How to Design a Dreamy Nursery
One of the best parts of prepping for Baby is designing that special place that she can call her own – the nursery. With all the time you’ll be spending in there together, you want it to be warm, inviting and fun. These tips will get you going in the right direction.
Choose a Color Scheme
Gone are the days when parents felt they had to choose between baby blue, light pink or yellow to color the nursery walls. Get creative with your shades and develop a fun combo of your own. If you love a bright hue but are afraid it might be too much for the entire room, consider painting just one accent wall, or use it in stripes or a simple border for a little pop.
Don't Bite Off More Than You Can Chew
We all have our strengths and our weaknesses, and if you’re not tremendously artsy, don’t attempt any complicated paint techniques or artwork. Creating the nursery should be fun, so don’t add any unnecessary stress. Your baby will never know the difference if she’s living in a room with four solidly-colored walls or those decked out in one-of-a-kind murals. You can spice up the room in a variety of other ways that don’t involve unleashing your inner Da Vinci.
Go Neutral Now, Add Splash Later
When you’re waiting to find out the sex of the baby deciding on a color scheme based on gender is obviously out of the question. Choose paint hues and bedding that are neutral like greens, yellows and creams, then add bold splashes of color later when you know whether the little person who will be taking up residency in the room is a he or a she. Pinks look fantastic with any of the aforementioned shades, as do various blues, so you can add on accents with curtains, rugs and other adornments later.
Take Stock of Your Space
If you’re working with a smaller room, don’t go crazy with lots of furniture. The three key pieces for any baby room are a crib, a dresser with a changing table topper and some sort of rocker or comfy chair where you can lull your infant to sleep. Any dresser can multi-task by attaching a changing pad securely to the top of it. If there is room for a set of shelves to house your child’s books and toys – fantastic! If not, invest in bins and containers that you can stack in the closet to help keep things organized.
Use Short Cuts
Remember how we advised you not to attempt any masterful painting techniques earlier? Well, that doesn’t mean you can’t cheat to add some fun and unique-looking décor to the nursery. Wall decals and borders provide endless options for creating a personalized look to your child’s room. Everything from monograms to animal silhouettes to choo choo trains are currently available to add a fabulous flourish to Baby’s private sanctuary. Have fun with these easy-to-apply decorations to achieve a custom-made look.
Keep a Balance
Keep your budget in tact by perhaps investing in one expensive piece of furniture and filling the rest out with more affordable items. If you just have to have that intricate crib, consider refinishing an old dresser you already own to match it. It’s easy to get carried away when you want the best for your baby, but the best doesn’t necessarily mean spending oodles of cash.
Give Baby a History Lesson
Search flea markets and garage sales for antique furniture and vintage artwork that looks like it holds a special history to it. One great find can spark an idea for the entire theme of your nursery. Vintage cartoon posters, animation cells or even old advertisements can be framed to create a uniform look. One piece of furniture that you should avoid buying used, however, is the crib. Older models may not be up to today’s JPMA standards or may have been recalled, so buying new is the way to go.
Soften Up the Space
Make the room more baby-friendly by adding soft touches – literally. If your home has hardwood floors, consider investing in an area rug where your little cutie can lay, roll around or play in comfort. Floor pillows can provide a space for you to sit while you spend bonding time with Baby. Also, beware of sharp edges on furniture. It may be many, many months before your child starts crawling and a year before she starts walking, but purchase protective corners to keep furniture edges cushioned.
Decorate with Friendly Faces
Remind Baby of how many people love him by adding framed family photos to the nursery. It will keep faraway relatives fresh in your little one’s mind each day. Create a collage of baby photos of you, your partner, aunts, uncles and grandparents. Little ones love to look at other babies so this could become a favorite item in the future.
Create a Non-Toxic Environment
Whether you make attempts each day to lead a green lifestyle or not, you certainly don’t want your child living in a room filled with toxic fumes. Look for water-based, low-VOC paints and be sure to paint the walls at least a month before your due date so that you have time to properly ventilate the room before Baby comes home. It’s also a good idea to assemble the crib and remove the mattress from its wrapping well in advance so that its fumes have time to air out as well.