During the design process almost every client asks me, "What do you think of it?". Those who know me know that I am never afraid to give my opinion, but I also always explain that I would never design something that I didn't think looked great (obviously) and didn't meet all of their needs - BUT, at the end of the day, the room isn't going in my home. Once I leave the completed space, unless they invite me over for dinner or hire me for the next stage, I will likely never be in it again. I'm not the one who is going to spend sleepless nights or joyous milestones in it.  So, while I am always a big fan of my own two cents, what I personally think in these cases doesn't really matter. All that matters is that the client loves it each and every day after I leave.

However, there are a few times when the stars align perfectly and good 'ole opinionated me isn't afraid to shout out in excitement when that happens. If you've seen my own kids' rooms then you know that my personal style tends to lean to the more modern end of the spectrum. Projects like those don't come around everyday, but when they do, I have just a little more affection for them.

Working with Angela Simmons was one of those projects and it was so much fun. Not only because her baby boy is so stinkin' cute and her personality is laid back and cool - but because we share a modern, bold design style. It took only a few seconds into our very first conversation before the entire room was dancing around in my head, very appropriately to some catchy hip hop song - after all, this is a hip hop Princess we're talking about.

Angela knew she wanted the Nurseryworks Vetro Crib to be a focal in the space. Considering this is the exact same crib I chose for my toddler almost 2 years ago, I'm very familiar with it. The completely acrylic crib speaks volumes on its own, but I wanted to find something equally as striking to exist with it, as opposed to being outdone by it. Around that time I was traveling and saw an art installation using only tape. I was mesmerized by the talent, the art and the way it was created and I remembered that Angela was a big fan of cool and unique art. I knew that was it! This was our focal wall! Angela loved the idea as well and I connected with the extremely talented Eric Klein (known on social media at TapeArtist) about the project. I loved that he had never done anything like it in a nursery before - in fact, I'm pretty sure that Sutton's nursery is probably the first in the world to have tape art. I flip flopped a little between using just white tape on the rich navy backdrop or adding silver and after seeing the finished product, I'm so happy we kept it simple.

Then it was time to add touches of acrylic in the space. I wanted to complement it and not overdo it. My first stop was one of my favorite female-owned, made in the US companies: Lux Holds Ups. Manufactured in Brooklyn, the custom acrylic curtain rods and their stunning hardware are like art in their own right. The rich velvet drapes are by Best Home Fashion.

The acrylic skateboard light fixture by Elk Lighting was something that Angela and her fiance chose and I love the playfulness it adds to the mostly mature space.

By now I'm pretty sure that it's known that I am all Nook all the time. That's the thing about working with me - You get my design vision, but also my product expertise. Most other interior designers can't say they are experts on the baby-related products that go into the space. As a store owner, I immerse myself in the products and curate a selection that meets my own high standards in function and design. I use Nook products for my own kids, my friends' kids, my sister (she has no kids, but lots of Nook pillows), my cousins' kids, my clients' kids -- and well, you get the idea. So, the point to this is that the crib mattress and changing pad are both by Nook and Nook obviously rocks in my world.

Sometimes you go big on the focal wall and the other side feels left out. Not here. If this was the prom and the walls were the people - I'm not entirely sure which side would be crowned King.

Newport Cottages makes all of their furniture custom in southern California. My favorite part about the company is the color options are seriously endless. I know you're probably thinking of all the amazing things that could have been done to this Max dresser and you are absolutely right. However, this wall totally called for white. Some things just pop and shine better with simplicity and this was one of those times.

With a room like this we really could not just paint the "other side". I know sometimes people are afraid to mix several things in a space thinking it will be too much or look mis-matched. This can obviously happen, but when done right, the end result is stellar. The rest of the walls in the room are covered in a gray croc textured wallpaper by Graham and Brown. I love it so much that I want to wall paper every other wall in the world in it at the moment.

Atop that wallpaper is the star of this show - Cookie Monster! But, Cookie got a total makeover by the talented artist who created him especially for Sutton's room. Perego gave Cookie some bling, DJ equipment and a rockin' hat. His overall look is a clear homage to Sutton's Grandpa Rev Run, one of the influential founders of the hip hop group Run DMC. Perego is an amazing artist and if you need custom artwork then I highly suggest connecting with him.

If you have your eye on the chair in the room, you should know there's way more to it than just its good looks. Dutailier has been the longtime leader in nursery gliders and recliners. This piece is from their modern collection and is the most comfortable, maybe ever. What makes it even cooler is the fact that it can recline at the push of a button. No throwing your weight forward to stand = Baby sleeps soundly! It also glides and can be locked when the child is older, making it a great addition to another room one day.

The area rug is actually made of individual carpet squares. Flor is my go-to, especially for playrooms. When kids do their thing, and they will, you just pop one out and replace it with a fresh square. No stress, no tears. Plus, the color and pattern options make it easy to find something to go into any space, but hard to choose just one.

To complete the space I added a navy blue X side table by Inspire Q Home black leather tufted ottoman by Zuri Furniture, acrylic book ledges and a Schylling Speedster. The chic Hermes canister to house toys was sourced by Angela.

Remember what I said in the beginning about never getting to see the room again? Well, I was lucky to be back in Sutton's nursery last week to film an episode of NBC's Open House show. You'll get a full tour of the room, including a first-look at some additions since it was photographed. So definitely keep an eye out for the episode!

All of the amazing photos were taken by the very talented Chris Veith.



AuthorVanessa Antonelli