Running a small business while pregnant during the pandemic, bakery owner and author Angela Garbacz knew she’d want the help of a professional to design her new baby’s nursery. Angela received recommendations for designer Belinda Pabian, another small business owner (and mom, too). And when she saw Belinda was offering a giveaway for design services, Angela entered—and won!
The two then set out to bring to life a hygge vibe for Angela’s new son Enzo’s nursery, using elements inspired by Angela’s personal style and her business, Goldenrod Pastries. And they did it all virtually; from sharing inspiration boards and design renderings to FaceTiming for art placements and styling. The nursery is cozy and comfortable (achieving hygge) with fun pops of color and statement lighting. Read on to hear from both women about the virtual nursery design process and their favorite elements in baby Enzo’s nursery.
Name: Angela Garbacz
Location: Lincoln, Nebraska
Years Lived in Home: Three
Rent or Own: Own
How did you decide whether to use a designer to decorate your baby’s nursery?
As a small business owner operating during a pandemic, I knew that choosing pieces for Enzo’s room was going to be really challenging, both from a time and creativity perspective. We used a designer to help with the living and dining areas of our home when we moved in, and the amount of time it saved to have a professional make the decisions was incredible. I am a firm believer in working with people who know more than I do. I am definitely not a designer, so working with a professional makes the most sense for me!
I am a firm believer in working with people who know more than I do. I am definitely not a designer, so working with a professional makes the most sense for me!
Belinda came very highly recommended from a few friends, and she shared on social media that she was running a giveaway for a nursery design—so I had to enter! I won and was so incredibly grateful for Belinda’s eye, and that she understood the vibe we wanted.
How would you describe the nursery’s “theme” and what inspired the design?
Angela: I absolutely wanted the room to feel very cozy, very relaxed, and very comfortable. The textures are super-rich and there are so many different textures that add interest to the space. I love the pops of color from books, the textiles, and his toys and stuffed animals. The light-up “Enzo” sign is a huge focal point, and has definitely been really helpful—it has a dimmer, so we use it as a night light!
Belinda: Angela and her bakeries inspired the design. She has great style; you can see that in the way she dresses and how she has built her Goldenrod Pastries brand. It’s modern, with touches of fun and the unexpected. She wanted to integrate a “hygge” vibe and make sure it felt cozy. So, I designed the room to be tonal with lots of texture, and with pops of color in the art, pillows, and toys/books.
You designed the nursery virtually during the pandemic, can you tell us about the process?
Belinda: We kicked off the project with Angela sending me dimensions of the room, as well as her Pinterest board with inspiration she had gathered. We then had a phone call to discuss her goals and vision for the space. After that meeting, I presented furniture floor plans over the phone/email. We talked through the pros and cons of each layout, and after she selected a furniture layout, I then started pulling together the design! Once it was complete, I presented it to her via phone/email again, we made some revisions over a couple of weeks, and then we started to place orders.
Angela: After the initial dump of my rough ideas, Belinda presented me with beautiful documents and I was able to say ‘yes’ to almost everything, and then ID the items I wanted to change really quickly. She presented new ideas for those very few items and we moved on from there.
Especially with everything going on with having two stores and being pregnant during Covid, this was so fast and easy from my end. I loved being able to click the links she provided me for everything and just purchase really quickly—we also timed it perfectly around some really great Labor Day sales!
Belinda: Once things arrived, we did a FaceTime video call to get things placed just perfectly in the room (e.g. hang art, style, etc.).
How did it differ from a typical room design process?
Belinda: It’s actually very similar! My design process always starts with a discovery conversation (learning more about my client and their style and goals for the space), gathering inspiration, furniture space planning, and then the room design where I source furniture, décor, textiles, paint, etc. The only difference is that we met virtually, and she gave me measurements of the room.
We knew going into the design process that we needed to source “ready-made” furniture to avoid long lead times due to Covid and her busy work schedule over the holidays.
Lighting seems to be a big focal point in the room, can you tell us more about the selections?
Belinda: The room isn’t too large, so I wanted to draw the eye up with a unique take on a sputnik light fixture. I also thought it would be a fun sculptural detail for her son, Enzo, to look up at. Then, the name light above his changing table gives off a soft “night light” for cozy evenings and mornings for the family.
What is your favorite part of Enzo’s nursery?
Angela: I knew we would spend a lot of time in his room, but I underestimated just how much time we would actually spend in there! I told Belinda I absolutely had to have room for both me and my husband Russell to sit, so we have the big recliner and an accent chair with an ottoman. I think making the intentional decision to have seating for both of us has made a huge difference. We both feel welcome at all times.
I love the neon sign of Enzo’s name, and all of the textiles Belinda chose. Again, this is not my area of expertise, so having her selecting really nice rugs, blankets, and pillows made a huge difference in the space to make it feel really warm, inviting, comfortable, and deluxe.
Belinda: There are two things that I thought were really special. One, I love that Angela requested two chairs, so she and her husband could both sit in there with her son. Second, I loved that we added the “Enzo” name light above the dresser, as it’s a nod to her Goldenrod Pastries bakery décor.
How would you recommend parents incorporate their home’s overall style into the nursery?
Angela: I really like a super clean, modern design style but with pops of bright colors and interesting shapes and textures. The rest of my house uses a lot of neutrals, but with really bold art and so I wanted the nursery to emulate that.
Belinda: This is a great question and one that I took into account for Enzo’s nursery. I looked at photos of Angela’s living and dining rooms, and that helped inform the design aesthetic of the nursery’s major furniture pieces. I think it’s important for the nursery to have a sense of whimsy since it’s for a child, and I also find it important for it to fit with the overall aesthetic of the home.
What tips do you have for parents to design a nursery that can grow with their child?
Belinda: Select foundational pieces that will stand the test of time. For example, if you purchase a dresser instead of a “changing table,” a great rug, and timeless window treatments, all you have to invest in for a “big kid” room is a bed to replace the crib. Also, choose a color scheme that can adapt to different interests your child will have as they grow older. You can change up your child’s bedding and art to suit their preferences at different ages.
Belinda, is there any design advice do you find yourself giving clients again and again?
If you fill your home with things you love, versus what’s on-trend, you’ll never grow tired of it.
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