It’s a fact, babies are expensive. The average UK family spends just short of £10,000 per year, per child bringing up their little ones, which doesn’t leave much budget for doing up the baby’s nursery. Many parents rush to have their baby’s nursery freshly decorated and fully furnished before the little one’s arrival, but do you really need to shell out on brand new furniture, wall murals and multiple tubs of paint?
Current guidelines recommend that babies spend the first 6 months of their life sleeping in their parent’s bedroom, so there really isn’t any need to go rushing around putting finishing touches to your baby’s own room when you’re heavily pregnant…..like I did!
At 8 months pregnant, I was painting the skirting board, glossing the door and sticking wall stickers to the wall. And do you know what? 9 months since she was born, her room still isn’t finished and she’s still not sleeping in it.
I still need to cut in the paintwork around all the edges. The door needs another coat of gloss and I’ve got more wall stickers to put on the wall.
Keeping within budget
We decided not to shell out on brand new furniture for our little one’s room. This wasn’t because we couldn’t afford to, but because we didn’t feel it was needed. Instead, we’ve moved spare pieces of furniture in that we already had, including a book case, chest of drawers, ottoman and tower storage unit. When she gets a little older and has her own likes and dislikes, we’ll get her a nice set to match the rest of the room which she can help to choose.
So, if you haven’t got the budget, the energy or the need to splash out on expensive items for your nursery, here’s a few items and ways you can to make the room look special without spending a fortune.
Use furniture that you’ve got hanging around the house, or ask family and friends whether they’ve got anything going spare. Then, strip, paint, draw, sticker over it and make it a special, unique piece for your baby’s nursery. We used sticky back plastic to upcycle an old ottoman I had as a kid into a toy chest decorated with pink hearts.
Make use of leftover paint
So often, when decorating, you’re left with some paint in the bottom of the tin. We’ve lived in our house for less than 3 years and our shed is already full of part-filled paint tins. If you’re the same, why not put them to good use?
Mix several colours together to create a unique colour to suit your needs – be sure to make enough though as you’ll never be able to recreate the same colour if you’re short!
Seek out second hand items
I was a little put off by using second hand items for my baby, however when you think about it, it makes sense! Babies grow out of things so quickly, that in most cases, many baby bits are hardly used. We were gifted a second hand moses basket from a family friend and bought a brand new mattress to go with it (new mattresses are always recommended). I’m so glad we didn’t fork out for a moses basket ourselves, as little one was only in it for 6 weeks before she started trying to roll out of it and we had to move her into her cot.
I was a little dubious about using wall stickers as when we moved into our house, several rooms were plastered in some ugly looking ones, but I found some lovely animal themed ones on Amazon in the end and bought some budget-friendly ones – and they really do look great!
Use boxes for storage
Not sure what to do with your nappy boxes other than to pop them in the recycling bin? Instead of throwing them away, think about decorating them with pretty paper and using them as storage baskets, book cases and so on. There’s a dedicated Baby’s Nursery board on my Pinterest where I’ve saved some great DIY storage boxes idea.
Keep it simple
Keep your baby’s nursery simple. Avoid purchasing lots of soft toys, soft furnishings for the crib or cot and just buy the basics. Baby’s shouldn’t sleep with pillows or duvets and you should ensure blankets are secure to reduce the risk of SIDs. The right age for babies to sleep with pillows and similar objects is around two years of age when they make the move from their cot into a toddler bed.
If you find you need to get other bits and pieces as time goes on, buy it on an as and when basis, but there’s no need to go overboard before little one even arrives.
Update as you need to
Your baby isn’t going to refuse to sleep in their nursery because they don’t like the decor or the colour scheme. As they get older, they’ll adopt likes and dislikes and this is when you can adapt the canvas you’ve already created to make it the perfect bedroom for your tot.
Have you got any other budget friendly tips for decorating a baby’s nursery? I’d love to hear them in the comments section below.
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