Safari animals, an enchanted forest, floor-to-ceiling florals—baby decor often falls into a handful of whimsical themes. But interior designer Jessica Ayromloo had other plans for this nursery she dreamed up for a young Tribeca-based couple and their newborn girl. “Since the room was boxy and plain, we wanted to add some excitement,” says Ayromloo.
The goal: Make every surface of the apartment’s spare bedroom glimmer. Inspired by a celestial wallpaper, the Kelly Wearstler alum (she worked for the design star for five years before starting her own firm) imagined a futuristic but still soothing iridescent universe. Here’s how she turned the bland space into a fantasy world fit for toddlers and grown-ups alike using pastel paint, shimmery finishes, and a few lighting tricks.
She Contained the Wallpaper to One Area
“We were looking for interesting reflective surfaces,” explains Ayromloo of her solution to combat white box boredom. Calico’s Orion fit the bill. “It was dreamy enough for a nursery but sophisticated enough to evolve into a teenage sanctuary.” But she didn’t want it to be overpowering, so the designer only covered two adjoining walls for a dramatic backdrop behind the crib.
She Pulled Out Complementary Colors
On the opposite side of the space, pastel paint allows other elements—like a Tetris-like storage cabinet—to shine. “We wanted to keep the walls that face outward from the crib soft and soothing,” says Ayromloo. She picked matching dusty pink, lilac, and ice blue shades, which she applied in blocks to the walls and ceiling, subtly defining beams and other architectural details. “We wanted to replicate the wallpaper effect in a slightly different way to tie it all together.”
She Made Storage the Star of the Show
Ayromloo was determined for the dresser to be an artistic focal point: “If we went with just a rectangular cabinet, it would have overwhelmed the room,” she says. She drew inspiration from building blocks, toy trains, playground slides, and even nail art to create a Memphis-like showpiece with a curved bookcase. “I wanted to tap into a childlike wonder and respond to the amazing energy and curiosity that children have.” To bring the cost down, she used a maple plywood frame covered in a rainbow of laminates.
She Layered the Light Sources
To bounce light around (and add to the kaleidoscopic vibe), Ayromloo added a cluster of opalescent pendants. A custom neon sign in the corner casts a rose glow over the space. “I wanted the lettering to be a unique font, so I asked a graffiti artist to use cursive and include a heart,” explains the designer. Yet another feature you don’t typically find in a nursery, but it’s magical all the same.
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