Otis’ Nursery – Jungle Theme

Otis’ Nursery – Jungle Theme

Otis’ Nursery – Jungle Theme

Call of the Wild

 

Rooomy asks Amanda Cotton about creating

an animal theme nursery for the arrival of little Otis

 

RB – When you suspected or found out you were pregnant, and you’re becoming a mum for the first time, roughly how much time do you think passed before you were thinking about what would be happening in the nursery?

AC – We had IVF to have Otis so the dream of having a child of our own was something we had wanted for a long time. I started planning his nursery soon after the 20-week scan, when things started to feel more real.

RB – Where did the jungle theme idea come from?

AC – There’s a hotel in LA called the Beverly Hills Hotel which has this amazing palm printed wallpaper. I’m a bit of a wallpaper addict, so when I found one similar from Milton and King I just thought this could really work as a jungle theme. Plus, we love animals, and hope this rubs off on Otis.

I always think nurseries/kids’ rooms work well when they have a theme, or something to centre the look around- whether that’s a theme, or a big piece of furniture. It also helps with baby shower gifts..ha!

Jungle Themed Wallpaper, Gender Neutral Nursery Ideas, Leaf Print Wallpaper

RB – Once you had the theme sorted, how did you develop your ideas? Any tips for mums to be?

AC – I wanted the cot and changing table to stand out from the white panelling in Otis’ room, so I opted for a Stokke hazy Grey Sleepi cot and dresser with changing top. I love the Stokke range, as its very much designed to see your baby through their childhood years and isn’t just for babies. The Sleepi cot can be extended when Otis is bigger and the centre panel can come out, so he can get in and out himself when he’s big enough. I’m all about keeping the cost down in the long run.

My tips for mums to be would be… Choose the cot and the changing table first. The cot is usually the centre point to a nursery, but by adding a large soft toy, canopy or painted dresser you can change the focal point.

Having a theme helps to narrow the focus on wallpapers and accessories. I went with a jungle/ safari theme for Otis’ nursery.

Babies love colour and pattern, so be creative with the décor and have fun with it.

RB – How old will Otis need to be for you to allow him to choose his own décor?

AC – Ha! That’s a good question. We will see. I’m sure I’ll eventually give in and let him choose comic book bedding and matching wallpaper, but for now I’ll enjoy making the big decisions.

Leaf Print Wallpaper, Jungle Themed Nursery, Gender Neutral Nursery Design

RB – If Money was no object, on the market now, what have you seen out there that you would love to buy for his room?

AC – I have just seen that Pottery barn kids have launched in the UK, and they have a collaboration range with West Elm where they created a cot and changing table in their signature mid century design. They also have a cream cot with brass legs and a honey comb texture on the sides. It all very dreamy.

They also have a lovely elephant rocking horse that I’ve got my eye on- plus it fits perfectly with his jungle theme.

RB – What would you advise new parents to really invest in for their nursery?

AC – I’d invest in a cot which has a moveable base, and I’ve also found our changing table essential. Don’t under estimate the luxury of changing your baby while standing up, especially if you suffer from back ache. I would also recommend getting a comfy chair for nursing/feeding. Otis has only just moved into his room, but we sit here every evening reading a book and having a bottle before bed.

RB – What are the Zebra, Lion and Elephant called?

AC – The Zebra is called Brian, the lion is called George and the Elephant is called Simon (and the giraffe is called Geraldine). The heads are all from the fabulous Fiona Walker.

Leaf Print Wallpaper, Jungle Themed Nursery, Gender Neutral Nursery Design

RB – What are your three favourite items in the Otis’ room?

AC – The giraffe! Our lovely neighbours bought this for Otis after he was born. It’s by Melissa and Doug which you can buy from Argos. He really makes a statement in here.
The green velvet chair (from homesense). Being velvet isn’t essential, but I love its vibrancy in colour. We had this chair in our bedroom before I found out I was pregnant and it just fitted perfectly in here. It’s also essential for Otis’ bedtime routine of book and bottle.
(A little fact I’ve discovered- wet wipes can clean most things and have been really handy getting any milk spills off the velvet.)
The huge rug (From La Redoute). The rug covers most of the floor in Otis’ room which is brilliant now he loves to roll and do plenty of tummy time. It was my husband’s idea to get a big rug as we have wooden floors throughout our house and I’m so pleased we did.

