Nursery Design 101 - Tips from a New Mom

A Beginner's Guide to Designing a Nursery

Are you overwhelmed with how to begin designing a nursery? Do you feel pressure to make sure it's 'Pinterest' perfect? It sure is easy to get lost in the abundance of choice and trends online so we asked a new mom to share her thoughts on how she chose her nursery pieces and what she learned now that the nursery is in full use.

Like many first time moms, Meghan started planning her nursery early on in her pregnancy and wanted to have it ready before her little boy was born. With time on her side, Meghan started searching for inspiration wherever she could and soon realized that making decisions was more challenging that she anticipated. Everything is just so cute, right? The only thing she knew for sure was they would be keeping the existing wall color. It was a gorgeous soft grey hue that both her and her husband liked so that was the starting off point. 

“Designing a nursery is something I’ve always looked forward to. I wanted the room to feel calm and comfortable and I think I achieved that. Every purchase was made with that objective in mind.”

Meghan was inspired by soft, neutral spaces and wanted to keep the room calm and bright.  She was attracted to white furniture with touches of natural wood and felt that those pieces would last for years to come in subsequent children's rooms. After selecting the larger furniture items, she started collecting small items for shelves and artwork for the walls. She loved the whismy of the paint stroke decals from Urbanwalls and thought they made the perfect feature wall behind the crib. The fact that they are removable was appealing to the new parents so that this room can be easily changed and grow with their son.

Calm Nursery Design
A Real Mom's Guide to Designing a Functional Nursery
A Real Mom's Guide to Designing a Functional Nursery

After chatting with Meghan, we compiled a list of common mistakes that she thinks first time moms should be aware of when designing a nursery:

1.  RUSHING TO MAKE CHOICES:  Give yourself lots of time. You'll change your mind along the way so don't rush or fail to think things over before you purchase anything. Keep receipts and don't take the tags off anything until you are certain. It's fun to have the nursery completed before baby comes but it's not 100% necessary. Focus on the larger, essential items and worry about the small details later. Your baby isn't going to notice if the artwork isn't hung on the wall the first year. 

2.  WANTING EVERYTHING TO BE NEW:  It's nice to mix old and new or incorporate a few meaningful family items. Everything doesn't have to be new or matchy-matchy.  Although it's helpful to stick to a color scheme or theme, everything doesn't have to match perfectly. If you love something, that's all that matters. 

3.  BUYING EVERYTHING YOURSELF:  Make sure to leave some items for your baby registry. Meghan admits that she bought many things ahead of time that she could have left for her Babylist registry. Friends and family are eager to purchase gifts for a new baby, so leave a few things such as the mobile, crib aquarium, humidifier and your Mushybook for others to buy.

4.  SPLURGE ON THE WRONG THINGS: Invest in good, solid, multi-use furniture that will last for years to come. Instead of a traditional change table,  pick a dresser that can be used longer.  Work within the budget you have but buy the best quality that you can afford. Don't get sucked in to buying the latest 'must-have' that really isn't going to get used or last the test of time.

A Real Mom's Guide to Designing a Functional Nursery
A Real Mom's Guide to Designing a Functional Nursery
A Real Mom's Guide to Designing a Funtional Nursery

Moms everywhere will attest to the fact that you're going to spend a lot of time in the nursery, especially in the first year so making it a comfortable space should be priority number one.  For more nursery design inspiration, visit Mushybooks on Pinterest.