Designing a Nursery
The process of designing a child's bedroom with all the essentials
Ask anything about designing a nursery
Here are some ideas for your baby's nursery
If your nursery has limited space, don’t cram too much in - it will make the room hard to use and feel even smaller. Small is beautiful and less really can be more. Your baby needs to sleep in the same room as you for the first six months. But you can still use your baby's nursery as a play area, clothes store and changing room until he’s older. Here are some practical ideas on how to make the most of a small nursery. 1. Think tall furniture, not wide Use the height of the room and choose tall rather than wide furniture. Think about buying a single-door wardrobe and adapting it to your needs. 2. Multi-functional furniture Multi-functional furniture, such as a storage bench that you can use both as a toy chest and a seat, saves space and money. 3. Make use of wall space Another option for nappy changing is a wall-mounted changing unit, which folds up against the wall when not you’re not using it. Most have storage pockets for all your nappy-changing accessories. You could also put up some shelves, with enough space between them to fit boxes and baskets. 4. Folding furniture Try portable or collapsible drawers for storing items under the cot or bed. Don’t use them for storing potentially dangerous items such as nappy bags or toiletries. Travel cots take up less space and can be folded away when not needed. Folding bassinets that double as playpens are also available, and some have wheels for moving from one room to another. They usually come with a carrier bag, so you can put it away when you’re not using it. 5. Extra storage ideas Storage bags that you can vacuum-pack yourself are ideal for storing teddies, clothes and bedding. They’re airtight and flatten the contents without damaging them. You can safely store the bags under beds and wardrobes. 6. The illusion of space Room corners are often left bare, so think about corner cupboards or shelving and corner hanging nets. Corner changing tables use less floor space and your baby’s legs will be facing you, which you may find easier for nappy changing. Some wall colours can make a room feel bigger or smaller. Choose soft, pastel colours for a more spacious feel. If you prefer vivid colours, use a pale colour for the base and a bright, stronger colour for detail. If the room has a low ceiling, vertical stripes on one of the walls create an illusion of height. Mirrors create a sense of space and come in fun patterns and shapes for children’s rooms. A mirror opposite a window adds more light and sparkle to a room too. Mirrors are often heavy, so do make sure it's securely attached to the wall. 7. Consider other options If there isn’t room for a nursery essential or something you’ve set your heart on, think about other options.
Useful tips for designing your baby's nursery
Are you planning to decorate your baby's nursery but not sure where to start? You will be required to plan each and everything very meticulously with the arrival of a baby. As the better you plan, the more effectively you will be able to carry out your responsibilities. Here we offer you some vital tips to guide and inspire you for designing your baby's nursery- 1. Consider the room's location and other practicalities: If you have a choice, select a peaceful room closer to your bedroom so you don’t have to walk far at night. Make sure that a cold room has adequate heating and a warm room has good ventilation. 2. Incorporate the style of your house into the nursery décor: Is your interiors style traditional, contemporary or perhaps an eclectic mix? It’s important that your nursery design reflects your own personal style and how you’ve decorated the rest of your home. Otherwise, it will look out of place. 3. Create your own mood board: Search the internet and magazines for pictures you love and piece them together to create a mood board. This will help you to pick your colours, keep your ideas focused and pull your theme together. 4. Keep it simple: With all the gorgeous nursery furniture and accessories available, it’s easy to over-decorate. Keep it simple and decide on a single focus for the room early on, such as a piece of furniture or artwork. Think child-friendly, not childish. Choose a neutral background and mix in age-appropriate accessories and you’ll reduce the need to redecorate every few years. 5. Choose soft, tranquil colours: Consider using colours that are calming and nurturing. When your baby gets older she will tell you what she wants, so take this special time to consider what makes you feel relaxed. With the demands of a newborn, most mums need calm more than anything. 6. Choose adaptable décor: Consider how long the nursery décor will last your baby. Wall paper with characters might have to be changed in a few years if your child finds it babyish or out-of-date. Wall stickers are a cheap, easy alternative for decorating that can be removed when your child gets older. 7. Think about safety: Make sure that the cot is deep enough to be safe for your baby. The bars should be at the correct distance apart, and the cot must not have cut-outs or steps. Create a safe zone around the cot by positioning it away from windows, heaters, lamps, wall decorations and cords. Keep furniture that your baby could clamber on to away from the cot too. Content source Featured image source
