May/June Issue of D Home: From India with Love

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From India with Love
When a Dallas couple finally got a chance at parenthood, they created a vibrant and beautiful space for their bundle of joy.

By Margaux Anbouba

When it came to choosing a name for their future child, Tim Davis and Nathan Hejl were at a loss when it came to girl names. If blessed with a boy, however, they had the perfect one picked out: Asher, "happy" or "blessing" in Hindi. Selecting the right Hindi name was important to the couple because they would soon travel 8,170 miles to New Delhi, India, to meet their surrogate and start their family.

Turns out, they never needed a girl's name option. After a month of soaking up the Indian culture overseas, they returned to Dallas with their little boy. To make sure he felt at home, Asher was given a vibrant nursery adorned with mementos from India. "Elephants with the trunk up are considered good luck in India," Tim says. "We tried to find as many lucky symbols as we could, to bring us luck on this journey."

Nathan, a senior designer at EJ Interiors, transformed their guest bedroom into Asher's room. But Tim, a neo-natal practitioner at Parkland Hospital, was also an active participant. The mesh of modern furniture and bright colors was an homage to both Indian culture and their excitement for this new step in their life. "Everything that was put in the nursery has a special thought process behind it," Nathan says. "Nothing was chosen just because we liked it."

The fabrics—printed with elephants and the traditional Indian print Ikat, which represents tying or binding together—brought luck, color, and culture into the designs. The Babyletto crib is topped by a handmade mobile created out of elephant ornaments. Above the custom daybed that Nathan's father built is a framed print of an elephant dressed in cowboy boots, representing Asher's two cultures. "Becoming fathers was part of our life-long dream," Tim says. "To have my own child is really something. I wasn't sure it was ever going to happen. He really is our blessing."