the other little haven

October 23, 2008

True’s room is probably the most complete in the house and I am in love with it. I mean, who can resist her antique little bed, vintage baby quilt (found on etsy), and French poster… certainly not me (sometimes I even try to lay in it)…
I had help putting the poster with the bed, as inspiration came from Australia’s July/August issue of Inside Out magazine (I already had the bed and quilt), so when I saw it, I thought, “That is just what I am looking for,” and off I went to find it, then it was all perfect (I even styled the bed just like the picture).

Then, a wonderful DIY project is this ginormous chalkboard that my Ben made. We bought a solid door at the local hardware store, had it cut 4.5 ft. by 3ft., then he primed and painted it with chalkboard paint, mounted it to the wall, and voila…
I love the thickness of it because it looks like a giant canvas. It is really big and the girls love it, and the can go wild coloring everywhere on it. We spend most mornings coloring here or on their little table. This is where we play pre-school. They even have a cute bucket for all their chalkboard-ing fun and little vintage milk stools to sit on…

True’s softie collection is displayed on some old, rusty, wire baskets. I have a thing for vintage baskets… metal, locker, picnic, woven, apple picking, you name the basket (and the more rust it has), I probably would love it!

I am still looking for more, so if anyone ever comes across some similar ones to these, please let me know.

My love for chalkboards is evident because True has another one on the opposite corner, this is an old French one and the stool next to it was handmade by Ben’s dad. You really could never have too many chalkboards. There is also a nice little reading corner for someone to snuggle up in. Also, a lot of our books are some of Ben’s books when he was little. Kinda cool that the girls are now enjoying the same books Ben read when growing up. Guess you can say that they are kinda vintage. Most everything in the room is vintage, minus the toy box, and the bookshelf was the best bargain of the room because we snatched that up awhile back for $5 at the flea market…

The jars are used to hold mementos or little collections that spring up from time to time (can’t remember which design book I got this from). So far, they hold sticks and shells True has found at the beach and ticket stubs from her first time on an airplane…
I really love her room. The style isn’t baby-esqe, heck, I would even love that poster in my room! We have so much fun playing in here.

The room is almost done, there are a couple of empty spots on the wall that need something, but I am not sure what yet (except I could use more metal baskets). Her dresser is also bare with nothing on top, so we will wait to see what collection may grow there, but for now, it is absolutely perfect for my little girl.

And she loves it, so that is all that matters…

45 comments on “the other little haven”

  • sammi says:

    oh my….just so lovely….I need a girl!!!!!! we have an entire wall in our kitchen in chalkboard paint. I painted four layers of magnetic paint underneath the chalkboard paint, and it has allowed fun with drawing and posting drawings on the wall for display as well….it looks better the more it gets drawn and erased…I am now venturing upstairs to see what I can do with the boys room!! (I have been looking for that poster…where ever did you find it?)

  • emily says:

    it really is a perfect little room!!! i love it!

  • Anonymous says:

    you have such a beautiful style!

  • Jenn says:

    Beautiful. I’d love being in a room like that, too. What I think is neat is that it’s very transitional — no need to reinvent the design as she gets older.

    And Ohdeedoh is the children’s area of the Apartment Therapy site. Most of the content are reader submissions of their children’s spaces. Especially with all your handmade toys and flea market finds, it’s definitely a good share! Same for Cookie’s Nesting blog.

  • Charissa says:

    I love the simplicity of both rooms and hope that each day I move a little closer to that, although right now I am a keeper that has trouble throwing away. What do you do when you get ridiculous gifts that don’t fit your design style at all – noisy toys or sesame street stuffed animals.

  • Rubyellen says:

    charissa- haha… you should see my closet. i have at least 3 boxes full of those kinds of toys that i plan on sending somewhere where some kids would treasure them more (our church frequently collects things like these). we get too many and as much as i appreciate the thoughtfulness of people, we really don’t need that many toys and i try to stay away from plastic.

    i am definitely not a keeper and toss what i can. also, with their toys, there are some that we keep and i constantly put some away and rotate them around so there isn’t an over abundance of them. plus, they don’t play with all of them anyway.

    i say, if you feel bad about tossing, keep them in a box hidden away and the kids will only want what out, so what they don’t see or know won’t hurt them!

  • Leslie says:

    i agree with jenn, you need to submit this to ohdeedoh. it deserves to be seen, it is so beautiful. do you mind if i link to it? i’ve been coming back to it all day, really love your style!

  • Rubyellen says:

    leslie- of course not! go ahead… i would be honored. thanks for the encouragement. i will look into it and see how it is done.

  • you definitely have an inner-decorator! These look like magazine spreads. Don’t be surprised if a zine comes calling!!! That poster is terrific!

  • Sarah Jane says:

    oh wow. I am so inspired! I can’t wait to “redo” my kid’s rooms, and this just perfect. The chalkboard is awesome! I love it! Where did you find that poster? do you mind sharing?? I love it!!! I would love to play in that room too:)

  • i feel the same way about my little girls room. when we first moved into our home hers was the ONLY room that was fully decorated, or even had furniture for that matter. i still love just laying in there with her. your style is beautiful and something that isn’t to babyish so she’ll grow with it perfectly.

  • Her room is amazing! Great job! :]

  • I love the blue scale and the baskets for display and of course, the gorgeous little antique bed! What a lovely room!

  • sunnie_fairy says:

    wow, that room is amazing! i would absolutely love that room!

  • erin says:

    what a charming room! i’m envious! i don’t know where you are in california, but if you’re anywhere near san francisco, you would likely adore the alameda antique fair. it’s held on the first sunday of every month, and it’s massive–can take all day to get through it. i’ve furnished my whole house over the years by attending faithfully.

