Better for baby: How Meghan Markle is inspiring our nursery paint choices

Markle's dedication to cruelty-free interiors is informed by her lifelong love for animals. It was recently announced that the duchess will act as patron of the British animal welfare organization Mayhew. AP Photo.

Even if you aren’t royally obsessed, it’s still likely that you have been bombarded with the speculations surrounding Prince Harry, Meghan Markle and their upcoming arrival. From gender to due date, little is known for sure about the royal addition who is expected to arrive in early spring. However, what we do know is that Markle has been decorating her soon-to-be home, Frogmore Cottage, with health conscious and environmentally friendly materials.

Notably, Markle has opted for a vegan paint from the British company Organic & Natural Paint Co. in a soft palette to cover the walls of the gender-neutral nursery. Rumored to be infused with eucalyptus and rosemary, the wall paint also boasts a “natural” tag, which assures the covering is cruelty-free and safe for children, avoiding the harmful VOCs, or volatile organic compounds, that are released with some paint brands.

“Volatile organic compounds are emitted as gases from certain solids or liquids,” explains the United States Environmental Protection Agency on its website here. “VOCs include a variety of chemicals, some of which may have short and long-term adverse health effects.”

And while Markle’s paint of choice might be difficult to locate in the United States, we reached out to local interior designer Carrie Griffin of Carrie Griffin Design to learn how we can implement Markle’s thoughtful design choices using local sources.

“I think it’s good to be aware of what we are using in our homes, whether it’s paint or cleaning products,” explains Griffin. “Tommy Gibson, the manager of Harrison Paint, says that even their contractor grades have very low VOCs. However, Benjamin Moore’sĀ interior paints are free of VOCs and the brand also offers an organic line of paint called Natura that is specifically for children’s rooms. They call it green without compromise.”

The line of organic paints came in handy recently, as Griffin helped her design assistant Natalie Walker pull together a nursery for her newborn son Kit. In addition to utilizing kid-safe materials, Griffin says a huge part of the design hinged on a neutral background with bright touches added in a way that could be easily changed as Kit grows up.

Neutral walls provided a blank canvas for Kit Walker’s bug-themed nursery. A special touch is the beetle paintings above the crib, which were painted by Natalie’s father. Photo courtesy Carrie Griffin.

“You don’t always have to paint a nursery a color,” says Griffin. “You can go with a neutral you love and add color with the furniture, art and accessories. The space will grow with the child and you won’t have to repaint every time they want to make a change.”

Markle is likely adopting the same policy when it comes to her nursery. And thanks to the duchess’ status as one of the world’s biggest trendsetters, versatile and healthy elements are the new statement makers.

To learn more about Griffin and her design expertise, check out her website here. Or, check out some of her past tips here and here.

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