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My Baby’s "Manly" Room

When my son was 11 months old he decided he needed a more “manly” room.  Ok, so maybe I decided, but we had to pick the paint color for his bedroom the week before my ultrasound revealed him to be a boy.  I wanted something gender neutral so I went with a beautiful pale green color a neonish green color that I hated (paint colors can be the most challenging thing about decorating sometimes!).
THE BEFORE, eh, kinda neon, kinda babyish (and yes I know he is in fact a baby!)          


It finally bugged me to the point that I had to change it, so then the Mr. and I had a conversation that went like this:
ME: “Hey wouldn’t it look good to put some horizontal planking on this back wall, someday, like maybe for his big boy room?”


MR: “Huh?”


ME: “Here look in this PB kids catalog.”


MR: “Oh, yeah, that would be cool someday.”


So naturally the next day he came home from work to find the room had been painted grey and there were 18 1x6x12 MDF boards laying in our son’s room!  WHAT? He totally did not specify when this should happen (see above statement “someday”)


*SIDENOTE : If you saw some wacko  driving 25 mph down the road with 2 kids in the car and stacks of MDF boards sticking out the back window between their heads it was definitely not me…probably…


I’m smart and decided to have 5 or 6 boards already nailed up so  there was no turning back at this point!  Loving husband that he is, he just shook his head and laughed (he has known me for 12 years he should have seen this one coming.)

THE AFTER, see so much better?

I thought this project was going to be no biggie, and it was for the most part, although I don’t envy the Amish after this project. All I had was a hammer and a hand saw, if I didn’t think I would shoot my eye out with it, a nail gun would have been much preferred!


My son’s room is 11 x 12 so the boards were supposed to fit perfectly, turns out it is actually a few inches off so I just put up the side trim pieces to cover up the gaps.


All I did was put liquid nails on the back of each board and then nail them into the studs that I pre-marked up the wall with a pen.  To get a space between each board I nailed nails just above the board and rested my next board on top of them.  Repeat the process until you reach the top! Then countersink the nails, fill with putty, paint and TADA!


This was easy to do by myself until I got closer to the ceiling, then I broke down and asked my hubby for help (what a sport) hauling the boards up to the top so I didn’t smear liquid nails over everything doing it by myself.


These cute nautical flags are from Land of Nod.

My next fun project for this room was this locker I found at an antique store.  I loved this old locker and just had to have it! It was all rusty (which I secretly loved, but didn’t seem a good idea for a baby’s room!) so I spray painted it grey and blue and now it serves as his dresser.


In this shot you can see the white washed “pine” floors in the kids rooms.  It is actually a laminate, super affordable and I will be able to paint their rooms any color of the rainbow and it will look nice. BONUS:  Purple crayon washes right off…


My last project to complete the room was a fun growth chart.  I saw this print on Pinterest (the actual link was broken so I don’t know where it came from) and thought it would make a cute growth chart.  So I bought a length of canvas, measured everything out and painted it.  I used some cheap trim pieces to frame it on the wall.

Totally covered up the “1” with my trim, whoopsie!

That’s the tour…for now…can’t wait to put a big boy bed and some cute bedding in there, but I CAN wait for the big boy part, not ready to leave his baby days behind me yet :)

UPDATE: You can see the new and improved big boy room, complete with big boy bed here.

Linking up at Thrifty Decor Chic here.

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  1. LOVE this room! I’m attempting doing the wood planked walls for my sons nautical room. What white did you use to paint the wood? You’ve made it sound so easy, hopefully it is :)

  2. It’s hard to tell from the pictures, but is the comforter the navy or gray one from pottery barn?

  3. What a great room! I have been wanting to do a planked wall in my son’s room. Anyway, do you remember what colour the taupe walls are? My son already has navy curtains but he loves red everything. So I am trying to figure out a way to incorporate it all together. He wants an all red room…that’s not going to happen…hahaha.

  4. Hi Kelly, so glad to have found you on Design Dining and Diapers. I originally stopped by to see your blueprint art, but got distracted and here I am in your son’s room. How timely is that? I’m working on my son’s room right now and have been debating what finish to use for the plank accent wall. So glad to have seen this post, and be able to visualize what it would look like in white. This room is really nicely done and I love your style. Looks like we started blogging at about the same time. So nice to have found you, and I’m your newest follower!


  5. I just found you thru TDC. I am looking at making changes to our toddler’s room soon. His room is bright green right now. I LOVE this! It’s a great big boy room!

  6. I saw your post on a link – for some reason the print/text on your blog makes it crazy hard for me to ready, but I love it anyway!! I just sent your blog to my husband – that’s exactly what I want to do to a wall in my kitchen!
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