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Nursery Inspiration: Fashionable Hostess

New house, new nursery. Amanda Gluck shows off her baby boy’s space.

Nursery Inspiration: Fashionable Hostess

There’s a common refrain when you have a baby that your space will cease to be your space, and every square inch of your apartment will be filled with unsightly toys and an uncontrollable mess. Guess what? It’s not true. Ok, maybe it happens to some of us (sheepish nod), but a quick glance at Amanda Gluck (aka Fashionable Hostess)’s Instagram feed , and we are reminded that even when you have two kids under 3 years old, you can still live in high-design. We know, we know, life on Instagram isn’t always what it seems. But trust us, Amanda’s the real deal--we’ve visited her NYC apartment, and it looks just as gorgeous in real life as it does on your phone.

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This summer, Amanda and her family relocated to Nashville, and while we’re sad to lose this chic NYC mama, we’re ecstatic we get to watch her decorate an entire house! Here, she shows off her son Brooks’ brand new nursery and offers 5 valuable nursery design tips, no matter how much space (or impeccable taste) you have.

How is decorating your space in Nashville different than NYC?

My design aesthetic hasn't really changed, as I have always loved soft colors in a nursery both in our New York apartment and here, but since we owned this time around versus renting I could do some bigger investments such as carpeting, window treatments, and painting the walls and trim.

Tell us about the foundation of the nursery.

I love powder blue walls in a baby boy's nursery so Benjamin Moore's Blue Lace was the perfect fit. Then I'm all about practicality in my decor. Toys make for the best display items. I love a stack of books in an array of blue to match the room or cream-colored teddy bears and stuffed dogs.

How did you stick with a color theme without making it feel over the top?

Blue Lace by Benjamin Moore is a soft blue to start, then by adding in white and grey accents throughout the room, like the animal heads on the wall or my grey rocking chair with white piping make the room calm and sweet. The second you get into richer primary colors you can get into dangerous territory. I also prefer pillows and accents with clean lines or simple patterns, stay away from loud prints.

How does this new room compare with Brooks’ NYC nursery?

It's about three times the size so we had a lot of space to work with, but really we stuck with all the same furniture; the Alex crib and changing table from giggle, a CB2 book shelf, and Buy Buy Baby rocking chair . We finally had space for a night table, which I purchased from Pottery Barn kids, while the lamp is a fun piece from Jonathan Adler . My favorite addition was the white animal heads from Kulture Bomb, hung up on the wall behind the rocker.

What are some of the details that aren't obvious but make a big difference?

Things that make a big difference are “white” blackout shades! We got ours from ShadesOnline.com and had them installed. They match the white trim in the room, and of course are great for helping the baby sleep as much as he/she can (which us mamas can appreciate!). Another not so obvious detail is a great toy chest for storing away any unsightly toys… they look sweet and of course keep the room clean! Plus, it’s great to teach your kids the clean up song and how important it is to pick up their things at the end of the day.

This room is so clean! How do you make sure it stays that way?

I always keep the room looking neat by creating storage space in the closet for the less attractive toys (which you know always seem to be their favorite).

What are a few of your very favorite items in the nursery?

The rocking chair cow from Giggle. It started out as a cute prop and quickly became a fun toy for both kids! Then there’s the large bear stuffed animal, which was a total score at Costco. We bought two, one for our playroom and one for Brooks’ room--Reese (our 2.5-year old girl) named them Charlie and Champ! The best buy for sure was the grey rocking chair from Buy Buy Baby. It has gone from my first child to my second and still is in great condition (minus all the minor spills). I love all the special memories it holds.

Any major splurge items?

I am a sucker for great lighting. I think a chandelier or pendant can make a room, so I love the Restoration Hardware shade we put in the nursery. Then I love the Jonathan Adler Horse lamp we bought for Brooks’ bedside table. It’s fun and adorable all at once.

Give us 5 important tips for any mom designing a nursery.

  1. Make it comfortable whether it’s adding a super soft area rug or even buying beanbag chairs. You will spend a lot of time in there, especially on the floor!
  2. Make it a calming space by choosing soft colors. Having a baby can be hectic, so this can help counterbalance the crazy!
  3. Scotch guard any furniture you don’t want ruined, like your rocking chair or day bed! Babies spit up or spill milk on just about everything.
  4. Baby wipes are actually the best cleaning solvent. I have to say that baby wipes get out 90% of the spills that occur. Blot your spills with them immediately after occurring.
  5. Remember this is your space to make memories, so just enjoy your time in there. We placed an ipod speaker in our nursery so we can dance, sing, and silly as a family.

