One of my favorite things in the world to do as a mama specialist has always been to put together Ella Grace’s spaces, dreaming up wild invitations for wonder.
I still remember waddling around as I carried her in me, loving on her nursery, creating crafts with J in the waiting, researching and picking out each item for our poppyseed we couldn’t wait to meet.
She was 12 days old when this picture was taken and the shock having birthed and loved a child into the world had barely worn off.
Our dear photographer, Caro, lovingly captured all the little details of her newness including getting a wide shot of her sleeping in her crib.
“You’ll want this for later,” her mama heart whispered as I looked on curiously, not knowing yet how quickly the years pass.
I have always come back and thought about this photo, what a gift it is to have a mamatribe to love and learn from.
I can’t tell you how much my heart exploded remembering all the different iterations of our Stokke Sleepi crib and Ella Grace. It’s been worth every penny for how much joy and comfort it’s brought our little big girl, our heart for Stokke products very much evident in our home for their sustainable, quality-made, thoughtful designs.
We got ours from Happikiddo and I’d highly recommend it (and the TrippTrapp chair)! We like the IPC or Publika store as you can get a good look at the whole range to touch, see, feel, dream together.
But back to the heart of this post, we wanted to celebrate her final transition of her 4-in-1 crib with the gift of a grown-up little big girl room.
Think less ‘toddler princess’ and more ‘daughter of a King’ gorgeousness with matte golds and pewters, blush pinks and a little sparkle. The last expansion to her crib is an official big girl bed that will last her until she’s 10 years old!
I can’t even fathom 10 year old Ella Grace.
Isn’t it gorgeous?
At each developmental stage, the kits have been thankfully so easy to put together at home.
One of the main things we considered while trying to make a smaller footprint was the quality of the material used. We weren’t willing to give up her safety in exchange and five years later, the mainframe fully constructed from solid cultivated beech wood (known for it’s strength and stability) is still sturdy and shockingly, even though white and very much used and knocked around, still looks new.
And because kacaumamas gotta kacau, I made our only child a sleepover surprise.
Ella Grace has always been fascinated by the idea of sibling bunkbeds so instead of tossing out her old mattress (all Stokke mattresses are hypoallergenic, breathable, fancy – cannot waste okay?!) I made her puppies and unicorns and bunnies and kitty cats a little bed underneath.
We giggled and giggled when she found it and it made it such a priceless discovery!
We live in a little 1500sqft apartment in the city so we needed all the space-saving, multi-functional, do-it-all hacks we could get.
Little ones also play/rest/learn best in uncluttered wide spaces so I wanted to be careful not to junk it up and overstimulate her room.
We debated over a few different ideas for our book lover and finally landed on this sweet little cabinet. I usually prefer front-facing bookshelves as an invitation to read but we made an exception for her room.
A beautiful way to encourage early literacy with little ones is to simply make it easily available. In all the other corners of our home, she has little reading nooks that we rotate out every few weeks but the bulk of it was still in her room and rapidly expanding.
Thanks to a little tip from my friend Rebecca from Spark Joy & Flow, we organized her books by color instead of type or height and it was instantly a lot easier to manage with the added bonus of a rainbow!
The cupboard was also a great way to store her little bibs and bobs. Different games, puzzles, jewelry boxes, accessories – easily accessible but still allows her room to feel uncluttered with a shut of a door.
Another favorite addition was this mirror!
Mirrors are developmentally such a great learning tool. It allows little ones to explore a healthy sense of self, mirroring concepts, hand-and-eye coordination but mostly…
How else will they be able to see how fabulous they are?!?
Besides being able to write sweet love messages with chalk pens, this mirror also made the perfect dress-up corner.
With a small rack and hooks behind to hang up costumes and accessories, it was just the right height for Ella Grace and sturdy enough to handle a few enthusiastic dancing bumps.
I considered creating a little baby doll corner (think white wooden doll crib, stroller, change table) but thankfully, Pottery Barn Kids isn’t available in Malaysia though if you know anyone that makes wooden doll furniture locally PLEASE EMAIL MAMA!!!
In the end, I kept her dollhouse but raised it up to accommodate her height (in her old toddler-size room, we put it on the floor so she could reach!) and love that she could easily tuck a few chairs to play with a friend if wanted.
The LISABO range from IKEA is one of our favorite tables for all her play places – wood, rounded edges, perfect height! Scroll down to the end of this post for a list of other product recommendations too.
And last but not least, one of her favorite corners in her room – her “studio”.
She would have cried for days if I removed it so I just cleaned it up a little. In a year, she managed to finish almost all her paints, stickers, and ink in her markers so her box is looking a little bare but stay tuned on my stories and I’ll show you when the stock comes in!
I love that she loves her little art table and literally does spend hours here, morning, afternoon, and night, just creating!
Ella Grace is a little older now so there weren’t as many safety hazards to consider but here are some of what we still did do.
- Secured all cabinets or anything that might tip over and cause a crush injury to the wall using an L bracket.
- Kept her diffuser out of sight and out of reach with essential oil bottles completely out of her room to prevent burn/poisoning.
- Covered all unused plugpoints.
- We also removed the shades/curtains in her room for more natural light plus the added bonus of not having to deal with cords.
- All her windows have been child-safety locked so it can’t open more than a few inches.
And this sweet girl who immediately asked to change to pjs to take a nap as soon as she saw her new bed….oh how she makes it all worth it.
Watch a little video of her reaction on my IGTV!
Your mama and daddy love you, Ella Grace.
RK RECOMMENDS (tap for drop down list)
Bed – Stokke Sleepi Bed in White + Junior Extension kit
Books – Adam+Zara, Me Books
Cabinet – Regissor
Chair – Mammut, Poang
Costumes – Elsa, Anna, Fairy Wings, Cat Tail, Mask, Capes, Butterfly, Princess/Pirate
Dollhouse – Hape All-Seasons House
Duvet – Stillsamt
Games – Ice Cream Social, Silly Monkey, Pack Your Bags, Lizard & Ladders, Eeboo
Mat – Parklon
Mirror – Knapper
Organizer – Kvissle Tray, Kvissle Desk, Clear Acrylic
Photographer – Caro Cuinet-Wellings, Erica Knecht
Plushies – Jellycat
Puzzles – Owl, Princess, Decoder
Swan – Robinsons
Stationery – Markers, Paints, Pens, Color Pencils
Table – Lisabo, Mammut
Tray – Peter Hoe
Wall Art – You Are My Sunshine
Yoga doll – Linen House