Having a baby is one of the greatest pleasures in life and a time filled with joy and excitement but the work involved when preparing to welcome a new life into the world can sometimes seem overwhelming. One of the most important tasks is setting up the nursery.
Designing a nursery for your baby on the way should be fun and exciting but can also be a daunting experience if you don’t know where to start. Take a moment to read though this article where I’ll show you how to design a baby’s room and help you to create a space where you and your baby can relax and enjoy. After all you both will be spending a lot of time in this room so it’s important to make it as comfortable as possible.
A good nursery begins with a good color palette. It’s a known fact that babies respond to color and it helps to stimulate them from an early age. As a rule of thumb, when considering a wall color stick to pastels (light blues, pinks, greens, lavender, aquamarine, grey, ivory etc) as large swathes of a bold color such as red or orange can be too bright and may agitate your baby. If you want to brighten up your baby’s room feel free to add pops of color with fabrics, furniture and accessories.
Light blue or pink is always classic but for a more gender neutral approach consider decorating with green. Green is soothing, calming and refreshing and has been shown to promote learning in young minds. Subtle yellow is also a color worth considering as it’s cheerful and energetic and is a perfect choice if your nursery lacks a lot of natural light.
Your baby will be spending a lot of time on their back looking up so instead of a boring white ceiling, why not do something more creative such as painting the ceiling a soothing color or installing ceiling decals to further inspire your baby’s creativity.
Choose the right paint
When selecting paint make sure to go for low-VOC or VOC-free paint. Volatile Organic Compounds or VOCs for short are chemical compounds found in many paints that evaporate under normal indoor temperatures and can degrade the air quality in your home. Babies and young children, particularly those with allergies or asthma are most at risk. Choosing a safer paint for your nursery should be a priority.
Think of the crib as an investment and not as a temporary item. Many children sleep in a crib for more than three years, and it can be used again if you have more kids down the track. It’s the showpiece of the nursery and where baby will rest their head for hours on end. Though there are some gorgeous vintage pieces around I suggest you turn a blind eye and purchase new. This is the one place you will be leaving your baby alone for extended periods of time so for peace of mind it’s worth investing in a quality crib. Safety standards are constantly evolving and it’s important to be up to date and ensure your crib meets all current US safety standards.
Choose a style that goes well with your decor and theme and I’d suggest keeping it gender neutral if you plan on having more kids in the future. When it comes to bedding this is where you can incorporate some color and personal style. When purchasing crib fitted sheets make sure they are 100% cotton so as not to irritate baby’s sensitive skin.
Baby will want to sleep during the day so curtains or blinds are a necessity. Make sure whatever window treatment you choose has a black out liner to block out as much light as possible during nap time. Roman blinds are a popular choice as they look clean and are easy to use. Just make sure whichever window treatment you choose, any hanging cords are well away from where baby will be napping.
This may well be the most important part of the nursery. Invest in a good quality nursing chair as you’ll be spending a lot of time sitting here with your baby. Make sure it’s super comfortable and good quality. Consider a chair that rocks or glides as the movement will help to lull you and your baby to sleep. When selecting a fabric, choose something that’s easy to clean yet still soft and comfortable as no doubt there will be some unpleasant spills and messes to deal with. An ottoman is also a good idea as it will give you a place to put your feet up and get into a more comfortable position.
The joys of having a baby also come with the joys of changing dirty diapers. A freestanding changing table is your best bet if space allows otherwise a changing pad that can sit atop a dresser is also an option if your nursery is on the small side. To make the changing experience as pleasant and safe as possible it’s a good idea to have all the essential baby changing items close at hand so you’ll never have to step away from the table to grab an item and leave baby unattended. Make sure you have all changing related essentials such as clean diapers, wipes, lotions, clean clothes etc within reaching distance in a drawer or kept organized in a bin. Hang a mobile or keep some toys nearby so baby has something to play with while you get to work.
We want to avoid overly bright light in the nursery where we can. Install a dimmer so you are able to adjust the brightness of the ceiling lights so they aren’t shining at full capacity all the time. Make use of table and floor lamps to give you good eye level lighting especially near the nursing station. Ensure the changing station is well lit so you can see what you are doing when baby needs a diaper change. A fun hanging pendant in the middle of the room can also do wonders for the room and create interest.
Make sure your baby’s room has ample storage. A dresser with large drawers is great to store bedding, blankets and sheets. Wall shelving near the changing station is practical to keep all necessary baby changing items close at hand yet still out of baby’s reach. A large bin to hold clean diapers is also a good idea so you always have a bunch on hand and can see when you are running low. Make better use of hanging space by using hanging organizers which can hold a variety of different items which keeping them neatly stored and away from sight.
Now for the fun part
This is where you can let your creativity shine. Consider hanging some fun typography on the walls or colorful animal themed artwork. If you have a hard floor then use a large floor rug in the center of the room to create softness underfoot and give a more cozy atmosphere. Framed photos can add a personal touch as well. Wallpaper with cute prints or wall decals can add some fun and interest to the walls and help to liven up what would otherwise be a blank wall.
Don’t get too caught up in creating a ‘baby’ theme in this room or being overly fussy with decor and accessories. Fill it with items that reflect your personal taste and that make you smile. The number one rule when designing a baby’s room is that if it makes you smile, then it’s a perfect place for you and your baby.