Don't forget these important things while designing a nursery for your little one
When the arrival of your baby is near, you have a lot of things to worry about, including your baby's room. And, the furniture you pick up for your baby is also of utmost importance, as it's going to last for a while and also be of use to other children in the family or your second one. So choose carefully. The things you need to keep in mind while choosing your baby's furniture are: Selecting Furniture Positions Selecting the crib is not only about what model you choose, but also where you position it in the room as well. This is not to say that you need to position your nursery according to a strict philosophy of feng shui. Room arrangement should be about enhancing safety, efficiency, comfort, and sleep. Be sure that you position the crib in a part of the room away from windows, avoiding outside walls if at all possible. In certain climates and homes, outside walls can be drafty and cold. Also, consider how the light enters the room at different times of the day. When the sun comes up in the morning, you may not want it shining directly on your baby. Evening light from street lights may also affect a baby's sleep. Thoughtful placement of the crib may help snag several those few extra minutes of much-needed sleep. Creating Storage Do not underestimate the amount of storage space you will need. Babies may be little, but baby items will take up a considerable amount of room. When looking at dressers and shelving units, there are several tell-tale signs whether a piece has the quality to remain durable over the years. Dovetail drawer joints and drawers having corner blocks on the interior will withstand more abuse than those without. For safety purposes, you should anchor dressers, shelves, and other large pieces to the wall or install anti-tip devices. Choosing a Changing Table Many parents choose to place a changing table in the room. There is a wide range of styles and designs for changing tables from which to choose. These items double as a comfortable place to change the baby and as a storage space. However, it is not absolutely necessary to have one. If space or cost prohibits you from purchasing one, you may opt to change the baby on a mat on the floor. Some changing tables ride over the rails of traditional cribs and flip down when not in use. These are a great choice for smaller nurseries. Crib and changer units may also be a space-saving option. To help you sort through the options, here is a list of the basic necessities you should have on hand when your baby arrives: A crib that meets all safety specifications. New cribs sold today must meet these standards, but if you're looking at used cribs, check them carefully to make sure they meet the same standards and have not been recalled. Unless you have money to spare, don't bother with a bassinet. Your baby will outgrow it in just a few weeks. Bedding for the crib, including a flannel-backed, waterproof mattress cover (which is cooler and more comfortable for your baby than plain plastic or rubber covers), and tight fitted sheets. Never use infant cushions that have soft fabric coverings and are loosely filled with plastic foam beads or pellets. Remove all pillows, quilts, comforters, sheepskins, and other pillow like soft products. Remember that the safest position for a baby to sleep in is on her back. A changing table that meets all safety specifications. It should be placed on a carpet or padded mat and against a wall, not a window, so there is no danger of your child falling out the window. Put shelves or tables to hold diapers, wipes, and other changing equipment within immediate reach (but away from the baby's reach), so you will not have to step away from the table—even for a second—to get anything. A diaper pail. Keep the pail securely closed. If you are going to wash your own diapers, you'll need a second pail so you can separate wet diapers from "soiled" ones. A large plastic washtub for bathing the baby. As an alternative to the washtub, you can use the kitchen sink to bathe your newborn, provided the faucet swings out of the way and the dishwasher is off. (The water from the dishwasher could dump into the sink, resulting in scalding.) After the first month, it's safer to switch to a separate tub, because the baby will be able to reach and turn on the faucet from the sink. Always make sure the bathing area is very clean before bathing your baby. Also, be sure the hottest temperature at the faucet is no more than 120 degrees Fahrenheit (48.9 degrees Celsius) to avoid burns. In most cases, you can adjust your water heater. Keep Everything Clean Everything in the nursery should be kept clean and dust-free. All surfaces, including window and floor coverings, should be washable. So should all toys that are left out. Although stuffed animals look cute around newborns (they seem to be a favorite shower gift), they tend to collect dust and may contribute to stuffy noses. Since your baby won't actively play with them for many months, you might consider storing them until she's ready for them.
