The Baby’s Room

Indian Elephant by Helen Lambert

Indian Elephant by Helen Lambert

I doubt that the imagination can be suppressed.  If you truly eradicated it in a child, he would grow up to be an eggplant.   Ursula K. Le Guin

Eggplant by Elizabeth Blaylock

Eggplant by Elizabeth Blaylock

Growing up in a wee little 2 bedroom house meant that I had to share a bedroom with two of my brothers.

(Another brother slept in a tiny junior bed at the foot of my parents’ bed and when my sister came along her crib was jammed in there too!  We had no idea as children that we were cramped for space – or money, for that matter.  We had love and fun and that was surely enough.)

Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe by Joseph Martin Kronheim

Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe by Joseph Martin Kronheim

Dad had painted merry nursery rhyme figures on our dressers and bunk beds and  this served as art.  I do not remember any pictures on the walls.

Except . . . during the years when I slept on the top bunk.  Then I cut out magazine pictures of Bible stories, especially Jesus, and the Minneapolis Lakers basketball team and tacked them to the nearby dormered ceiling.  At night I would stare at these pictures.  (Don’t even ask.)

Minneapolis Lakers  or -

Minneapolis Lakers or –

Jesus, Standing at the Door

Jesus, Standing at the Door

When it came time to decorate a nursery for our firstborn, I went the route of most young moms of 1962 with cheerful chintz print curtains, a child’s lamp . . .

Kinda like this one :)

Kinda like this one :)

and a sweet picture of a chubby toddler boy.  I know I enjoyed his sweetness more than our little son did.

Ours in long gone, but similar in feel -

Ours is long gone, but similar in feel –

With every child thereafter I did grow a bit in adding art to their rooms, but with far less imagination than my daughters and sons and daughters-in-law!

17 years after Chris, Emily got Monet's poster

Monet did find its way into one bedroom.

Yesterday Emily showed us the nursery for their baby son, due in May.  Every detail was tasty, but the part that has me whirling today is the art that she has chosen!  Yes!  Interesting art, even original art!

Penguins by Adam Swanson and Mountain Lake by Penny Stewart

Penguins by Adam Swanson and Mountain Lake by Penny Stewart

Emily and Marit (dear daughter-in-law  in Chicago, mom of year old Gust), were both art history majors.  And while it may be difficult to find employment as an art history major, it sure does help when it comes to imaginative baby space.

Emily picked up The Ballet Dancer at a silent auction

Emily picked up The Ballet Dancer for Susie’s room at a silent auction

And she found a painting of the sea, tossing on a bright day with a sailing ship – large and hung directly across from the crib.  Soon this boy will be dreaming of adventures to far-away places.

IMG_4608

“Don’t dumb-down art for kids”, she told me.  How fun is this?

Instead of a sweet little ol’ Noah’s Ark . . .

old noah

Why not a contemporary  ark from Eric Dowdle . . .as fun as Where’s Waldo!

ark by eric dowdle

or even a Jacopo Bassano Noah’s Ark from the 16th century?

lg bassano

There’s nothing wrong with popular fairies . . . .

en_fairies_gp6p

But – look at these gorgeous, embroidered beauties . . .

Found on etsy -

Found on etsy –

“Cute” can be fun . . .

lil cowboy vintage graphicsfairy005d

But let a little cowpoke walk into this world . . .

Where Waters Run Cold by Martin Grelle

Where Waters Run Cold by Martin Grelle

You could find amazing posters or prints of illustrious illustrators – like this one of Moby Dick by Tony Millionaire . . .

moby-dick2

Or this one for an older child – would it not catapult him into reading the book? . . .

moby-dick

Do include some inspiration – but make it strong, not sweet.

Like this by Timothy Botts –

guard your heart

or this by Ron DiCianni –

He will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways.  Psalm 91:11

He will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways. Psalm 91:11

A great blessing of the internet is the accessibility of art.  We can move from one possibility to another, until we stumble across a picture, an idea  – which is exactly what we needed, even though we didn’t have a clue.  Art stimulates, touches deep, refreshes and is etched into our memory banks.

Our kids and grandkids will have doors into worlds beyond their borders.

And we will too.  It’s not too late, praise God.

Le Chateau Noir by Paul Cezanne

Le Chateau Noir by Paul Cezanne

A little music for your baby too;  Bach’s Prelude Cello Suite no. 1, here performed by Eric Larkins;

Images courtesy of:  Indian Elephant by Helen Lambert;  earthskyart.com/pages/gallery/07elephant,  The Eggplant by Elizabeth Blaylock;  dailypainters.com,  Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe by Martin Kronheim;  picasaweb.google.com,  Monet poster;  movieposter.com,  Cute Noah’s ark;  etsy.thehomegnome,  Eric Dowdle’s Noah Ark;  dowdlefolkart.com,  The Ark by Jacopo Bassano;  reproarte.com,  Fairies embroidery;  etsy.com.loutul,   cute cowboy;  graphicsfairy.blogspot.com,  Where Cold Waters Run by Martin Grelle;  gallery4collectors.com/images/MartinGrelle,  Moby Dick illustration by Tony Millionaire;  biblioklept,  Moby Dick;  www.edu.ge.ch,  Timothy Botts caligraphy;  inkwellgreetings.com,  Ron DiCianni;  rondicianni.com,  Le Chateau Noir by Paul Cezanne at National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.;  artunframed.com,  Strega Nona by Tomie dePaola;  onu.edu/node/25184.

x

Don’t forget Strega Nona!

Strega Nona by Tomie de Paola

Strega Nona by Tomie de Paola

5 responses to “The Baby’s Room

  1. Great ideas Mom! I totally am with you!

  2. well, of course I love this post! I would like to start a business around children’s bedroom art. I’m inspired by the mini museums of wonder one could produce… And I’ve always thought a strega nona themed room with a spaghetti mural would be divine. Our new little one will have waters to look at ~ lakes and sea creatures and oceans. I still need a river, (Where Waters Run Cold by Martin Grelle is wonderful!) and a Noah’s Ark. My mind will be whirling all day with ideas… Thank you!

  3. When I think back on my favorite books as a child, they all had amazing illustrations to go with fantastic tales. I can’t remember all the stories now, but the beautiful pictures are as real in my mind as ever. Can’t wait to see pictures of Emily’s baby in that room!

  4. What a delightful idea for these little ones.

  5. Yes ! Love it—also Jesus and the Lakers !! What a hoot–Barb

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