Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015 by Danny Peterson
Expecting a new addition to your family? Before the stork comes, you may need to invest some time in getting your home ready for the new arrival! We’ve all heard the jokes about needing to paint the nursery before the little one comes—but for many parents-to-be, painting the nursery is the least of their concerns. In fact, you may need to start doing some remodeling work right now to create a nursery in the first place! Of course, setting up an extra bedroom or home office space as a designated nursery area may be something you’ve never done before, especially if your pending arrival happens to be your first child. So what should homeowners consider as they think about converting a room into nursery space?
Making the Most of It
Of course, you probably have a dream nursery in your head, one that’s decked out with big comfy armchairs and ottomans and play areas and all the bells and whistles. There’s just one problem: You may not have enough square footage for all of that! Nurseries tend to be relatively small rooms, and you may have to come to terms with the fact that you just can’t fit everything into it. Thus, homeowners will need to prioritize, and to think about the things that you are truly going to need for your little one: A crib, a diaper changing station, some toy storage, and, of course, somewhere comfortable for you to sit and read bedtime stories or nurse.
One of the universal rules of nursery design is that you can never have too much storage. New parents, you will quickly find that kids always need a ton of stuff—way more than you can even imagine! And of course, you’ll need places to put it all. This can be tricky in rooms that are on the small side, so you may have to get creative. In particular, seek out furniture with built-in shelving or drawers. For nursery design, furniture that does double duty is a must. Also important: Making the most of your wall space. Any kind of vertical shelving is going to be good. And if you are lucky enough to have significant storage space in your nursery—say, a full closet!—really capitalize on it. Invest in a closet organization system you can use to get the most out of that space.
Extending the Room
Some parents wind up wishing for a larger nursery space—for a way to extend the space in their nursery. Of course, knocking out a wall and extending the room is sometimes possible, but it’s a bigger project than you might want to take on right now, with a new kid on the way! So you need to be creative. Think back to that closet. If you have a reasonably large closet, like a walk-in sized one, you can use it to effectively extend your nursery space, maybe putting the diaper changing area inside it. Some parents even let the nursery spill out into the adjacent hallway, perhaps putting a small bookshelf right outside the door to the nursery.
Getting it Baby-Ready
Finally, you’ll be ready to deal with aesthetic issues—including, yes, painting the nursery. Remember that, in addition to making your nursery look cozy and kid-friendly and nurturing, you can also make it look more spacious than it in fact is—painting horizontal stripes or painting one wall darker than the others. Remodeling is always a special, exciting thing for homeowners—and when it comes to nursery design, it’s all the more so! Enjoy it, but also make sure you do it right!