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Welcome to the Hive Nursery

by Emily Mussett
(Berwyn, Illinois)

Welcome to the Hive Nursery

Welcome to the Hive Nursery

Welcome to the Hive Nursery

I really love bees. In my team design class in college, which was the culmination of my civil engineering studies, we were to design an industrial complex with a recycling business capable of generating 20 megawatts of energy with a sustainable residential zone catering to employees and families of on-site industries. We were to propose and research five related industries and design the structural, geotechnical, environmental, and transportational aspects of the complex. I was quick to suggest an entomological enterprise, which integrated with our proposed greenhouse facility. Bees and butterflies provide a vital link in pollination and you’d have to be living under a rock to not know that an estimated 1/3 of honeybees have recently vanished.

It is a dream of mine to someday have a hive in our backyard. It took great restraint not to invest in the amazing Flow Hive kickstarter campaign. I have even researched beekeeping classes in Illinois. For fellow Pushing Daisies fans (and if you’re not, you should be)…Chuck Charles is my spirit animal! THEN I came across this absolutely stunning room reveal on Pinterest, featuring an ombre hexagon wall in a citrus color palette, and it clicked! I knew that if we had a baby girl, I wanted to do a bumblebee themed nursery, heavy on the geometrics (another obsession of mine)!

What brand and color of paint did you use?

All wall paint colors were Behr Ultra brand in a satin finish. The base color of the room is “White Clay.” The darkest shades for the ombre hexagon accent wall are “Fiery Red,” “Tangerine Dream,” “Springtime Bloom,” and “California Dreaming.” We had leftover Behr Ultra “Gentle Rain” from painting my son’s nursery two years ago, so we blended that shade with both black and white to create the gray hexagons. We had Lullaby Paints color match Behr’s “California Dreaming” for non-toxic, baby-safe paint to apply to the crib and changing table.

If you added stripes, polka dots or other paint effects, tell us how you did it.

To create our own ombre hexagon wall behind the crib, we measured the wall and I laid it out in AutoCAD to determine the optimum size and spacing for the hexies. Then, I brought it into Photoshop and used the dropper tool to identify five accent colors from a jpeg image of the crib sheet fabric. We took a trip to Home Depot with a print of this template and the fabric swatches.

I made a hexagon template out of foam board and set about the painstaking task of taping off the grid. We purchased sample sizes of each accent color, started by painting the inside corner, then, we poured the paint into a separate cup and mixed white paint to achieve the next desired color. This process wasn’t very precise and we quickly discovered we needed a lot more white paint than the sample size we had originally purchased.

What brand of crib did you buy? Where from?

The crib is the Million Dollar Baby DaVinci Kalani 4-in-1 in white, purchased at Babies R Us two years ago for my son, and repainted green for my daughter’s nursery.

What brand of nursery furniture did you choose? Where did you buy it?

The dresser and end table are both Restoration Hardware pieces, which were passed on to me by a family member. We purchased an inexpensive changing table from Ikea and painted it the same shade of green used in the accent wall and on the crib. The glider and ottoman were both purchased from the Land of Nod, also repurposed from my son’s nursery.

What nursery bedding set did you use? Where did you buy it?

We were moving the bed from our guest room into the basement and converting it into my daughter’s nursery. The room already had great olive green geometric floor to ceiling curtains my mom made to coordinate with the guest bedding and I didn’t really want to replace them. All bee themed nursery décor I found

online was yellow and black and not what I was going for, so I knew I would be making custom. My next “ah-ha” moment came when I discovered the Sweet as Honey by Bonnie Christine fabric collection at Hawthorne Threads in the Autumn Harvest Palette. I could not have personally designed something better aligned with my vision! I quickly identified the “Orchard Blossom in Autumn” as the primary fabric I would use to make the crib sheets and changing table cover. I chose my four other favorite fabrics for a 4-tiered ruffled crib skirt, purchased some extra “Bee Sweet in Sunset” for a Boppy cover, and ordered a fat quarter bundle to assemble a small hexagon quilt, backed with gray minky.