Six great colours for your baby's perfect little nursery
Want to create a relaxing nursery space for your baby? Choosing the right nursery color is a great place to start! According to color psychologists, color can have a pretty significant affect on the psyche, influencing everything from mood to physical wellbeing. Armed with a little color know-how and a can of paint, you can easily transform a big, lonely nursery into a soothing sleep sanctuary. Just choose one of these calming nursery colors, and let science do its thing! Subdued Blues Like a calm sea or cloudless sky, soft shades of blue tend to relax both mind and body, giving us a sense that all is right with the world. Exposure to the color blue has been known to physically lower blood pressure, heart rate and respiration, cooling the body and preparing it for sleep. Blue also decreases feelings of anxiety and aggression, making it a natural salve for nervous newborns and tantrum-prone toddlers. Muted Greens Green boasts all the nurturing power of Mother Nature, providing us with a deeply instinctual sense of security that we, too, will grow and thrive in its presence. Associated with health, healing and well-being, green reduces anxiety, allowing for better concentration. Studies have even found that exposure to the color green may increase reading ability! Pale purples Associated with wisdom and spirituality, purple combines the soothing properties of blue with the nurturing femininity of pink. Colors like lavender and lilac create a soft and serene atmosphere, but only in very pale shades. If you choose too dark colors, your nursery may end up looking crass or gloomy. Pastel pinks Pink speaks of unconditional love and compassion, making it a fine fit for a baby’s room. It tends to inspire warm and comfortable feelings, which may help your little one relax. But while a soft pink nursery can make for a docile baby girl, pink overload may lead to agitation and anxiety in toddlers. Earthy Neutrals Neutral shades have a warm, grounding effect, and can be great for creating a cozy atmosphere. Neutrals are also easy on the eyes—literally. Earthy shades of beige and brown give baby’s developing peepers a much-needed rest from stimulating color and contrast, allowing your little dreamer to wind down and sleep. Content source Featured image source
Preparing for a baby: Getting your finances in order
Planning ahead for conception (as opposed to those oops! pregnancies) means you’ll also have time to plan for the financial changes you’ll experience once the baby makes three (or more). When you’re financially preparing for a baby, don’t stress out about tackling every line item at once (no need to worry just yet about how you’ll pay those college bills), but anything you can start taking stock of now will make money matters down the road easier on your wallet and your sanity. Next, make a list of your expenses and then add in the baby costs you’ll be calculating soon: diapers, bottles, formula (if you don’t plan on breastfeeding), baby clothes, baby gear, baby food, baby toys, etc., so you can get a clearer idea of what your expenses really will be once your family starts to grow. Before you panic about all the baby-preparing you’ll need to do, remember, you’ll be getting plenty of those mommy necessities and niceties as gifts; others you’ll be able to borrow from friends and family. Finally, think of ways (big and small) to cut corners and generate extra cash for baby expenses. Some almost painless ways to save big when you’re preparing for your baby include: Cutting back on luxuries such as expensive restaurant meals and high-priced lattes (you don’t need all that caffeine now, anyway). Using the old “loose-change-in-a-jar” trick: Just be sure to move the money periodically into a savings account (preferably an interest-bearing one that you’ve both sworn not to dip into). Looking critically at monthly expenditures for home and cell phone services, cable, gym memberships, and the like. Not that you need to live without these conveniences, but you may be able to switch to cheaper ones. Often just calling to threaten a switch can snag you a better deal. After all, companies like to keep their customers. Reducing credit card debt by avoiding late fees, paying more than the minimum each month, and rolling balances onto low-interest cards. Diverting some of your current savings into a “baby fund” for your various baby expenses. content source Featured Image Source
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15 easy tips to organize a perfect baby nursery
