Brooke’s Playroom

If you’ve been following me for a while, you know that I had a blast designing and decorating Brooke’s nursery. I knew that once our baby arrived, my next project would be turning my former craft room into a fun playroom. Well, it only took the better part of a year…but I can say that it’s now (mostly) complete! I have LOADS of pics to share with you, and hopefully a lot of good tips and information.

**NOTE: I have decided that I will do future posts outlining the individual DIY projects for this room in more detail. It’s just too much to all do in one post.

So, with that said, here is a weird, fisheye view of the playroom (sorry it’s the only lens I have that can get the whole room in one shot!)

My theme for this DIY makeover was a) bright & cheery primary colors b) keep costs down, and c) try & re-purpose items we already owned.

There is a lot of IKEA stuff in this room – are you shocked? 😉 The main element is this large Expedit bookcase – it only cost $199 and just LOOK at all that storage!

Totally awesome. All baskets and boxes inside this shelf are also from IKEA. We are actually doubling up on storage with this bookcase, as I have a row across the very top containing office supplies, crafting supplies, and other miscellaneous items. Luckily we don’t have THAT many toys (yet) so we are able to still use one row on this monster bookcase for us 🙂

The flooring is made up of these foam squares. (thank you, Amazon Prime for fast & FREE shipping!). I thought about the flooring for a while. We looked at MANY carpets and area rugs. Unfortunately, the carpets I found were crazy expensive and not large enough to cover the entire floor. We wanted something soft, colorful and relatively inexpensive. I got this idea from a friend, and it works perfect! It was WAY cheaper than a huge area rug – and it’s SO much easier to clean. It can also be customized to almost exactly the size of the room (I still have a few blank squares I need to fill in here & there). If one square gets damaged, they are easily replaceable. All around win.

The curtain valances were another DIY project, courtesy of these full panel curtains from IKEA.

I bought just one set (for some reason they are showing $50 for price on their site, but I only paid $30 for mine. Not sure what that is all about?) Anyway, I cut them up & sewed them into these valances, then added some cute pom pom trim – just like the curtains in Brooke’s nursery. I still had a BUNCH of curtain fabric leftover (still do, actually) so I used some to create these pillow covers:

(I followed THIS awesome and simple tutorial for sewing these covers). I keep these pillows on the floor so that we have something to lean on when we sit and read with Brooke. I already had the pillow inserts so this was a very cheap element to add to the room. 3 valances + 2 pillows for ~$35. Not bad!

We have a few walls with mini bookshelves, because this little girl has LOTS of books (which we LOVE!)

I stole this bookshelf idea from many inspirational rooms I found online. We recieved SO many wonderful books at my baby shower and I love that this gives us a way to display them all. (another inexpensive way to fill up wall space using items we already owned). Brooke is very tough on books at the moment, so I really would like to save these nice books until she is a little older. I keep the board books nice and low for her to easily grab, and the larger books with paper pages up top.

These bookshelves are actually spice racks from IKEA, painted white. They are only $4 a piece and I just love the look of them. The most annoying part about these was hanging them up (luckily hubby will do anything for his little girl. Sorry, Pete!)

The word “READ” was created using wooden letters that I found at Michael’s in the unfinished wood section. They were already white so I didn’t even bother painting them. Just had to hang them up to create this fun title. You might recognize a few of these letters from the Father’s Day gift disaster. LOL. At least I got my money’s worth out of them…

I filled the space above the bookshelves on this wall with some super inexpensive DIY art. This is simply fabric wrapped around cheap embroidery hoops. Full post on these coming soon.

This next wall has lots of fun stuff on it!

The bottom has both a chalkboard and velcro board – more DIY projects that were relatively inexpensive.

Brooke LOVES both of them (when she isn’t trying to eat the chalk. EW).The velcro board has a bunch of laminated flash cards stuck to it. She really enjoys sticking things to the velcro and pulling them off. I plan to laminate more stuff soon and use this as a learning tool when she gets older.

Above that I have a wire from IKEA to display my little Picasso’s latest creations. This was something we already had leftover from my old craft room, so there was no cost there.

Above that I have another shelf from IKEA, along with cheap IKEA frames. Inside the frames is some DIY digital artwork that I created. (mostly because I was being cheap and didn’t want to pay for the ones I found online.) It’s not nearly as nice as the ones I saw online, but it works for this room. I will do a full post on those soon, too. I filled the rest of the shelf in with some favorite photos.

This last wall displays my Sunshine wall art, more frames for Brooke’s crafty creations, and my latest project, a fun magnet board:

I snagged some Melissa & Doug wooden magnets at my local craft store using a 50% coupon. They are perfect for her little hands! Our stainless steel refrigerator is not magnetic for some reason, so this DIY magnet board makes up for it 🙂 I got the idea from this lovely tutorial.

One of my best finds for this room was this Fisher Price “door” that I grabbed around Christmas time. A friend’s neighbor was looking to sell this toy for $30 – it goes for almost $80 brand new! I was so happy to get a gently used toy that is in great working condition for such a bargain. Brooke has a BLAST with this toy and it acts as the perfect centerpiece for the playroom.

Also, I thought I would let you all know that if you think the room stays this clean you are sorely mistaken. This is a pic of her doing what she does best – acting like a tornado & ripping EVERYTHING off the shelves, ha!

I must admit though, that it does not take long to clean up at all, thanks to all the storage bins & shelves in that IKEA bookcase. And don’t worry, we have bracketed this shelving unit to the wall for safety. We also have gates on each doorway to keep the tornado Brooke from weaving her path of destruction to other rooms on the 2nd floor. AND to avoid the stairs…ha 😉 Also, I realize I sound like a walking advertisement for IKEA in this post, but I can assure you that I am in no way being compensated from them. (although that would be pretty freaking awesome, LOL!)

So that’s it! I hope you enjoyed this LONG tour of our newly completed playroom. I must say that Brooke really enjoys playing in here. The room is actually right off her nursery, so as soon as she wakes up, she toddles right into the room and starts playing. It worked out perfectly for the flow of our house, too – because in order to get to most rooms on the 2nd floor, you have to walk through this room. There really wasn’t much else you could do with it, aside from making it an office/craft room/playroom.

I will try and do more specific posts on some of the DIY projects soon, but let me know if you have any other questions on things I might have left out. Thanks! 🙂

Happy Sunday :)

this is too good not to share. Brooke loves playing on Daddy’s Shoulders. (and yes, I know we are silly & goofy and talk like idiots. But you know, it’s SO much fun. We just can’t resist!)

Her faces just kill me. She is such a smiley happy baby!

2 Months.

I cannot believe my little peanut is already 2 months old! We had a little photoshoot last week so I wanted to share the pics here with you all. It’s been an awesome 2 months. She is growing & changing everyday and we are loving every minute of it! Brooke really recognizes us as Mommy & Daddy now and I have to tell you there is no better feeling than looking at your little one & having them smile back at you. GAH! Makes my heart melt.

For example…


At 2 Months, Brooke is:

  • Smiling a LOT! She loves to smile at Mommy & Daddy, but really anyone who catches her attention.
  • Cooing a TON! Every day is seems she coo’s even more and it’s so freaking awesome. It’s like she just discovered the sound of her own voice & she loves to hear it. I can really get her going in the morning when she wakes up for her first feeding. It’s my favorite part of the day!
  • Sleeping for ~6 hour stretches at night. We’ve had a few 8 hour stretches mixed in there (glorious). Now I just need to be better about falling asleep at the same time that SHE does so that I can get more sleep! (easier said then done though – there is always something around the house that I need to get done before heading up to bed!)
  • Sleeping a LOT during the day still – but that’s OK. I love the cuddle time and she seems to need it. It helps her sleep better at night when she naps more during the day. I am embracing this time as I know it won’t last forever. LOL
  • Weighs 11lbs/ and is 23.25 inches long!
  • Brooke has already been to visit her Nana & Grandpa overnight twice with Mommy & Daddy. She’s a travelin’ baby and handles it so well. When I am home with her during the week, we go anywhere & everywhere. Mama likes to get out & do things so Brooke is getting used to being on the go. I am hoping she continues to like it as she gets older!

I also had this pink skirt that I bought a few years ago on super clearance with the idea of Baby Photoshoots in mind. I wasn’t even pregnant at the time, and little did I know that someday I would have a baby girl of my own to stick in this skirt 🙂 So I couldn’t resist putting her in it & getting a few shots.

My favorite part is the way her chubbo little belly squeezes into that skirt. LOVE! hehe.

Love this face. SO much.