Blog 20 of Top 25 Home Design Moms - 2012
Favorite Blog Posts
- Greener and Leaner Birthday Celebrations
- Making a Safer Bed on Any Budget
- Keep Toxins out of your body with the 3 points of Entry
How did your decorating style change when you became a mom?
I expected having kids to change a lot of things in my life, but the effect on my family's decorating style was something I never could have anticipated. My decorating style has always been to include a lot of color. We have brightly colored walls throughout our home, for example. But when my kids were born we started learning about all of the environmental and health toxins that are often used in home decorating. So we had to shift our choices a bit. For example, if we couldn't get the absolute brightest blue paint in no-VOC, then we would choose a different color rather than compromising our values. We also started to learn about and choose VOC-free furniture, mattresses and pillows without toxic flame retardants, PVC-free wall and window coverings, and even lead-free Christmas tree lights. It has been a slow and steady transition and eventually I hope to be able to replace our couches and other large pieces with non-toxic versions as well!
What's your advice on creating a beautiful family space that works for both kids and adults?
My biggest piece of advice is to keep the toys out of the kids' rooms. While my living room often looks like the playroom in a daycare filled with 20 kids (when I only have 2 kids), we were very mindful about creating a peaceful space for the kids to sleep. Of course, they do play in there too and they each have a selection of books, but there isn't anything plastic, battery-operated, or otherwise distracting in their sleeping spaces. Only soft, quiet and peaceful. Even writing this about it is making me want to go in there and take a nap.
How would you decorate a child's room on a budget?
I would skip a lot of the frivolous things that are often marketed to new parents. You don't need a bottle warmer, a humidifier, a separate changing table, a diaper caddy, or even a separate laundry hamper (unless of course you are cloth diapering). We went with three key pieces: the crib, a dresser and a rocking chair. We put a changing pad on top of the dresser and chose a MDF-free crib that converts to a toddler bed so we'll get many years use out of it. Also very important to our family was selecting an excellent non-toxic crib mattress. We took the money we saved on other unnecessary decor and bought Naturepedic organic cotton mattresses for both kids. This was one of the best decisions we made in the nursery and now, in our son's "big boy" room. Knowing that the kids are breathing easier and sleeping better because they are not inhaling toxic fumes from PVC and toxic chemical flame retardants makes the price tag worth it to splurge on this one item. If you can't afford an organic mattress, then I recommend leaving any new conventional mattress outside to offgas for at least one week before putting it in baby's room and cover it with a PVC-free waterproof pad if you can. There are also lots of great companies making PVC-free wall stickers and curtains, as well as formaldehyde-free, phthalate-free and lead-free cribs and other kids' room furniture. So focusing on health and safety while decorating a child's room is becoming more accessible.
This Valentine's Day, treat loved ones to the thoughtful, delicious gift of an edible valent… Read More
Got something to say? Join Circle of Moms or login to participate in the conversation.Please login to comment