You are counting down the days until a new little life will join your family, and it seems like they just don’t go by fast enough. Then you walk into the nursery (or former-storage-space-soon-to-become-the-nursery) and there is a slight wave of panic. Nothing is ready. You realize you still have to decide on furniture, bedding, window treatments, and décor – basically everything. But at least the paint is done…that is a big thing, right? And it is such an awesome shade of blue…hopefully…you stare at the unopened gallon sitting on the floor. Panic. Oh, where to begin at this point, how to choose the right furniture without spending money on something that only gets used for a few months, or is that just what everyone does? The answers and ultimately the decisions are far easier than it seems in this overwhelming hormonal state you may be in. I will highlight the nursery furniture pieces that I think are essential, functional and will transitional when baby becomes toddler and his needs change.
Instead of going into details regarding the obvious piece of furniture that every nursery needs, I will just reference you to my last article Some Easy tips on Choosing the Right Crib. I outline certain things to look for, options, styles, types to give you a little more insight when choosing your crib.
Next, let’s talk about the changing table. I never used one, I know many people who never used one either, but I also know many people who would NEVER have survived without one. So…I would say this is personal preference. Don’t feel as if you need to buy a changing table because you don’t. Personally, I find them to be difficult to use once baby gets active and starts kicking and twisting, so for me the floor is much easier. And, once baby is grown, the changing table can’t really move onwards and upwards unless it is to the garage or storage room. I would suggest instead on purchasing a dresser that has an optional changing tray that either sits on top or is attached but removable. These are so common now that you may find this easier than just a typical changing table. With this piece you will get your storage, place to change baby, and added bonus of it transitioning with baby right into the big kid room.
The one piece of furniture that I did not have, that I wish I had is typically not one many new parents think of – a glider. New baby = sleepless nights, multiple nighttime feedings, diaper changes, story time, nap times, and then everything in between. That is a lot of time in the nursery, so have some seating that you don’t mind spending hours in. A glider is the ideal furniture piece and is as essential as the crib, just more for mom and dad than baby. The best part is that the glider can also transition to the big kid room because there will still be many more years of cuddling up with your now toddler to read books before bedtime, or soothing him when he wakes up sick in the night.
The last thing I will touch on that I think is an essential piece for the nursery is actually two pieces working together. It seems simple enough, but everyone should have a side table or end table with a small lamp. We know lighting is always essential, but for the nursery make sure you keep the wattage really low – this is only secondary room lighting and should not be bright like the ceiling fixture. Obviously the table itself will easily transition out of the nursery with all the other pieces, so you are addressing both a current and future need.