So you are a few months to deliver and wondering what you need to put in order as you wait for your newborn? Among other things, you need a nursery for your baby. Traditionally, most people decorated nurseries with an idea of the gender of the baby. One could decorate in yellow, light blue, and pink, but things have changed significantly over the past few years. Most people prefer to create a gender neutral nursery with the end goal being to achieve a good design as opposed to putting together the traditional girl-boy color patterns.
Designing gender neutral nurseries sounds like a simple process; however, while it might be one of the easiest and most exciting activities when getting ready for the arrival of your baby, it is equally easy to find yourself stuck. For example, you may not be aware of what options to go with when it comes to the color, design, and where to buy the best décor materials and photos to include in the nursery. Read on to learn a few tips on how to decorate a gender neutral nursery successfully and without much hassle.
How Do You Decorate a Gender Neutral Nursery?
So, you or a friend is expectant and does not know where to begin when it comes to decorating a gender neutral nursery? Whether you are new to parenthood or have already been there, creating a stunning nursery for your baby takes a lot of preparation and consideration. This is even the case when you are planning to decorate a gender neutral nursery. If you are wondering where to get started, here are a few reliable tips to set you off in the right footing:
Choose Your Themes and Color Palettes Well
While it would appear limited and outdated to focus on having blue and pink colors for the boys and girls respectively, it remains a great default in mainstream decoration for nurseries. However, with designers and shops deviating from this tradition, it is only natural you choose your colors and themes more carefully.
When you decorate a gender neutral nursery, a combination of white and gray colors can create a serene environment. In addition, such a mix makes it easy to customize your nursery when the baby comes. It is a necessary rule of thumb in mainstream décor and even more important when decorating a nursery without the child's gender in mind. Sticking to a partial base leaves you with a room to add any personal touches much later especially after the baby's debut.
Neutral Gender Does Not Mean No Colors or Patterns
Do not get it all wrong by going with all no-color decorations. It will be uglier. While it is important to be careful with the colors and patterns you choose, you are not limited as long as you combine them naturally. For example, if you have a low ceiling in your room, a bold hue painting or graphic wallpaper can add interest and depth to the space.
Consider a Light Touch
Move away from the traditional floor-to-ceiling themes and use a light touch as you decorate a gender neutral nursery. While such a theme might help in sprinkling a recurring element within the room, having oceanic elements, furry friends, or geometrics shapes present can make a great environment for babies of any gender. In mainstream décor, less is considered more, especially in the case of themes. All you need to bring the theme home is to carefully place subtle elements in strategic areas. The same applies to designing babies' nurseries.
What Mistakes Should I Avoid as I Decorate a Gender Neutral Nursery?
There is so much to do when it comes to preparing a nursery for a newborn. Most people think decorating a nursery is all about painting and including one's preferred color palette. We cannot argue against such, but what you need to know is that every step you make plays a significant role in the lifetime of the nursery and health of your baby.
At times, most parents try to include anything in the nursery that they may consider ideal for their young ones; however, some things that you might include in the nursery might be harmful to the young one or even affect their happiness and growth negatively. That is why it is advisable to be careful when choosing what to include in a nursery. Here are some of dangerous mistakes to avoid as you plan to decorate a gender neutral nursery before your baby arrives:
Mismatching in Themes and Characters
It is normal to want to make the room as beautiful and ideal as possible for your baby. In most of the cases, this might drive you to have everything superhero or princess theme in your baby's nursery. If you over-theme, the room will appear cluttered. If you are anything like most parents who would do anything to ensure that their favorite themes or colors are included, it is advisable to find a few areas to infuse it rather than having a mismatch of themes all over the nursery.
Wrong Choice of the Floor Cover
Using a standard wall-to-wall carpet is a no-brainer, as it acts as the right cocoon for your baby. A little homework will help you settle for the best floor coverings. Carpets have some toxic chemicals like perchloroethylene, toluene, benzene, acetaldehyde, and formaldehyde. Such chemicals can affect and cause irritation on the throat, nose, and eyes, among other effects. It is advisable to consider no-VOC finishes, untreated carpets, or even 100% wool rugs.
There is sometimes the temptation to copy the luxurious designs you find online. However, going overboard with the design can have a negative impact on the nursery. For example, the room can be cold, stark, or even appear like a museum. Despite the level of sophistication you may desire to achieve, your child's room should be homey. Ensure that you only spend a fortune on items which count.
