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Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I'm starting on the nursery, but I'm working with a tight space. Is there anything I need to keep in mind?

Re: I'm starting on the nursery, but I'm working with a tight space. Is there anything I need to keep in mind?

The Bump Expert

Yep. There's lots to think about. To help get you going, here are a few tips from our own editor in chief Carley Roney:


Prioritize right
If you’re really short on space, consider the must-have items that you need for your new baby. Many parents oftentimes find that they don’t use a crib for their new baby, so a bassinet might just make do for a while.

Buy furniture that grows with baby
Choose products that have more than one purpose. For example, a convertible crib can change into a bed and is great for a growing child. (If you’re spending a lot of money on furniture, investing in a quality crib that can be converted as your child grows is a smart idea.)

Take advantage of folding & portable furniture
Another great idea is to purchase items that can be folded and stored when not in use. For example, babystyle.com has a folding changing table that is not only gorgeous and sturdy, but it also folds flat for easy storage.The storage boxes in the nursery can also be placed not only on the changing table, but under the crib when not in use.

Look into multi-purpose furniture
Selecting furniture that have more than one purpose is a great way to maximize space. For example, a step stool that also has a storage space can help you prevent clutter.
Research companies that specialize in furnishing smaller rooms

Here are some of my favorites:

Stokke -- Stokke has cribs that can fit in the tiniest rooms. What’s great too is that you can add or take out pieces to the Stokke cribs and make them larger as your child grows or if you ever move into a home with a larger room.
Oeuf -- Oeuf was founded by first-time parents that wanted to create a nursery line of clean, simple design. One of their most popular items is the “The Oeuf Crib” which has a changing station that can actually be placed right on top of the crib. Oeuf also carries a “Sparrow Dresser” which can be easily converted to a changing table.

Netto Collection – This company specializes in modern streamlined furniture. They have a “Moderne Crib” that has a shelf underneath the mattress area for extra storage space. Plus, it converts to a daybed. They also have a “Loft Changing Table” with drawers that can be converted to a tray-topped cabinet.

Use your wall space
If you have limited floor space, consider purchasing items you can hang, such as a diaper bag or laundry hamper. Maximizing the use of your closet space is also a smart idea. Stackable drawers and installing extra nails to hang items can be a huge help in storing away clutter

Buy portable and collapsible drawers
These items can be placed under the crib and hidden with a dust ruffle for additional storage.

Try wall shelves
Wall shelves are not only a great way to put away books, frames and toys, it’s also a great way to showcase mementos.

The Bump Editors

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

Look into mini cribs that convert into a twin bed. That should give you more space. :)

cdb28612 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I planned on storing a long bin under the crib for clothes or supplies and later for toys but after putting the crib together realized the bottom is too close to the floor on all sides. Good so baby doesn't crawl beneath but quite a bit of wasted floor space that I needed! So be sure to look at that when buying the crib if you want to use that space.

Bluebird04 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

We just got finished purchasing the big furniture for our nursery. We have a small nursery, so I had to decide what we needed the most. We got a crib that converts to a toddler bed and a full size, which saved money, and will save space because we won't ever have to store the crib. Also, I knew I was going to need a dresser because the closet is tiny too: but I knew I didn't have enough room for that plus a changing table. I looked and was able to find a dresser that doubles as a changing table - so that saved money and space too. With just those two things, I'll still have room for a rocking chair and a small toy chest. One thing I know from helping out my brothers with their kids is that hanging up clothes is a huge space saver. So, if you really don't have room for the dresser - just hang the clothes.

teelaman |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

Check this out. It's pretty simple, yet helpful. http://www.fitpregnancy.com/yourbaby/nursery/tiny-turf-40724482.html

jessica.chryst |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

we didn't even have space for a full sized crib when my son was born, so we got a pack&play from graco that has the ability for it to start as a bassinet up higher and then move the bottom down lower once he starts sitting up, and it has a changing table that stays attached to it but folds out of the way with just the click of one button and stores diapers & wipes on the side! it's perfect!

gummybearsong |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

we bought a combo unit crib/changing table that has some nice drawers and it was very affordable and very sturdy. http://www.toysrus.com/product/index.jsp?productId=3368925 if you have a small room and want to do seperate furniture pieces, I recomend taping it out (using masking tape) on your floor to see how much room each piece will take up. We drew it on paper and first thought we had room for crib, dresser and rocker, but then when we mapped it out on the floor, we realized that although we had room for all that, you could not walk around in the room, could not stand in front of the crib and would have to stand on the side of the changing table! So seeing it in 3D makes a big difference!

