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Artwork display gives child’s nursery new life

Mon., May 3, 2010

It’s that time of year to celebrate Mother’s Day, which got me thinking about all the “mothers-to-be” who patiently wait for the official “mom” title to be a reality. That’s when 30-year-old graphic designer, artist and friend Christina McHenry came to mind.

I stopped by her house on a recent Saturday to see how things are going as she and her husband, Stephen, plan the arrival of their first child in July. An active, eco-minded, urban couple with projects in the works both indoors and out, it’s always an adventure to pass through their backyard gate.

Inside their remodeled turn-of-the-century home, I was inspired by the simplicity of decor and the smart mix of old and new.

“We don’t want to accumulate a lot of stuff, and we enjoy repurposing the things we have,” Christina said, as she led me upstairs to their in-progress nursery.

While the “less is more” adage is modus operandi in their home, when it came to the nursery walls, more is definitely more. The three rows of 16 pieces of framed art that extend between two sage walls are a creative focal point.

“We don’t know the sex of the baby, so we decided to decorate with a display of framed pictures that reflect our love for animals and the outdoors,” said Stephen. “It’s a theme all kids enjoy.”

The three-step project:

1. Clean the glass in inexpensive 3-inch-by-5-inch frames, trim the art and assemble.

2. Arrange framed art on the floor with an eye to mixing up colors and subjects.

3. Use a laser level and a standard level to mark where to pound nails, then hang the frames.

Good sources for prints include picture postcards, pages of art from old children’s books purchased at garage sales, photos that tell your family story, notecards, magazines, catalogs and posters.

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