Decorating your child’s nursery is one of the most amazing parts of expecting. Cherish the moments with these amazing nursery ideas.
Decorating a baby nursery can be an exciting but daunting task. After all, how do you decorate a room for someone who doesn’t even exist yet and won’t be able to give their input when they arrive? Luckily, this article is packed full of nursery ideas to help point you in the right direction when it comes to creating the perfect nursery for your little one. Whether you’re expecting a boy, a girl, or a surprise, read on to find the nursery theme you’ve been looking for.
1. Boy Nursery Ideas
When sifting through baby boy nursery ideas, there’s always the classic option of a blue and white color scheme. Paint the walls a soft blue and add nursery furniture and decor in coordinating colors. This color scheme is perfect for a nautical theme! Ocean-themed wall decals like seashells, boats, or lighthouses can add to that atmosphere. A rug shaped like a life preserver or aquatic stuffed animals like turtles or whales are good options as well.
For a fun spin on the classic design, add another color or add a darker blue for a gentle monochromatic effect. Adding another color could be as simple as painting the walls blue and choosing a rug and crib bedding in the other color. You could go all out with an accent wall or wallpaper that uses both colors. Make sure to pick one that goes well with blue, like green or purple. This will help you add visual interest without making things chaotic.
2. Gender-Neutral Nursery Ideas
Whether you’re letting your little one’s gender be a surprise, putting siblings of different genders in one room, or simply looking beyond the confines of traditionally-gendered decor, a gender-neutral nursery might be the option for you.
As an obvious first step, steer clear of pink and blue. You can’t go wrong with warm neutrals like beige, cream, and tan, which will pair nicely with wood accents. White and gray are also sleek, modern options for a gender-neutral nursery. Colors like sage green and poppy yellow can also brighten the room. You could incorporate them with a blankie, a rug, or a few throw pillows, or wash the whole room in color.
It’s best to avoid hyper-gendered themes like flowers or sports. While nothing is stopping your baby boy from growing into a gardener or your little girl from becoming a soccer star, themes like this tie into the deep-seated gender associations that you want to avoid. Stick to something like wild animals or outer space, or skip the theme altogether and unify the room under a color palette or decor style.
3. Girl Nursery Ideas
For a girl, on the other hand, classic colors include pink and purple. You could easily choose one or use both, combining them using the ideas listed above for a boy nursery. Put up flowery patterned wallpaper and decorate the rest of the room to match it. You can also paint the walls a neutral color and choose blush pink accents. Soft yellows and greens could also make for a cute baby girl’s room when paired with daffodils and buttercups.
Traditionally, baby girl nursery themes often lean toward the delicate side with things like flowers or fairies. You could go with one of these by purchasing patterned bedding, putting up themed wallpaper, and buying related toys and wall prints. However, any theme could suit a classic baby girl’s room as long as the color scheme is soft and feminine.
4. Modern Nursery Ideas
Of course, your baby’s room doesn’t have to follow any predetermined rules at all. You could forgo classic themes and bold colors entirely and opt for a chic, modern nursery that accommodates your baby and flows well with the rest of the house.
Choose a crib and other nursery furniture in mid-century modern design. Go for neutral paint or wallpaper similar to that of the rest of the house, or choose colors in tones not traditionally used in nursery rooms, like dark colors or jewel tones. These work best in rooms with lots of natural light, so it doesn’t feel too cramped or shadowy.
As far as decorations, try adding elements like eucalyptus or pampas grass. These plants add a soft touch and an air of sophistication to any room. Put up wall art of rocket ships or cute animals in a tasteful, organized way. If the room’s color scheme and decor are modern, you can go all out with the room’s overall theme while maintaining a dignified atmosphere.
5. Nursery Decor Ideas
Between color palettes, themes, layouts, and decor, it can be tough to figure out which of the thousands of baby nursery ideas are right for you. Luckily, there is no right or wrong answer. You could go traditional with blue or pink, or opt for a modern nursery decorated in muted, neutral tones.
You have the freedom to go all out with a fun theme that might feel overpowering elsewhere. You can also ignore nursery norms altogether and decorate the room so that it fits right in with the rest of the house’s decor style.
It is the baby’s nursery, and it may even convert into their bedroom throughout the years. But since you’ll be spending plenty of time in there as well for a while, decorate it in a way that makes you feel right at home.
6. Nursery Wallpaper Ideas
Wallpaper is an excellent way to add character to your baby’s nursery. You can wallpaper the whole room or reserve it for an accent wall, which could be an excellent way to cut costs without compromising a fun atmosphere. The non-accent walls could either be neutral or painted to match one of the colors in the wallpaper.
The wallpaper could relate to the room’s theme—like banana leaves or swinging monkeys for a jungle theme. You could go for a more subtle design as well, like navy blue stripes on a white background to complement a nautical theme. You could also try and match the wallpaper to another element of the room’s decor, like the armchair or the crib skirt.
