Sarah Linden of Highland Village typically can be found behind the camera, shooting photographs of elegant home designs. Recently, she put her own design talents to work when she created a lovely space for one of the most important new people in her life – her baby daughter Rachael.
Sarah and her husband, Benjamin, have two children, Bennett, 5, and Rachael, 9 months. This is the second time Sarah has designed a nursery space, but she admits, “Rachael’s feminine space was more fun!”
“I loved the process of putting together Rachael’s room. I think it’s the thrill of the hunt! I love bouncing around from Home Goods, Facebook marketplace and the larger retailers to find all the coordinating pieces,” she says, adding that eclectic items make the room feel more curated. “I find spaces look more tailored to the person who lives in them when items are collected from a variety of stores and from a variety of decades. That’s the definition of unique.”
Through her business, Sarah Linden Photography, Sarah photographs spaces for local interior designers. Her affinity for photography was inspired by her mother.
“My love for photography first began when my mom, as a newish single parent, went back to college and took a black-and-white film photography class. I vividly remember helping compose images and seeing the final product several days after she developed the film in the same dark room,” Sarah says. “A few years later, I took that same class with the same professor and developed film in the same dark room. I became obsessed with the process, feeling accomplished as both an artist and pseudo-scientist, snapping photos in my spare time and mixing chemicals in the dark room to see if I actually captured images worth framing.”
Now Sarah’s frame-worthy images appear in marketing material and magazines.
“My newfound niche perfectly blends two passions of mine: interior design and photography,” she says.
Sarah enjoyed blending that artistic talent and eye for design when conceptualized and created her daughter’s nursery.
With both of her children’s nurseries, Sarah began with an inspiration piece. “In the case of Rachael’s room, I began with the stunning wallpaper and let the other elements complement its whimsical pattern … I swapped out my ceiling fans for ones with brass, and I also found a pair of vintage brass swans I’m using as bookends. The table lamp is the other unique piece with its white and gold flower-filled base. It’s not normally a style I’m drawn to, but in Rachael’s nursery it fits so well with the feminine, whimsical feel,” Sarah says.
Perhaps most importantly, Sarah sought to create a comfortable space.
“I like my nurseries to be calming spaces. And not just for the babies. I know I’ll be spending a lot of time in them myself, and I prefer décor that’s soothing to the senses,” Sarah says.
“As much as I want a lovely looking room, there’s no way I’d add something that took away from a comforting space,” she says. “For example, the big, white chair. I know it’s extra-large, but as the primary person using it, especially on those all-nighters with the baby, I can’t imagine replacing it with anything smaller or more compact. I used this same chair in my firstborn’s nursery, so there’s a lot of nostalgia there too.”
Sarah also repurposed her son’s crib. “Seeing how gender neutral they are, and how fast babies grow out of the nursery furniture, it felt right using these pieces again. In fact, the only new piece I purchased is the cane dresser. I intentionally went with a lighter wood tone since all other furniture pieces in the room are white.”
Sarah says it was important for her to invest in pieces that are functional, beautiful and will work in the space for years to come. Her thoughtful design choices have resulted in a dreamy, perfect space for her daughter to enjoy as she grows.
“The nursery makes me feel inspired, really. And imaginative,” Sarah says. “I hope Rachael feels this way too when she gazes at the birds and butterflies on her wallpaper. I envision the next stage of this room with a white Jenny Lind bed and canopy draped against the wallpaper for an extra dose of whimsy. I would have died to have a room like this as a kid!”
To see more of Sarah’s photography, visit sarahlindenphotography.com.