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Tuesday, January 13, 2015

5 ways to avoid a BASIC nursery

The definitive Basic as declared by Allure magazine.

I'm obsessed with the term "Basic." It so succinctly sums up the bland j'adore/hair donut/navel gazing/swoonery that permeates the blogosphere. Chevrons and brickmaker coffee tables are to decorating what infinity scarves and ripped jeans are to fashion - capital "B" Basic.

Because I am the generous sort, I'm here to share five choices to transform the one room in the house that always seems to devolve into Basic territory (even with creative individuals) - the nursery. How many times have you tuned into a blog all atwitter and ready to experience an ah-mazing teased-for-the-previous-14-weeks nursery reveal? You click, peruse and feel that familiar disappointment spurred by a room that looks like EVERY OTHER NURSERY ON THE INTERNET.

I'm not going to post examples of extant Basic nurseries, because people get their panties in a twist if you dare say Precious' sleeping hole is less than the most totes amazing space ever posted since Al Gore invented the interwebs. Instead, here are the five worst Basic offenders and alternatives to consider.


1. Sharon Montrose's baby animals series vs. Family-sourced art

Has a national law been passed requiring all cribs to have a Montrose baby animal hanging over them? I ask that in all seriousness, because damn. Every single nursery has at least one, set off with white matting in a thick white frame. Try instead hanging art you and your significant other made as children. Charming and a heartstring tugger.



2. Teepee vs. Playhouse

Do I even have to explain why cultural appropriation is gross? For the same reason you shouldn't wear a chief's headdress to Coachella, a teepee in your child's room is a No. If you can claim Native American ancestry, then rock on with your bad self. If not, install a play house. Though your little darling won't be developmentally ready for make-believe play for another 3-4 years.



3. IKEA Maskros vs. Any other light fixture from IKEA

Introduced in May 2009, IKEA's Maskros light fixture was installed in every pregnant blogger's nursery by June 2009. I kid, I kid. But I don't. Let's try another IKEA pendant, any other IKEA pendant actually. I'm not picky, though the Kvartar has the same light, paper-y airiness with a slightly edgier silhouette.



4. Sheepskin/flokati/Beni vs. Braided rug

I couldn't think of a less smart choice for a nursery floor than a white rug that's difficult to clean. Instead try a braided rug - soft, available in a universe of schmutz-hiding color combinations, and eminently more easy-care.



5. Moroccan pouf vs. Age-appropriate footstool

Brutalist chandeliers, metallic disco wallpaper, louche touches of exotica - when did Studio 54 become a nursery trend? Think less "Sex and the City 2: Samantha seduces the souk" and something, say, more geared for an infant. Like an adorable needlepoint footstool shaped like a turtle.

17 comments:

N K said...

you're back! this is awesome, missed you so!

Annette said...

Thank you, just thank you!

Jeannine | The Small and Chic Home said...

OBSESSED!!!!1!

Kidding. Such a great list of offenders. I have started to call it "blogger style." All you need is a striped wall!

ktgirl said...

You're back, and I'm loving it!!

Studio 54 nursery decor.....so true!

Bethany [at] Powell Brower Home said...

i wake up looking forward to reading your brilliant literary snark every morning now. i am so effin glad you are back to blogging. oh how i missed this. the refreshingness of it all. the dare to go where so many are afraid to go, with words. i just love it.

My Interior Life said...

Oh, lord, I try not to be Basic but I think I fail miserably. I no longer have babies or nurseries to decorate, but we do have a Maskros fixture in my daughter's room (of course, she's 12, not a baby, and picked it out herself). I know it's been done to death but she loves it and I'm too lazy to change or argue. I'm liking that Kvartar. Hmmm. And the Studio 54 comment had me rolling.

Rebecca said...

BRAVA! Thank you for naming the disgusting cultural appropriation that exists in the design world.

life, in small chunks said...

I saw a "blogger" nursery a few weeks ago (wish I could remember where, now)that had extremely - I mean extremely - expensive handmade wallpaper in it. How's that little momma gonna feel the first time (and it won't be the last) their little darling puts a crayon to it? It's gotten out of control and there seems to be so little thought as to what a baby/child would actually like and be comfortable in.

life, in small chunks said...

p.s. you are spot on as usual.

Raina Cox said...

life, in small chunks - Nursery reveals are the dick swinging of decor blogging.

Linda {Calling it Home} said...

Spot on, funny.

Unknown said...

You are spot on, as always. I especially like shearling fleeces in the nurseries of vegan/vegetarians.

penelopebianchi said...

As you may know; i abhor trends. Abhor. (not sure if you know me!!)

I wish I could find pics of my daughter's nursery (good God; I MIGHT be able to and scan them!!!)

Heaven. This fabulous yellow chintz with white butterflies in profile (we did not know in those days who was what until birth); my own crib painted white )with a few yellow butterflies flitting); Classic white furniture; and water colors of Peter Rabbit scenes water-colored by ME!!! (I copy well); (with the sayings underneath )!

I would scamper around....."What did Mrs. Tiggy-winkle say????" and on and on for 6 of them!!!

What fun! Classic. NO TRENDS EVER anywhere!!!

ps she will be 45 in April!!!

Sharon Brown said...

A nursery element I've always found to be super bizarre are those cribs that turns into a toddler bed that turns into a bed. People that have them are always so proud of their decision to buy one. But, I was always at the other end of the crib spectrum with my super-duper simple plain white crib from Costco.

Raina Cox said...

Sharon Brown - Yup. Saving money on ugly is still ugly.

Kristen said...

"Precious' sleeping hole"... hilarious.

ita darling. said...

I'm SO tempted to send this to a blogger friend who is "guilty" of every one of these nursery sins... but that would be a bitch move, and I am not a bitch to my friends, instead I can just mentally throw shade on the situation...