As a kid, I was a big reader. I fell in love with books and in love with the inspiration and imagination they opened me up to. Some of my favourite authors we’re Dr Seuss, Enid Blyton and Roald Dahl. But my all time favourite, whose books I read over and over again was May Gibbs. I think it was the combination of the storylines in her books, along with the fact that I lived in the country, so the bush theme throughout her stories resignated with me. I remember wondering if there were really gum nut babies and Banksia men living in the bushland behind our home and would often keep an eye out for them during walks. Fast forward to almost 20 years later and I’m rummaging through a local op shop and come across a copy of a May Gibbs book (see right). It instantly brought back such happy memories for me. As soon as I got back home, I started researching May Gibbs and gum nut baby themed home decor. Now, as much as I would have loved to give my own bedroom a bushland makeover, I’m not sure that my husband would be on board. Or that it’s OK for a 33 year old mother of two to have her bedroom decorated in a May Gibbs theme… So naturally, the next best thing to do was to push the idea on to my 1 year old daughter who has can’t tell me no yet. And so Harper’s May Gibbs Room makeover began.
It’s funny how some times in life, things are meant to be. I was meant to find that book that day. Because soon after when I contacted the lovely people at May Gibbs, they informed me that October 2018 was the 100th anniversary of May Gibbs releasing Snuggle Pot & Cuddle Pie. What are the chances! So this opened the door to an array of home items which were coming out as a part of a collaborative range between May Gibbs and some well known Australian home decor and clothing stockists. So fortunately for me, I was gifted some absolutely amazing stunning for Miss Harper and her room, as well as finding some items perfect for the room from some large and small retailers. Below are some image’s of how the room came together, as well as a product list of all the items I’ve used. I am so happy with how the room came together and feel that it is a special place that suits the natural look of our home while paying homage to one of my favourite authors and both of our love of the Australian landscape.
I wanted to create a real feature dedicated to May Gibbs on one of the walls in the room and so decided to add in a gallery wall. I enlisted the help of Perth business Vertical Print to print an original May Gibbs image directly on to the wall. This process was amazing to watch and I am beyond happy with the final piece. Something unique and very special to treasure for years to come. I also used various pieces from Spineless Classics, Head in the Cloud Gifts, Minky Dinks and No Longer Lost, as well as images I collected from books and ones I already had in my possession that fit the theme.
When it came to the colour scheme of the room, I drew inspiration from gum leaves. As they age, their colour goes from a vibrant green to tones of earthy yellows and pinks. So I purchased a quilt cover set and throw blanket from Adairs which brought in these tones, as well as a pink floor rug from IKEA. To bring in the green element to the bed, a gorgeous custom made pillow slip from small business Princess Panda Pants and plenty of artificial greenery. The amazing cane bed head was a find from a Facebook buy and sell page which I picked up for just $25. I’m so happy to have found it as its a real feature in the room.
- Bedside table Kmart.
- Perspex shelves Vivid Styling.
- Wooden dining chair op shop.
- Timber tree Happee Trees.
- Australia earrings Winter Meadow
- Gum nut babies print Boho Art Styling
- Artificial gum leaves Adairs.
- Gum leaf garland EBay.
- H print Hustle Living.
- Jute floor rug Kmart.
- Curtains BigW
When I found out that Walnut Melboure were releasing a kids clothing and shoe range in collaboration with May Gibbs, then first thing I asked of course was if they made it in adult sizing? Really, I am that obsessed with Snugglepot & Cuddlepie 🙊 Their range is simply stunning and the quality is amazing! It includes onsies, shirt and pants, baby blankets, bibs and shoes. My little gum nut certainly looks adorable in her storytime onsie and shoes. To view the rest of the range, head here.
May Gibbs have also collaborated with two fantastic Australian home decor brands to bring out a range of children and home items to celebrate the anniversay. Make Me Iconic, who have released a wooden puzzle range and Ecology, who have brought out a range which includes mug and coaster sets, placemats and coasters, gardening tools, aprons, hunting, toiletry bags and more. May Gibbs have also released a range of toddler and children’s books inspired by the Bush baby friends as well as a 100th Anniversay edition of the complete adventures or Snuggle pot & Cuddlepie. Head here to view the entire book range.
A big thank you to everyone who was involved in this makeover. Especially Rosalie at May Gibbs. None of this would have happened without her help and guidance and also for arranging some of the beautiful pieces in the room. You have not only made a little girl very happy, but her Snugglepot & Cuddlepie loving mum as well 🍃💚
Zoe Gilpin – The DIY Decorator