As you may have learned from Instagram, I love organizing, prepping and styling nurseries. Working with soon-to-be, second-time or even third-time parents is a complete JOY. Getting to know their thoughts, dreams and aspirations for their little ones through the design of their nursery just makes me happy.
My approach to organization and nursery prep is very personal. The tricks, tools and techniques I use vary from room to room and parenting style to parenting style; but the following seven tips I use almost universally in all nurseries I organize and/or prep:
1. Wash everything! And wash it when you get it. You never know when that baby will be here. This includes more than just clothes. Blankets, bedding, Boppy covers, pacifiers, toys, bottles, pump parts, etc.
2. Have a system for clothes that are “too big”. I use small storage bins marked with future sizing (i.e. 3-6 months, 9 months, 12 months, etc.) and leave them in the closet until it’s their turn. Other parents hang baby clothes with size dividers like you’d find in a clothing store.
3. Have a system for clothes that are “too small”. There is nothing worse than changing a blowout covered in… well you know… and then grabbing a new onesie from the drawer only to realize (after you’ve put it on) it’s too small. Talk about kicking a woman (or man) when she’s (or he’s) down! Don’t let this happen to you and toss that too small onesie in a “too small” basket for future use or donation.
4. Have easy access points for the essentials. Load the top drawers of the dresser/changing table with extra diapers, wipes, rash creams, Vaseline, burp clothes, bibs, etc. It’s prime real estate on the changing table and trust me, you will need a quick access point. In general, I recommend using a hierarchal system for the dresser/changing table. Top drawers reserved for the essentials. Second drawer, everyday clothes. Third, additional everyday clothes or perhaps seasonal items such as booties, socks, hats, head bands, bonnets etc. Basically, the most items important up top and the least important items on the bottom.
5. Double up on bedding. This is actually more helpful in older babies and babies who have siblings. Put on two mattress protectors and two sheets (protector, sheet, protector, sheet) on your crib mattress. When your baby gets sick or has a blow out in the middle of the night, you’ll thank me. It’s an easy change of bedding without disturbing other siblings or family members AND its minimal awake time for baby.
6. Get a red light bulb. Or a light that can go glow red. It seems a little odd but my friends and I swear by this method. Your eyes are less sensitive to the color red (it’s science… Google it). Make late night feedings calmer
and easier by creating less light disturbance for both you and baby. I had a red bulb in the nursery lamp and in my bedside lamp. It provided me a clear path with little eye disturbance. We have since upgraded from the red light bulb and have the Hatch Baby Rest. We love it and it’s also useful for teaching my toddlers how to sleep in… but that’s a whole other post.
7. And finally… PLEASE anchor dressers and any other necessary furniture to the wall. It’s not even a tip. It’s a plea. Most furniture comes with a wall anchor. Do it. It’s a no brainer. Save that little pumpkin from a potential trip to the ER by just baby proofing that dresser ASAP.