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When Kate Rhodes started designing her daughter’s nursery, she had a vision of what she wanted. But, she found it challenging to execute her ideas. The layout proved to be tricky and everything Kate found felt too traditional compared to her unique taste. 

“My husband and I decided we wanted the gender to be a surprise. I looked online for gender-neutral nurseries and had a very hard time finding any with colors that weren’t green or yellow,” she says. Kate wanted an exciting and colorful nursery but didn’t know how to break away from the conventional nursery design. 

With the baby on the way, the clock was ticking. In the nick of time, Kate discovered Havenly online interior design. She worked with designer Annie to make her dream nursery a reality.

Adventure a World Away

Where the standard nursery opts for pale pinks or blues, Kate’s designer, Annie, drew inspiration from a keepsake Kate and her husband found on a trip to Thailand two years ago.

“We were walking around in Chiang Mai, and I fell in love with a painting of two elephants with their baby. It had a lot of color, and I envisioned hanging it in our future nursery,” explains Kate. “Annie took our artwork and designed the entire room around it.”

The painting ties all of the design elements together. “I was shocked that Annie was able to take my wide range of ideas and organize them in a way that makes sense. She has a gift for tying everything together,” Kate says.

From the tropical Serena and Lily wallpaper to the wicker elephant hamper, the nursery design nods to Thailand. The room’s bright accent wall and eclectic carpet are dynamic, while the natural fiber elephants and footrest create a soothing texture palette. Kate loves how the nursery treads the line between relaxing and fun.

An Atypical Nursery with Room to Grow

Kate is the first to admit that her ideas for the nursery weren’t standard. “It’s unique,” she says. “I don’t have the typical neutral nursery.”

Although the design elements and colors are atypical, Kate sees the nursery as a room her child will grow into, instead of out of. “It is so nice to have a fun, peaceful, and beautiful bedroom for my baby girl,” Kate explains. “I fed her on the rocking chair before bed when she was younger. Now, my husband and I read to her before rocking her to bed. She also loves to play here now.”

Kate looks forward to the day their baby girl grows to appreciate the space as much as her parents do. “One day, I’ll get to explain what the elephant painting represents and she’ll understand how much we loved her before we even knew her,” Kate says.

Finding Joy in the Process

Kate didn’t have an exact plan for the nursery, but she knew she wanted it to spark joy. With the help of her Havenly interior designer, the design for the room took shape. 

As Kate worked on the space with her designer, she saw the nursery design evolve in real-time. “I loved seeing the initial ‘ideas,’” Kate says. “And the final layout helped me envision what the nursey was going to look like. I fell in love with Annie’s ideas!”

To incorporate each of Kate’s ideas, Annie used products from the Havenly Shop. Small details, like the curtains, crib sheet, and hamper brought the space together for Kate.

In addition to the colorful painting and the couple’s love of travel, Annie even found the perfect home for a side table that Kate’s husband built during her pregnancy. “The handmade piece means a lot to me,” explains Kate. 

It’s not your standard cookie-cutter nursery, and that’s exactly how Kate wanted it. With Havenly’s help, all it took was an idea (and a beloved painting) to bring a vision to life.

Ready to make your design dreams a reality? Get your process started with Havenly’s style quiz.

Words by Emma Diehl