RB – What has surprised you most about yourself on becoming a mum?

AC – How bloody hard it is. I think I was a bit delusional and had all these preconceived ideas of starting a business on maternity leave, or at least having loads of time to write my blog. The truth is I have less free time now. I’m always hearing about these super mums who start-up businesses on their year off. I have no idea how they do it? I have massive admiration for full time, stay at home mums now.

 

Leaf Print Wallpaper, Jungle Themed Nursery, Gender Neutral Nursery Design

RB – Otis’ nursery is incredible, he is going to love moving in their soon. To the onlooker it is perfection, but we all know for the creator that’s not always the case. Is there anything you’d do differently?

AC – Otis has been sleeping in his room for the past week now, and is doing 10-12 hours a night. Although, naps are whole different story.

I want to fit blackout blinds between the shutters and the windows but its currently proving difficult as there isn’t enough space between the sash window frame and shutter. This is something I would definitely consider for next time. Shutters look great, but they just not as practical as good black out curtains or blinds. Hence the day nap problems…

RB – What do you enjoy most about being Otis’ mum?

AC – I really can’t choose one thing. It’s an amazing feeling being Otis’ mummy. Just seeing his smile, and making him laugh is the best feeling in the world. Before I had Otis, I lived a fast-paced lifestyle. He’s taught me to slow down and appreciate everything for the first time again.

If you love this nursery and Amanda’s wonderful maximalist style then you’ll want to follow her latest project, coined “The Rat House”, what will she create for Otis next?  Check out her progress here on Instagram.  If you want to see more great nursery inspiration subscribe here for the Nursery Edit.

More Nurseries…

Sustainable Wallpapers for kids bedrooms

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Sustainable Accessories for kids bedrooms

Sustainable Accessories for kids bedrooms

Sustainable Accessories your kids will love Rooomy's best sustainable accessories for kids and the family home   Whether you’re redecorating or simply looking to update your kid’s space, accessories are where you can have a lot of fun with stylish or playful items...

New Style Editor 2020

New Style Editor 2020

New Style Editor 2020

Rooomy meets Chloe Spillett,

children’s interior designer and

new Style Editor for Rooomy Magazine

 

Rachel Burns speaks to Chloe about her style and

love of kid’s interiors and the best places to shop.

 

 

RB – When did your love of interior design begin?

CS – I have loved interiors for as long as I can remember. My mum has great taste and an awesome eye for styling, so I guess she influenced me from an early age. I was a 90s child so changing rooms also played a huge role. Still waiting for that show to make a comeback!

 

RB – What was your room like when you were kid?

CS – Well, my Mum was much like I am now so it changed a fair bit throughout my childhood! It was always very tastefully classic; Laura Ashley, broderie anglaise and gingham. Once `I was about 13 I was given free rein and I remember really going for it! Bright pink and orange everywhere. It was an absolute riot of colour and anything but classic!

RB – You’ve won two big comps now, ‘Under the Stairs’ at Grand Designs 2019 and The National Prize for “Styled by Be” Judges by Sophie Robinson. What did you learn from these experiences?

CS – The most valuable thing I learned is to have confidence in your own capabilities no matter the level of competition. I was up against many high esteemed professionals and influencers so both victories really took my breath away. It didn’t even enter my mind that I might be good enough to win either.

If you have a clear vision you just have to really go for it, and you’ll be rewarded in more ways than you can possibly imagine!

 

RB – Do you think there are some discernible differences when approaching the design of a kid’s room compared to the rest of the house?

CS – I think this really depends on the brief and the desired outcome. Many of my clients have wanted longevity from their children’s spaces and so from that point of view you almost have to treat it like any other room in the house. Of course, from the child’s point of view their priorities are usually that they want their rooms to be fun and exciting with a sense of adventure and escapism, so it can be a challenge to strike a balance to ensure both parties are happy! To tick all the boxes, I always aim to keep adaptability in mind. I try to think about how the space can evolve with the family as they grow, without losing its identity. 

RB – With colours being such a huge part of your work have you ever designed a monochrome room? Would you try and talk your client round?

CS – It’s true I live for colour and I think it’s a really great tool for inspiring and motivating young people, but I still think my personal sense of style is rather fluid. I really love to change it up and in the past I’ve definitely been drawn to monochrome. The client should always be at the centre of the design process so if its monochrome they want then its monochrome they get! That said, I’d probably advise them that to do Monochrome justice you have to fully commit; not always easy when children come with so many nick knacks!