From diapering to feeding to clothes and toys, babies need a lot of stuff. And you need to find a place and a system to organize them! What’s more, babies grow very fast, and you find yourself constantly replacing clothes and toys. As a result, organizing your baby’s nursery can seem like a never-ending process. Here15 Tips to Organize a Baby Nursery 1. Find storage in all places You might think that it’s easier to just stuff baby’s various things into different nooks and crannies of your own wardrobe or dressing table, but this is a recipe for disaster! It’s always advisable to have separate storage for baby, right from the start. It’ll save you time, keep things organized and leaves your existing systems in place. If you have a small home, demarcate a corner of a room for baby’s things alone. 2. Use Collapsible Furniture If you’re short on space and don’t want to spend a bomb on new furniture for baby, go for less expensive ‘temporary’ furniture. These are the kinds of things you’d buy if you were in a rental, or a hostel room. A collapsible furniture is a great option to hold all of baby’s things. Many of them come with pockets on the side and the space on the top of the cupboard can also be used. 3. Utilize an old Book Shelf A plain wooden bookshelf that’s lying in the corner is perfect for all kinds of kids’ storage, including baby stuff! Just give it a new coat of lead-free paint and you can change it any way you want. You can remove shelves and put in rods to hang, or you could add a drawer or two. You could also leave it as it is and put in baskets and boxes to hold various small things and leave the more essential supplies out for easy access. 4. Make use of Under-Crib Space Most cribs are at a good height from the floor, leaving lots of space underneath. Now you could either let that space go to waste and collect dust – or you could use it! Get an under the bed organizer and store anything you like. We’d recommend using it for things you don’t need on a daily basis, like blankets, bedsheets, winter wear etc. A box with wheels makes it easier to push and pull from under the crib. 5. Keep Diaper Supplies in one Place In the initial months, you’ll be spending a good amount of time changing your baby, so it’s well worth your time to make the process run as smoothly as possible. Invest in a diaper caddy or a basket, to hold all diaper changing supplies in one place. Most Indian Moms don’t use a changing table, preferring to change baby on any flat surface by laying a sheet on it. With a diaper caddy, you can carry it around and change your baby anywhere in your home. Use it to store diapers, wipes, tissues, sanitizer, diaper cream and maybe a toy or two to keep baby occupied. 6. Go for Hanging Organizers If you’re using cloth diapers, you’ll need to have a good stock on hand, especially if it’s winter or monsoon and things don’t dry fast. A hanging organizer is perfect for the job, and if you’ve got some brightly colored diapers, it can double as decor too! You can get either the ones with shelves where you stack diapers or the ones with pockets where you can stuff a diaper in each slot. 7. Use Hanger Dividers for Baby Clothes Sometimes it can be more convenient hanging baby clothes, considering how difficult they are to fold! If you have sufficient hanger space, make the most of it by hanging all your baby’s clothes on it, even ones that are too big now. 8. Use Labelled Tubs Now if you don’t have space to hang your baby’s large-size clothes, you can still keep them sorted with labelled tubs or bins. You can get clear or opaque plastic containers anywhere. Just sort your baby’s clothes by age, put it in different tubs and stick appropriate labels. 9. Organize with Drawer Dividers As you probably know by now, it’s the smallest things that give the most trouble! Baby accessories like socks, booties, mittens and caps can easily get lost, so keep them corralled in drawers with drawer divider. Most of them can be adjusted to your drawer’s dimensions and are really useful to avoid a messy drawer overflowing with stuff! 10. Install Double Rods You may actually have more hanging space than you think! If you’re reusing an old bookshelf or have just a narrow wardrobe, you can install a rod at mid-height, so that you have two levels to hang. You can also use the space under a shelf for this. Baby clothes are small, so they don’t take up much space vertically. Make sure the installation is such that can be removed later when you need to hang longer clothes or organizers. 11. Hang Baby Hairbands If you have a little girl, then you’re bound to have lots of cute little hairbands! Keep them from getting lost or tangled with each other by hanging them on a hairband holder. 12. Find a Sustainable Toy Storage Solution Okay, let me explain why I said ‘sustainable’. You’ll probably have a few toys for your baby already, but you need to remember that this collection will grow steadily over the next 15 years. So unless, you want to spend an hour or two every day picking up toys, it’s best to train your little one to pick up his things right away! Get a sturdy toy box or basket which is big enough to hold everything and which doesn’t have too many drawers or slots. The simpler, the better, for it’s more likely that your energetic toddler will actually use it! 13. Keep Books on the Wall Baby books are usually bright and colorful, which make them quite useful as decor elements! Display baby’s books on the wall with will mounted bookshelves. You can even use a set of spice racks that are sturdy enough to hold heavy books. This also keeps all the books at eye level and off your other surfaces. Maybe it’ll also encourage baby to reach out for his own favorite! 