Happy Wednesday, everyone! We’re so excited to introduce a new weekly series to the blog—Start With Art! If you remember, last month we launched a partnership with Pinterest under the same name based on the idea of designing a space around a piece of art. Now, we’re partnering up with designers from all over the country to bring you design inspiration and share their tips for starting with art. Our first designer is Naomi Alon of Little Crown Interiors. Naomi specializes in nursery design, and today she’s sharing a mood board for a nursery designed around ‘The Camel Porter I’ from Gray Malin at the Parker, which is currently on sale! The space is so dreamy and we love Naomi’s tips. We’ve also included links to everything in the mood board so you can create a similar design in your home. Keep reading to see the full design, learn Naomi’s tricks, and get inspired to create a room starting with art…
Hi everyone! My name is Naomi Alon and I’m a nursery and kid’s room designer. I started my design studio, Little Crown Interiors, so I could focus solely on these special spaces. I was always interested in interior design since I grew up with a parent and grandparent in the business—it was just always a part of our household and felt natural for me to go into it as well. I had the opportunity to work at a small design firm that specialized in nursery and kid’s design, and I was hooked! When I started Little Crown in 2008, nursery design was still a fairly new idea. But now the industry has exploded, and there are so many amazing options available for these spaces. I love exploring new decor brands and searching for amazing artwork to feature in my designs.
My personal style is mostly modern with touches of Mid Century Modern. I love lots of white with pops of vibrant color and have had a long-standing love affair with acrylic and gold. Since nurseries are such an intimate space, I often mix in softer and more bohemian touches to balance the modern elements when working with clients. We use a lot of patterns, florals, animals, etc., and mix those in with clean-lined, acrylic and gold accents. I would say I’ve also become known for the use of wallpaper accent walls in nurseries! The first time I did this was way back when I started, and the trend surprisingly stuck around all this time! I would say that wallpaper is almost always requested by my clients nowadays.
I’ve used several pieces from the At the Parker collection over the years, and I love how they mix modernity and style with whimsy and playfulness. ‘The Camel Porter I’ is a bit more mature in its playfulness, which I really like about it. When I design a nursery, I like to mix in pieces that aren’t necessarily juvenile to give the space a more sophisticated look. Camel Porter I also has a gender-neutral color palette which makes it so versatile, and the Hermes blanket on the camel brings a pop of color and a luxury vibe to the piece. There is color, texture and personality—perfect for a nursery!
I really like how this piece has a variety of colors if you look closely. It has much more depth than just the pop of orange and greenery. There is a variety of neutral tones in the patterned wall and even on the camel itself, along with the blue sky in the background. Even though blue isn’t the standout color of the print, I pulled from that sky blue background and used it as a foundation for the room’s color scheme. I combined the ideas of the blue color with the patterned wall and chose a pretty blue patterned wallpaper to represent both of those ideas. Then I added small pops of orange and green to tie it together. I chose neutral tones for the lighting and rug and combined them with texture to mirror the camel’s fur and the large patterned wall. I love the use of plant life in the piece, so I also added lots of greenery in the design, and then some little camel wall hooks to really tie it together.
One important rule that I like to follow in my nursery designs is that the room doesn’t need to feel juvenile. I like to design with a lot of pieces that are from “regular” lines of furniture and decor and mix those in with the nursery-specific pieces like the crib and glider. That way, the room feels fresh and sophisticated and can appeal to the parents as well. I like to note that once all of the baby’s clothes, toys, books, and stuffed animals are in the room, it will feel much more playful, no matter how sophisticated the design.
Especially with nurseries and kid’s rooms, it’s easy to fall into the “theme” trap. Since this photograph is of a camel, it could have easily turned into a camel-themed room. I like to use art as a centerpiece, but not as a theme. For example, instead of creating a camel-themed nursery, I used design elements from the piece, like color, pattern, and texture, and created the design around those. There are small elements of theme like the camel wall hooks and Hermes blanket, but the overall feel of the room doesn’t mirror the photograph.
Don’t forget that the entire Gray Malin at the Parker series is on sale for a limited time with prints starting at $199. Happy shopping!