There is so much to think about when a baby is on the way, including putting together a nursery that welcomes, comforts, and supports a new life and the newest part of your family.
Here are a few suggestions and tips that may help you along the way....
▪ Strive for serenity and simplicity. Keep it simple and easy. Go neutral, muted, or subdued for colors, floor coverings, and furniture. Going neutral creates an easy backdrop to accommodate gender, personalities, interests, changes as your child grows, and eventual repurposing.
Think about task and ambient lighting. Add a dimmer switch (yeah, saves $$, but mostly helps when you are creating a time-for-bed ritual or when you are dealing with an immediate need, like teething or a cold and a bright overhead light just might make things worse).
▪ Add pops of color, character, and depth. How do you add color to a neutral background? Textiles, bedding, window treatments, art, easy-remove wall decals, accents, lighting, and accessories. Soft tones (greys and muted tones over brights) are easiest on infant eyes. Consider using with tones of the same color.
▪ Consider gender-neutral. Neutral nursery decor is a savings savvy way for creative reuse, especially if there may be brothers and sisters in the future.
▪ Keep adaptability in mind. Look for multifunctional and multi-purpose in nursery basics (including convertible furniture and furniture that can be used later in other places around the house). Designer David Netto advises, "Look for things you'll never have to throw away."
▪ Keep it moving. Make sure the furniture and support accessories in the nursery are easy to move so you can reconfigure with ease as your child's needs change like casters, convertible furniture, and removable picture hangers and hooks.
▪ Make touches to the room that are kid-friendly. An environment that encourages! Scale furniture and accents to the height of a child's point-of-view (and reach) - like easy to open drawers or cubbies.
An awareness of the invisible aspects of the nursery during planning is vital. Opt for zero VOC (volatile organic compounds) paints and keep emissions in mind (something as benign as a changing pad might give off invisible unhealthy fumes).
▪ Avoid theme decor. Don't exhaust yourself with the details of a theme - you have too much to worry about right now. You know what you love, but you don't know yet what your child will love. And, you have more latitude in decor with that neutral background (see Keep it serene and simple above!).
▪ Inspire imagination. No reason a nursery can't be sort of a giant "busy box." Use accents and accessories to spark creativity and play ~ stars on the ceiling, textures around the room, a lighted globe, patterns and designs on the area rug.
▪ Be budget savvy. Invest in a couple major pieces that will adapt to your child's growth and then go budget light on the rest of the nursery - because things will change, often and quickly.
Inspiration is all around.
You can keep it simple ~ create art via your laptop, printing off over-sized letters and numbers in different fonts and matting and framing them, or frame favorite children's book covers or greeting cards or wrapping paper.
Think about washable and durable.
▪ Make it a room that you love. A nursery is for you and your baby. Think about how you use the room, too. "Buy what you love," Melissa Pfeiffer of Modernseed suggests. "The nursery should reflect your lifestyle and your home. So make a statement and have fun."
You will be spending time in the nursery depending on your baby's needs, sometimes overnight, consider your comfort, including a daybed, sofa, sofa bed, or recliner. Or go the traditional seating route with a rocker or glider or comfy stationary chair.
Amish Originals Furniture Co. features the iGlyde chair - with two back height options. The chair is stylish and oh, so comfortable. Hidden storage in the arms is a great place to stash within-reach baby needs.
For more info....
HGTV Nursery Decorating Ideas.
HGTV's Ideas for a Modern Nursery.
From our blog, Decorating from a Kid's POV.
Nursery advice from Rosie Pope.
Resource: Project Nursery.
Amish Originals April 2012 eNews: Safe Keeping.