14. Keep Low Level Storage Safe Speaking of reaching out, as your baby starts crawling and exploring, it’s a good idea to have some toys and books at a low level for him to pull out and do as he pleases with them. Simple cubes stacked together work well, as long as you’re sure they won’t topple down. You can also use simple TV stands with open shelves where you can put in some toys and books for your little explorer. 15. Get Multi Purpose Baby Gear A great way to stay organized and minimize clutter is to get baby gear that serve several functions. For instance you can get a baby rocker that also works as a gym and baby feeding chair, and later transitions into a toddler chair. Foldable high chairs and strollers take up less space and can even be hung or stacked away under the bed. Most multipurpose baby gear do cost more than basic models, but in the long run, the price is usually worth it! Even if you co-sleep or don’t have a particular room dedicated to baby, you can still create a small corner in your room specially for your little one’s things. It’ll keep baby’s stuff from getting mixed up with Mommy’s and Daddy’s! You’ll also be more aware when supplies are about to run out and there’ll be no hassles when you’re about to go outside or it’s the middle of the night. It’s no wonder then, than an organized nursery results in a happy family! content source
12 simple things your baby needs
Month 1: Swaddling As a new mom, your passion for your baby is matched only by your passion for an uninterrupted stretch of sleep. Long nights are the norm at first, but snugly wrapping your infant in a blanket may help him rest better. Babies love it during their first weeks because swaddling works in part by mimicking the close conditions of the womb. That makes your baby feel warm and secure. Month 2: A baby carrier Thanks to a highly developed vestibular system (the sensory system located in the inner ear), babies crave movement: rocking, swaying, pacing. "If you want to calm a new baby, you can't just sit there," says Lise Eliot, Ph.D., author of What's Going On in There? How the Brain and Mind Develop in the First Five Years of Life. A front carrier (most are designed for babies at least eight pounds, and they're especially helpful once you're out of the first-month haze) makes everyone happy. Your baby gets that soothing motion and you get something done. "Dishes, laundry, sweeping -- they're all doable while carrying a baby," says Rebecca Vega of Eau Claire, Wisconsin. And while some naysayers felt her daughter Sydney, now 19 months, would be spoiled by being carried so much, Vega says the opposite was true. "Because her needs were being met, she didn't have a reason to be any fussier than other babies." Month 3: Tummy time Back sleeping has been shown to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), so it's nonnegotiable. But spending time on his stomach is also important to your baby's well-being. "As back sleeping has become more common, kids are rolling over and crawling a bit later than they used to," says David Burnham, M.D., a pediatrician and medical director of the HealthEast Maplewood Clinic in St. Paul. "Tummy time helps a baby develop those large motor skills." At around 3 months, your baby will be able to hold himself up by leaning on his forearms, so that makes this a good age to introduce a little tummy time into his day. If he hates it, don't force the issue, but also don't feel you have to spend a lot of time on it for him to get the benefits. Even three to ten minutes twice a day will do the trick. To make it more fun for your baby, lie down facing him or put a colorful toy in front of him. Months 4 - 8 Month 4: A mirror Babies love gazing at human faces -- Mom's, Dad's, and even their own. And since by this age they have the muscle control to lift their heads and really take a look around, attaching a baby-safe mirror to the crib slats will give your child instant entertainment (someone new!). Though some experts believe that babies can't recognize themselves until they're around 18 months, a mirror is still a lot of fun for younger ones. They may realize that when they smile or wiggle their nose, the baby in the mirror is doing the same thing -- and that's an exciting discovery for a 4-month-old. Month 5: Downtime Convinced that constant stimulation would make my baby smarter, I danced with Ella in the living room, sang "Ring Around the Rosy," and handed her an endless parade of noise-making toys. When she grew fussy and turned away, I assumed she was tired. But according to Holly Brophy-Herb, Ph.D., an associate professor of