By Kaitlin Krull
Decorating the nursery is a rite of passage for new parents-to-be. However, turning a room that was once full of boxes or office supplies into a calming space fit for a baby may feel like an overwhelming process. Our friends and home remodel experts at Modernize, love watching homeowners transform their living spaces as their needs change, so they’ve come up with a few remodeling hacks to help take the stress out of turning your spare room into a nursery.
Walls and ceilings
While there are no real shortcuts for repainting a room (aside from those clever ready to roll paint devices), there are a few ways you can make the walls–and ceilings–in your new nursery look fresh and new. When a fresh coat of paint is necessary, try to choose a brand that has no VOCs to minimize the presence of chemicals in your nursery. Making sure to fully air out the room after painting will also help to remove lingering smells and toxins. If the previous color scheme in your spare room was neutral, then you can skip painting and add a few decorative decals to the walls or get extra creative and decorate the ceiling with shiny dots or stars.
New parents know that, among the hundreds of purchases you will make for your new baby, the crib will be one of the most important–and most expensive. Choosing a convertible crib that grows with your baby will save you money and hassle over the first few years of baby’s life. If you have a family heirloom crib that you want to salvage for your new nursery, you can carefully strip and restain or paint the crib in the color of your choosing. Just make sure to use chemical-free stains or paints, and double check that the components of the crib are all structurally sound before handing it over to your bundle of joy.
Up-cycled changing table
Many first-time parents are enticed by the idea of a matchy-matchy nursery and opt for furniture sets instead of single pieces of furniture. If you are DIY inclined, you can save a little money and inject some personality into your nursery by upcycling an old dresser or sideboard into a changing table with storage. The only limit here is your imagination, so choose any old furniture you can find, and make it your own with a fresh coat of paint and some decorative wallpaper or fun knobs.
If you want to keep your nursery as tidy as possible, storage is a key part of the remodeling process. If your spare room already has a built-in closet, then a quick trip to Ikea and some clever organization will help you find space for most of baby’s things. As hard as you may try, however, there will always be a few toys or muslins that seem to be strewn across the floor. You can nip this mess in the bud by placing a few storage baskets around the room. We love natural materials like rattan and jute, but even a pop-up laundry basket will do the trick.
During the early days, it may feel as if the vast majority of your time will be spent feeding your baby. Give yourself as much comfort as possible by creating a feeding area in a quiet corner of the nursery. A table stocked with a lamp, snacks, and a book are must-haves, but the number one priority here should be a comfortable chair. If you have an old, unused armchair in your house, you can throw a blanket over it or reupholster it to match the color scheme in the nursery. If you are less inclined to complete this kind of job yourself, feel free to outsource the job to a professional seamstress, or just buy a new comfy chair or rocker.
No nursery is complete without a few adorable decorative accessories. While you may be tempted to buy all the soft, cuddly toys you see in the runup to baby’s birth, there just might be a few hidden gems in your parents’ attic that will do the trick. Retro and vintage toys may not always be suitable as playthings, but will look stunning on the shelves of your baby’s nursery. If you don’t have any of your old toys lying around, take a quick trip to your local thrift shop or flea market to find some unique items.