5 Ways to Personalize a Nursery + Giveaway

updated with winners, below!
I'll admit I'm totally geek when it comes to personalizing my kids' spaces. Maybe it's because I'm extremely into names but part of my process in creating a welcoming room for my babies-to-be has required (for me) personalized touches. The cloth letters are a start. And the blankets are perfection adorableness, but there are many fantastic ways personalize your babe's nursery without getting all cutesy wootsy. Some ideas for my fellow nesters (and holy shit, you guys! So many of you are expecting! Congratulations!) and nesters-to-be are:

1. Street Sign Artwork

I've posted about "Where the Streets Have Your Name" before. The dude who runs the business is a family friend. Makes for a great gift for a new parent or newlywed couple. Very cute without being cutesy.

2. Vintage Vinyl from Ebay

Had the girls been boys, we would have named them Vox Shepherd ("the voice that guides") and Revere Blaze ("deeply admired light") which, I'll be honest, I'm still mourning because I think they're fantastic and strong and fantastic. But it's like that quote we used to write on our binders in Jr. High "if you love something set it free..." so fly free thou boy names! If the twins had been boys, these would likely be hanging in their nursery right now.
Revere was a tough one (I searched and searched) but this is close enough and look how they match!
Speaking of color coordination, these make a pretty solid pair:


3. Chalkboards
Archer and Fable have an entire wall in their room painted in chalkboard paint. We're planning on bunking them in the Fall so they can actually access the wall (that rhymed). Fable's daybed formerly known as crib has been against it this whole time but we're looking forward to turning half of A&F's bedroom into a create-their-own-adventure type art space and the chalkboard wall will act as center stage. For a nursery, however, here are a few chalkboards I found on Etsy that would make for beautiful wall hangings for personalized love letters:


4. Old Books (or Book Lamps)
Hardback Book Lamp - Archer in Hollywood-2
I posted about Archer's "Archer in Hollywood" book lamp, here. The artist (his name is Philip Hansen) doesn't have a lot of Book Lamps in his shop currently (more are on the way) but there's a chance that if you contact him he may be down to customize an order. Maybe? Another way to personalize is to frame dust jackets. Expecting an Olivia or Eloise?
...A Madeline or Miles?
Triplets named Sally, Dick and Jane you say?


5. Personalized Wooden Toys:
My friend Amy runs Little Aloutte and included in her hand-crafted wooden toy store are these beautiful wooden typography teethers (see R&B above) that double as beautiful display items before babies have any teeth to bite them with. They're also the kind of things the girls will keep with them always. (Thank you, Amy for the personalized teethers! They look lovely in the room!)
Annnnnd, because I haven't done a giveaway, here, since... Tuesday, Amy's offering two lucky readers a handmade "typography teether" in the letter of your choice. I'll pick two winners via random.org next Thursday, September 15th. To win? Tell me a name you love. And don't forget to include your email address!
P.S. For the next week, with code "twinsrule" you get 15% off all Little Alouette purchases. Thanks, Amy! And thank YOU all for your continued support and kindness. You have made this pregnancy feel truly blessed and my family feel especially loved. Hope you've enjoyed this little giveaway week o' mine. Good luck and happy nesting!



Updated: Congrats to commenters #104, Ashley and commenter #212, Ann Marie! (Expect an email from me shortly!) And thanks for everyone for participating!


«Oldest   ‹Older   201 – 315 of 315   Newer›   Newest»
Mary | 11:15 AM

I love our son's name, Gabriel (Gabe for short). If he'd been a girl, he would have been Amelia Ann. I'm extremely partial to names that can be shortened.

KatDinsmore | 11:20 AM

I love the names Chase & Cole. They're two of my husbands favorite baseball players and they go well together.

katdinsmore at gmail dot com

Kate | 11:25 AM

Coen is the name of my son and I just ADORE this name. I also love Eleanor, but my husband needs more convincing on this one :)

katepeaslee at gmail dot com

Nicole H | 11:25 AM

I love my daughters name, Hannah. When she was born her dad and I weren't married yet, and Hannah was my maiden name. So now that I have a "new" last name, the Hannah name lives on :)


nicole | 11:27 AM

I love the name Marlowe for a girl. But my husband vetoed it. So, I'll set it free! xoxo.


domestiCate | 11:29 AM

Just named my baby girl Elsie Bennett. Love it. Love your blog. Can't wait to "meet" R&B!
cateholcombe at gmail dot com

Laura | 11:31 AM

If our single girl (Lily Rose) would have been twin girls, they would have been Rowan Marie and Flora Belle.

