Congratulations on your impending arrival! Prepping for everyone’s favourite new person is totally fun. While picking paint and cutesy artwork helps set the tone in the room there are some not-so-obvious pointers you’ll need to consider. Here’s a mix of practical and pretty ideas for your nursery.
Pile on Soft Surfaces (but Not in the Crib)
Babies liqu-poop a lot in the early days. Which means quick diaper changes everywhere. You don’t really need a dedicated change table. You’ll likely plop your precious freshly baked baguette on the floor a lot, so make sure it’s cushy. Layer in a rug or put down a pad that comes with those diaper-changing kits. Pro tip: move the pad to the room you’re in the most, so it’s handy.
Anchor the Furniture
Your newborn is teeny now but that sprout sprouts faster than the Beanstock in that nursery tale about Jack. While you’ve got energy (before those frequent wake-ups sap your spirit), bolt all standalone pieces of furniture to the wall. Most of them come with anchors these days, anyway. The built-ins in this nook are fab!
Darken the Room
Light and bright is fine if you’re assembling a Scandinavian living room for the cocktail set, but this is a nursery, people. It needs controlled lighting or your wee cherub is going to be mightily confused around nap time. Invest in blackout curtains, and layer in stylish drapes over them if you like. This pink canopy cutely adds extra room-darkening coverage.
A Comfortable Glider is Your Best Friend
Whether you’re nursing or bottle-feeding, a glider is your best friend (so is nipple cream, but that’s another topic altogether). Don’t think you can get away with any ole chair. At 4am, when you’re sleep-slumping you’ll want to do into something cushy, like this beauty from the Save My Reno team.
Keep the Crib Free of Stuff
Stuffed animals, crib bumpers and patterned pillows are cute, but don’t be tempted to fill up baby’s bed with them. They pose a suffocation hazard. Your crib should only have a firm, tight-fitting mattress and a crib sheet. That’s it. Save the accessories for when he or she is older.
Opt Out of a Dedicated Change Table
Babies grow quickly – one second they’re in diapers, the next they’re on the potty. So what are you going to do with that change table? Take a page from Toronto-based Collective Studio. The crafty design duo turned an elegant dresser into a diaper-changing station using a simple white box that holds all the essentials (diapers, wipes, ointment and a Keekaroo change pad).
Paint the Room a Soothing Hue (and Other Paint Pointers)
It’s tempting to go hog wild in the nursery – neon pink, anyone? But Benjamin Moore Colour and Design Expert, Sharon Grech, says neutral is best. “It can be the perfect backdrop to other items in the nursery that have colour, including clothing, mobiles, curtains, toys and artwork,” she says. And give some love to the ceiling. “Babies spend a lot of time on their backs so a touch of colour there is pleasant.” Shown here is Benjamin Moore’s Natura Bunny Gray 2124-50. It has zero VOC, zero emissions and is certified asthma and allergy friendly, so baby can sleep in the room right after painting. On second thought, sleep? What’s that?
Encourage an Interest in Books
Babies are copycats. If they see you reading, they’ll do the same. Surround them with books at a height they can reach when they start crawling and grabbing.
Put Together Multiple Diaper-Changing Stations
Invest in a Baby Monitor
Surveillance for your new bub? Yes! A baby monitor is useful if you’re the nervous type (hello, all new parents). You’ll have to shop around (and ask around) for one that suits you. Video monitors are great, as opposed to just the ones that emit sound, because you can see that all is well in the crib. Video monitors are especially useful when baby gets older and starts attempting the Herculean crib climb. One that shows the temperature is also nice, as an overheated room is dangerous to baby.