Styling: Eliza Ashe | Photography: Seven is Yellow
Somehow, Sydney-based stylist, writer and mum Eliza Ashe makes everything look simple. Perhaps even more impressively, she makes simple look great. In fact, she makes simple look inviting, appealing and stylish. So when she turned to Pottery Barn Kids to style her own baby’s nursery, we knew we were going to love the results.
Simplicity in decorating has become a mantra for so many of us, and with good reason. It might be a cliché, but busy working mums have enough to juggle without feeling confronted with clutter or a cacophony of colours and patterns.
Neutral nurseries built around simplicity aren’t just a solace for mums, they’re also a haven for new bubs and their siblings after a day of learning, play, fun and visual stimuli.
Subscribing to simplicity isn’t easy, and true minimalism isn’t for everyone, but at the very least we can all take a little (olive) leaf out of Eliza’s book and simplify our way to a stylish nursery.
Buy the best-quality and smartest furniture you can. Great storage that will transition well, such as this timeless Reese Dresser with removable changing table topper, will pay big dividends when it’s still housing your child’s t-shirts and PJs well into their adolescence.
Have a place for everything. If there’s no obvious place for it, rethink its existence in the room. This might mean being a little ruthless with unwanted gifts, but it’s usually not hard to donate to someone who’ll appreciate it more than you.
Leave a little space – literally and otherwise – to flourish. It’s natural to want to give your kids everything, but that doesn’t mean overburdening them with too much stuff. A little minimalism can encourage imagination, resourcefulness and creativity. For example, the clean, white surface of this Spindle Play Table and these Bistro Play Chairs invite them to read, build and make-believe.
Inspiration is dynamic, so make displays easy to change. The Collector’s Shelves by Pottery Barn Kids are named such for a reason: they let you show off and swap around your collections whenever the whim strikes you.
Let colour come and go. Soft, neutral shades are the most restful and conducive to peaceful sleep. Conveniently, neutral also means gender-neutral, making it a great choice for shared rooms. Avoiding a strong colour scheme also allows you to easily adapt the room as your child grows and develops their own tastes.
Size things just for them. The more accessible and easy you make it for your little one to interact in their own room, the better. After all, that’s what good design is about: consideration. The Madison 4-Shelf Bookrack is a case in point. Instead of a bookshelf jammed with spines that little fingers can’t get to, this bookrack is thoughtfully designed to encourage children to choose, read and put back their books, which then become part of the room’s decor. What could be better than that?
Make room for the authentic. Incorporate one-of-a-kind pieces that have a story, whether they’re from your own childhood, or shells from your last beach holiday, or a pretty postcard from friends. The humblest – and most unexpected – of objects can teach, enthral and nourish your kids’ minds. An olive tree in the nursery? Why not!
Have less. By having only what you really love, and really use, you’ll save time on cleaning, tidying, searching and sorting. It’s simple, really.
Love Eliza’s simple nursery style? Shop the look at potterybarnkids.com.au.