Andy and Jenni | 11:39 AM

We think we'll name baby number three, our second son, Tolliver - my stepfather's last name. We'll likely call him Tollie. A "T" teether would be awesome... jbetz1383(at)wideopenwest(dot)com

Anonymous | 11:45 AM

Vox Shepherd and Revere Blaze? Were you having a Sarah Palin moment?
I named my sixth and seventh Waterless Cookware and Chrome Finish. The ones I'm carrying now are going to a Bolt Action and Venom Antidote.

k | 11:56 AM

Lucy is my 19 month, so obviously I love that name. As for our choices for other children, we have Beatrice, Matilda, Finnigan. Clearly I like classic (but different) names :)

my email is kwagner.smith@gmail.com

Ann Marie | 11:59 AM

Naming my soon to be daughter, Vael.


The_JenStar | 11:59 AM


as in...Mercer County NJ...where I grew up.

It's now our son's name. And I will tell you that since we are anticipating another adoption in December...coming up with something equally as simple, cool and heartwarming as Mercer is VERY difficult.

Aaron & Cassie | 12:18 PM

We just named my daughter Eidel (like from Eidelweiss), pronounced A-dul. I LOVE it! aaronandcass@gmail.com

ilovethemidwest | 12:19 PM

Alice! It's a family name and I've always loved it.

Jenny | 12:20 PM

My two favorite girl names are, Vivianne, pronounced Vivi-Ann, (a spin off Vivien) and Lilah :-) They are both feminine-sounding with a light happy ring to them. Our daguthers get many compliments!

PS: Love your blog!


rap216 | 12:23 PM

Those teethers are awesome! A name I love is Echo. And also Hazel. Good luck to you!

rap216 | 12:24 PM

The teethers are awesome! I like the names Echo and Hazel. Good luck to you!

MadEnoughWorld | 12:28 PM

i need a k and r for katherine roberto

Anonymous | 12:36 PM

i love the name rafferty. my 2 month old, oliver gray, would have been rafferty if my husband was a tad bit more open-minded when it came to baby names =)

-jamie c.

Äiti | 12:38 PM

I love my daughter's name Calla.

and my fave names for another baby are

Ione or Maeve for a girl
Rune or Luca for a boy.

Heidi | 12:46 PM

Our October baby will be named Calvin. Personally I love the name Jesse, however my husband vetoed it. But all's fair, I had already vetoed his choice of Bing. When Kate Hudson named her baby that he said HA! I told you that was a good choice.

heidi dot pardo at gmail dot com

Moon Whaler | 12:58 PM

I love the name Lorenzo, Enzo for short, for a boy. I think it sounds cute for a little boy OR when he grows up and is an old man! I already have 2 girls and their names are perfect :)

Anonymous | 1:06 PM

Rhythm and blues.. I have no idea for Rhythm but I think Blues might be Bluebell!! I might be wrong but Bluebell is still such a lovely name.

kateypie35 | 1:09 PM

My favorite names are Nathan and Ellie - my two sweet cherubs! If Ellie had been a boy she would have been Finn. Fond of that one too. :)

writtenbliss | 1:22 PM

I've been in love with the name Diana since high school. No kids yet to bestow any of my well-loved names on, sadly. We're working on it. :)

Malou | 1:23 PM

I love the name Asta (Nordic girl name)It means amiable and enchanting and was the name of a famous danish (indeed enchanting!) actress, who lived in Berlin in the 20's.
(marialouchris at gmail dot com)

Alyson | 1:54 PM

I decided on the name Alden Michael when I was in second grade. My husband had to agree to it before I would marry him. Our first child was a girl, but I'm now pregnant with our second. If it turns out to be a boy, we already have our name.