Photography by Lindsey Grace Photography.

14 outdoor toys your kids will want to play with beyond summer

They transition seamlessly for indoor play.

With Labor day weekend in the rearview and back-to-school in full swing, most parents are fresh out of boxes to check on their "Fun Concierge" hit list. It's also the point of diminishing returns on investing in summer-only toys. So with that in mind, we've rounded up some of our favorite toys that are not only built to last but will easily make the transition from outdoor to indoor play. Even better, they're Montessori-friendly and largely open-ended so your kids can get a ton of use out of them.

From sunny backyard afternoons to rainy mornings stuck inside, these toys are sure to keep little ones engaged and entertained.

Meadow ring toss game

Plan Toys meadow ring toss game

Besides offering a fantastic opportunity to hone focus, coordination, determination and taking turns, lawn games are just plain fun. Set them up close together for the littles and spread them out when Mom and Dad get in on the action. With their low profile and rope rings, they're great for indoors as well.

$30

Balance board

Plan Toys balance board

Balance boards are a fabulous way to get the wiggles out. This one comes with a rope attachment, making it suitable for even the youngest wigglers. From practicing their balance and building core strength to working on skills that translate to skateboarding and snowboarding, it's a year-round physical activity that's easy to bring inside and use between Zoom classes, too!

$75

Detective set

Plan Toys detective setDetective Set

This set has everything your little detective needs to solve whatever mystery they might encounter: an eye glasses, walkie-talkie, camera, a red lens, a periscope and a bag. Neighborhood watch? Watch out.

$40

Wooden doll stroller

Janod wooden doll strollerWooden Doll Stroller

Take their charges on a stroll around the block with this classic doll stroller. With the same versatility they're used to in their own ride, this heirloom quality carriage allows their doll or stuffy to face them or face the world.

$120

Sand play set

Plan Toys sand set

Whether you're hitting the beach or the backyard sandbox, this adorable wooden sand set is ready for action. Each scoop has an embossed pattern that's perfect for sand stamping. They're also totally suitable for water play in the wild or the bathtub.

$30

Water play set

Plan Toys water play set

Filled with sand or water, this tabletop sized activity set keeps little ones busy, quiet and happy. (A mama's ideal trifecta 😉). It's big enough to satisfy their play needs but not so big it's going to flood your floors if you bring the fun inside on a rainy day.

$100

Mini golf set

Plan Toys mini golf set

Fore! This mini golf set is lawn and living room ready. Set up a backyard competition or incorporate into homeschooling brain breaks that shift focus and build concentration.

$40

Vintage scooter balance bike

Janod retro scooter balance bike

Pedals are so 2010. Balance bikes are the way to go for learning to ride a bike while skipping the training wheels stage altogether. This impossibly cool retro scooter-style is built to cruise the neighborhood or open indoor space as they're learning.

$121

Wooden rocking pegasus

plan toys wooden rocking pegasus

Your little will be ready to take flight on this fun pegasus. It gently rocks back and forth, but doesn't skimp on safety—its winged saddle, footrests and backrest ensure kids won't fall off whether they're rocking inside or outside.

$100

Croquet set

Plan Toys croquet set

The cutest croquet set we've ever seen! With adorable animal face wooden balls and a canvas bag for easy clean up, it's also crafted to stick around awhile. Round after round, it's great for teaching kiddos math and problem-solving skills as well.

$45

Wooden digital camera

fathers factory wooden digital camera

Kids get the chance to assemble the camera on their own then can adventure anywhere to capture the best moments. With two detachable magnetic lenses, four built-in filters and video recorder, your little photographer can tap into their creativity from summertime to the holidays.

$179

Wooden bulldozer toy

plan toys wooden bulldozer toy

Whether they're digging up sand in the backyad or picking up toys inside, kids can get as creative as they want picking up and moving things around. Even better? Its wooden structure means it's not an eye sore to look at wherever your digger drops it.

$100

Pull-along hippo

janod toys pull along hippo toy

There's just something so fun about a classic pull-along toy and we love that they seamlessly transition between indoor and outdoor play. Crafted from solid cherry and beechwood, it's tough enough to endure outdoor spaces your toddler takes it on.

$33

Baby forest fox ride-on

janod toys baby fox ride on

Toddlers will love zooming around on this fox ride-on, and it's a great transition toy into traditional balance bikes. If you take it for a driveway adventure, simply use a damp cloth to wipe down the wheels before bringing back inside.

$88

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So, what's new this week?

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Not sure where to start? Here's what we're adding to our cart:

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