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Welcome to the Nature Baby Journal, a thoughtfully curated world of information for parents and parents to be. Inspiration, products and ideas that will nurture you, your baby and the environment.

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motherhood: erena te paa

The lovely Erena Te Paa, interiors expert and mama of two shares with us her life as a mum and some of her top tips for creating a dreamy (and practical) sleep space for little ones.

I am a stylist by trade and mother to two young boys Costa, 2.5yrs and Sol, 4 mo...

For the most part parenting has taken centre stage but when time allows I like to style campaigns for clients or renovate our home which is a big project in itself. 

Home for us is Hamilton. I met my husband Joe here while we were both at University and though I worked for a time in Auckland, love would always bring me back! We also bought our dream house here two years ago and honestly I couldn't imagine being anywhere else.

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Some essentials for little one's sleep space...

A comfortable bed to entice great sleep, a sideboard or drawers that can double as storage, a mobile or artwork for playful personality and a handful of comforting keepsakes or play things i.e books, toys, puzzles, even quilts - it all helps tell a story about the child which is key but also everything in the space is useful.

Prior to my first baby I thought I needed 'all the things' only to find that I actually only used a certain few. So I would say start small, choose quality (quality can be new or secondhand) and invest in pieces that can grow with your baby like a cot that can become a bed, a change station that can become a sideboard and quality clothing that looks good after several washes.

Choosing well-made furniture ensures longevity and it doesn't have to be eye-wateringly expensive. I often use secondhand pieces like drawers or chairs as they are easy to restyle with new upholstery or paint as your child gets older. I also like to mix in the odd contemporary/ grown-up piece of furniture into a childs room; things like table lamps, a statement chair or feature light create interest but also give the space flexibility.

My favouirte room in my home is our outhouse...

We have just finished renovating our it which we plan to rent out. It has been completely modernised so everything in it has that brand new feeling and I won't lie, I am very partial to sneaking out for cheeky cups of tea (and zen time) in there! 

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It starts with knowing what the key features of your home are...

and which of your favourite colours compliment those features. Pinterest is great for this. Our home has a lot of wood panelling and so it was only natural to want to offset all that wood with my favourite earthy tones and tranquil neutrals. 

I've had a lot of success with Trade Me and Etsy for finding unique secondhand pieces but I also love local shops and makers, like Needle in the Hay shop, Blackbird Goods, Walk in the Park, The Flower Crate, Mark Antonia, George Sand and Oepan Ceramics.  

A day in the life

I LIVE…in a quirky mid century home outnumbered by boys!

I AM CURRENTLY READING…Chasing Slow by Erin Loechner

I OFTEN FIND MYSELF COOKING…Lasagne or Banana cake

I’M LISTENING TO…The shortchange by Thomston

I CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT… my family (of course) plus good music and brow powder!

Thanks so much for sharing your beautiful family and home with us Erena xx Nb