RB – What is your dream project?

CS – My absolute life goal is to design for DIY SOS. It’s on my vision board and one day I will make it happen!

 

RB – If money was no object and you could buy your girls anything for their bedroom or playroom, what would it be?

CS – I’d really love to design an all singing all dancing installation that’s out of this world and commission someone to build it for me.

 

RB – Three top places to shop for kid’s rooms?

This Modern Life, Bobby Rabbit Kids and H&M

 

RB – What’s next for Chloe Gets Creative?

CS – Ahhh who knows?! It’s absolutely terrible business ethic but I’ve never really been one for devising plans. Life is unpredictable; we have all been awoken to this in the last few months and I truly believe it’s far more important to just enjoy the journey. I’ve gained an absolute tonne of experience over the last few years and I’m stoked about all of my achievements so far. I think positivity is the best recipe for progress and success and I’m happy with the way things are going for CGC and equally excited about future possibilities.

RB – What has been your favourite project to work on?

CS – Ooooo that’s a real toughie, I’ve loved each and every one of my projects I really couldn’t pick just one. Grand Designs Live has without a doubt been a highlight, not only because of the prestige of the exhibition but because it was unlike anything else I had ever done before and I met some amazing people! I’ve also designed spaces for children in very vulnerable situations so I will always hold these projects dear, it felt wonderful to think I’d brought some sunshine to their lives. Then of course there are the rooms I have designed for friends and family as well as my own children. They are all special to me.

RB – Who or what are some of your design inspirations when thinking about kid’s rooms?

CS – It’s such a cliché thing for a designer to say but literally everything! Design is always at the forefront of my mind so if I’m immersed in nature, watching TV or a film, travelling, whatever I may be doing, I’m always thinking about ways to add value to our indoor spaces that are new and innovative.

 

RB – Where do you like to hang out in your spare time when you’re switching off and relaxing?

CS – I am loathed to admit I am one of those irritating people who rarely sits still, I find it quite hard to switch off and I’ve pretty much always got a project on the go. I don’t really relax as much as burn out and then rest until I’m raring to go again! Lockdown has really been quite pivotal for me, as I am sure it has been for so many of us. I have started to discover new territories both metaphorically speaking and literally; There is a fair bit of countryside locally and we have been enjoying some really lovely family walks. Oh and gardening! I really love to be in the garden with my family. Despite all the worry and suffering surrounding this new phase in our lives there’s still plenty to be thankful for; I’ve found a few good, new, happy places.

RB – Your style is fun, smart and colourful, what has influenced this most?

CS – I’m a firm believer in creating your own sense of style. As you can probably imagine my Instagram feed is full of children’s interior related pages. There are thousands of beautiful rooms on the ‘gram but there is also a lot of repetition, I get a real kick when I discover a space that makes me stop in my tracks. I want my designs to have that impact on other people; a space people have never seen before. I really try to think outside the box.

 

There you have it, a great introduction to our new Style Editor, I am thrilled to have Chloe on board.  You’ll be able to see Chloe’s debut Style Edit in the next issue of Rooomy, out in a few weeks, the Nursery Edit.  If you’d like to check out more of Chloe’s work check out her site Chloe Gets Creative. 

For more interviews with other amazing creative minds take a look below and if you want to make sure you get your hands on th Nursery Edit, you can subscribe here for free.

Interviews

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy's Nursery And More Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning and becoming a creative legend   Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went...

Room To Bloom Creator

Room To Bloom Creator

Room To Bloom Creator

Rooomy meets Ursula Wesselingh,

Kid’s Interior Designer

 

Rachel Burns speaks to Ursula about her signature style for kid’s interiors

and how Dutch design differs to British.

 

 

RB – Ursula, when did your love of interior design begin?

UW – I’ve always been intrigued by people’s homes, and as a child I had strong ideas about what my room should look like. Professionally, I entered interior design about 15 years ago or so. Following a redundancy, I enrolled in an interior design course and before the year was over, I was offered a job at an architectural practice. It felt like coming home and I’ve never looked back.

RB – We share the same view that children’s bedrooms are a huge part of their childhood/world. What was yours like? And how has this affected the work you do today?

