Turquoise Vintage Circus Jungle Nursery

When I was about four months pregnant, my close friend Kasandra asked me, “So, what is your theme going to be for the nursery?” Theme? Uh….under the sea? Wild west? I just don’t think in themes. So I thought about the colors I love — red, turquoise, purple, teal, orange, yellow — oh wait — I love all the colors.

When we first moved into our place Stephen and I painted two of the rooms Martha Stewart Vintage Map, which, obviously, is a light blue color (I can’t get over product color names).  So, conveniently enough when we found out we were having a boy we didn’t have to repaint the walls.

Honestly, though, I have a problem with classic nurseries. The baby is only a baby for a couple of years so I see no point in decking out a room with paint and decals and décor that will only be applicable for a short amount of time. Also, I wanted our baby room to be a space that I’d want to hang out in.

I love vintage toys and they all seem to have vintage colors like rusty orange and faded blue. I also love the look of Hipstamatic photos. The colors are saturated but a little off. They kind of remind me of old circus photos.

A few months ago I found someone on Craigslist who was selling several Fisher Price toys from the ’60s. I instantly scooped them up and after some light contemplation I had an answer for Kasandra: the theme will be vintage circus. What I ended up with I can’t exactly explain in terms of a theme, hence the bizarre blog title of Turquoise Vintage Circus Jungle Nursery.

I love how the room turned out. It look very little effort to transform what used to be the booze and guns room into a comfortable space to play and care for our son. Due to space constraints, my husband is sharing this room with baby. Stephen lays claim to the closet and the upper part of the cube shelf is his retro music station. But I think it blends well with the rest of the room.

I pride myself in finding good used items, so this room was a relative bargain. All the furniture is from thrift stores, garage sales, or was given to us. Most of the decorations were handcrafted by me, friends and family or were printed off the Internet and put into cheap frames.

We have many meaningful things in this room: a slate that my godmother used when she was a child, my older sister’s teddy bear, friends’ artwork, embroidery that was in my nursery, “A Child’s Garden of Verses” that belonged to my husband’s grandfather, a crib that all four of the kids in my family used, a bookshelf my grandfather made in the ’50s, a homemade sock monkey that belonged to my older brother and photos taken by close friends.

The love from our family and friends spans wall to wall. I hope you enjoy these photos as much as I do. Click on a photo to enlarge.

Curtains from Ikea, blanket made by me, crane mobile and paint chip bunting also made by moi, our old garage sale chair and ottoman, my Oriental rug from college

Bookshelf made my my grandfather in the ’50s, thrift store bedside table and lamp

Craigslist vintage toys, slate belonging to my godmother, thrift store toys, new German wooden toys from grandma

Homemade fitted sheet, giant sock monkey and red monkey painting from our friend Ashley, crib made in Sweden and purchased in England for my brother in 1971, wall quilt made by my mom, jungle painting scrounged from a moving van, space-age TV scrounged from a dumpster
From left to right: My childhood bear Bosh, older sister’s bear Beary, new Pooh sitting on vintage telephone bench converted to a toy chest

Artwork and haiku by my old friend Joe

Craigslist cube shelf, painting by original Jack, thrift store toys, photos by our friend Amber
Bins from Jo-Ann’s

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3 thoughts on “Turquoise Vintage Circus Jungle Nursery”

  1. Yes, she was creative. I put the little red sweater on him, though, because the pattern came out too small. I think Jack will be far too big for it as soon as he arrives.

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