ECSoens |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I am in the same boat of woking with a tight space for a nursery... I wanted the changing table and and matching dresser to the crib but all the furniture including a rocking chair and my desk it was just not going to be possible! lol So we decided to go to lowes and we found these amazing closet organizers! They are avaible in 3 colors and are also mix and match!! you can get drawers including cabinets and cubbys! I think its the best way to go to save room plus its a great price for a great amount of storage! Good Luck

LadyLorraine |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

Remember to utilize wall space, you can put almost anything on shelves.

frogirl202 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I think nursery furniture is kind of overrated. We don't even have a nursery; we are a co-sleeping family and just put a pack in play in our room for the baby's naps and diaper changes. You can get one of those contoured changing pads and just lay it on a bed or the floor when you need it and stick it against the wall then you don't. Diapers and wipes sit in a basket on my dresser and the clothes go in a little stack of plastic drawers next to it. I'm not saying it wouldn't be nice to have nursery, but you can get by without it. I think changing tables are a waste of money and space, as are diaper pails, but that's just my opinion. I know some people put the expensive gliding rocker and ottoman in the nursery too, but I never wanted to spend all that time breastfeeding isolated in a room. I preferred the chair in the main living area where I could talk to people or watch TV. Some people really enjoy decorating the nursery, but that was never important to me. I think cribs that convert to toddler beds are kind of impractical too unless you have an only child. In most families, you are going to want to reuse the crib for the next baby around the time its toddler bed function becomes necessary. I think our cultural expectations about what a baby needs are too materialistic. Babies just need you! Later on that changes, so enjoy it while things are simple.

titania9 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

You can put a changing pad on top of a dresser instead of having a changing table. Also, I got the Koala Baby hanging closet organizer from Babies R' Us which will nearly double the closet space! Check out http://www.happyhealthypregnancy.com/tools/index.aspx?d=1&_nc=634044977604784618&_nockcheck=true too. They have a virtual room creator that allows you to put in the measurements for your room and move furniture around etc. Pretty neat!

Roehlbride1 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I own a simplicity crib with the changing table attached. I know ther have been recalls with this brand...but I love mine and believe it is the best purchase I made with my first child. It also converts into a bed and side table. Very affordable! Very attractive. Also has wheels and a trundle drawer under it. Great for storage needs.

TGERBER |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

We are working with a small room and I'd rather keep the floor space we do have open so the baby can play in there when as she grows instead of crowding her in with furniture. Our major investment will be a closet system with shelves all the way up to the ceiling and wire drawers. That will take care of all of her clothing and linens. I bought a crib, but no changing table. I will just change her in the crib when it's in the top position, and then on the floor or on our bed later. In my experience, the older kids are, the less willing they are to lay down for their diaper change anyway and you have to do it as they are running around and playing, not on a fancy changing table. I also got a rocking chair and a floor lamp for nursing. Besides that, we will also have a bookshelf in the room that has baskets for her toys and books. A baby doesn't need a lot of space, really, so long as we don't buy too much junk for them. As far as stuff is concerned, you need clothes and a few toys, sure, but mostly, the child is just interested in spending time and interacting with YOU, not a bunch of crazy, loud, plastic contraptions.

KatAaaa! |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

This cracked me up. The person asking the question has a small space for a nursery. Let's face it, that means she is probably not overly wealthy...so I have to laugh when the original article/answer suggests checking out some of the most expensive cribs/sets out there! Stokke (crib $1000, mattress $300, + special sheets-oval shape $250=$1,500), Oeuf ($700 crib alone), Netto Collection ($1200-2750 cribs alone...), while I laud the eco-friendliness of these brands, they are a ridiculous suggestion for someone tight on budget! Hello Ikea or Costco!

Dozerzmom |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I bought a Graco Travel Lite with an adjustable bassinet. I have a convertible crib for the baby that my MIL bought, but I also babysit my friend's 2 year old. The 2 year old won't ever stay still and insists on playing with anything that I am trying to get organized. She fits in the smaller play yard and it's super easy to pack up and take with us to Grandma's house. The adjustable bassinet has a total of 3 positions so it can grow with baby. I love it. Oh, and a pillow case can fit the pad at the bottom and save money on sheets.

klaulis |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

i totally agree with titania9. I'm doing the same thing all i need is a crib and this super cute bassinet i found in walmart for $70 it even has storage space on the bottom and includes two storage baskets which is were im going to put my diaper and other little things heres the link to it http://www.walmart.com/ip/Burlington-Baby-Ecru-with-Brown-Eyelet-Bassinet-with-Soothing-Center/14237824?qty_0=1®istry_id=80512870172&selected_variation_0=14237824&shopFor=true&upc=0004675926804

matsujunkie |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

Portable or Mini Cribs are awesome! I had a very small space in which my son had to share our bedroom and this was such an awesome buy. I bought an additional mattress for extra cushion and he went from their, right into a toddler bed (later on after we moved of course). We were able to attach a diaper organizer to the end of the crib as well. The portable swings and chairs are nice as well. We all want the best, biggest, and nicest things but when it boils down to it, it's what is the safest and most efficient that matters most.

