Nursery Progress: Shopping For A Rug, A Light, & Curtain Fabric

You all remember where we left off when it comes to the big nursery makeover, right? We painted the walls a nice pear color and added a splash of light aqua to the ceiling:

Well… then it was time to go shopping. And not just any kind of shopping. Seriously determined we-have-a-goal-and-we’ll-make-fifty-stops-if-we-have-to shopping. And that goal was a lofty one. We set out on a Saturday morning with the hope of hunting down five distinct items for the recently painted nursery by that very evening:

  • Some sort of light fixture, either a big fun patterned pendant lamp or some sort of playful and sweet chandelier
  • A plush 5 x 8′ 100% wool rug (without any rubber backing or synthetic materials since we’re trying to keep the nursery as VOC-free as possible)
  • Tons and tons of fabric to create three curtain panels (two for the window and one for the now-doorless nursery closet)
  • A simple clean-lined curtain rod to hang the aforementioned window panels once they’re made
  • A vibrant mirror that will hang across from the window to reflect light around the room, thereby brightening the space)

That’s a pretty specific list, eh? We didn’t even really think it was possible, but we do our best under pressure so we listed all the items that we wanted out loud a few times- just so we had something to strive for. And what do you know… we actually returned home with every single item on our list! Sure it took us almost seven hours of driving around and ducking into nearly eight stores, but we got ‘er done. Plus we did this all on the same morning that we picked up our nursery paint. Yeah, we weren’t kidding when we said it was a serious shopping blitz. Here’s what our back seat looked like after a long (did I mention long?) day of shopping:

We’re actually approaching the transformation of this room just as we did all the other rooms in our house except for the recent basement and full bathroom makeover that we shared. In those instances we whipped up a mood board of sorts beforehand (check out the bathroom one here and the basement one here). But when it came to every other room here at Casa Petersik, we decorated in stages and took a let’s-see-what-we-find-and-go-from-there approach. The funny thing is that both methods are pretty parallel when you think about it.

Making a mood board usually involves us finding an item that we love and drawing inspiration from that single item’s style and/or color (be it a rug or a pillow or even a drawer pull) and building a room around it. So when we whip up mood boards we might start with a graphic patterned rug which leads us to other furnishings and accessories that seem to complement and play up all the things that we liked about the initial piece that started the whole board. Similarly, when we shop around and take a less pre-planned mood-board-ish approach, we usually still find something that gets us thinking in a certain direction, and from there we find other items that complement that initial item. There’s just more of an open plan with the second approach, since it’s not like we hop online and order everything in one fell swoop. Instead we sort of let things happen organically and do some fun pavement pounding over the course of a few weeks (or even months and -gasp- years) to create a room that we love in the end. Of course with a baby girl coming along in less than four months we don’t really have years to devote to this room, but we definitely don’t have to finish it within a week or two either.

So on this particular Saturday we didn’t have any pre-planned mood board to follow, we just had our cheerful pear and aqua walls as a starting point of sorts (tip: always bring your paint chips with you when you shop, so you can hold them up and see how they “play” with new items that you’re eying). The first stop was a local discount fabric store here in Richmond called The Interior Outlet. The first bolt of playful and graphic pattern to catch our eye was this print with a richer and brighter version of both our pear wall color (seen in the flowers) and our light aqua ceiling color (seen in the leaves). But although we liked the bold design, we wondered if there was something a bit less über modern and a smidge more modern-meets-traditional (since we envisioned clean lines and punchy patterns in the room without much stark white- and with a bit more of a charming lived-in look).

And then we saw this beauty. As Carrie on Sex & The City would say: well hello, lover. It really was love at first sight. Everything from the slightly deeper aqua background to the modern yet charming print felt warm and sweet and perfect for our little beanette. Plus when we held up our paint swatches they felt like they would seamlessly create the perfect backdrop for our new favorite fabric in the world. The other amazingly fortuitous thing about this particular fabric is that it’s actually an indoor/outdoor textile made by P Kaufmann/Waverly (which still feels soft and billowy to the touch, but is not only fade resistant but dirt, water, and wear resistant). Um, could it be more perfect for a little girl’s room?

And the $14.99 a yard price was nowhere near where most designer fabrics usually range, but it wasn’t exactly $2 a yard either. Especially because we needed tons of it to make two floor-to-ceiling window curtains plus a third curtain to use in lieu of a closet door. But when we did the math and deduced that each of the three panels that we needed would be around $35 a pop (plus we’d have a few feet of extra fabric to play with when it was all said and done) we decided to make our move. After all, the rest of our home’s breezy white curtains were just $7 each (thanks Ikea!) so we reasoned that splurging just this once for our baby girl was ok- especially because we’re pretty sure these babies will MAKE the room. Well, along with the other baby of course.

Plus we found the perfect clean-lined oil-rubbed bronze curtain rod with little ring hooks (won’t they look so posh for a bambino?) on clearance at Target for a total of $12 (for two packs of rings and the rod!). So we felt further vindicated that our custom made curtains would be well worth it in the end. Spoiler alert: we’ve since made them and they nearly made me cry with joy when we hung them up. Yeah they’re that good (stay tuned for that post early next week).