Abbe | 1:54 PM

I'm at week 36 tomorrow and dang it if the hubster and i aren't 7 million miles apart on names. So for now, i'm going with Baby No Name for our coming boy. Aack!
abbesol [at] hotmail [dot] com

Teeka | 1:55 PM

I LOVE those teether letters! I'm expecting #4 and aren't allowed to disclose names, but in the hopes that I win it will be D or G... or J, P, I, N, O... We're of the "wait to meet him or her" mindset this time.

me/g.s/hea@mac.com (without slashes)

Alyson | 1:55 PM

Oops, I forgot to include my e-mail.

afwsprag at yahoo dot com

Anonymous | 1:57 PM

My son's name is Jackson and I love it. I really wanted to name him Robert for my grandfather, but our last name is McGee and I couldn't risk the "Bobby McGee" refernces his entire life (even if I do LOVE the song :)


Unknown | 2:50 PM

Our girl name is Elise and I am so hoping that I get to use it the next time, rather than comb the baby books for another boy name!

marlene | 3:08 PM

oh bunk beds. i am trying to find a decent looking one as we speak. it's harder than i thought. did you start searching yet?

andrea.d | 3:08 PM

We had names chosen for each of our children, but when they came out, they were given completely different, not-even-on-the-list names. It was as if they came with a name and we didn't even have a say in it. Silly, but that's how it felt! I'd love to get an 'E' for my sweet Everett.

marlene | 3:11 PM

awesome post. i am looking into bunking my kids too. having a hard time finding cute bunks. did you start looking?

Jessi | 3:29 PM

I love love love the names we had chosen for our last baby if he had been a girl..but he wasn't and that's it for us.
We liked Abigail Willow and Gillian Nicole, but ended up with a Mark Alejandro.

Jessi | 3:30 PM

We liked Gillain Nicole and Abigail Willow for our baby but turned out he was a Mark Alejandro. And our last baby :(.


Anonymous | 3:38 PM

I love the name Junyae, pronounced like June-Yay. It's place near Beirut in Lebanon where my Husband lived during the war in the 80s. But my Husband doesn't like it. He thinks that when we go back to visit family in Lebanon they all will think it's weird we named our kid after a place. And it probably reminds him of scary times as a kid living in the middle of war. I just really like the way it sounds. We actually have a deal for when we finally have kids. He gets to name any boys and I get to name any girls. Lebanese tradition dictates the first born boy is always named after his grandfather. So since I don't get input on naming our hypothetical son, I took away his input on girls names. Ha!

selena | 3:48 PM

Beatrix, Vivi Anne, Jonah

Suzanne Halekas | 3:53 PM

I love the name Magnolia. But my husband doesn't. And also, we're having a boy.


Lauren | 3:57 PM

Girlfriend you are my HERO. 3 vaginas. 64 lbs. Insane. You rock. But x nay on the eloise-nay or however the frig piglatin works. My kid is Eloise and the name is getting far too popular for my liking!

katie Chapman | 4:04 PM

love my kids names- Staughty Elias (b) and Eula Beatrice (G). Due in a few weeks with gender unknown, but more than likely, his/her name will start with S!
also LOVE your twin boy names- setting the standard high for the girl names!

Brenda | 4:09 PM

I named my babies the 2 names I love...my daughter Jocelyn & my son Talan!

Abi | 4:25 PM

We named our first, Ayame. It is the Japanese word for Iris. I triple puffy heart it.

bellastitch at gmail dot com

oh, jenny mae | 4:47 PM

i love my kids' names. although i don't share first names online, their middle names are also pretty spectacular. scout, jillianne, justice & jamison. those three 'Js' were accidents. my one week old nephew, milo asher, has 2 of my favorite names and if i had any more (hahahahaha!) i love elias and lola.

Katherine Vargas | 5:30 PM

I'm due in late feb/early march & if it's a girl I'm gunning for the name lula bell. My great-grandmother's name + my husband's grandmother's name = amazingness, I think. If it's a boy, I have no idea. LOVE those teethers! thank you for the opportunity

Anonymous | 5:45 PM

One of my very favorite names is Rhys. I love it so much. We have a girl, though, with no plans for another baby. So no Rhys for us. :) (Our girl is Eriana, and I love her name very, VERY much!)

Anonymous | 6:05 PM

I love the name Hannah. It's old-fashioned and sweet. Husband vetoed it, but I'm holding out hope for the future. Have you read Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison? The emphasis on names was fascinating.