I used Lori Holt’s Hexie Half Ruler set to make the hexagon quilt. I modified the pattern slightly to suit my needs. I do not have a quilting machine, so I used a stitch in the ditch approach with my sewing machine to quilt two inner hexagons into each of the large hexies and hand stitched the minky binding. I also made a felt floral accent pillow.

Tell us about your window treatments, nursery lighting, rugs, wall decor and accessories. Where did you buy them - were any handmade?

As I previously mentioned, the color scheme for the room was somewhat built around the curtains previously sewn to match guest room bedding. I purchased the chartreuse rosette lampshade at Anthropologie several years ago to match the same guest room bedding. I wanted to repurpose the shade on this silver geometric table lamp from the Land of Nod, but it was not the right type of fitting. I wound up purchasing a simple white shade from the Land of Nod, removing the fabric from the Anthropologie shade, cutting away about three inches of fabric from the circumference, re-stitching it, and gluing it on the white shade.

The Pottery Barn Kids Sweet Flower Rug in Crème was a gift from my Grandmother, and I feel like the neutral pop really tied the room together. The gray honeycomb shelves were purchased from the Land of Nod. The three prints above the dresser, the felted wool mobile, and cast iron bee wall hooks were all Etsy finds. I was particularly fond of the monocled hedgehog and bee since I felt like the hedgehog gave a subtle nod to Alice in Wonderland, and our daughter’s name is Alice.

How did you store all your baby goodies? In baskets, on shelves?

I found cute gray linen striped totes at Target that we use for storage under the changing table and end table. Remaining items are stored in the Restoration Hardware dresser or in the closet.

How long did it take you? Was it easy, fun, difficult? What was your favorite part?

We started work on the nursery in November 2014, and it was mostly complete by late January 2015. My husband was really nervous about taking on the hexagon accent wall, but we were both pleasantly surprised that it didn’t take as long as we expected! I’m hard pressed to pick a favorite part. I just love how everything came together to create a fresh twist on a bumblebee theme!

Did you do the entire nursery on your own or did someone help you? Who? What did they do?

My husband did all the painting, shelf installation, and other heavy lifting, and I did all the shopping and sewing!

What do you love most about your little one's finished baby room?

I love the feminine color scheme and that I think we successfully created a bee-themed room that isn’t yellow and black. I also really challenged myself with some of the sewing projects, particularly the 4-tiered ruffled crib skirt, which I made without a serger – my iron really got a workout from pressing all those hems! I’m happy we can look back and take pride in what we accomplished and I think we chose elements that will grow with our little girl!

Comments for Welcome to the Hive Nursery

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Sep 28, 2015
Absolutely Awesome Hive
by: Jana

Alice's nursery is beautiful, imaginative and full of fun images for my lovely and brilliant great niece! She will enjoy growing and learning in her special space.

Sep 25, 2015
The Besr
by: Tedra

This is so creative! Beautiful colors yet calm enough for a peaceful baby room!

Sep 25, 2015
Hive Five!
by: Angie

I absolutely love the color scheme of this nursery. While it is for a baby, it's not babyish. The hexagon-shaped wall art is adorable and had to have taken time and patience. The whole concept is bee-u-tee-ful! This little girl is lucky to part of your hive!

Sep 25, 2015
Hive Nursery
by: Gini

Emily is the most creative person I know. My favorite part of the nursery is the hexagons on the wall. The colors go together very well. And I like the 3 bumble bee prints on the wall.
I am very proud of Emily as she taught herself to make the quilt for the crib and gathered all the layers of the bed skirt.
She deserves to win this contest!!


Sep 25, 2015
Clever and cute!
by: Linda

You were spot on saying you managed to make a gorgeous bee-themed room without using black and yellow! And I agree, this room isn't too "baby" that it won't grow with her. It's the best!

Sep 25, 2015
by: Devin

Gorgeous nursery! Absolutely love it! So creative! I bet people would hire you to help them with their nurseries and/or interior designs in other rooms of the house!!

Sep 25, 2015
So sweet
by: Lisa


Sep 25, 2015
Very cute!
by: Anonymous


Sep 25, 2015
So cute
by: Ali

Ems, I love this nursery! When I have babes, I'm gonna need some major help from you. ;)

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