Category Archives: Della

Della’s Big Girl Room {Questions Answered}

I had quite a few repeat questions from Della’s Big Girl Room Reveal, (yes, I’m slow to answer. Sorry! There were all the kids tugging on me that wanted food and stuff).

So, I thought I would answer them all here, in case some of you folks that didn’t speak up were still hankering to know the answers too.
1. Where is that light from??! (Far and away the most common question).

I got it at a Pottery Barn outlet ages ago, before I even had a room to use it in. I paid–get this–$30. (It’s currently selling on the Pottery Barn site for–get this–$199. ON SALE). How did I pull that one off? Read this post to find out.
2. How did you make the framed butterfly art?

I’ve never done an official tutorial on this one, but it really doesn’t need one. Basically, I used a butterfly-shaped craft punch (use a 50% coupon at Michael’s, and you can get even the big ones for something like $10…I’ve used mine for multiple projects like this butterfly mobile in Della’s old room and the twins’ butterfly wall) on various sheets of cute scrapbook paper until I had a pretty good pile. I bent the wings of each butterfly slightly so that it would have a bit of dimension, then hot-glued them in rows against a piece of white card stock. I was inserting them into old Goodwill frames with existing matting, and I added a layer of textured white wallpaper to the matting to make it stand out a little more. That step is completely optional, though. After I replaced the matting (I secured it to the card stock backing with a bit of tape), I popped my new easy “art” back in the frames and called it done!

3. How in the world do you keep her bedspread and chair so white?

Honestly, I don’t do anything special, although the ruffly “bedspread” is rarely actually on her bed, since it’s a bit slippery and tends to slide off. So, that stays out of harm’s way (i.e. sticky fingers and markers) most of the time. As for the chair…well, thanks to a painting snafu a few years back, it actually has a haze of oil-based coral paint on parts of it. It’s not super-noticeable unless you look closely, but it’s definitely not in as pristine of condition as it apparently appears in the pictures.

4. About that bedspread, how did you make it again?

I totally didn’t “make” anything about the bedspread. I had plans of actually sewing the ruffles onto the quilt, but laziness/busyness got the better of me, which means it really, truly is just a shower curtain laid over top of a white quilt. Works for me!

5. What is this ginormous bed you speak of?

I realize it was probably hard to picture a bed big enough for all three little girls that makes sense in a room this small. Shaun was planning to make a custom bed for the space, but then we found this twin over full bunk bed with a trundle.

It was a pretty big splurge, but considering that it’s essentially 3 beds in one, works really well in the space, has great reviews (which, hopefully, means that it will last a long time), was at least $1,000 cheaper than any comparable name-brand options, and saves my husband a lot of work (not to mention the fact that the materials for making/painting the bed we had in mind weren’t exactly going to be cheap), and had FREE shipping, we decided to bite the bullet and invest in something all of the girls could use for a long time. (We also got it for about $100 cheaper than the listed price, thanks to some discounts, so that was nice).

6. WHERE are all the toys/little girl clutter?


First up, I have to emphasize that Della’s room is never super-tidy when I haven’t just pulled a full-on Mary Poppins on it. Still, the truth is that she doesn’t have tons of toys in her room. We have two bins full of random toys downstairs in the living room and tons of toy storage in our “big room”/schoolroom upstairs, so my kids’ rooms are (somewhat) toy-free (not that you would guess that from the Lego graveyard that usually litters the boys’ floor). She does have a dress-up basket in her closet and a bin full of stuffed animals in her room (not to mention the constant collection of random bits and bobs that end up stuffed in the top part of the secretary desk that holds her non-hanging clothes).

7. How in the world did you have time to do all of this?

Honestly, considering that I pointed out that it took me almost 3 years to get this room finished, I’m surprised that anyone was still wondering this. Because the short answer is that I get it done, one project at a time, veeeeeerrrrry slooooooowly.

But then again, on the day that I finally got everything finished up, I spray-painted four different things, hung multiple pieces of art (with Shaun’s help…AKA, he did almost all of it), rearranged, cleaned, fluffed, and shot pictures. And all of that within the space of about 4 hours.

How did I manage it? Well, my kids were all at my mom’s, so I wasn’t trying to do 41 different things at once. I was a little amazed at how much I could accomplish without constant distractions. Don’t get me wrong: I wouldn’t trade my sweet little “distractions” for an infinite number of finished rooms. But having that dedicated time definitely made a difference in my productivity levels.

So, if you’re feeling like you should be doing “room reveals” or finishing things up more often with kids around, please be assured that I don’t. Not really. I plug along getting some things done, but without that dedicated kid-free time, I don’t know if you would have ever seen Della’s room.

And that’s the straight-up truth, folks.


I think that mostly answers the big questions. Feel free to add to the list if you have any more, though. Oh, and thanks for the encouragement to keep her chair! I’m going to try to find a place for it (that bed really does kind of swallow the room whole, though).

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Della’s Big Girl Room Reveal

I knew it had been–ahem–a “little while” since I originally posted the inspiration board for what I planned to do with Della’s big girl room. But it wasn’t until I pulled up the actual post and checked the date that I saw that it was from April of Two Thousand TWELVE.

That’s a long time to wait for a room reveal, y’all. You must really love me or something if you’ve hung on for this long. Either that, or you just gave up hope. (I don’t blame you).

