We’ve waited a long time to decorate Freja’s nursery, so now I am beyond excited to get moving on her room. I thought I would write a quick post of considerations that I never would have thought of, pre-motherhood, as well as a little taster of what we have planned.
1. Keep it calm and relaxing.
Back when I started pulling together mood boards, a lot of my ideas featured super bright primary colours and lots of bold, graphic patterns. While this is great for a play room, it’s not so helpful if you have a very visual baby who likes to fight sleep. The last two months in our flat, everything kept her awake and I often ended up standing in a small corner of the room where the walls were white and there was nothing to distract her. I’ve spent hours trying to sing that girl to sleep. I will be doing everything I can to create a calm environment in the hopes that it will make bedtime and nap time a lot easier.
2. Find a way to make it dark. And by dark, I mean DARK.
We had a gorgeous 6ft tall 4ft wide window in Freja’s nursery at the flat. During the day it was amazing, but as the sun started setting later and later, Freja’s bedtime became more and more difficult. It got to the point where I could guarantee that she wouldn’t fall asleep until at least 20 minutes after sunset (which set smack in the centre of her window, making it even more difficult to darken the room). Because we were moving we didn’t want to invest in a permanent solution. I tried the Gro Blind, but returned it pretty promptly and ended up with a combination of black bin bags and black cardboard. (Classy). I’m not a roller-blind or curtain girl at all, but her sleep is far more important. I will be investigating my options heavily to make sure she can get a long, good nights sleep and settle easily for her naps.
3. Make sure there’s somewhere for you to crash that will accommodate a growing baby.
I’m not planning on cuddling Freja to sleep when she’s three years old, but inevitably there will be nights (when she’s ill, had a nightmare, etc) where I’m sure I’ll end up back in her room, in a chair, rocking her and I’ll want to be comfy enough to snooze a bit too. Had we bought a chair pre-birth, I’m sure I would have looked for something quite minimalist and compact. 9 months in, and the makeshift chair we have is just not wide enough. I’m having to sit sideways to feed her so I don’t bump her head or knock her feet. Which has me re-thinking the whole rocking-armchair plan. I’m tempted to find a chaise instead, which would be a fab place to read as she gets bigger, but haven’t seen one that I like. So could end up with an armless or low-armed, wide chair. Or even a loveseat from Loaf. I’ll let you know what we decide.
4. Give yourself functional space
I’ve gotten very good at doing things one handed. But having a table, and flexible stations set up around the room will make my life so much easier. Poufs (like you’ll see below) are starting to seem like a good option.
5. Get a child’s perspective
The last few months, I’ve spent a lot of time on the floor. It’s amazing what you see when you do. At the moment, her view includes carpet, some pretty bland walls, the bottom of a chair and a fireplace. The most interesting thing is probably the electrical outlet, which I obviously want to distract her from. Which made me realise that most of her ‘decoration’ is currently for us, and not her. So as we’re re-doing things, I’ll definitely be thinking about the room from her height as well as mine, and trying to include a child-friendly area for her.
To give you an idea what we’re going for, I’ve started pulling together a few images.
We’re keeping her white cot (Rachel, from John Lewis) and I’ve also picked up this Little White Company rocking horse on eBay. The grey will have a hint of blue/lavendar in it (like Morning Jewel from Dulux) to keep the overall feel soothing without being too cold. And then accents (curtains and potentially the door to her closet) will be in a muddy navy like Oxford Blue. Floorboards will hopefully be the bleached colour I mentioned in my last post – not fully white washed – and we will keep white trim, coving and picture rails. The chair i’ve included here is from West Elm, but it’s not 100% perfect. I like that it’s armless and a comfy, wide base without being too chunky but will keep looking. And the poufs are Harlequin from Loaf, which could double as a footstool, table, or a little spot for Freja to hang out when she’s older. I still want to find some fun bedding, a rug, and also a few accents that will make it feel more personalised but this is a start.
Any other learnings you’ve had from putting together a nursery? Any changes you made as your child grew older? And of course, any thoughts about our plan?