any of the stuff I did for the price I did them for.
I want to add a super special shout out to my Mom, and my sister Aubri! I couldn’t have done this without them, they were a HUGE help with the leg work of this project!
If you want to watch a little video of the project including revealing it to my brother and his wife, you can watch that here.
I hope you enjoyed seeing the transformation and maybe it will spark some ideas for your own nursery or child’s room remodel!