Oh, baby: Designing a modern nursery

Expert tips for designing your first nursery. | iStock
Expert tips for designing your first nursery. | iStock

Back in the day, nurseries were fairly simple. Get a crib, add a hand-me-down changing table, hang a mobile and you were good to go. Matching Disney linens? In the ‘80s, this made you Parent Of The Year.

But now, as Pinterest will attest, things are different.

“The nursery is the nicest room in some houses,” says Katie Groves, owner of Glen Mills furniture and design store Studio 882. “We’ve been seeing this trend for the past couple years—parents really want to capture their child, their family, how bright the future is going to be and how much fun and love is down the road.”

If creating such a space sounds more intimidating than childbirth, fear not. Here, Groves shares her tips for designing a modern nursery.

Rethink color
It’s time to retire baby pink, powder blue and that sad, pale yellow. “Pastels used to be what you thought of for nurseries, but now we’re seeing much more saturated colors—bubblegum pink, seafoam green and candy hues,” says Groves. Also on her radar: Greenery, Pantone’s Color Of The Year, and rose gold, a cozied-up way to incorporate metallics.


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Light in layers
When it comes to lighting, there’s nothing trickier than a nursery. Diaper changes require some serious wattage, whereas bedtime stories call for a soft, sleepy glow. Meaning no, that lone lamp isn’t going to cut it. “You have to take a layered approach to the lighting,” says Groves. “I recommend a ceiling light—maybe even a chandelier—and then a floor lamp and a table lamp so whatever you’re doing, you have the right light.”

Organize, organize, organize
No matter how beautiful your nursery, it’s guaranteed to look like a morning-after frat house if you don’t start out organized. Groves recommends colorful fabric baskets for housing baby essentials as well as getting ahead of clutter by editing the amount of accessories in the room. Then, spend some time strategizing your changing table storage—the easier it is to find those wipes at 3 a.m., the better.


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