Simple and Sweet

Painted furniture and rose-printed fabrics grace a little girl's bedroom.
Sandra Allen Lynn

When Suzan and Neil Doidge moved into their new home, daughter Anne Raines was almost 3 years old. It was time for a big girl look--one that was sweet enough for a child, but mature enough to last for many years. Suzan asked me to help, and we began by assessing the furniture situation.

We decided to use the nursery armoire again, along with the rocker and two side tables we pulled from Suzan's garage. She had inherited a small settee sofa from her parents that Anne Raines loved. "I always find her playing on this sofa," Suzan explained. "I had it slip-covered to soften the Victorian look. The two dark-stained end tables were painted and given a distressed finish."

After studying many children's rooms in decorating magazines and at friends' homes, Suzan decided that she wanted to use flowers and the color pink. So I began fabric hunting, knowing all the furniture would be painted and that we wanted an antique iron bed.

I found a bright floral duvet cover and green-and-white striped ruffled sham in a local linen shop. We also ordered several yards of the awning stripe to detail the drapes. The soft green in the stripe is the color used on the walls, and we offset the green with white linen curtains. I designed a vertical 10-inch band to run down the inside of each curtain panel, creating a horizontal pattern from the striped fabric. The panels are gathered into pleats at the top and hung from white-washed wooden rods. To warm up the floor, a natural white carpet was bound for an area rug.

A pink-and-white checked cotton was used for the skirted slipcover on the small sofa, and a rose-print fabric was chosen for round ruffled pillows on the sofa and a lampshade. Wavy chenille, coordinated with the other tones, covers a stool, another lampshade, and a pillow.

A friend of Suzan's mother heard about our search for an iron bed and offered one that she had in the basement. Neil gave it a good cleaning, and then spray-painted it white.

We found the chest of drawers already painted pink, the china plates, and the mirror frame all at a flea market. The salvaged wood molding, which serves as a faux ledge for the rose prints, and the antique basket on top of the armoire are the perfect finishing touches for a room that Anne Raines will enjoy for years to come.