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I ended up going with a Mermaid theme instead of The Little Mermaid… which I think surprised Olivia at first. She had asked for her room to be a surprise, but she still had little clues as to what it would be and had guessed Little Mermaid. I think she was expecting to walk in and see all things Ariel and Melody. But I’d rather have an item, like a picture, that can be easily switched out then splattering a character all over the room. That being said, this is an truly an Under the Sea themed room with a nice sprinkling of mermaids, all that can grow with Olivia!
The bed had to stay in the same place because of the layout of the room, but I still think the changes have a huge impact! I’ll share more details from some of the projects throughout the next week, but if you have any questions, feel free to ask in the comments! Alright, let’s look at all the pretty pictures!
Cricut Explore Project # 1: DIY Grotto Sign made with balsa wood, printable vinyl and cardstock — UPDATE: Balsa Wood Sign Tutorial is now live
Cricut Explore Project #2: DIY Felt Flower Bunting — Update: Flower Bunting Tutorial is now live!
Cricut Explore Project #3: Mermaid Pillow made with iron-on glitter vinyl
The DIY Bubble Chandelier is a fav that was made with clear plastic Christmas ornaments and fishing line. UPDATE: DIY Bubble Chandelier tutorial is now live.
Cricut Explore Project #4: Sea Horse Wall – I used painters tape to stick them to the wall. Cricut Project #5: DIY Scallop Stencil
I am so happy with the DIY Clay Whale Knobs too – the duo always makes me smile. Update: The Clay Knob Tutorial is now live.
This foam head headband holder was Olivia’s creation. I have a box of foam heads left over from my FloraCraft challenge. She was looking for a craft project to do and asked me if she could paint one. I said yes and this is the result! She chose the colors and even though I recommended just painting it one color and not doing hair, she was bound and determined to do it her way and she was so right! She did this with very little help from me and I love the result. So proud of my crafty girl!
Cricut Explore Project # 6 – Easy Labeled Drawers
The closet is one of the projects I am most excited for! The BEFORE of the closet was such an embarrassment. It was not utilizing the space well and I was constantly shoving stuff inside. Now I have a spot for everything – the top three bins hold clothes that have been handed down to Olivia, but are still too big. The other two bins hold clothes that are too small and we willl be handing down. The Elfa drawers from The Container Store are AMAZING (I love them so much I ended up buying a set for my sons closet too!)! I used them to replace her dresser, which gives her more space in the room. They hold all of her clothes perfectly and are easy to access. The labels help her (and my hubby) when putting clothes away. Have a non-reader? Consider adding pictures of the contents instead of words!
Cricut Explore Project #7 & #8: Outfit of the Day vinyl and Magnetic Mermaid Board — Update: Magnetic Busy Board Tutorial is now live.
I placed the magnetic board on velcro 3M Command strips so she can take if off the door and use it on trips, etc. This is by far her favorite part of the room! She has used this for hours already – she loves playing with the Mermaid dolls that I designed and is constantly making them sing by writing words in bubbles next to them!
She has also really come to love the Outfit of the Day station. She likes me to help pick her outfit but she wants to hang it on the hook all by herself. I use to lay her clothes out on the floor the night before, this is just a much cuter version of that!
The DIY Faux Capiz Shell Chandeliers were left over from Olivia’s 4th Birthday Party that I had hung in her room and looked too perfect in the space to take out!
Storage was lacking in Olivia’s room before so I made sure that she had PLENTY this time around. Each of the bins is labeled, Barbies, Drawing Supplies, Electronics, Baby Doll Stuff, Small Toys – that way everything has a place and it is easy to clean up and store items.
Update: The Sea Shell Mirror Tutorial is now live!
I must give a shout-out to my friend Jeremy and his in-laws, Jeff and Winona – they literally dug through the snow in the backyard of Jeff and Winona’s house to gather the sea shells for the mirror for me! They have a whole collection in their garden from all of their trips to North Carolina!
