Most of us would think twice before attempting to host our very own episode of Extreme Home Makeover without the help of a full-time construction crew, two nannies, an endless budget, and well, you get the picture. But if you’re can-do power duo Kate and Ben, the idea of a DIY renovation seemed like a piece of cake. The couple, who decided that before they were going to have a baby, needed to seriously overhaul their nursery and get it ready for the arrival of their future little one (just one look at the “before” photos sure makes it seem like they had their work cut out for them!). As a young married couple with a limited budget, they tapped into their inner DIY-er and set out to renovate the room all by themselves. Check out all their hard work below and ready your pencils to start taking notes for your next DIY project.

Over the course of 11 months, Kate and Ben demolished the old nursery down to the studs and rebuilt it up into a space worthy of their soon-to-be bundle of joy. The first step of the remodel was removing the plaster and lattice off the walls and ceiling. After removing the lead-painted trim, out came the windows and up came the indoor/outdoor carpet that was peskily glued to the original hardwood floor.



The most difficult part of the remodel? Having to rotate the radiator to make a more effective use of space. Working with plumbing in a 100 year old house doesn’t exactly sound like our idea of a fun project (handyman Ben emphatically agrees)


By the looks of things, Kate and Ben didn’t keep very much of the old room intact. With new windows, new drywall, freshly sanded and painted floors, new (lead-free) trim, and crown molding, their newly renovated nursery was ready for a coat of paint and some decorations for it’s future resident.

Kate and Ben cleverly repurposed several of the items in their new nursery. The dresser was a thrift store purchase that Kate repainted and added drawer knobs.
The bench seat is actually a trunk that was handcrafted by Kate’s step father. They added a pad for the top and placed it under the window, transforming it into a window seat that offers great storage options.
We absolutely love the use of hanging planters to store stuffed animals on the wall!
The cloud shelf and hooks came from Kate’s Etsy Shop, Littles.

Can you believe that Kate and her husband Ben did all of the work themselves? When we asked what they used for inspiration, they said a pallet of pastel colors served as the basis for their color scheme and the whimsical decor was a way to create a fun and playful space without making their nursery too gender specific.


If only we all had the know-how and skills to pull off such an awesome project! While Kate and Ben both admitted that the project was long but worthwhile, they believe that having an organized plan before you begin is a key component to pulling off a successful room makeover. Kate advises deciding what projects you want to tackle and creating a reasonable budget from the start, as it is very easy to spend more than your original budget if you are uncertain about the costs beforehand. Research and planning were the two factors that kept them under their projected budget.

What’s your favorite part of this nursery renovation? What do you have planned for your next DIY project?

–Scott Wardell

all photos courtesy of Kate and Ben