Tracy | 6:16 PM

Since I was about 10, I've loved the name Noah. But good friends of our named their daughter Norah, so we have to cross Noah off our list.

tracy at mayhaps dot com

beyond | 6:17 PM

I had a Nicander (mostly called Nick or... Baby) five weeks ago. He'll need an N to chew on soon.

Keri | 6:42 PM

i love the name pippa but we have another girl name ready for our bebe, due any day...no idea if it's a girl or boy so we'll see if it gets used! ;)


MKEMomma | 6:44 PM

I am done having kids and now living vicariously through friends and family. I had girls and always wished for a boy. I will become an auntie to my first nephew in January and loving the name my brother picked for his son... Lennox James.

email: dogue2236@msn.com

MKEMomma | 6:50 PM

After years of all girls, anxiously awaiting the arrival of my first nephew in January. Loving his name, Lennox James.

email: dogue2236@msn.com

Lindsey | 6:55 PM

I love the name Victory Lionheart. My husband is eternally grateful that we never had a girl.

lshepard at loribonn dot com

LindaB | 7:55 PM

I love the name Sebastion for a boy and Pamela for a girl. I love all your recommendations and wish TO ALL THAT IS HOLY that I wasn't on a strict budget (courtesy of the husband). damnit.

Garden Street Zoo | 8:12 PM

My first boy is Oliver Blake (both family names) and when we had a second boy, we named him Henry Finch. If I had/have a girl, she would be Charlotte and Charlie for short. My other favorite girl name is Scout, but I already used up my To Kill a Mockingbird reference with Finch.


Miss M | 8:52 PM

Oh this one speaks to me! I still look at my baby and see a Silas, but my husband would not go for it. I love the name so much!

Christy | 10:07 PM

I love the name Iona, which is the name of my oldest daughter. It was my beloved grandmother's name, and also the name of a small and beautiful island off the coast of Scotland that I've been to (and obviously have to take my daughter to someday!). Her middle name is another great-grandmother's name, Evelyn, which I also love a lot. If I hadn't used it already for her middle name, I would have used it for my second daughter's first name!

Since we went with family names for the first daughter we also did with the second. Named Lucie Elizabeth after her dad Lucien and
distant relatives on both sides. Some old family names are awesome, but we had a Bertha and a Buella in there too. I don't think those will ever come back in style!! Ha!!

Email is christymichelles@hotmail.com

e,c,e,m | 10:19 PM

I love Paige and Reid.

jennifer | 12:11 AM

i'm loving my korean coworker's baby's name: yul hwi. she asked me to give her an english name too, so i chose julie, so I guess a J would be perfect for her!


Amy | 1:12 AM

We named our daughter Aravis Jade. I have always wanted a daughter named AJ, so it was just a matter of coming up with a combination we both loved. Aravis is the heroine of 'The Horse & His Boy' which is the fifth book in the Chronicles of Narnia & my husband's favorite.

If we have another girl, I think we'll name her Arwen Elizabeth...

Unknown | 4:23 AM

I like the name Sadie - when I worked in the church nursery a few years ago there was the sweetest little toddler named Sadie who obviously picked her own outfits - mostly mismatched tutus with sparkly shoes. So sweet!


Suzie | 5:47 AM

We came close to naming our daughter Vianne. :) We find out the sex of #2 in a week and a half and I am no where near choosing a name!

Carla | 6:31 AM

We currently have a little boy named Robert (love traditional names)who is past the teething stage. I would love a letter "B" for the "baby" that is in the works. No names picked out just yet! Enjoy the final weeks of your amazing pregnancy.

Samantha | 7:07 AM

My favorite, favorite name has always been Jack. Partly because my mom's favorite uncle (one I never met) was Jack and partly because it has so much character, strength and LOVE in it to me. So when we get ready to have a kid (in addition to the two stepchildren I'm head over heels for), he will totally be a Jack. And if it's a girl? Daisy!

Amanda | 7:40 AM

I've been on an Enid kick, for a girl. And I've always loved Stella (perhaps A Streetcar Named Desire really did it for me in middle school...I'm also an Interpol fan). Stella Enid. Maybe one day.

I like Vincent for a boy. Not sure why but it sounds sort of elegant to me. Dapper.