If you aren’t sure about devoting the whole room to a specific theme, you can allow the wallpaper to provide visual interest while choosing furniture that doesn’t pull focus. Choose simple styles in colors that match the ones of the wallpaper. Make sure that whatever decor you buy complements the tone set by the wallpaper. For example, Southwestern-style decor would go well with cactus wallpaper. You might choose stuffed animals like lions and giraffes instead of pigs and cows if the wallpaper is safari-themed.
7. Rustic Nursery Ideas
If the rest of your house is rustic, there’s no reason not to incorporate it into your nursery design. This can help the room feel warm, earthy, and cohesive with the rest of the house. Start with furniture in natural materials like wood, wicker, and jute. Add plants like pampas grass and lavender in bottles or planter boxes with old-timey logos, either new or hunted from a vintage store. Other decor options are antler furniture or cute wall prints of farm animals.
For the classic rustic style, stick to earthy tones like brown, tan, and white. It shouldn’t be too hard to find teddy bears and other stuffed animals that fit this color palette. However, by no means do you have to stick to it. You could wash it out with white and gray or amp up the energy with whatever bold colors you want, like pink or teal. As long as natural, down-to-earth design elements are present in the room, the rustic decor style will shine through.
8. Small Nursery Ideas
If you’re working with a small nursery, you’ll want to arrange the furniture efficiently so you can move through the room easily. Look for cribs with built-in storage, and opt for hanging light fixtures rather than floor or table lamps that take up precious floor space or dresser surface area.
If you’re having a hard time choosing between two pieces of furniture, go for the one you can use when your little one isn’t so little anymore. Instead of a side table, for example, opt for a dresser. It can function as a changing table and continue to offer more storage as your child accumulates clothes through the years.
You’ll also want to avoid dark paint colors because they can make a small space feel cramped and airless, especially if it doesn’t get much natural light. It’s best to stick with lighter colors, which reflect light and help a space feel brighter and airier. You can incorporate darker colors in small accents like throw pillows or a rug.
If the nursery has a window, try not to partially cover it up with the crib or a tall dresser, as natural light is key in opening up a room. You’ll want thick curtains to ensure that your baby gets a good night’s sleep and doesn’t get too hot. Adding sheer curtains underneath can allow you to customize the amount and severity of light that enters the room every day.
9. Twin Nursery Ideas
You might want to buy two of everything when preparing for twins, but that isn’t necessary. What you will need two of, however, are cribs. If the room is small, consider mini cribs or bassinets. Cribs placed side by side might lead to your little ones disrupting each other at naptime or trying to climb in for a visit, so consider placing them on opposite sides of the same wall. Putting a changing table between them allows for easy access from both beds.
You can maintain one color theme throughout the room or assign a certain color to each child. Try putting their initials on the wall above them or giving them bedding in complementary colors. Twins sometimes struggle to differentiate themselves from each other as they get older, and it can help if you acknowledge their differences early on by giving each one a different color, animal, or some other type of “mascot.”
However, there’s nothing wrong with maintaining a cohesive design throughout the whole baby room. You want your twins to be a team from day one, and their nursery can reflect that. Hang identical wreaths or art prints above their cribs, or put up some fun wallpaper on the wall they share.
10. White Nursery Ideas
If your nursery walls are already white, you might save yourself a color-coordinating headache by going for an all-white nursery. Buying rugs, curtains, crib bedding, and furniture in the same shade of white can create a sleek, monochromatic environment. Add some dimension by using textiles with different textures like corduroy, velvet, wood, or a shag rug.
If you don’t want to go all white, you could incorporate color by using accents in subtle shades like tan, blush pink, or mint green. Buying curtains, picture frames, or bedding in an accent color allows you to add visual interest without overwhelming the white. Plants placed in warm-toned terra cotta or wicker pots can add a touch of life to the baby’s room while improving your little one’s air quality.
Nursery Decor FAQs
When should I start decorating my nursery?
It’s best to get an early start and decide on your theme and budget by 18-20 weeks. You’ll want to order furniture and paint or wallpaper by 23 weeks, as some of it could take a very long time to arrive once you order it. In all, you should finish by 36 weeks.
What color should I paint my baby’s room?
While you might feel obligated to deck your nursery out in pink or blue, the truth is that your baby won’t have an opinion on that for a while. It comes down to choosing a color you like in a gentle, calming tone, like a pale green or a soft yellow.
How do you decorate a nursery?
Choose a specific theme or color palette. This will narrow your focus and make decision-making a little easier. Buy decor like curtains and crib bedding before painting, to be sure it doesn’t clash. And lastly, since you’ll be spending a lot of time in there as well, set up a spot where you can sit comfortably.