The best nursery for your newborn should be embodied in comfort and gentleness. Anything that you include in the room should create an environment conducive to playing and exploration; the room should not inhibit your child from having an enjoyable time there. Therefore, focus on including soft natural fabrics and neutral textures and colors. These will help promote creativity in your baby. Such combinations help ripen imaginative and bold dreams in your little one.
Making the Nursery Extremely Girlish or Boyish
There is always the temptation to create a nursery that is gender specific. This gets most parents rushing to buy soft blue items for their baby boys or pink themed clothes for their baby girls. What if your baby does not like any of the gender-inspired items?
Children are wired to develop different tastes and likings for various items as they grow. Therefore, having overly gendered motifs and color palettes for the nursery is not a good idea. Nevertheless, a few aspects of blue and baby pink can work by mixing them with other colors such as beige, gray, and soft cream. This creates a neutral environment which you can pair with other colors depending on your kid's tastes and preferences as they grow.
When Should You Get Your Nursery Ready for the Baby?
While many people face different challenges when it comes to decorating a gender neutral nursery, others have their share of issues in deciding when the nursery should be ready. Lack of proper and prior preparation is the main reason most people find the process of designing a nursery quite challenging and stressful. After all, what can you expect when you start the process when you barely have a week or two until the arrival of your baby?
Prepping for a baby includes picking numerous and different items to include in the nursery. Some of these items may take a lot of time to arrive as well as be ready for the nursery. It is advisable to start the process of decorating your baby's nursery as early as 18 weeks after conception. Here are a few tips that you can follow to ensure that the nursery is ready by the time the baby arrives.
18-20 Weeks - Settle for the Theme
You may consider this an obvious stage when prepping for your baby's arrival but may not be aware of how early you should choose the theme. If anything, starting early is recommendable since it makes it easy for you to create a budget depending on the selected theme. In addition, it helps you make fabric and color choices in line with the theme you anticipate for the nursery.
21-23 Weeks: Get the Right Furniture
Every nursery decoration takes up a considerable amount of furniture space. The challenge is the fact that some furniture types may take more than 14 weeks to be available and arrive at your home. Make your order as early as possible to avoid last minute orders and inconveniences. Also, make sure that you make the necessary logistical arrangements. For example, do you have somebody on standby to move and assemble the furniture on arrival? If not, you'll need to look in to that.
23-25 Weeks - Install Wallpaper or Paint the Room
Whether you are planning on painting the room or installing wallpaper, you should do it early on. You do not want a case where your baby has to inhale the fumes of fresh paint. This is also the ideal time to remove the crib mattress from its packaging. It helps do away with that bad smell associated with long time packaging
25-27 Weeks - Settle on the Right Storage
What storage options do you have in mind? Avoid a last minute rush and choose your preferred solutions quite early. It is no secret that having a baby comes with increased storage needs. Besides the room's closet and the furniture you are planning to buy, you can consider other storage solutions such as additional shelving and storage baskets. It is important to have enough of these. You do not want to find yourself with no room to keep your baby's items.
27-30 Weeks - Add Any Extras to the Nursery
Parents should try to create the best nursery for their baby. During this time period work on adding any extra items and designs to the nursery to achieve the level of beauty you need for your baby. Perhaps you may consider extra embellishments such as improved lighting, hanging pictures on the walls, or even clearing any gifts you got during your baby shower.
By the 30th week, you should have all the furniture you had ordered in your possession. Arrange and rearrange them to make maximum use of the available space and achieve the best fit. The final setting should be a serene environment just for you and your baby.
36 Weeks - The Nursery Should Be Complete
By the time you hit the 36th week, you should have everything ready and complete. There are cases when the baby will arrive earlier than expected. You cannot afford to be uncomfortable when it comes to this. For this reason, you should ensure that the nursery is ready by the 36th week. In addition, all of their clothes should be clean, their changing table should be stocked, and the baby's crib should be well-made.
Decorating a gender neutral nursery is a concern nowadays not only for new but also experienced parents. It aligns with the recent trend to deviate from the traditional approach where every mother used to design gender themed nurseries for their babies. With the changing environment, it is important to be careful with how you prepare for your baby.
As outlined above, there is a lot that goes into designed a gender neutral nursery aside from the basics of painting, installing wallpaper, and choosing a theme. Prior preparation and budgeting will help you decorate your baby's nursery successfully and hassle-free. You should plan ahead and make good color and theme choices. Above all, ensure that you put the health and happiness of your child in the forefront as you design and decorate the nursery.