Helpful guide to creating your baby's perfect nursery
From space saving ideas to those final touches, we give you the tips and ideas to help you create your dream nursery
One of the most enjoyable aspects of pregnancy is planning the room where your baby will sleep. But before you get swept away by choosing the colour scheme and soft furnishings, there are a number of practical things to think about first.
Space: This is a big consideration when designing the nursery, and make sure you measure furniture before you buy so you’ll know it fits.
Budget: Stick to your budget by shopping around. You don’t have to have a matching nursery furniture set. Do your homework and hunt out deals, special offers and even think about sourcing second-hand furniture.
Longevity: How long you’re expecting the furniture to last can help with deciding how much money to spend. If money is tight, look for furniture that can grow with your child i.e. a changing unit that can be used as a chest of drawers, or a cot that converts into a toddler bed.
The bare essentials When your baby comes home from hospital, he will need somewhere safe and cosy to sleep. There’s nothing to stop you using a cot right from the start, but a smaller bed like a crib or Moses basket will make a newborn feel more secure.
Remember that while it’s fine to plan a separate nursery for your baby, try and use it for daytime naps and storage initially, as for the first six months the safest place for your baby to sleep at night is in the same room as you.
If you have the budget and space, a matching set of furniture can be a good, but not essential buy. You will find that some nursery furniture is quite big and bulky. So do think about your child having enough space to play as well as sleep in the future.
The next decision is whether to go for a cot or a cotbed. This is one of the most important buys along with a car seat and pushchair. A cot will last for around two years, a cotbed until your child is around four or five, for more information to help you choose read our guides on pages 16 and 20.
And don’t forget, many cots and cotbeds are often sold without a mattress so you’ll have to do your homework on which one to buy.
What else you might need
A chest of drawers for all your baby clothes, muslins, wipes, and nappies is a good buy, and the higher the better, with a changing table on top to stop you stooping over during those endless nappy changes. It’s not completely essential though, as you can pop a mat onto any flat surface to change your baby’s nappy.
Once you have the main furniture in place, it’s time to think about those little extras.
Cot mobiles can be a great source of comfort and help soothe your baby to sleep, but you must remove it once they can sit up.
You’ll be tempted by pretty matching bedding sets, just remember that duvets, quilts and pillows are not recommended before your baby reaches a year old.