Cricut Explore Project #11 & #12: DIY Paper Mermaid and Whale Specimen Art for the custom Gallery Wall
I’ll be sharing more on this super awesome gallery wall and sharing the free printables next week — UPDATE: Get the free printables now!Cricut Explore Project # 13: DIY Scallop Picture Frame
And yes, there actually is a message inside:
Cricut Explore Project #15: DIY Vinyl Canvas Sign
This window is all one unit, which means adding shades is a bit hard. The ones I chose use adhesive strips to attach to the frame. Because of this, they have clips that hold the shade open. They are nothing special, so I spiffied them up with a few nautical friends:
This is what I did with all of her stuffed animals! The soft ones and ones she doesn’t play with as much got placed in that awesome Stuffed Animal Bag from Boon that doubles as a floor pouf! She can still easily get to the animals inside by unzipping the mesh top. My son doesn’t think it is too comfortable to lay on, but we’ve used it several times and it works perfectly. You can just sprawl like a regular bean bag, but Olivia uses it to sit and do her hair or to play with her magnetic board. I think it is way fun! The stuffed toys that had hard plastic or that she plays with regularly were placed inside the purple basket for easy access.
The Olivia name blocks were one of my very first Cricut projects I ever made, 5 years ago! I had a small Cricut machine that cut 6″x12″… the Cricut cutting machines have come a long way since then.
How much did the room cost?
As a reminder I had a Cricut budget of $1,000 for the room makeover. Normally I don’t spend that much on changing things up in my kids room, but since I had the money, I decided to splurge on a few things, especially to make the closet work better for our needs!
Paint & Supplies $100.00
Bedding & Sheets $59.99
DIY Mermaid Pillowcase $10.00
Stuffed Animal Storage Basket – $10.69
Boon Animal Bag – $34.46
Bed Canopy – $13
DIY Bubble Chandelier – $8
DIY Seahorse Wall Art – $1
Anchor Hook $9.231
Arch Shade – $19.97
Ikea Mesh Curtains – $10.00
DIY Shade Clips – $3
Elfa Drawer System – $245.00
Plastic Clothes Hangers – $4
Drawer and Bin Labels – $1
Hanging Shoe Storage – $7.00
DIY Foam Head Headband Holder – FREE, all items on hand
Tea Set – $7.95
Hutch Makeover – $5
Lava Lamp Nightlight – $7
DIY Magnetic Mermaid Board – $7
DIY Seashell Mirror – $8
Michel Mercier™ Detangling Brush – $15
DIY Grotto Sign – $4.50
Martha Stewart Fabric Drawers (x13) – $78.00
DIY Collection Sign – $15.00
Floating Shelves – $31.96
O Wood Letter – $3.19
DIY Message in a Bottle – $2
DIY Flower Bunting – $2
DIY Scale Picture Frame – $2
Gallery Wall – Frames were given to me from CutItOut, retail for $75. Artwork designed by me and printed at home, Whale and Mermaid were made with the Cricut – $1 each, Paint and Foam Rollers, $4
3M Command Strips, Velcro – $24.00
DUY Clay Fan Pulls, Starfish, Whale and Octopus Knobs – FREE, clay on hand
TOTAL ROOM MAKEOVER: $812.94
What did Olivia think of her surprise? She was a bit overwhelmed at first. There was a lot of change and a lot to take in! She isn’t one to jump up and down or cry… she absorbs. And then for the rest of the night I heard over and over how much she loves me, she loves her new room, did I see this and how cool is that?!? It was enough to make my heart burst. She was so appreciative and really took in each and every detail of the room.
I put together a video of a bit of the process, the reveal and some clips of Olivia playing in her room for you:
I had so much fun putting this room together. I had some friends that really took the time to help (thanks Jeremy & Krista!) and were awesome sounding boards. We had some really fun text convos throughout the designing process and they made the whole experience that much more fun! I sure hope you like the end result and I would love for you to vote for my Mermaid Room next week!