Before & After: Fresh new nursery takes over old office space!

With the pending arrival of their first child, Sean and Carrie McGrath wanted some help changing the room they used as an office into a nursery.
They gave me a fairly open mandate to redecorate, with only two provisos
1. They were okay with ‘cute’ but the cute had to stop well short of “Disney.”
2. I had to somehow incorporate a t-shirt Carrie had purchased for Jack before he was born, which featured a teal colored rabbit (teal because they didn’t know their baby’s gender at this point.)


As far as ‘Before’ spaces go, this one was hovered somewhere between ‘challenging’ and ‘just plain awful’.
With regard to the latter, the office sported dated red wallpaper and was home to an unused sauna!
Before 4
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But the former bedroom would be perfect for a nursery and once we took specs and photos of the space here is what Sarah and I came up with –

All Photos below by the proud Father, Sean McGrath:


DSC_0300.NEF. Image by Sean McGrath (
Featured:  Accent wall- Benjamin Moore (Bahaman Sea Blue 2055-40) and regular wall Colour- Benjamin Moore (Hazy Skies OC-48_Bella Crib from Natart Juvenile, Gus*Modern Sparrow Glider/Ottoman, Gus*Modern Pawn Stool (Tuck Studio), Faux Hide Rug in Bone by, Laminated Map Print – Global Compassion print by Rebecca Paragine, Normann Copenhagen Side Table Lamp in White, and Themis Mobile designed by Clara von Zweigbergk from Artecnica, (Tuck Studio.)

DSC_0305.NEF. Image by Sean McGrath (
Aside from the blue feature wall, the rest of the nursery is a warm white, allowing natural light to create a warm and comforting space for Jack.  Carrie and her mother made the bunting while she was pregnant.  Rabbit Pillow by

DSC_0311.NEF. Image by Sean McGrath (
Remember Carrie not wanting anything ‘too Disney cute?  Here she picked out a set of Disney chest of drawers with a view to tweaking it. We recommended they remove the rounded sections on each leg, and then we switched out the knobs with two fox and two rabbit ‘Through The Wood Knobs’ from Anthropologie.  We then threw in some friends for Jack: Areaware Fauna Pug and Fauna Pico Squirrel cushions designed by Ross Menuez (Tuck Studio.)  Note also how all of the trim was removed from the side walls of where the closet doors used to be.  Shelves were built to the right to accommodate Jack’s clothing, with a light installed above.

DSC_0324.NEF. Image by Sean McGrath (
The standard-go-to Ikea Expedit Shelving Unit with turquoise and white Ikea Drona storage boxes. Vintage stool spots a set of Alphabet Blocks designed by Pat Kim.  On the Ikea unit is the Ursa Minor wooden bear designed by David Weeks, a Black and White infinite tree designed by Johannes Molin, and Kinto mugtail porcelain cups holding the plants. (All through Tuck Studio)

The framed sonogram photo (second shelf down on the right) was a Mother’s Day gift from Sean with a special message from “Jack” on the back for Carrie.
The book on the top of the storage unit are photos from his birth taken by Nienke Izurieta and Sean McGrath (father).

The stuffed bunny was the first baby item Sean and Carrie bought as a couple 4 years before Jack was even conceived.

DSC_0345.NEF. Image by Sean McGrath (
Water Colour by Casile Hayward, a friend of Carrie’s brother. The painting was inspired by Jack’s onesie, which was the creative springboard for the nursery.

DSC_0359.NEF. Image by Sean McGrath (
Baby Jack on the Sparrow Glider wearing the shirt that inspired his room!

Five inexpensive décor tips for  ‘cute –without going overboard’ !

DSC_0407.NEF. Image by Sean McGrath (

1)  Adorable building blocks by Areaware Alphabet Blocks designed by Pat Kim through TUCK STUDIO.  Vintage metal and wood stool sourced from a second hand store.

DSC_0347.NEF. Image by Sean McGrath (

2.)  FLOR Faux Hide Rug in Bone (comes in many other colours).

DSC_0348.NEF. Image by Sean McGrath (

3.  Switch out regular knobs for Rabbit ‘Through The Wood Knobs’ from Anthropologie.

DSC_0279.NEF. Image by Sean McGrath (
4.  A Live Edge board with hooks for baby’s clothes (Fox ‘Through The Wood Knobs’ from Anthropologie).
DSC_0278.NEF. Image by Sean McGrath (
5.  Add a colourful mobile such as The Themis Mobile  (recently featured in Spike Jonze’s film, ‘Her’).

Check out the proud father’s photography, below (Sean McGrath):

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Want to see it all again on Click on the image below:
HGTV Nursery

Design by PUNCH INSIDE (Judith Mackin & Sarah Tapley)

Want to see another radical makeover we designed with Sean and Carrie?

CLICK on the image below:


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