UW – My bedroom was hugely important to me. It was located on the top floor of our farm, overlooking the garden. I have fond memories of a blue and white scheme that I created with the help of my mum. We found a “white” (cream) carpet offcut, some blue and white fabric that my mum made into curtains (I still have them), and blue and white wallpaper. We then also painted my bed and drawers blue. Finally, with some tractor paint that I’d found in one of our barns, I painted all my knick-knacks that didn’t fit the scheme blue… matchy-matchy.

I suspect that through my work, I recreate my childhood in some way. Style wise, my work has a modern rustic undertone, which probably goes back to growing up on a farm.

RB – How do children’s interiors in the UK differ compared to the Netherlands?

UW – In the Netherlands, kids’ rooms get quite a lot of attention – parents put a considerable amount of effort into making their children’s rooms look beautiful, and there is a wide choice of stylish and affordable furniture and decor available. To illustrate the point, Dutch interiors magazines always feature a few photos of the children’s rooms alongside the rest of the house – something you still see very little of in the UK, though now there’s Rooomy!

RB – Do you think there are some discernible differences when approaching the design of a kid’s room compared to the rest of the house?

UW – Hmm, “no” is the short answer. I mean, designing a kitchen or bathroom is very different to designing a child’s room from a technical point of view, but all the same elements are there: analysing the opportunities and limitations of a space in relation to the objectives, and coming up with solutions to achieve those – through the use of light, colour, finishes, space planning, etc.

RB – What’s been your favourite project to work on?

UW – Haha, that’s a tricky one to answer – I’ve enjoyed working on so many. I guess generally speaking my favourite projects are for clients who are fans of my signature style – the ones who phone up and say “I love what you do, please come and sort my children’s rooms out!” I really like the collaborative process and it’s just much easier and enjoyable when you are on the same wave length.

 

RB – Who or what are some of your design inspirations when thinking about kid’s rooms?

UW – I’m generally attracted by Scandinavian and French inspired styles, a mix of simplicity, period details, pretty pattern and subdued colours.

 

RB – Where are you continuously drawn to for its beautiful interior?

UW – Not one place really… I am very happy to stay in well-designed hotels, and can spend hours analysing why things were done in a certain way – to great amusement of my partner.

RB – Your style is calm, soft and comforting, what has influenced this most?

UW – It’s hard to say really, it’s just what I do. I think calm and comfort are a good base for kids to venture out from, and come back to.

RB – How do you feel about bold vibrant rooms? Do you ever have to turn down projects because clients taste is too different to your approach?

UW – I don’t dig bold and vibrant rooms at all, I just couldn’t handle staying in one myself. Luckily I tend to attract clients who love my style, so I don’t have to turn projects down on that basis.

RB – What is your dream project?

UW – I’ve seen this very small room in a church that is being used for a play group – a beautiful, tall space full of character that is wildly let down by the decor and furniture in there. I’m itching to turn that into a beautiful place to play.

RB – What mistakes do you think parents are regularly making when decorating their kids’ rooms?

UW – Playing it too safe. I think it pays off to do something special, to go out of your way to create something beautiful and memorable. That doesn’t have to cost lots of money – imagination and attention go a long way.

RB – What most excites you about your future?

UW – Continuing to attract clients who love my style, keep growing as a designer, and who knows, develop my own line of children’s décor.

If you love Ursula’s style as much as I do the go check out her site Room To Bloom.  She will also be sharing a glorious new nursery in the Nursery Edit out later this month, to make sure you receive your copy you can subscribe here for free.

For more interviews with other amazing creative minds take a look below.

Interviews

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy's Nursery And More Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning and becoming a creative legend   Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went...

OYOY Living – For Families

OYOY Living – For Families

OYOY Living – For Families

Rooomy talks to Lotte Fynboe,

Creator of OYOY Living

 

Rachel Burns speaks to Lotte and takes a peak behind the

Scandinavian brand she created straight out of college

Always thinking about children and the whole family home

 

Let’s meet Lotte who studied deign and college and went on to create the glorious brand that is OYOY Living.  She love all kind of music which makes Spotify her best friend right now, currently she’s enjoying listening to The Weekend, Phlake, The Minds of 99 and Coldplay.  She’s not a huge chocolate fan but once enjoyed a Rittersport in Berlin and when a favourite tipple is reached for it’s usually an Aperol Spritz or a Hugo, don’t worry I Googled it, it’s a cocktail made up of Prosecco, Elderflower syrup, Seltzer and mint leaves. 

