A colorful alphabet theme is a fun baby nursery idea if you’re looking for a way to decorate a gender neutral bedroom that works for a boy or a girl.
Today as a little “Throwback Thursday” we’re sharing photos of our boys’ nursery before its recent transition into a playroom. This colorful alphabet theme is a fun baby nursery idea if you’re looking for a way to decorate a gender neutral bedroom that works for a boy or a girl. We’re also sharing 10 other decorating ideas anyone can use to create a special nursery for their family.
If you’ve been following Ideas for the Home by Kenarry® for a while now, you know that this spring we created a combined outer space bedroom for both of our boys. C1, our oldest, recently turned six and his younger brother, C2, is 3 1/2 years old. Before that, C1 had a Curious George bedroom all to himself while his little brother slumbered in the baby nursery across the hall. They’re the best of buddies and the two of them were begging us to share a bedroom.
As we worked on the outer space bedroom, we also converted the baby nursery into a playroom on our main floor to get the toys and kid clutter out of the living room. Next week we’ll share what the new main floor playroom looks like, but before we go there we thought it would be fun to get a little nostalgic and share some of the boys’ baby nursery photos and ideas. If you’re expecting a little one soon, this baby nursery idea might get your creative juices flowing!
10 Gender Neutral Baby Nursery Ideas
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When we were expecting our first child just over six years ago, we found out at the 20 week ultrasound that we were pregnant with a little boy. However we longed more than one child and wanted to keep the baby nursery gender neutral just in case the second child was a girl. We decided to go with bright cheerful primary colors. The paint on the walls in the room was already a pale yellow color from when Kent first had the house built, so we left the walls as is and decorated around that color.
When we looked at baby nursery bedding and decor, we quickly fell in love with the Alphabet Soup Set from Cocalo. Unfortunately this set been discontinued, but the bright colors were exactly what we wanted for the room. There are only a few pieces commercially available still for this theme like this Toy Box/Bench, and a little picture frame. We don’t have either of those though that bench is adorable! You can find several other gently used or new pieces for this set though if you search for Alphabet Soup decor on eBay.
Baby Nursery Idea #1: Hang the comforter on the wall.
Since the current baby advice was to NOT put the bedding directly in the crib with the baby, we hung the cute little comforter on a curtain rod to display it on the wall instead.
Baby Nursery Idea #2: Paint a whimsical tree in the corner.
Though we decided not to change the overall color of the walls in the nursery, we did paint a whimsical tree in the corner near the crib. In this case “we” actually means my mother. Though I love to paint murals, my mom refused to let me stand on a ladder when I was seven months pregnant.
We tied the tree into the “Alphabet Soup” theme by adding the red little bird from the bedding and decor on one of the branches overlooking the crib.
Baby Nursery Idea #3: Upcycle from your own childhood.
The little green rocker you see in the baby nursery was actually mine when I was a little girl. It was white and very well loved from years of use and decades of storage.
The little rocker was in great shape though so we repainted it green and added colorful accents to make it match the Alphabet Soup decor. We even painted that little red bird again! It’s been fun to see the boys love the rocker as much as I did. It’s really a great size for a little kid and worked perfectly for my older son to sit there if I was tending to his little brother in the large glider rocker.
Baby Nursery Idea #4: Invest in a comfy chair for yourself.
We knew we’d be spending a lot of time at all hours of the day and night in the nursery caring for and comforting our babies. We wanted to make sure we chose a large glider rocker that was durable and high quality to last us through several children. We chose the Manuel Glide Rocker with matching ottoman from Best Home Furnishings. Ours is wood with an espresso finish and khaki colored fabric.
Over six years of use, this chair has been through the ringer with late night feedings, reading more books than we can count and enduring numerous spills, spit-ups and sticky hands. It’s cleaned up beautifully time and time again. Now that we’re done with it in the nursery, it’s so comfy and neutral in color that we’ve been able to move into our living room.
