Designing a nursery for your baby-to-be can be a fun and rewarding experience, but it can also seem a little daunting, especially if you don’t know where to begin. Feeling a little overwhelmed? Take a moment to arm yourself with these helpful nursery design dos and don’ts, and you’ll be ready to hit the stores in no time.
Do choose a specific style or theme.
Although it’s not absolutely necessary to limit yourself to a single concept, settling on a specific idea will help you to narrow your focus and create a more cohesive design.
Do pick the perfect palette.
Swimming in a sea of paint chips? Put these 8 foolproof color tips to the test.
Do choose textiles before paint.
There is nothing worse than finally finding the perfect curtains or the baby bedding of your dreams only to discover the color scheme clashes with your paint job. Given the astounding array of available paint colors and the prevalence of color-match technology, it’s definitely easier to choose your textiles first and then buy paint to match.
Do identify a focal point.
Most nurseries are centered on the crib, but there are many other options to choose from. A large window or alcove or even a signature piece, such as an over-sized toy or a painted dresser, can also draw focus.
Do decorate the ceiling.
Babies spend much of their time on their backs. Why not give your little one something to contemplate? Consider painting the ceiling a soothing color or enhancing your nursery’s theme with a mural or decals.
Toxic compounds affect infants and newborns far more quickly than older children, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Although confined by a crib or your arms now, that little one will soon be crawling and exploring every possible part of the nursery. And, as we all know, what they pick up typically ends up in their mouths.
When choosing paint, consider purchasing low VOC – short for volatile organic compound – paint. “Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) are emitted by different gases and solids such as paints and lacquers, paint strippers, cleaning supplies, pesticides, building materials and furnishings,” according to the experts at Home Depot. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says that some organic pollutant concentrations are two to five times higher inside our homes than outside. A low or zero VOC paint will help maintain healthy indoor air in the nursery.
Carpets are also guilty of emitting toxicants in the home, especially newly laid synthetic types. It’s known as “off-gassing,” and although the largest release occurs within the first 72 hours after the carpet is laid, low levels will continue to off-gas for up to five years, according to best-selling author, Dr. Joseph Mercola. “The ‘new carpet’ aroma is the odor of 4-PC off-gassing, which is an eye and respiratory-tract irritant that may also affect the central nervous system. The adhesive used to affix the carpet to the floor typically contains benzene and toluene, some of the most harmful VOCs,” he cautions.
The solution? Ditch the carpet and install tile, hardwood or laminate flooring and scatter throw rugs to keep the tiny one warm while exploring.
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