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DECORATING ADVICE : The Future Is Bright in Nursery


Question: I plan to decorate a bedroom for a baby. I want to decorate the room to still be appropriate for the child when he or she is 4, and I would like the room to be cheerful and bright. The brown carpet and off-white drapes must stay. What colors should I paint the walls and ceiling? There are wood cornice boards above the windows, trim and wood closet doors that can be painted in accent colors. What do you recommend for the crib bedding? I have considered using an educational border paper as a chair rail at about a 2 1/2- to three-foot height.


Answer: Begin by covering your walls with a stripe, maybe one that has vertical bands of bright red, emerald green, sky blue and yellow. There are many striped wallpapers on the market. Paint your ceiling sky blue with puffy white clouds, and hang a colorful animal mobile from the clouds. The cornice boards around the room can be painted shiny bright white, as well as the trim and closet. Paint your closet interior sky blue too, and the shelves white. Purchase a white crib, and use a cover of bright yellow and white polka dots. Accent the crib with cushions of green-and-white and red-and-white polka-dotted pillows.

If you want to use an educational border dado around your room, find one that has numbers or the alphabet (maybe red or green letters and numbers on white) or one of the new animal prints (dinosaurs are very big). Apply the educational border on top of the striped wall covering.

Q: The grass cloth on my living room walls has turned to an ugly tan. Can I paint over the grass cloth or should I remove it before I paint? I have a rose-and-cream area rug. Should I paint the walls cream? I have dark shutters at the windows; there are no curtains.


A: Remove the grass cloth before you repaint the room. Make certain your walls are sanded and prepared properly for the paint. With your rose-and-cream area rug, why not paint your walls a soft aqua? Cover the trim with an off-white semi-gloss enamel. Repaint the shutters a light cream, so there is a contrast to the white trim.

Author's notes:

Spring 1993 will usher in lots of new design trends. Here is some of what's on the horizon.

* Wallpaper and borders will be everywhere, graced with new color combinations: spring green with white and aqua blue; soft melon with white and rich tangerine, accented with bright watermelon red; daffodil yellow with cream; rich skipper blue and--believe it or not--lilac and purple. And here's the newest color combination: azalea with dark forest green, white and lilac.

* Aubergine, a shade of dark purple, will find its way onto the walls of many rooms. Deep red walls, deep hunter walls and rich chocolate walls will become second to deep purple. Deep purple walls will look smart with white trim and a sky-blue ceiling.

* Deep color-stained furniture will become a decorating priority for the young at heart. So look for furniture stained (not painted) red, navy blue or deep green. Classic furniture that can be restored with this new technique makes a perfect addition to any contemporary home.

* The Swiss look--in both red-and-white and blue-and-white checks--will be all over the market. Expect to see some red-and-white checkered lampshades in the magazines and department stores. You'll also find lots of blue-and-white check and window-pane fabrics on wing chairs and on bedroom comforters.

* Color will make a statement in the bathroom. The latest combinations include bright aqua with white, chocolate with soft green, red with soft aqua, and yellow with bittersweet orange. And you can be certain to find all those wallpapers adorning the bathroom ceiling, too. Tile manufacturers will develop bright shades of red, green, aqua and cocoa.

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