by Roelf Nel

Congratulations, you are having a baby! The arrival of a tiny new family member is the perfect excuse to redo or convert a room into a nursery. Not certain where to start? Simply take a moment to arm yourself with these handy nursery dos and don’ts, and you’ll be ready to hit the shops in no time at all. Remember trust your instincts and enjoy the process!
Nursery Do’s:

  1. Know your space. Make sure to measure your room before you start shopping. It is painful to fall in love with a crib, rug or changing station that simply won’t fit. A great measuring trick is to lay out newspaper in the space where you want your furniture to go, helps to get a good feel for depth. Make sure to bring your measurements with you to the store so the salesperson/designer can help you achieve the proper room layout. Even a quick sketch of the room will prove to be most beneficial.
  2. Identify a focal point. Most nurseries generally centre round the crib, but there are other options too. Ideally look for two to three key focal points, such as a special signature piece, a large window or antique cabinet. The majority of your accessories should be concentrated in these areas, drawing the eye and making the theme clear.
  3. Choose textiles before paint. This is an important step that mustn’t be overlooked. There is nothing worse than finding just the right set of curtains or the perfect pictures, only to discover the colour scheme clashes with the paint job on the walls. It’s definitely easier to choose your textiles first and then buy paint to match, not to mention a huge cost saver too.
  4. Use a low-odour, lead-free, interior paint to prevent exposing your newborn baby to dangerous fumes and toxins.
  5. Install a ceiling fan. Ceiling fans both cool and circulate the air. They not only protect your baby from overheating – a known risk factor associated with SIDS – but also improve air quality by whisking away potentially dangerous pockets of carbon dioxide that might otherwise restrict baby’s oxygen intake.
  6. Decorate the ceiling. Babies spend much of their time on their backs. Why not give your little one some stimulating distractions! Consider painting the ceiling a soothing colour or enhancing your nursery’s theme with a decorative mural or interesting decals. Let your imagination run wild here.
  7. Leave room to grow. When choosing your nursery furnishings, definitely have long term in mind. Save yourself a great deal of time and money by designing a room that can grow with your child. Avoid themed wallpaper, as it is easily outgrown and difficult to remove. Instead, opt for easily removed decorative decals or wallpaper designs featuring simple textures or patterns. Thinking ahead will ensure you get the most out of your space.
  8.  Install blackout curtains or heavy blinds. Be sure to use a blackout shade or choose curtains with a built in blackout liner, so you can darken the room at naptime. This will prevent the room from becoming too hot during the day and allowing baby to sleep longer and more comfortably.

Nursery Don’ts:

  1. Use harsh lighting. Install a dimmer switch for overhead lights in order to create a soft, comforting glow, especially if they are located directly over the crib. In addition, consider floor or table lamps near the nursing chair and changing station.
  2. Forget a nightlight. A nightlight is invaluable for checking in on your baby or for a cozy, story-time glow. Nightlights provide both safety and comfort, especially during late-night feedings. With so many designs to choose from today, they can also be downright cute!
  3. Place the crib near a window. Avoid putting the crib right next to the window, where it can receive direct sunlight or streetlight and where there might be drafts. Don’t forget too, once they can pull up on the crib, they will grab everything and anything. This could be an accident waiting to happen.
  4. Forget to make safety a priority. Cover electrical outlets, tuck away cords, make sure window dressings are properly installed, and secure furniture to the walls and area rugs to the floor to prevent slips. And never keep ointments, medicines and lotions in the bottom drawers or anywhere within your baby’s reach.
  5. Wait until the last minute. Be sure to set your nursery plans into motion early, so there will be plenty of time to air out new furniture and freshly painted spaces. By starting early, you can take time to work on your room, even if it’s only half an hour per day. When it comes to bring baby home you’ll be glad you put in the effort to create a space you can feel good about.

Visit our Pinterest Board and get inspired by the great ideas found on Nursery room.

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Nursery Room Design Tips