But back to our Saturday shopping spree. Here I am standing in front of the fabric store proudly showing off our new fabric and my baby bump. Side note: everyone, including fabric vendors, is nicer to you when you’re pregnant. No, we didn’t get a discount or anything but they were all smiles and treated me like a preferred customer. I could get used to this…

Ok, but back to the search. We checked off fabric and a rod but still had three more boxes to tick off: overhead lighting, a rug, and a mirror. So we headed over to a store that we knew could potentially kill at least two birds with one stone (that expression is kind of gross when you think about it). It’s called The Decorating Outlet, and it’s actually a local shop that we hit up from time to time- just to see what they have. And what do you know… they had THE PERFECT CHANDELIER. Everyone knows that I’m a sucker for capiz, and this capiz shell chandelier was aqua! Hello? Can you picture the happy dance that ensued (complete with some belly-holding to make sure not to jostle the beanette more than necessary)?

Yeah, it was kind of epic. And the great thing is that the nursery is actually visible from the master bedroom (and vice versa, they’re right across the hall from each other) so we love that this longer and punchier capiz chandy in the nursery will be visible from the master bedroom which boasts a wider and more subdued white version. It’s like they’re related but not too matchy-matchy. Almost like our master bedroom chandelier had a sweet playful little baby and we adopted it for the nursery across the hall. And I haven’t even told you the best part yet. It was marked down from $125 to $50. Sold!

Here’s a sneak peek of it hanging up with our lighter aqua ceiling and the fun pear wall in the background. We love the texture and the sort of childlike magic that it brings to the space. And we mentioned that it was longer than the one in the bedroom, right? In fact we feared that we might have to snip a few discs off the bottom since John’s a tall guy and we didn’t want him walking into it, but it’s perfect as is! Long and dramatic but totally walk-under-able. Whew.

But the party didn’t stop there. We knew the lighting outlet also had rugs, and thanks to an “end-of-season-clear-out” (which may or may not go on all year round- you know how those signs act like something is special but sometimes it’s always in effect?) all of their in-stock rugs were 50-75% off! As we mentioned we really wanted an 100% wool rug (without any rubber backing or synthetic materials since we’re trying to keep the nursery as VOC-free as possible) and they had a bunch on hand for us to choose from.

Unfortunately many of them had a bit of fun pattern, which was nice but we knew that we wanted our patterned curtains to be the star so we pulled out rug after rug in search of something simple, plush, 100% wool, and not three hundred dollars (even with the 50%- 75% off sale, many rugs were originally $800+ so they were still far beyond our budget). Then we saw a light blue 5 x 8 100% wool rug that was nice and cushy (and swanky- it was actually hand knotted). Our plush light blue find wasn’t exactly as aqua as the ceiling, but it was a soft powder blue and it was marked down from $399 to $99. Uh, yes please! We decided to buy it and see how it looked and if it was a bit too cool (and not aqua-ish enough to work with the ceiling, the chandy, and the curtains) we’d just bring it back. Thank goodness we snagged it because when we got home and put everything into the space it totally worked. And we actually remarked that we were happy it wasn’t light aqua like the ceiling since the more subdued gray undertone will definitely hide a lot more dirt and create some nice layered interest in the room. Score.

Then it was time to mirror hunt so we swung through TJ Maxx and then Marshall’s (which are pretty much our mirror holy grails, along with Home Goods) where we spotted this large and in charge stunner for… wait for it… $39. That’s pretty much unheard of for such a giant and detailed 30″ solid wood mirror. And of course we don’t plan to keep it black so you’ll just have to wait and see what color we’re going to paint it. Hint: it’s not going to be white- I know, we’re just shocking you left and right today.

So that’s how we hit up a slew of stores over the course of about seven hours and returned with a car full of stuff (poor Burger really had to pee by the time we got home to rescue him). We must admit that our shopping trips aren’t usually this fruitful, we just happened to be at the right places at the right time and did our best to see the promise in things that might not always look exactly right for a baby girl’s room (like the dramatic black mirror above). Oh and we devoted seven hours to the cause. Did we mention it was a long day of shopping? Because it was.

It’s also pretty cool that about 70% of our finds hailed from small local businesses (not only did we get our paint from a green boutique here in Richmond, but the rug, chandelier, and fabric all came from local outlets that we found either by driving by them or looking them up in the Yellow Pages. The lesson: don’t forget to check out specialty stores in your area, do some googling, and even ask the neighbors for suggestions when you’re on the hunt for something that you can’t seem to find at Target or Marshall’s. Of course two of our items (the curtain rod and the mirror) came from those big box stores so it really is a pretty balanced bounty. It just goes to show you that you never know where you’ll find your next deal, but if you keep an eye out and set out with a serious mission you just might come home with a packed car and a whittled down to-do list. Now we just need furniture, art, and storage galore…

But what about you guys? Do you have any favorite local haunts where you always score something special? Any big box stores that leave you giddy over the big box deals that they dole your way? Let’s talk about that serendipitous feeling of finding the right thing for the right price. There’s got to be at least one thing in your house that you can’t believe you snagged for such a steal.