RB – What happened in 2012 that lead you to starting OYOY?

LF – The tale began while I was studying to get a degree in product design. Many of the products developed during my design education were part of the first collection that was launched back in January 2012 and some are still running in the existing collection. I had known throughout the design study that I wanted to be independent and start my own company so the founding of OYOY Living Design came as a natural consequence and of course my passion for design.

RB – What three words would you use to describe OYOY?

LF – 1) Rooted in the Danish traditions of simplicity, functionality and playfulness. 2) Playful yet straight forward aesthetic approach to design and 3) OYOY is for modern families in the search of re-calling childhood memories and creating new ones

RB – What is your mission? Has this changed at all since your started?

LF – The mission has changed over time during new categories, new countries and a larger product. My vision is for OYOY to be one of the strongest Danish design brands, offering home accessories for children, adults and the homes they live in. We strive to be respectful and dedicated to the manufactured products, all involved people and our surrounding nature – always with a creative and playful approach in mind.

RB – After designing for 8 years, where do you go for inspiration?

LF – Everywhere. Wherever I am, ideas often arise from a need or something that can be made more simple or with a more playful expression. It could also be from museums, materials, colours, travelling, shopping, tiling pattern on a wall in Portugal when travelling, the list is endless…

RB – What are the biggest challenges of being a business owner?

LF – Keeping the business going, enough time and at the same time making it a nice place to be.

RB – What do you find the most rewarding?

LF – To feel the interest about the products from the customers. We design all products ourselves and are responsible for the process from sketch to finished product, which just makes it even more satisfactory when we get the positive response.

RB – What one piece of advice would you give parents, agonising over where to start in their nursery?

LF – Choose unique products and create a beautiful universe for the child, the parents and family.

RB – As an international brand what differences do you notice in kid’s interiors around the globe?

LF – Basically, all children are the same all over the world, but it is the parents who define the difference in the way they live. We are seeing a growing interest in creating a unique universe.

RB – Congrats on the launch of the UK site. What else can we expect from you in 2020?

LF – Thank you. We expect: New products, desire to expand and a wider range of products.

RB – What are your hopes for the future of OYOY?

LF – We hope that OYOY continues to healthily grow together with our current and new customers. More unique, quality, long lasting products for the children and adults – the whole family.

 

There are so many incredible products from OYOY Living, you need to go window shopping round the site, great for your kids, great for gifts and wonderful ideas for your family home.  Let us know what your find and love the most.

Love Scandi Design

OYOY Living – For Families

OYOY Living – For Families

Rooomy talks to Lotte Fynboe, Creator of OYOY Living   Rachel Burns speaks to Lotte and takes a peak behind the Scandinavian brand she created straight out of college Always thinking about children and the whole family home   Let's meet Lotte who studied deign...

Interview – INPO INSPO

Interview – INPO INSPO

Interview – INPO INSPO

Rooomy meets Vickie Neave aka INPO

 

Rachel Burns speaks to one of Instagrams most loved mums,

Vickie Neave aka INPO (In No Particular Order),

about teen interiors, art and everything in between

 

RB – Hey Vickie, you have three teenagers under one roof, how is that going?

VN – Every day is different. I never quite know what to expect. Mind you they would probably say the same about me!

RB – I know you have a love of colour and all things that bring to joy to you and your family. How would you describe your interior style/preference?

VN – Our interior style is home. I do not follow trends because we need room designs to last. Storage is key in every single room but now we do not have to house four million plastic toys we are starting to reclaim the house and add in design elements. I love to relax in the living rooms and then the kitchen is for entertaining. We have a very social home and we want everyone to feel welcomed and chilled.

RB – What was your approach to the kid’s rooms when they were younger? Was it all planned and thought about or was it thrown together? Any princess themed rooms?

VN – We never massively invested in the kid’s rooms when they were younger. I added a bit of personality by switching up the duvet covers. We were having lots of building work when they were younger and there were lots of room swaps so we never made too much of a mark with them.

RB – Liberty’s room is simply awesome. When did you notice that her room was starting to change and that she was clearly moving from a kid room, into wanting a more grown up space?

VN – Liberty lucked out as she was a young teen at the end of some building work and we moved some walls. We recently changed it again to adapt to her being an actual adult!!! I have an adult?!? How did that even happen. So we lowered the bed. She is forever switching it up but the most recent layout seems to really work for her.