Around Tucson there has been a Dillinger trend for boys, which I actually love. Swedish names for boys are pretty awesome too.

Britt | 8:58 AM

welllll.... I'm going to give you two names. What I want to name if we ever have children. Luna & Sol. (Moon & Sun in spanish)
e-mail address: brittjoshdellinger@gmail.com

Anonymous | 9:47 AM

I love my baby's name. We named him Atticus Elliot. We had a long list of girl names, but Atticus was the only boy name on our list.


Nicole | 10:37 AM

We are going with Baylee for our girl twin and Conner for our boy twin! I'm due in December. We are super excited and crazy nervous! Thanks! Nicole ncabrera@bisonsteel.com

Annie | 11:22 AM

After reading through all of these comments, Coen is moving up in the ranks.


alissa | 1:13 PM

god, i love you. and all of this! a name i love is delia, but my daughters name is liv, so im kind of partial to that one too :]

Emily | 8:13 PM

We named our son Malcolm and not only do I just love the name, it suits him perfectly. Baby #2 is on the way and I'm a bit nervous that we won't be able to agree on another name that we love as much ...

Robin | 3:31 AM

I love the names Juliana or Caterina if we have a girl next. If we have a boy...no idea! Our son is Gabriel, which is a name I now even more in love with!

Lacey Jane | 7:32 AM

I am pregnant with my first. Only 11 weeks along but I am feeling pretty major *girl* vibes. I confess I wanted a boy first, entirely because I have an older brother (and two older sisters) but he's my favorite person, and I so wanted my own personal clan to have a big brother leading it. With that said- I'm not disappointed at all that this baby is probably a girl. And I love the name Vega. My husband is pushing for "Luna", which I also love- but Vega!!!! Vega. Such an awesome name.

Lacey Jane | 7:32 AM

Oops! LaceyJane413@hotmail.com

Leah B | 9:25 AM

I love the name Anabelle and Louise. My husband ... not so much. Luckily we agreed on Emily (who happens to be teething as I type!). This a great giveaway -thank you!

Karen Cordano | 9:59 AM

Our son was born 11 days ago and we named him Charles Abraham. The Charles is for my grandfather and the Abraham is for Lincoln, my husband's hero. We are calling him Charlie.

Lara | 1:53 PM

A name I love that I will never have the balls to use is "Story" for a girl. Swoon. Sigh. So sweet.

spanishteacher83 | 5:17 PM

My husband and I have talked a lot about naming a daughter Hermione after the HP character.

Ray | 5:44 PM

I love the name Bonnie (c/o, "Gone With The Wind").

lauren reed | 6:26 PM

I'm loving Emarie Wynne- for a little girl. due 2/22 we find out next month. my email is blaine_lauren@yahoo.com

Laurah | 7:28 PM

Right now my favorite name for a possible future daughter is Violet. It's so fresh and feminine. My email is lathcat at hotmail dot com

Martha | 8:09 PM

If we have another boy, he'll be Noble actually. We drove by a Noble Lane and my husband said - Noble! We've loved the name ever since.

Martha | 8:10 PM

If we have another boy, he'll be Noble actually. We drove by a Noble Lane and my husband said - Noble! We've loved the name ever since.

leaner | 8:27 PM

I love the name Jadzia, its my baby's middle name because my husband felt it was too "weird" as a first name. She ended up with Natalie as her first and I don't love it. Nearly 6 months into her life and I still don't love her name.

Astrid | 8:29 PM

I really loved the name Hector, but my husband vetoed. Our son is seven weeks old, and he is Tycho John.

lindsay | 10:21 PM

I LOVE the name Thea. I don't know why but it's always sounded so goddess like to me and would love to name my (not even a thought yet) daughter that.

Lindsay | 5:51 AM

It took us a while to decide on names, we didn't know what we were having so we had both ready... and he was a Pearson Gabriel - a family name. We loved Atticus, Sterling or Blythe which I think could be for either gender. If our next one is a girl we are thinking Saleh or Maelle.

linzydee at gmail dot com

Meg | 5:57 AM

I love the name Coralie. My mom and I used to go on house tours when I was a kid. One time a tour included a stop at an old cemetery. I did a grave stone rubbing on a decrepit stone and that's the first time I saw the name.