Psst- Wanna see the nursery transformation from the very beginning? Here’s our first post about clearing the room and here’s our second one about painting the walls and ceiling.


  1. amelia says

    looks great! holding judgement on the rug – its lookin’ a little dark, but waiting to see the whole room put together. Eager to see the curtains too!!! Great finds ;-)

  2. Leigh says

    I can’t wait to see the finished nursery! The suspense is killing me but I do love how you list everything out step-by-step. I am loving this nursery; it seems perfect for your little one to grow in to.

  3. Carmil says

    LOVE love love the scheme! Did I say I loved the fabric?!

    Its so perfect for a neutral/sophisticated– little girl room. Now I’m having fun guessing the mirror color. I see a few guesses for pink (the soft pink in the fabric flower) and I could go with that, but just to keep it interesting– I’m going with a soft silvery blue! I think I did that so I could say I guessed it if you go silver or if you go blue– just covering my bases!

  4. Stephanie says

    I just bought the same mirror last month!! Since I started reading your blog a few months ago I’ve really strived to step out of my decorating comfort zone. The mirror was one my first decorating ventures and I seriously contemplated returning it out of fear of it not fitting anywhere. I always meant to paint it white and you guys have totally helped to validate this purchase! I love your decorating style and you’ve definitely inspired me to add texture, multiple colors, and complimentary accessories to a space. Thanks and I look forward to future nursery posts!

  5. Chantalle says

    SO cute. I love the chandelier and can’t wait to see the color of the mirror! I was wondering…do you have any idea what the name of that first print was that you didn’t use? I would love some of it (out here in California) Thanks!

  6. says

    I LOVE the fabric you chose. You made the right decision. It is to great to find the perfect fabric.
    I also am thinking pink for the mirror.
    What do you plan to do with the closet. I am trying to figure out how to arrange my son’s closet to get the most usable space… Thought you might have some great ideas.

  7. Tana says

    I can’t wait to see the finished room!

    You are so lucky that your husband will go shopping for 7 hours! It’s nice to be able to just get it done (not that I’d know, haha).

  8. Tracey says

    Hey you guys! Could you please tell us what kind of product you’re going to use to paint the mirror? I saw the same one this weekend but the color was all wrong. I suck at DIY so I didn’t buy it. But if it’s super easy I think I can handle it. I just need to know what you recommend as far as paint products go.

    • says

      Tracey- We just use a few thin and even coats of latex paint to redo mirrors and frames (with a nice high quality paint brush). Occasionally we drag out the primer but that probably won’t be necessary for this mirror since it’s already painted and we’ll just be painting right over it (so no stain should bleed through or anything). Of course you can also spray paint mirrors and frames but since we’re trying to keep the nursery non-toxic we’ll be brushing on No-VOC paint instead. Hope it helps!

      Heather- As for the closet, our basic plan is to get a few horizontal bars to maximize space and add storage baskets and bins to further utilize every inch of the tiny nook. Our new floor length closet curtain (in lieu of a door) will definitely gussy things up so it’s more polished and sweet in the end. Stay tuned for the entire play by play when we finally tackle that aspect of the room!

      Chantalle- We don’t know anything about fabric #1 offhand, but we would suggest clicking the link that we included in the post above (we linked the name of the store to their online info) and giving them a call to hopefully hunt down some info. They didn’t have many things like it so they should know what you’re talking about when you call, and then you can get the maker and maybe even the model or style number. Hope it helps!


  9. erin p. says

    i love all the things you scored! i cannot wait to see your nursery, its going to be so pretty! we find out the sex of baby-#2-on-the-way this thurs and cannot wait to start the nusery!

    i LOVE marshals and tj maxx… everytime i go it’s like a treasure hunt because they always have different things in stock and i usually find something i love! i also want to make a stop at the local thrift stores to see if i can score any gems when we start shopping for the nursery.
    we just moved to this area a few months ago and unfortunately still dont know about many of the local shops. and we will probably use etsy for fabric and art. and since baby isn’t due until late june, i will have time when its warm to hit up some garage sales too (were in WI so it doesnt really warm up until may!)

  10. CarMaj says

    I just have to give John a huge e-hug for shopping ALLLL DAY – even in a fabric store!! My husband absolutely HATES shopping and I’m not sure how he’s going to do when a little one comes along and we get to redecorate but WOW – was I so very impressed!
    The room will undoubtedly look cheery and beautiful and love that it is a different style form the rest of your fab home. Can’t wait until the big revel!!

  11. says

    Everything is looking great. I bet you’re having so much fun on this room! You know what I’m most impressed with … that you guys do this TOGETHER. My husband wouldn’t be caught dead shopping for 7 minutes, much less 7 hours.

  12. Kristen says

    Ooo… I think that mirror would look SWEET painted hot pink! I’ve always wanted to do a shabby chic little girls room.
    Its looking great guys… can’t wait to see what the beanette thinks of it!

  13. Caroline says

    That fabric is great! You guys are going to have one lucky baby!

    I love how each room is distinct but definitely reflects your taste and design aesthetic — the flow of colors and materials throughout your house is great. I can’t wait to have my own place so I can get started on more projects of my own!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *