A nursery is a special place in the home to cherish the first experiences with your newborn. It calls for a certain sense of softness and comfort that creates a nurturing environment, which is not always easy in an otherwise-modern home. For a brand-new, contemporary home in Mar Vista with incredible views of the Santa Monica Mountains and the Hollywood Hills, Joyce Downing Pickens of JDP Interiors was put to the task of creating a space that brought child-friendly comforts to life while also complementing the existing aesthetic.
"When designing the nursery, we wanted to keep it in line with the modernity of the house," says Pickens, while still keeping the feeling "comfortable, cozy, and layered." This delicate balance was achieved through streamlined, sophisticated furniture, the right touch of playful details, and a serene earth tone palette. Head below to tour the animal-themed nursery, and read what Joyce Downing Pickens has to say about designing the space.
"My goal was to design a nursery that felt sophisticated while still maintaining that childish innocence."
"I wanted to make a departure from the stereotypical bright, loud, and garish colors typically associated with a nursery. The colors needed to be soft and unique, and the design [needed to be] simple but interesting. Babies are soft, delicate creatures, and their space should reflect that."
"The baby was due in August, so Leo the Lion was also a theme we played with loosely."
"The back wall was a huge expanse of white when we first began. This would have made the crib feel like it was floating and unanchored in comparison. This mural wallpaper really fixed this predicament, and instead of shying away from the problem, we decided to make the wall the intentional focal point while still bringing some warmth to it."
Besides great filler accessories from Target, Pickens says that the mobile called "Symphony" by Christian Flensted, a Danish designer, was one of her greatest finds. "It's such a departure from steretypical baby mobiles and makes an uncomplicated statement in the room." Pickens says the wallpaper is her favorite thing about the space. "I'm obsessed with it," she admits. "It feels like we created a dream world in reality."
"I always lean toward serene earth tones. Your home should be your sanctuary where you go to relax, unwind, and take a deep breath. The colors should facilitate that."
Yolk Wooden Bear ($37).
Yolk Mouse, Little Brother in a Box ($28).
"The first thing we bought for the room was the crib, of course," says Pickens. "[We] loved the raw natural wood details. We, of course, had to make sure we were ready in case the baby came sooner than expected. The rest of the design was built around the crib." She notes how they felt like the wallpaper was an ode to the illustrations of Where the Wild Things Are, and the fabric and patterns came into play all pulling in and working around it.
"The little baby on the way is a boy. We wanted to choose a color scheme that felt masculine and would grow up with the baby as he grew into a little boy without using cliché nursery hues. Green was the color we settled on with only a few subtle blue accents."
"I love classic, traditional design with a modern and bold twist. Mixing the old with the new," says Pickens. "So I am happy to be presented with a project that falls in either category."
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