RB – Have you let your kids have a say in how their room looks?

VN – Yes totally. Millie wanted a fish tank underneath her bed and somehow her clever old Dad made it happen. I let them put up posters as long as they use a nice washi tape! They choose their bedding etc. They tend to have an eye for style thankfully.

RB – Where are your three favourite places to shop for interiors goodies?

VN – Homesense. I love the fact you never know what you will find. You can never go there for anything specific as they will never have it. Yet go for a “browse” and the trolley is full!

La Redoute but obviously only with a code – does anyone pay full price!!!?

So hard to pin it to 3!! I could not be without LoveFrankie who makes the most amazing lampshades and although there is not one in Liberty’s room – there will be soon!!!!

RB – If Liberty could have anything in her bedroom what would it be?

VN – More wardrobe space! We have a large chimney stack to contend with in her room so her wardrobe is built around that but the hanging space is small!!

RB – I love that she came to you earlier in the year asking for a room update and you had wallpaper that had been previously purchased but not put up, so you just cracked on with it all. Is this your normal approach to decorating?

VN – I think I am a bit of both. I love planning out a room and creating a little mood board but also love the ‘let’s just go for it’ approach. That paper is coming down soon or being painted over. We loved it for a while but it is a bit too full on for the room and just needs to quieten down a level.

RB – On a scale of 1-10 how important do you think a teen’s interior is and why?

VN – 10/10, it’s hugely important. So many emotions, so much change in their minds and bodies. So much stress with exams and simply growing up that their bedroom needs to feel theirs. They need to feel safe, loved and happy. It is so hard once that bedroom door shuts because as a parent you want to scoop them up and make everything right but then I remember being a teen and being in my room was my time. I feel by working on the rooms together that I am in there somehow even when the door is firmly shut in my face. Sometimes very loudly!!

 

RB – What’s your favourite part of her room?

VN – It has to be the Smeg door. It came to me when I was in New York years ago and a changing room had surf boards as doors and I started to think about what could add a splash of colour as a door. Smeg then came to mind and we got this door off Ebay for £13. It cost more for delivery but it was so worth it! It still makes me smile.

RB – What, if anything, would you do differently?

VN – I would get a roman blind made with blackout material. We will probably still do this one day. We had the slated wooden blinds because we could not afford shutters but they actually let in the light and boy do teenagers moan about light!!

RB – Top parenting tip?

VN – Never ever think you are winning, that is when you will fall flat on your face. Stay on your toes and smile.

If you don’t already follow Vickie, I cannot recommend it highly enough!  She makes me smile every day, check her out here INPO

 

For more teen interiors inspiration check out Issue 9 the Teen Edit by subscribing here for free.

For more interviews with other amazing creative minds take a look a the list below.

Interviews

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy's Nursery And More Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning and becoming a creative legend   Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went...

Interview – Bobby Rabbit

Interview – Bobby Rabbit

Interview – Bobby Rabbit

Rooomy meets Nicky King

 

Rachel Burns asks Nicky King, owner of children’s interiors online store Bobby Rabbit

all about her fab collections and her thoughts on sustainability within the

kids interiors market.

 

Rachel – Hi Nicky, tell us about Bobby Rabbit and your mission?

Nicky – Bobby Rabbit was my favourite childhood toy – a gift from my Nana on my first birthday. For about 10 years, Bobby came with me everywhere: to nursery, on play dates, to school, on holiday, and today he lives on, tucked away inside a shoe box in my wardrobe!

Bobby is the inspiration behind my brand ethos: fun over fashion, lifelong over throwaway. Our shop is a lovingly curated collection of toys, home accessories and furniture for babies and children aged 0-8 years old. We like to think that every product in our collection captures the spirit of our brand values and has the potential to be as special and memorable as Bobby was (and still is) to me. Our strapline, “for little treasures” says it all.

Twice a year (in summer and in winter), we launch new collections, taking our favourite new finds and styling them into ‘Bedtime Stories’ – playful, magical rooms to spark little imaginations. It means that our customers can shop by product or by room and re-create the looks at home.

Our mission is to inspire kids and grown-ups alike, helping them to create precious memories: “Cherish when small and remember with a smile and tall.”

Rachel – You’ve worked in the world of children’s interiors for a while now, what’s been the best improvement you’ve seen?

