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“Of course right away, I thought, where is this little kid going to live?” designer Leanne Ford recalls of the moment she learned her brother and fellow Restored by the Fords costar, Steve Ford, and his wife, Andrea, were expecting his first child. Back in 2019, Steve had turned a 7,000-square-foot warehouse in downtown Pittsburgh into a home for himself…then eventually a home for himself and Andrea. But to add a third person into the mix, even one as tiny as a newborn, would require some strategic planning if they wanted to stay put. “It’s cute to see how the home has evolved. There used to be motorcycles in the living room—now there’s baby stuff,” Leanne adds with a laugh.

The nursery area, before. Photography by Reid Rolls
The nursery, in progress.
The new nursery room.

The dining room–slash–dance floor area by the old garage door proved to be the perfect spot to set up a nursery. Steve constructed a small, 300-square-foot room with double doors and a curved wall and then tasked his sister with decorating the windowless space. “It was amazing timing because baby Jack was born right after I had put out my line for Crate & Kids,” notes Leanne. She leaned into whitewashed woods and black accents not just because it’s her signature move, but because the industrial setting called for it. “What we really appreciate is that the nursery looks like a natural extension of our home, and that was important to us,” shares Steve. 

No Windows? No Problem

Right now, the nursery’s lack of natural light is actually a perk when the 1-month-old needs to sleep. Still, in an effort to not have it feel like a dungeon, Leanne aimed to soften things, so she hung extra-long linen curtains from Etsy by slinky wires in front of the old garage door. Layering rugs also introduced a sense of warmth to the concrete floors. “Yes, the space has 12-foot ceilings, but the cool furniture; playful art; and texture of the walls, floor, and lighting all make it one warm and cozy space that the entire family enjoys,” Andrea points out. 

Break the Furniture Layout Rule Book

It’s common nursery protocol to push all the furniture flush against the walls, but Leanne begs to differ. By placing Jack’s Canyon Spindle Crib closer to the center of the space and pulling the bouclé rocker inward, it gives the room a sense of flow (plus Mom and Dad can easily get to him from any direction). She kept the causal vibe going by leaning the artwork on the dresser—something they’ll have to change once Jack is able to crawl around—and pinning up repurposed drop-cloth art from The Salt Air Farmhouse. “It adds a great touch of whimsy,” says Andrea. 

Bring the Party to Them

Second to their passion for renovating, Leanne and Steve share a love of disco balls (the designer even dubbed the disco ball holiday ornament in her last Crate & Barrel collection “Stevey”). “It must be a genetic thing,” she jokes. Now they’re passing that groovy sensibility onto Jack by displaying an enormous vintage one over the center of his nursery. Bonus: The sparkling focal point helps reflect the light coming from the five sputnik-like flush-mount lights. Naturally, Dad was the one to mount the fixtures with the help of his Hart Power and Hand Tools. “Steve hung everything,” says Leanne. “He’s definitely a do-it dad.” 

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