Baby Nursery Idea #5: Keep reading material close at hand.
While the boys were babies, we kept a small bookshelf stocked with reading material within arms length of the glider rocker at all times. From the first day we brought each of them home, we started to read books to them several times per day. Over and over again, we’ve gotten the advice that you can never read too much to your children. The earlier you start reading to them, the better it is for their brain development and their overall vocabulary.
Fortunately, my mother-in-law is a retired elementary teacher and sends us boxes of books from her teaching days on a regular basis. While we love reading Dr. Seuss books and of course Curious George, it’s been fun to also get to know some other favorites from her stash like the Froggy series by Jonathan London, the Franklin series by Paulette Bourgeois and the Amelia Bedelia series by Peggy Parish. We also love any of the books written and illustrated by talented authors like Kevin Henkes, Tomie de Paola, Jan Brett, and Mercer Mayer.
Baby Nursery Idea #6: Provide ambient lighting and monitor the nursery.
All of the rooms in our home have several large can lights in the ceiling. While this is great for making the rooms bright and full of light, sometimes you just want the room to be much dimmer like when you’re half awake, stumbling into the room in the middle of the night to feed the baby. On top of the bookshelf, we had a cute little elephant lamp that matched the theme. Next to it, we had an audio baby monitor so we could hear the baby if he needed us in the night.
Across the room next to the closet over looking the crib, you can also see where we had a video monitor mounted. This gave us a birds-eye view if we wanted to check the baby in the night. The video monitor actually worked right with our mobile phones and also allowed us to monitor our older son across the hall at the same time. It really was slick and incredibly useful. You can read more about how it worked in this blog post we did about the best video baby monitors for multiple rooms.
Baby Nursery Idea #7: Choose a changing table that can double as a dresser.
Rather than buying a traditional changing table for the nursery, we chose a short little dresser instead. It had two drawers where we could store pajamas, swaddles and sleep sacks. It also had three cubby spaces where we put bins for diapers and wipes. Then we just attached a changing table pad to the top of it. When we created the boys outer space bedroom this spring then, we were able to just remove the changing table pad and now we can use it as a dresser in their big boy room.
Here’s a little close-up of those cute Alphabet Soup wall hangings that were in the nursery just inside the bedroom door:
Baby Nursery Idea #8: Display family photos above the changing table.
Our parents, brothers, sisters and their families all live a significant distance away from us for the most part. To help the boys get to know them, we decided to hang a little collage of their photos in the nursery directly above the changing table. When we’d be done changing a diaper, we’d often take a moment or two to point out who everyone is in the photos so the boys could get to know what each of them look like. Of course, Skype and Facetime on the iPad have also done wonders for bridging the distance between the boys and their grandparents, uncles and aunts!
Baby Nursery Idea #9: Protect the crib rails.
Our oldest was quite the chewer during his early years and gnawed on the edges of the crib rails. To protect him (and the crib) from any further damage and make it look nicer for his younger brother, we created a crib rail protector by tying fleece around the top on three sides. You can check out the full tutorial for this crib rail cover to get easy step-by-step instructions to make your own.
Baby Nursery Idea #10: Find a way to keep the closet organized.
We could have done a much better job with closet organization for the nursery. As it was, we used little hangers to store all the boys clothes on the rod in the closet. Then we placed an old IKEA shelf on the floor underneath. This worked great for storing extra diapers, shoes, bags and other small baby items. On the shelves above, we kept baby tools and toys our sons had outgrown until we decided to give them away to other families. We also used and labeled cardboard boxes to store clothes that no longer fit until they could be passed down from one child to the next.
We hope these ten nursery ideas have been helpful to you as you prepare for the arrival of your baby. Which of these is your favorite baby nursery idea that you might implement in your little one’s bedroom? What other plans do you have for decorating and organizing for your child’s nursery? Please comment below and share. We’re always looking for new ideas!
While you’re here be sure to check out other kid ideas on Ideas for the Home by Kenarry® –
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