Lucy Liu's Playroom Got a Makeover, and It's Absolutely Adorable

Award-winning actress and director Lucy Liu has played many roles in her life — one of our favorites is the one from that epic Birkin battle with Samantha in Sex and the City — but these days, she has a new and adorable focus: her son Rockwell. The almost-2-year-old has entered into toddlerhood, and Lucy felt it was time to makeover his playroom space to better suit his new phase of life. With the help of One Kings Lane lead designer Nicole Fisher, Lucy was able to bring her stunning vision to life, creating a space that is perfect for Rockwell while still remaining sophisticated and adult-friendly. Read on as we chat with both Lucy and Nicole about their inspiration behind the stunning finished product and learn how you too can achieve a similar look.

Joe Schmelzer

When Lucy and Nicole first sat down to talk about their goals for Rockwell's play space, they both agreed that it needed to be toddler-inspired but still a welcoming, comfortable area for adults. Nicole says, "Lucy was eager to create an oasis for her family where her son can explore, be inspired, and be creative. Since it was one of the main living spaces in her apartment, I wanted to keep the sophistication element that is present throughout the rest of her home while still making it kid-friendly."

Lucy also adds, "I had very little furniture in there and it was very sparse, so I wanted to have a cohesive plan where there could be play space and it was safe. It was also important that it be presentable for adults as well as kids . . . that was our idea because I had never really quite furnished it; it was just piecemealed together."

Joe Schmelzer via One Kings Lane

When it came to the inspirational themes, Nicole says it was all about "creativity, comfort, and practicality." She continues, "While it had to be functional for Rockwell and his interests, it had to be comfortable with soft corners throughout and it had to be practical for Lucy and other moms that come over for a playdate. Thus, this sophisticated playroom was born!"

Nicole mentions that the use of various surface spaces "for art, magnets, and paint" was key in developing a functional room. "The room has so many surfaces for him and his friends to explore, sit, read, and of course, be creative. I even incorporated a showcase spot for him to take him creations and hang them up for display, easily swapped in and out as he creates new things."

Joe Schmelzer

After taking a closer look, we also noticed the many lovely details that Nicole and Lucy incorporated into this airy play space. For starters, Nicole explains that she definitely wanted to select a higher-performing fabric for the seating, deciding on Crypton fabric for "its high performance against stains, spills, and odors."

In addition to a muted color palette, Lucy also wanted the decorative accents to reflect plenty of texture with a global touch. For that reason, Nicole hung special items on the walls, like a framed pair of beloved Dr. Seuss books and beautiful wooden tribal masks Lucy already owned. Lucy explains, "I wanted to make it look more multicultural so they put baskets on the wall and over the fireplace. There's something about that added texture and the weave that brought the different elements of what New York City is to me."

Joe Schmelzer

If you are currently in the process yourself of creating a playable space for your toddler, Nicole advises you "invest in pieces your kids can grow with! The vintage rugs and Crypton chairs are pieces Rockwell will enjoy for years to come because of their ability to be cleaned and their functionality."

And as far as designing a space that your little one loves just as much as you do, Nicole recommends you "think outside the typical primary colors. Think about a space you, as an adult, would want to hang out in, and grow it from there. There's nothing wrong with incorporating a place you can enjoy yourself while the kids play!"

Joe Schmelzer Courtesy of One Kings Lane

As for Rockwell's favorite space, Lucy says, "He's obsessed with the tent they put in! They also put the toys and books so you can see them, so it's accessible and beautiful all at the same time. He can pull out what he wants without making a mess."

Speaking of keeping a play space tidy, Lucy adds that she thinks that "one of the keys to parenting is organization, not just with your time, but also the elements within your space. . . . They were really able to discover that and draw that out in a very artistic fashion."

Joe Schmelzer via One Kings Lane

Lucy says she loved the experience of working with a One Kings Lane designer. She explains, "Having a designer allows you to express the goal and the fragmented uses and then have them pull together a more cohesive idea of how you move in the space and live in the space. Without [Nicole], I wouldn't have been able to really visualize it myself."

Nicole adds, "The best part about working with Lucy and Rockwell was their excitement for the project! She is so lovely and was enthusiastic about making it a beautiful space for her and her family."