Now, granted, most of the important elements have been in place for a long time. But the finishing touches had languished in life-with-twins + I’ve-got-other-things-to-do land for almost three years…until about 3 weeks ago when the fact that we had a new bed (that will accommodate the twins and Della) that needed setting up forced us to rush around and get everything just so. My husband thinks it’s ridiculous that it only existed in its completely finished form for a day or two, but I had promised you a room reveal, so a room reveal you will get.

Plus, although we have to do some rearranging of furniture thanks to the behemoth of a new bed, most of the elements of the room will remain the same. So, it wasn’t all in vain.

Before I show you the finished room, let’s take a gander at the inspiration board to see just how faithful I stayed to my original vision.

della's big girl inspiration


The answer? Pretty darn (faithful, that is).

Wanna see? (Well, gee, Abbie, I don’t know. I mean, it’s only been three years. I think I’m good).

Okey dokey. I’ll try to source everything as I go, but if there’s something I don’t, or you have questions, feel free to leave a comment, and I’ll answer them the best I can.


I went with the Urban Outfitter’s rug (which was a steal at $35 but has since sold out) from the inspiration board. I love it. The colors are gorgeous, and even though the rug itself is super thin (almost more like a thick burlap than a rug), that’s not a problem since it’s layered over carpet here.


I also went with the original curtain inspiration. I never managed to track down the perfect curtains already done for me, so I made these from strips of $2/yard white linen and–get this–a $2 batch of fabric from Goodwill that just so happened to be perfect color.


I couldn’t bring myself to cough up $150 for UO’s waterfall duvet (from the inspiration board), so I did a little DIY hack by ordering an $18 ruffled shower curtain from Amazon and simply layering it over a white $10 quilt from Goodwill.


I found the pink patterned sheets at Ross, and the pillows are a hodgepodge from Marshall’s (gold polka dots), Target (teal ombre ruffle), and a pillow cover I won from a blog contest (birds).


You might recognize the name + butterfly art from Della’s nursery. I big-girlified the old frames with a coat of gold spray paint, and I love how they bring a little of her nursery nostalgia into her big girl room.

The bedside table is from Target (I revealed it in this post), the result of a ridiculously long hunt for the right style/scale of table to match her low headboard (which I found at Goodwill for $15 and which Shaun painted that lovely shade of raspberry).


The sunburst mirror was a $20 score (originally over $100–ridiculously enough–from Hobby Lobby). The metal started out a deep rust color, so I covered the biggest mirror with paper (thank GOODNESS all of the tiny mirrors were covered with pieces of plastic, or this project would not have happened) and spray painted the whole thing gold. (Shaun and I spent way too long peeling all of the little plastic pieces off afterwards).


Purdy, ain’t she?


I stenciled that aqua secretary’s desk ages ago, and it still does a great job of corralling all of Della’s non-hanging clothes.


Gold spray paint makes everything better!


So do fun floral knobs from Marshall’s.


That fun framed print is from Lindsay Letters via Hobby Lobby on a 50% off sale. I love her work and was thrilled when HL started carrying some of her prints, since I’m able to get my hands on them for half off (when they run their bi-monthly art sale).


I borrowed those colorful children’s classics from our upstairs sitting room, and the gold tinsel tree is from the Target Dollar Spot last year (obviously, I took these pictures close to Christmas).


If you turn around and face the opposite wall, you’ll see this cute vanity that I scored on a local FB swap and shop.

dellasroom dellasroom5

I made the butterfly art for Della’s nursery and am happy it still works well with the color scheme of this room too.


Her chair is another holdover from her nursery. Sadly, I don’t have a place for it anymore now that the big bed is in, but I don’t know if I can bring myself to part with it either. I keep moving it around the room hoping it will magically find a nook I didn’t notice before (unlikely in a small, square room, no?), but no such luck so far. The owl is from Urban Outfitter on major sale. And, yes, you guessed it: I spray painted it gold too.

I’m sure you’ve got a pretty good feel for the room at this point, so I figured I’d finish up with a few of my favorite detail shots.dellasroom9

I love this Anthro pouf. I can’t imagine how much they tried to charge for it originally, but I got it for $5 off of that same swap and shop site I mentioned earlier.    #5dolla #holladellasroom14

That cute wooden bird art is from Hobby Lobby on major sale, and I love the combination of its sweetness with the textured/striped curtains. dellasroom16

My friend, Lindsay, bought me that gorgeous polka dot gold and white bowl for Christmas, and I just about squealed when I realized just how perfect it was for this space.    dellasroom19 dellasroom20


I think the “love” earring tree was from Ross, and the floral clock was a Goodwill score.

And that, my friends, is what Della’s big girl room looked like after almost 3 years o’ tweaking and rearranging and hunting for just the right pieces at the right prices. I may be slow (like, really, really slow), but I do get there eventually.

Of course, now I have to figure out the room with a giant bed swallowing it whole.

So…be on the lookout for that reveal in a year or three.

So, what do you think? Worth the wait? I was in warm-up stages of labor with Theo and trying not to stress and get down about my body’s weird ways right after we finished this room. To that end, I kept walking into it, taking a long look around, and saying, “I love that it’s finished. It just makes me happy!” So, yeah. It was definitely worth it to me.

What about you guys? Does it take you forever to get a room just so too? Or do you like to bang it all out at once? I would love the all-at-once option if I had endless resources and cash, but, alas, I usually have to hunt for something I have in mind. It makes it all the more rewarding when I find the perfect thing, though.

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