Dads by Design

Husbands. Dads. Sharing Our (Mis)Adventures in Home Renovation and Parenthood.

Sydney Nursery Reveal 2

Sydney’s Nursery Reveal

Shortly after Sydney‘s birth mom chose us, we began thinking about how her nursery. By happenstance, a few weeks later, a Pottery Barn Kids catalog showed up in the mail with a photo of rainbow bookshelves that became the inspiration for Sydney’s room. Like her name, Sydney’s room is packed with meaning, and every choice was intentional. It was so important for us to create a space for her that felt unique and welcomed her as a member of our family.

The Nursery Before & After

These pictures don’t really capture what Sydney’s room looked like before. Her room is small (just slightly over 10’x10′), so it’s hard to capture everything with just one camera.

Sydney Nursery Before

Sydney Nursery Before

Sydney Nursery Reveal 1

The after is so much lighter and brighter. Exactly what we wanted!

The DIY Projects

For us, room was a perfect blend of DIY and design. The DIY projects included: redoing the windows by painting them black and adding new window trim, adding new molding to the doors along with hardware and paint, building the rainbow book ledges, crafting a new lamp shade for the llama lamp, and spray painting frames for the gallery wall.

Entrance Slab Door with Molding

The Details

Rainbow Book Ledges 1

As I mentioned, the rainbow book ledges were the inspiration for the rest of the nursery. Looking at them makes me so happy. And knowing we built them makes it all the sweeter.

Sydney Nursery Reveal 2

As much as I love them, I can’t decide if the book ledges or the gallery wall are my favorite part of the room. Every piece of art has meaning. The large cockatoo is a reference to her name because they’re all over Sydney, Australia. Anyone who knows us knows that we’re a “Disney family,” and there are actually two references here, the Never Grow Up word art and the balloon art in the pink frame is a very subtle reference to Up. Even the acrylic frames are from Australia. I loved being so intentional about everything and we had a lot of fun curating it.

Sydney Nursery Reveal 3

As we were putting together her room, the rocking chair was the bane of our existence. First, finding one that wasn’t horribly ugly was almost impossible. Then, not once, but twice, when we finally found one we liked when we went to purchase it and it was completely out of stock. Admittedly we spent too much on a chair, but it was our one splurge in the room. After the second chair we wanted at Crate & Kids was sold out, I Googled the chair manufacturer. Turns out they custom manufacture the chair we wanted. It arrived just days before Sydney and it’s perfect.

Sydney Nursery Reveal 4

There’s a lot going on in Sydney’s room. A lot of color and design. I had several ideas for what to do above her crib including another DIY. However, your eye just really needs a place to rest because the book ledge and gallery walls are so colorful. I originally purchased the garlands above the crib to hang along the curtain rods, but it didn’t work the way I envisioned. Ideally, I might hang the garlands slightly lower, but I don’t want Sydney grabbing them and pulling them down as she grows.

Sydney Nursery Reveal 5

There you have it, Sydney’s nursery! We spent a lot of time and energy on this project and are thrilled with the way it turned out. Right now it’s definitely the nicest room in our home. Even at 3 a.m. when we’re feeding her, I love spending time in there. As Sydney grows, I hope she feels the same way.

Sydney Nursery Reveal 6


Furniture & Bedding

Crib / Crib Skirt / Bedding 
Rocking Chair / Ottoman

Art & Frames

Rainbow Art / Dreamcatcher / Cockatoo / Never Give Up / Be You Pennant / Balloon Art / Unicorn Taxidermy / Wonder Woman Poster / Pink Letterboard / Neon Rainbow Sign
Rainbow Book Ledges
Acrylic Frames / Poster Hanger / Wall Hooks


Light Fixture
Curtain Rod / Curtains / Blackout Roman Shades (White Textured)
Rainbow Garlands
Llama Lamp / Changing Pad Cover
Flamingo Plush


Walls, Trim and Entry Door / Closet Door


Building Rainbow Book Ledges for the Nursery


We Finally Finished the Deck

1 Comment

  1. hi, your style is amazing.Following your articles.

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