  • Jaime says:

    Both of their rooms are adorable. But the best part of all is that antique bed. Where did you find that? My dad is a welder and makes really cool trellises and stuff for gardens and he recently built a bed for my mom and him that was pretty cool. I wonder if he could build something like that! I enjoyed looking at your kids’ rooms, I wish my kids would leave things where I put them in their room so it would look cute too, but they like to redesign!

  • Gina says:

    It’s wonderful, a child’s dream.

  • Lucys Place says:

    What a delightful room! Straight out of a magazine. True must be happy as a cricket in there.

    We’re still keeping an eye out for a bed, but maybe Lucy’s crafty grandfather can make her one. He has a forge for ironworks, and a big workshop for woodworking. All he needs is Lucy to come up with a design.

    I love the little dolls in their wire baskets hanging on the wall. seriously, very cool (in a sweet way of course).

  • Chrissy says:

    Hi Ruby! Just like the rest…. I love their rooms! Totally to die for. My husband and I purchased a vintage French bed sort of like True’s as well. It’s been sitting empty for about a year now! I’ve been unable find any foam for the mattress part. We live in Riverside County. Do you by any chance know where I can get the mattress part? Not sure if you would, I figured I’d give it a shot! Thank you Ruby! Keep well.

  • nathalie says:

    again….you did a wonderful job!!!! i wish i could appreciate antiques more. i know the whole character thing. but sometimes i just can’t do it. i love the poster. i saw it somewhere and i can’t remember. very cute. i will keep an eye for the baskets.

  • resa says:

    you are so amazing! it’s a pleasure to follow your success and creativity.

    i tagged you here

    hope you have fun!

  • Rachel says:

    This is such a perfect room for a little girl! I stumbled across your blog and love it!

  • Rubyellen says:

    erin- oh! it is my dream to go to alameda by the bay!!! but we live in southern ca, so it might be awhile to make it up there. otherwise, i try to make all the shows down here!!!

    jaime- we got the bed at a flea market. i am a frequent shopper at out local flea market and they have the best finds!!!

    chrissy- we might be neighbors! we just moved to riverside county too! email me at I can help you find a mattress!

  • Rubyellen says:

    also, thanks everyone!!! i love the room and it has been so much fun putting it together. we aren’t even done! now, if we can just finish the rest of the house!!!

  • Leigh says:

    I love love love this!

  • it is perfect… what little girl would want anything else? i’m still working on my son’s room, he is three now – i wonder how old he will be when i finish?

  • -amanda says:

    Love the room!

  • Anke says:

    I just discovered your blog via “a room somewhere” and I’m already in love! That room is perfection!!! I have a thing for these wire baskets too (“house doctor” in Denmark makes nice ones). I’ll be back! 🙂

  • katie says:

    ruby! both these rooms are beautiful. really really beautiful!

  • melissa says:

    What a perfect little bedroom! I LOVE all the details: the poster, the mini bed, the colorful quilt, the chalkboard…

  • liz stanley says:

    these rooms are amazing! good work. love your blog. ditto about ohdeedoh. they need some cooler nursery tours

  • Diana says:

    Absolutely beautiful! But I have a little girl too, and I would be worried about the toxic stuff in that room. Chalk isn’t healthy to breathe (and I think they found asbestos or something in some of it), and do you test the old paint finishes for lead? Just miniscule amounts of it in the air can be very dangerous.

  • Rubyellen says:

    diana- no worries! no toxic here! everything has been lead checked and none of it contain anything! i am very paranoid about lead myself. i have a few pieces that i failed to check when i bought it and it just sits covered up away from everything in our garage. too bad though, those were cute. i will have to get rid of those, but all the things in the room are safe!!!

    as for the chalkboard, i haven’t heard that. i will look into it though. i think you just have to be weary where the chalk comes from.

    thanks for your concern!

  • rubyellen, your blog, your family and your home are all just lovely! I linked to you through “Oh Happy Day,” and I’m sure glad I did. I have so enjoyed browsing through your amazing designs and creative ideas! You’re just plain inspiring. Your girls rooms are perfection- white is my favorite color too. My room is mostly all white on white, do you have any tips for making all the white look fresh rather than blah? Maybe a favorite white paint color? =)

    Also, I am a photographer and people always ask how to dress their children. I may just have to link to your blog to inspire my clients! I love your style and that you dress your children beautifully but still like KIDS.

    well, sorry for the novel. Thanks for making my evening!


  • Stephanie says:

    Gorgeous! I found your blog on Oh Happy Day. It’s a keeper. Thank you for sharing all your gorgeous, inspirational photographs of your children’s rooms. I’m utterly inspired and in awe. Well done!

  • Chrissy says:

    Hi again Ruby! Just wanted to shoot you a quick message. I emailed you on Monday about the little bed mattress. I’m not quite sure if you got the email or not, lately my emails I’ve been sending haven’t made it to their full destination. Not sure why. Anyway, hopefully we can touch bases, so I can get this little bed a mattress! lol., thanks Ruby talk to you soon.

  • Becky says:

    So cute. Love the Paris sketch on the chalk board. Love the white. My little one asked her Papa for a purple room — and he said yes. So, now we have a purple room… oh well!

  • Becky says:

    Too cute. Love the white. My oldest asked her Papa if he would paint her room purple. So, now we have a purple room… oh well.

  • jade says:

    Thanks you for sharing these wonderful rooms!!!! I am so inspired by them. Most of all by their simplicity! I struggle with keeping too many things, and end up with clutter. I love these rooms and they will be on my Inspiration board!

  • OMG, can you PLEASE come decorate my house??!?!?

  • sunny says:

    what a beautiful room! organized and so very pretty!

  • Abbie says:

    I love this room!

  • wow!!! this room is amazing. let me know if you are interested in having it featured on



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