As you’ve probably figured out, preparing for a baby to come into your life takes a lot of work and can be kind of stressful. But don’t worry, with a little bit of research on your end, you can create and design an awesome nursery. My hope in creating this post for you is to give you a step by step guide to get you started and keep you on the right track through the whole process. Let’s hop in.
Getting InspiredBefore you buy anything to start to lay out the room, the very first thing you need to do is get some inspiration by real designers. Lucky for you, pinterest is a great place to start. There are countless boards that will show you broad concepts like colors, styles and themes. I suggest that you create your own boards so you can pin what you like and come back to it as you start to move into the next steps.x
Narrowing Your OptionsNow that you have Pinned your heart away, the next steps are to start to narrow your options. Take time to review all of your boards and pins and try to settle on a specific decorating style or theme. This will help you define everything from paint colors and decorations to your different furniture options.
Deciding On a Basic Color Scheme
Now that you have narrowed your options, the next step is to select a basic color scheme. In addition to scouring Pinterest and the boards you have created, you’ll want to do your research around the latest color trends. One thing to keep in mind is that whatever you do, don’t buy your paint yet. This is likely the last thing you’re going to purchase.
Buying The BasicsAfter deciding on the color scheme of the baby nursery, you’re ready to start hitting the baby boutiques and big-box retailers. The very first thing you’ll want to buy is the crib, dresser/changing table, and rocking chair. The reason you want to buy this first is that it will allow you to better visualize the nursery.
Once you know where these large pieces are going, you’ll have a better idea of how much space you have to work with and what else is needed like lamps, storage cubbies, large wall decorations, etc. Let’s dive into the key pieces.
Buying your baby’s crib is obviously the most important part of pulling together the nursery. The crib should be the item that you invest the most into and I’ll tell you why: If this is your first baby, you will want a crib that will last through 2-3 children and if you do it right, it should.
I think it’s also important to note that some cribs will convert to toddler beds and some will even convert into full-size beds. If you are wanting to buy a new crib with each baby, going this direction might be the best bet for you.
Before buying the crib, make sure that the crib meets all of the US safety standards. This means it’s always best to buy new instead of from a yard sale or aftermarket shop. It’s important to note that over the last few years, safety standards have evolved a lot and since this is the one place where you will leave your baby all alone, it’s absolutely worth the peace of mind to buy one that is safe.
The Crib Bedding
Along with purchasing the crib, you’ll want to pick up some bedding to go along with it. Keep in mind that baby bedding will really make the crib be the showpiece of the entire nursery. Since cribs are typically gender-neutral, this is a great opportunity to have fun and pull in your own style. It’s also a great place for you to incorporate a theme or colors that you chose for your Pinterest boards and mood board.
One thing to keep in mind when purchasing bedding is to make sure you have plenty of fitted sheets. The minimum you should have is three, some opt for more like 5-6. I promise that you will be amazed at how many sheets you go through with your baby spitting up or blowing out a diaper.
When choosing your bedding, you’ll want to make sure that the sheets are soft to the touch. Many sheet sets are 100% cotton and some parents even opt for something a little nicer/softer like bamboo. Just remember that you want your baby to be as comfortable as possible, so make sure to invest in some nice sheets.
The Dresser/Changing Table
Next, let’s talk about the changing table. As you well know, when a baby comes into the picture, so do lots of dirty diapers. The best way to make sure the changing experience is seamless is to make sure that you have a changing table with all of the essentials close by.
So here’s the deal, lots first-time parents think they should just purchase a changing table, however, if you think back to how you are going to use your baby’s crib, you might want to opt for a matching dresser and plan on putting a changing pad on top of it. This way your baby will have a great place to put their clothes and have something that they can use as they grow and their crib converts into a full-size bed.
If you have the room and really want a changing table in addition to a dresser, you can buy a freestanding table that can be repurposed into something else down the road.
Along with having multiple sets of sheets for the crib, you’ll want to make sure you have multiple changing pad covers. Plan on your baby having accidents at least once per day while in the middle of a change and you’ll want to make sure you have plenty of backups on hand.
The Nursery Chair
The last major piece of furniture you’ll need to buy for the nursery is a chair. This is another item that you’ll probably not want to skimp on since you’ll be spending countless hours in it rocking, feeding, reading and cuddling with your baby.
Most parents will purchase either a rocking chair or a glider. Both will give you the type of movement to comfort and put baby to sleep. When looking at fabrics, choose one that will hold up to a lot of use and one that will clean up easily. Microfiber is typically a top choice for rockers. You’ll also want to consider purchasing a rocker that has armrests.
As you’ll quickly learn, having a new baby means having lots and lots of stuff to help take care of him/her. It’s funny how even the tiniest people need the most stuff. Think about all of the toys, books, diapers, clothes, blankets, burp cloths, etc. It all needs to have a place to go.
Many new moms think that open bin storage is a great option to get started. It’s easy to toss all the clutter on the floor of the nursery into them and they can be easily slid into the closet.
You might also consider wall shelves near your changing station for the supplies that you need when changing diapers. You can also throw things like thermometers, clippers, etc. on to them.
Lastly, hanging closet storage is another great option for new babies. Most kids don’t need hangers until they are 2-3 years old, so you can take up that rod space with hanging storage to keep all of their gear organized.
Just remember that with a new baby, you can never, ever, ever have enough storage.
The Other Essentials
For the sake of not making this post too long to read, there are a few other essentials that you’ll need to pull the rest of the room together:
- Night light or lamp with “night light bulbs”
- Wall art/tapestries
To wrap things up, it’s important to remember not to get too stressed about getting the nursery ready. Keep it simple, take your time and make it a cozy place where you can enjoy spending time with your little one. Good luck!