All You Need To Know About Decorating A Nursery

Rule 1: Keep it simple (Picture courtesy of Farrow and Ball)
Rule 1: Keep it simple (Picture courtesy of Farrow and Ball)
Some practical tips and inspiration for all those hastily attempting to create a nursery while pregnant, or post baby, while juggling all the various needs of a newborn. 

I am hugely envious of mothers who manage to decorate the nursery in time for their child’s arrival. 

My three children still sleep in rooms with almost nothing on the walls (maybe this is why my youngest resorted to yellow crayon graffiti?).

Anyway, here are some tips for all those hastily attempting to decorate while pregnant, or post baby, while juggling all the various needs of a newborn. 

I hope the following helps to inspire you – it really is such a fun project and I think you should enjoy it as much as you can!

Keep it Simple

Thank goodness for the minimalist trend. Tempting as it is to fill the room with every toy, gadget and cute decoration you can find, the prettiest nurseries are always the emptiest.

Make sure you have a decent chest of drawers (if it’s old you can spruce it up with drawer liner), some hanging space and a changing table. I hate ours, which comes from a recently defunct large-scale toy manufacturer – go for something sturdy with drawers such as this one from the White Company that will have a good resale value afterwards.

White Company changing table
White Company changing table

Really good idea to get a changing mat with washable fabric covers; these are so much more comfortable for a baby than the cold and creaky plastic versions. See this one for inspiration.

Then you’ll need a cot (more on this later), somewhere for you to sit, and shelves for toys and books. 

You can make it look more lively with some beautiful art on the walls. At the Spirit of Christmas Fair the other day we found some beautiful framed Winnie the Pooh prints; I also love alphabet drawings by Franny Watts.

Wipeable Wallpaper is a Godsend

Definitely wallpaper your baby’s nursery if you have the time and inclination. There are so many beautiful papers about. Look at Etsy for inspiration. 

Just in case the inevitable happens, however, go for something that can be wiped clean. Or, stick to paint – I’ve gone for subtle off-white walls with a baby blue colour for the windows, doors, skirting boards and radiators (all by Farrow and Ball), which looks great with an old pair of William Morris curtains.

Install Blackout Blinds

Don’t think twice about this. Babies definitely (in my experience) sleep better in the dark. It also helps to teach them the difference between night and day when it is still light outside on a summer’s evening. We had ours installed by the brilliant Ianjacksonblinds.co.uk and I’ve also heard great things about Stitched.co.uk

You Don’t Have to Have Baby Decor

A nursery can be relatively sophisticated – don’t decorate it with Peppa Pig everything unless you really love Peppa Pig.

Simple polka dots and stripes are great for upholstery, curtains and accessories and you can decorate your walls with photo frames or family pictures and beautiful Scandi-style wall stickers.

Oh, and we love paper lantern lampshades – they cost nothing but look fantastic hanging in a nursery.

Leave Enough Time

Decorating always takes longer than you think. Try to get the painting, carpets and furniture in by the time baby arrives – you can do the accents and decorations later on.

Choose a Convertible Cot

If you want to save yourself some money and hassle further down the line, it’s always a good idea to plump for a cot that can be turned easily into a bed when your baby starts climbing out.

My two year old is still contained behind bars but by Christmas I will have removed the sides and transformed his cot into the sweetest toddler bed.  

Bedding-wise, we love Isla and Wilbur.

 

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