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How to Put Together a Nursery

Updated on March 12, 2011

Planning a Baby Nursery

Planning a baby nursery takes a great deal of work and a sizable budget. Getting the nursery planned and put together before the baby is born is far easier than trying to do the same and take care of a newborn at the same time. For this reason, try to get as much of the nursery completed as possible before the baby arrives.

Planning the Baby's Crib, Bedding and Dresser

Start with the baby’s crib. As the main piece of furniture in the room, it often determines the style of the rest of the room. It will certainly dictate what color the rest of the furniture will be. After buying the crib, allow yourself plenty of time to put it together. Cribs are notoriously complicated and it may take time to get it just right.

Choose the crib bedding set. The set will tie into the theme of the nursery and it may actually be the determining factor as to what the room’s theme is. It isn’t necessary to wait until the baby is born to buy the set. Crib sets come in male and female themes as well as gender neutral.

Look for a coordinating dresser. For a larger nursery, a dresser and a separate changing table may be more convenient for organizing clothing and diapering items separately. For smaller nurseries, there are a number of dressers with a top that is designed for use as a changing table. A separate drawer jutting from the top of these dressers provides a place for diaper rash cream and wipes.

Take Care of the Windows

Get the window or windows fitted with window coverings. A number of studies have shown that babies who sleep with too much light in the room can become nearsighted later in life. The window coverings should block as much light as possible for these reasons. Never use blinds with looped cords, however, as they have a history of strangling toddlers. Use curtains, Roman shades or blinds with straight cords that can be tied to the wall.

Picking Nursery Colors and Decorative Items

Paint the nursery. The color will tie into the overall theme. It is possible now to match a paint color to anything you like. Simply take a piece of the crib bedding or anything else from the nursery to Home Depot, Lowe’s or another large home improvement store. These stores can match the color to any kind of paint you choose. The expectant mother should not do the painting, however, as paint fumes can be dangerous for the fetus.

Pick out the baby’s mobile if you will have one, a rug if one is needed and a rocking chair. None of these items are essential, but all can make the nursery more comfortable and inviting. Feeding the baby is usually more comfortable when done in a rocker or glider.

A baby nursery doesn't have to have a traditional theme. Some parents delight in choosing a theme and packing the room full of fun things that tie into that theme. Others want only a color scheme. Still others just want it to be convenient and useful and aren't concerned with the way it looks. The nursery that you put together should reflect your own tastes as well as what you thing the baby will thrive in. If you don't like the patterns you see in baby stores, don't be afraid to experiment with a theme that you like better.

Babyproofing the Nursery

Installing babyproofing items in the nursery is often the last step, and many parents wait until after the baby is born or just before the baby starts to crawl before it is actually done. The outlet covers, blind cord hooks and window guards won’t be needed for some time, but it’s much easier to take care of the nursery all at once than to try to remember to babyproof later when a toddler is on the move. If you can get this taken care of before the baby is born, that's one less thing you have to do when you are tired and busy and want to spend some quality time with your baby.

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