child development at Michigan State University, she may just have been tired of me. "If you're shaking a toy in front of the baby and she starts to look away, brings her hand up to her ear, arches her back, or stiffens, it's a cue that your baby's saying, 'I need a break, it's too much for me right now.'" With your baby reacting more to you -- and having so much fun -- at this age, it's easy to get carried away and think she needs a steady stream of excitement to keep her happy (not to mention boost her brainpower). But it's just as important to rock quietly with her or let her chill out by, say, watching the ceiling fan for a while. After some downtime, you'll both feel like playing again. Month 6: A babysitter If you haven't left your baby with a sitter by this point, now's a good time to start. Separation anxiety can appear at around 6 months, peaking between 9 and 15 months, as he starts to remember and recognize familiar and unfamiliar faces. "Before that happens, you need to get your baby used to the idea that someone who doesn't smell like Mom is still safe," says Eliot. By calling in a willing relative or a responsible neighbor now, you'll make it easier on everyone the next time you want to go to a non-child-friendly restaurant. Plus, a date night with your husband will make the two of you more pleasant -- both as parents and as partners. Month 7: A game of peekaboo While Jessica Picasso of Palm Springs, California, had played peekaboo with her daughter, Kayla, since she was just a few weeks old, it wasn't until Kayla reached 7 months that she could play along. "She likes to put a blanket over her head, pull it off really fast, and smile and laugh," says Picasso. Peekaboo helps your baby understand object permanence, which lets her know you still exist even when you're not in sight. Month 8: A routine With an 8-month-old around, it helps to be flexible about your schedule. But not too flexible. According to Dr. Burnham, a predictable daily routine -- breakfast between 6 and 8 A.M., first nap between 9 and 11, and so on -- is associated with the release of fewer stress hormones, so both you and your baby will be calmer. My husband and I learned to put our daughter to bed at the same time every night, and we consistently followed a soothing pre-bedtime pattern of jammies, feeding, and lullaby. By the time we laid her in her crib, she was ready to go to sleep. Months 9 - 12 Month 9: Stacking rings There may be a lot of toys out there that promise to boost your baby's brainpower, but there's nothing much better than a set of stackers or blocks -- classic, developmentally appropriate choices. Stacking toys put to use your baby's ability to reach and grasp, which he likely developed around 6 months, but they also stretch him to hone his fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. Between 8 and 12 months, they provide just the right level of challenge. "Stacking rings are just a little bit beyond a baby's capability at this age, but he can see the results of his own practice," says Eliot. Month 10: Security object The soft stuffed animals that Bonnie Ferguson of The Colony, Texas, gave to each of her four kids when they were infants quickly became beloved companions that helped them settle down at bedtime well into toddlerhood. According to Brophy-Herb, a lovey can be an effective coping mechanism for babies when they're dealing with everyday stresses like hunger, fatigue, and the care of a sitter. Not all children want a security object, though, so follow your baby's lead: If at this age she doesn't have one but is sucking her thumb or rubbing a spot on her sheet, chances are a lovey could help. Just make sure it's one you can get in and out of the washer and dryer before naptime. Month 11: Other babies As Ella's social director and a stay-at-home mom, I enjoyed her baby playdates (read: the chance for adult conversation) far more than she did. But toward the end of her first year, Ella began to get a kick out of hanging out with other babies. When she and her pal Tommy played side by side, occasionally swiping each other's toys, they entertained one another and learned a little about the rudiments of sharing. Plus, watching Tommy tool around the house gave Ella more motivation to get up and go herself. Month 12: A birthday cake One-year-olds are hyper-attuned to tactile sensations; they figure out the world by feeling and tasting everything. So a piece of cake is perfect for exploration: intensely mushable, squeezable, and, unlike many of the other objects they pop into their mouths, tasty. "Most parents don't want their child flinging food around the kitchen," says Jennifer Margulis, Ph.D., author of Why Babies Do That: Baffling Baby Behavior Explained. "But when you let your baby dig his hands into a birthday cake and try to get some into his mouth, you're letting him explore a natural fascination -- and do something he usually doesn't get to without being scolded." Happy birthday!