OK, let’s be real...babies don’t really need a designed and decorated nursery. Their list of demands is pretty bare bones: food, a place to sleep, and...well, that’s basically it. So we know that drooling over gorgeous photos of baby rooms is totally just for the parents, and we’re ok with it. But it can also be one of the first active things a mama can do to feel prepared and get excited for the impending arrival, so if you’re looking for ideas on how to set up your own baby haven, here are some of our picks:
Rhapsody in Calming Blue
We love the clean, peaceful feel of this room (and peep the DIY herringbone accent wall...such a unique way to add visual interest to the space without clutter). The different shades of blue work well when tied together with details like the photo frames and striped curtains, and the “grown-up” style of the furniture keeps the room from feeling garish.
Tip: Even if you have carpeted floors, consider an accent rug in a thicker pile or interesting pattern for your nursery. It can bring a varied color palette together or provide a pop of color on its own, plus it gives teeny knees extra cushioning for when babe starts cruising around!
Earth Mama, Boho Baby
This airy, earthy space works beautifully as a nursery; it’s super neutral and the soft tones and natural materials make it a boho lover’s dream. We love that this mama put her nursery space together on a budget too, and was able to add even more personal touches (like the printable wall art) as a result!
Tip: Not a DIY maven? No worries! You can still find easy swaps for things to personalize and elevate a space without spending a ton of cash. Try switching out the handles or pulls on a dresser for a custom look, or decant supplies like cotton balls and hand sanitizer into pretty canisters and pumps to display on the changing table.
Jewel Tones and Vintage Vibes
Nobody said baby rooms had to be pastel! This sophisticated space totally nails it with the rich green accent wall, the warm copper tones in the crib and the woven wall hanging, the darker wood on the vintage dresser, and the kilim rug that brings all the hues together. Whimsical elements like the baby swing, name art, and open weave pendant light keep the room from feeling stodgy. This mama had the grandparents-to-be write letters to the new baby and framed them; along with family photos and memorabilia this is such a heartfelt way to make a nursery feel extra welcoming and full of love.
Tip: Don’t skip flea markets and secondhand options for sourcing one-of-a-kind nursery decor...just make sure that whatever you get is free of lead paint or other potentially harmful chemicals. And we still recommend going new for items like a crib, since older pieces likely don’t meet current safety standards.
A Study in Black and White
This bold space makes use of high contrast and monochrome in a really elevated way; newborns can only see in black and white so we can bet this baby’s room was a big hit right away! The key here is texture: the moulding on the walls, the nubbly carpet, the mix of pillow patterns and fabrics. Varied textures keep things visually interesting without feeling too matchy-matchy when you’re limiting your color palette. A dark green crib and a mini olive tree in the corner add pops of color, and the grayscale artwork softens the look.
Tip: If you have the space, consider adding a daybed to your nursery. If your master bedroom is further away from baby, it can be nice to have a place to catch some Zs in between late-night feedings, and it’s also a great snuggle spot as babe grows!
Adventure Is Out There
We love a good theme, and this one doesn’t disappoint! Mama wanted an explorer vibe for her new little babe, and achieved it with decor like a wall map, vintage binoculars and a magnifying glass, a monstera leaf play mat, a menagerie of exotic animal loveys, and even a personalized ride-on biplane. Keeping the colors super neutral and muted and using natural materials like wicker and wood make this adorable space worthy of the most intrepid little adventurer!
Tip: To avoid a cartoony feel in a themed nursery, keep the quality and style of the decor akin to what you use in the rest of your home. Just because it’s a baby’s room doesn’t mean it has to be babyish!
It’s safe to say that modern farmhouse is having a major moment, so there’s lots of inspo to choose from when it comes to decorating your nursery. Galvanized metal initial art, shiplap walls (a pretty easy DIY, or you can fake it with wallpaper), leather furniture accents, and oil-rubbed bronze metal fixtures all achieve this popular design style. Just say it with us: reclaimed wood.
Tip: If going full-on farmhouse is a little too trendy for you, incorporate one or two elements that hint at the aesthetic instead. Sliding barn doors on the closet, for example, or canvas lettered artwork on the wall.
Minimal doesn’t have to mean boring or cold; in fact, often it’s quite the opposite. Nurseries that adhere to a minimalist aesthetic can feel even more bright and inviting because the focal element is clear: the baby! This peaceful room uses tone-on-tone technique to keep the colors from feeling bland, and adds visual interest with statement pieces like the dresser and the large plant rather than a lot of artwork or knick knacks.
Tip: Minimalism is great for cutting down on clutter and on waste, because many of these elements can easily grow with the kiddo or be repurposed in other rooms in the house once baby is older. Figure out what your reusable investment pieces are and thrift or bargain hunt the rest...even super cheap stuff looks elevated when paired with the right design style!
This room capitalizes on a wash of natural light thanks to big windows, and uses lots of textures and layering to keep a palette of almost exclusively creams and whites feeling cozy and welcoming. Framed lyrics to a beloved song draw focus to the crib wall, since the crib was this mama’s big splurge and her favorite piece in the room. Mixing textiles in the rugs and the detailing on the crib and rocker add warmth...we love that even her dog coordinates with the decor! A creamy neutral nursery is the perfect blank canvas to the growing interests of a growing babe.
Tip: If you get a lot of natural light in your space (lucky you!), consider hanging blackout shades or curtains as part of your window treatment. Thankfully there are plenty of attractive options on the market now, and trust us...you’ll want as little light as possible once those nighttime sleep regressions kick in.
Sometimes you just gotta go colorful, and both these nurseries are beautiful examples of a modern take on a classically delicate hue. The trick with pink is that it can easily veer into gaudy; choosing unexpected furnishings like a funky furry ottoman, layered jute rugs, or a blush dresser with more industrial fittings tone down the frilliness of the color and keep the space feeling contemporary. We also love how both these rooms opted for wall-to-wall murals as focal points...they offset the wash of rosy color and keep the decor playful.
Tips: Pink is not just for girl babies! In fact, pink used to be more commonly associated with boys, while pale blue was the color of choice for girls. However, if you feel strongly about color choice, think about keeping the base decor of your nursery neutral and using easy-to-swap elements like crib bedding and artwork to customize the space...that way you can keep the room flexible if you plan to have multiple kiddos.
Looking for more ideas for decking out your baby’s room? Check out our must-have registry items for mama and baby.