Decorating Your Baby's Nursery

One of the most important things to think about when having a baby is the preparation for your new arrival. This includes the decoration of your baby's bedroom,
and selection of all his or her furniture. For me this was one of the most exciting parts!
Here are some ideas and advice from my own experiences, which are vital to think about when planning what to do and how to do it.

Boy, Girl or Surprise?

The gender of your baby is most likely going to be the biggest deciding factor on the style of decorations and colour scheme you choose for your nursery. The most obvious choices are: blue for boys, pink for girls and white or yellow if you didn't find out the gender of your baby. 
However there are absolutely no rules, if you want to do something completely different and unusual then go for it!
Some of the more unusual nursery themes I have seen include, jungle animals, trees and plants, different types of fruit, and a red indian theme! 
When I was looking for inspiration I found an abundance of pictures and suggestions online, especially Pinterest.

Importance of Having a Nursery?

In an ideal world, having a room dedicated to your baby and all his/her needs would be wonderful!
However, some parents don't have this option, and opt for modifying their own bedroom instead.
But if you do have the space, I thoroughly recommend it! 
Not only does it help with organisation, it gives you a place to put all the clothes, toys, nappies and wipes which you've stocked up on, but it allows you to keep your own identity and space. If your partner needs to be up early for work, becomes ill or just needs a break, you can disappear off to the nursery with baby, to give them some peace, and when the time comes they can do the same for you!

Budget & Timescale 

It's important to have your priorities in order when it comes to budgeting for your new baby. Your biggest purchases e.g pram, car seat and cot (to name a few), are far more important than some expensive wallpaper and paint. 
Remember that it doesn't need to be done all at once, and spreading out the decorating process will not only be easier on your bank account, but also less stress for you, especially if you're the pregnant one! 
Don't put a time limit on yourself - yes, ideally it would be nice for the room to be ready for the baby's arrival,
however the NHS recommends for him or her to sleep in the same room as you till 6 months old anyway, so you will still have all that time to put in your finishing touches.

Layout & Safety

Consider where you want to put your nursery furniture.
Never put the cot next to a radiator. If the radiator is on it could cause your baby to overheat, which is extremely dangerous and sometimes fatal, also you don't want them to be able to touch it and burn themselves. 

If the cot is under a window there could possibly be a draft of cold air, or even noise from the outside coming in, making it difficult for your baby to sleep comfortably. 
Don't hang pictures or place shelving above the cot either, just in case something falls or gets knocked off. 
Other things to think about with regard to the layout of your baby's room, include having easy access to useful items. 
For example, I like to have the laundry basket and nappy bin next to my changing table, which is where I keep the nappies and wipes.

When picking furniture I would advise choosing items with inbuilt space savers, e.g. a changing table with drawers. Most changing tables have a part on top which can be removed so you can use it as a regular chest of drawers when your baby no longer needs to be changed. 
If you have the space for a wardrobe, get one!!
It will save you buying one when they're older and will need one anyway.
Don't worry if you don't have enough to fill it;
baby clothes don't take up that much space, and you can always put blankets and towels in there too.
Shelving is really useful, it can be used as a decorative aspect, and also as a place for books, toys and ornaments. 
Gaps under beds or sofas are perfect for storing things which may not get used that often; you can find lots of different sized and coloured boxes in homeware shops.
I got mine from 'The Range' homeware shop, they were the perfect size to fit under my pullout futon in the picture on the right.

A massive tip I have for you, learned from my mistake,
is to use gloss paint as it is much easier to clean.
Especially as your baby grows, sticky fingers and pen marks are a pain to wipe off 'matt' paint without leaving a horrid mark behind.
A quick warning about painting, when I was pregnant I tried to paint the nursery on my own while my partner was at work, and I began to feel extremely sick from the paint fumes. If you can get someone else to help you please do, or at least try and keep as much fresh airflow through the room as possible. Some paints can contain chemicals which if breathed in, can be harmful to you and your baby. 

Choosing a light and bright colour scheme is very important as it has been scientifically proven that a room with dark colours can directly affect your mood, as it creates a dark and dingy atmosphere.

Personally when it comes to colour schemes, I love having lots of different shades of the same colour, mixed in with either really plain colours like white and cream, or really bold colours like gold and silver!
I have a baby girl and my favourite colours for her are shades of pink, purple, gold and white... very stereotypical I know! 

Carpet vs Hard Floor
In my opinion carpet wins hands down over hard flooring in a nursery, for so many reasons!

Firstly carpet helps to keep the heat in, and living in the UK that's quite a useful thing to have.
Secondly when you've been trying for ages to get your little one to sleep, then you finally creep off, the last thing you want is for your footsteps or that creaky floorboard to be the thing to wake them up!
Many people try to replace the carpet with rugs and mats, but unless they are gigantic and cover the entire floor you will always have the risk of tripping or slipping whilst holding your baby (touch wood).

Finally, I am always kneeling on the floor, playing and doing tummy time with my little girl, and having carpet makes it comfy for her to lie down, saves my knees, and makes it extra cozy for the both of us!

I really hope this helps with your decision making 
at this exciting time in your life.
If you have any questions or can think of anything I have missed please leave a comment or send me a message! 

Good luck!