Anonymous | 7:13 AM

I've loved the name Alexandra since I was 7 years old.

Anonymous | 7:13 AM

I've loved the name Alexandra since I was 7 years old.

Rebecca N | 8:00 AM

I really like family names. My daughter is Elizabeth, after her great-aunt, but we call her Ellie. She's eight months old so we need that teether! :)

Kayley Maybe | 10:50 AM

I love my daughter's name: Karina. It's so perfect for her.

Of course, we're having a boy in 2 months and don't have a boy name picked out yet, but I like the name Mikkel. We're not going to go with it, but still a name that I love...

kayleymaybe @ gmail

Abby G | 11:06 AM

I love the name Tag. Too scared to use it. So we have a Sunny & a Lachlan...


princess granola | 11:23 AM

Zola! It's my daughter's name and I had been planning on naming my first daughter Zola since I was 6. Sometimes I look at her and still can't believe I finally have a Zola.

princess granola | 11:25 AM

Zola! When I was 6 I decided I would name my first daughter Zola..and so I did. :)

Miranda | 1:05 PM

Well, I'm pregnant with our second (our first son) and we've yet to settle on a name. To be honest, there isn't really a name I just love. There are names I like in theory, but for whatever reason I won't settle on them (don't like the way it feels to say is a popular reason for me to veto a perfectly lovely name).

Domestic Diva | 1:13 PM

I love Milo.

lovelydomesticdiva (at) gmail (dot) com

Chaneltara | 1:15 PM
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous | 1:18 PM

I have a Rosie, and due with a Hank in January. If Hank was a girl, our top picks were Marigold "Goldie", Daisie, or Mabel. All the girl names just seem happy and vintage to me.

ani_stasia at yahoo dot com

Rebecca | 1:49 PM

My 2 month old daughter is Clementine Bloom. Clementine because my grandfather always left bags of clementine oranges on my porch when I wasn't home and Bloom because my daughters and I wanted name to honor the arrival of the summer solstice (her due date) after a very long, frigid Illinois winter.


Elizabeth | 2:46 PM

I know its all the rage now but I love the name Harper. It's my son's middle name. To Kill a Mockingbird is such an important book, and I wanted to pay tribute to that.

Stefanie | 8:20 PM

One of my favorite names is June - it was my grandmother's name and I love that it is making a comeback.

stef1213 at hotmail dot com

JachiCue | 10:35 PM

Arya Morrigan - that's the name we've picked out for our little girl. We can't wait to meet her (1 week late so far).

Txbrenna | 9:16 AM

I just had baby #3 last week and we named him Davis, after my beloved uncle. I looooove the name and all the memories that come along with it.

T | 12:18 PM

I love the name Nola. I have 2 boys so I haven't had a chance to use it...yet : )

Andrea | 3:08 PM

Holden for a boy.

Frankie for a girl.

I'm all done having kids (Noah and Eva) and I wish I had had the balls to name them something a little more untraditional...

Kana | 3:05 AM

Discovered your blog last night through a tweet from Dooce, and well, here I am trying my luck!

The name I like right now is Evie, for my baby girl due in December :-)

Congratulations on the birth of your twins!

E-mail : kanadelf at gmail dot com

Mackenzie | 8:22 AM

Zipporah is a favorite. There just isn't anything about it that isn't awesome.

c. | 8:26 AM

Would love a J for my little Jazz!

Kelli | 10:15 AM

I love the name Scarlet, as that is my daughter's name. I also love Sloan, which I plan to use for my next child if it's a girl. So I'd love an "S" teether!


lastyleworks | 12:53 PM

our first baby is due at the end of november. We are going with the adored name of Guinevere Katharin. She was due to be a Vesper until about a week ago when we decided to just tell everyone that was her name until the moment she arrives...and shock the hell out of everyone :]


BonJoey | 8:08 PM

I love my son's names, Vaughn Michael and Sterling Marshall. If Vaughn had been a girl, he would have been Fiora Colette, and if Sterling had been a girl, he would have been Gwendolyn Colette. :)

my email is Bonjoey@live.com

Nay | 10:53 AM


amy | 9:35 PM

Haven. My new baby girl!


«Oldest ‹Older   201 – 315 of 315   Newer› Newest»