Nicky – Definitely the influx of smaller, innovative independent brands – and this is what makes it so exciting! Fifteen years ago, when I was launching Habitat Kids in London, most of these amazing little brands didn’t exist. These days, there is so much more choice out there for parents, not only in look and style but also in buying options and sourcing. The influx of social media has definitely helped these smaller brands to get ‘out there’ and be noticed, and likewise has helped parents to gain inspiration outside and away from the high street.

Rachel – What do you think is on the horizon for kids’ interiors?

Nicky – I think there is a definite move towards longevity and sustainability in children’s interiors. Increasingly, parents are understanding the value of quality over throwaway, and products that are responsibly sourced and made. Buy less – spend the same!

Rachel – What is the best way to find inspiration when planning or designing a new kids’ room?

Nicky – Visual platforms such as Instagram and Pinterest are by far the best place to start. You can start by saving your favourite images on either platform and before too long, you will start to get a feel for your style and preferences. Ask your kids! It is important to make them feel part of the process as well – after all, it’s their space, too.

Rachel – What do you think is the driving force behind a keener interest in handmade items?

Nicky – Care, love and attention to detail. Handmade items come with a special and unique story behind them – they are one-of-a-kind. And why wouldn’t you want to be a part of supporting that?

Rachel – When it comes to our children’s bedrooms’, what do you think sustainability means for parents?

Nicky – It’s about creating longevity in children’s spaces: buying quality products that last longer and are ethically and responsibly made and sourced using quality materials, rather than throwaway options. At Bobby Rabbit, we are conscious about where we source our products. We try to choose FSC-certified wooden toy and furniture factories, we have a soft spot for natural materials – and we love our organic cotton bedding collection.

It’s about understanding the value of this. It doesn’t necessarily mean spending more overall either – just buy less of the throwaway instead!

Rachel – Sustainable materials are wonderful, do you have a favourite?

Nicky – I love wool (and this definitely shows in my collection!) It’s warm, cosy and practical for kids as it is naturally stain-resistant. We offer felted rugs, garlands – and my new favourite – pompom animals (including a Bobby Rabbit mobile) that have been specially handmade for us by one of our amazing customers!

Rachel – Sustainably made items are often more expensive due to the price tag on the raw material and the care take to look after the environment whilst producing them. What would you say to parents who are concerned about the extra cost involved?

Nicky – With quality comes longevity – buying a bedding set for £10 won’t last as long as one that costs a little more. It is highly likely that there is more traceability to the manufacturing process in the more expensive bedding set, too. By making the right choices, you are doing your bit to help your children’s future – and you can’t put a price on that.

Rachel – If you could only have one product from your collection which one would it be?

Nicky – It would have to be our Bobby Rabbit Mobile. He’s handmade from wool and cotton with a beautiful grape vine wreath. He’s perfect for nurseries and children’s rooms, and perfect for the grown-ups too – and you can’t get much more sustainable than that.

Rachel – What is the process for Bobby Rabbit when curating such wonderful collections?

Nicky – 4 months of thought, 1 week of travel, 1 month of buying and curating, 1 week of photography, 2 weeks of madness – then launch! The key is in the thought. I start to develop my vision for the next collection as soon as the previous one is launched… The whole cycle takes around 6 months from start to finish.

 

Rachel – 3 words to describe Bobby Rabbits style?

Nicky – Happy, cute and playful.

Rachel – I love all the bedtime stories and room planning ideas on your site. Do you have a favourite?

Nicky – Our ‘Treasure Island’ room was a lot of fun to shoot. My vision was to create a shipwreck using the bed, inhabited by all the sea creatures! When we create our bedtime stories, we do it from a child’s viewpoint – what will they think when they step inside this room? How will they interact with the space? And most importantly, will they remember it? I think this one is pretty memorable, and I love how it makes kids and adults smile. Well, I hope so anyway!

 

Take a look at all that Bobby Rabbit has to offer with the brilliant curation of Nicky King at the helm. 

You’re sure to find something for your own kid’s room or the perfect gift for another.

Interviews

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Eleanor Bowmer – Nursery

Teddy's Nursery And More Rooomy talks to Eleanor Bowmer about nursery planning and becoming a creative legend   Eleanor Bowmer is a Textile Design and Illustrator based in Manchester. Mum to Norie and baby Teddy and of course Frank her French Bulldog. Eleanor went...

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