cfgoodrum |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

Our nursery is long and narrow (15 x 7) and also has to double as space for some of my own belongings (I'm claiming the closet and tall bureau). With that in mind, we decided to measure out the space on paper and create moveable paper 'furniture' to play with the decor (there are computer programs that do the same things, but it was a good project to keep me busy and seated one day). We decided what would fit and could move around the pieces to figure out the best layout. We kept my other lower dresser, emptied the drawers and got a contour changing pad from a moms group on-line (for free!) to go on top. In summary, my main advice would be PLAN, PLAN, PLAN -- and also be sure to let friends and family know that you're working with a tight floorplan so they limit purchasing any off-registry gifts you have no room for! If you haven't figured, the rest of our apartment is small too, so we also opted for a stroller that comes with a bassinet (double-duty) and registered for the Baby Bjorn Babysitter Balance b/c it folds flat and can stored away when not in use -- not necessarily 'cheap' items but a few good, quality, multi-use pieces seemed more valuable than a lot of single-use 'stuff' that altogether adds up to the same price.

marisa125 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

The mini crib is the way to go. One wt a changing table attached but rember beding isnt the standerd size and you may have to order you beding on line.

38christine |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

This blog has some tips. http://www.chiccheapnursery.com/2010/design-advice/big-ideas-for-a-small-space/

naa2114 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

we have a small space so we took the doors off of the closet, painted it to go with the rest of the room and put the dresser in there. then we used the top half for haning clothes and a shelf above that! saved us a ton of space! :)

linzmeister6000 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I just checked out the Ouef site recommended above, and really, $1100 for a dresser!!!?? You've got to be kidding me.

bebedee |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I got my crib from target and it actually had a cute drawer underneath it. It rolls out and I put the extra crib sheets and mattress covers in mine.

forddn |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

Babies don't need much. They need you, food, a place to sleep, and a clean hiney. Check out summer infant's cosleeper for a space saving, portable, affordable option.

chocm |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I have a very narrow room that was originally an office, now half office-half nursery. The best solution for baby items in a lack of space would have to be some tall, narrow plastic drawers you can purchase at WalMart or Target; hanging all the baby's clothes has helped but my floor and closet space are pretty obsolete due to furniture, an uninstalled car seat, and baby bath. This may sound a little crazy, but if you're really limited and can't use nails in you walls (like myself) I also converted a fabric changing table into a hanging shelving unit, kept up by 3M wall tacks from the ceiling. I've made it a little less strange by making my nursery theme into trees and birds, so it's just part of the decor. Hope that helps :)

notooley |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

All of these are super smart. Our girls, age 5 and a newborn coming in June, will be sharing a SMALL room!!! Here is how we managed: They both have their own bed: the older has a twin and the younger has a full size crib. The olders bed is high enough off the ground for under bed storage, so we have 3 plastic bins from Walmart under there for out of season clothes. The crib also has enough storage underneath for plastic bins so we have put her size up clothes under there. The older has a dresser. We added a changing pad to the top of that to use as a changing table for the younger. Next to that a a tall narow plastice drawers with 3 small drawers and larger drawer for diaper changing. We are using a shorter 3 stack plastic drawers for the youngers socks, onesies, and t-shirts!!! In their SUPER SMALL reach in closet, we have split it right down the middle and they each get a side for the clothes that are in season AND they can fit. in the middle of the closet is a 6 shelf shoe rack. the first 3 shelves are fot the younger. we are using collapsable bins in there for diaper storage, wipes, and other baby item. The last 3 are for the olders shoes. We put her down low o that she could reach her shoes. there is a top half and bottom half on each of the clothes sides for maximum storage. We also put the olders toy chest at the foot of her bed, and her boockase across from that. There is A LOT in a tiny space, but using ALL of the dead space made the room uncluttered!!!

cmcomer |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

We made a small nursery out of part of our Master bedroom (which was huge) by adding a wall. We put in hardwoods to make it feel larger. I bought a Portable crib (bigger than a mini-crib, but not as huge as a full-size crib.) It folds up too so if I want to move it, it's easy. I used an existing dresser as a changing table, offering lots of drawer space below. I used wall shelves and got an awesome wall unit from IKEA that is great for storage. Ikea is a great option because they offer a lot of compact furniture and design-your-own units to fit into the space you have. I added hooks to the back of the door and it turned out wonderfully!

katkestler |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

Our nursery is a pretty small space but luckily we have a wall of built-in shelves that I am using as storage space by putting colorful canvas storage bins in to hide all of the stuff! Also, I found using a canvas over the door shoe rack to hold burp cloths, blankets, towels, crib sheets, sleep sacks and wash cloths in.

nikkiherring |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

Hanging closet shelves are very helpful and super cheap look on any super-center website and find some in all different colors.

Cajun Mom |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I never got the point of a changing table or even a changing pad for my son. I live in an apartment were space is very limited and so is money. I kept a basket in l / r with receiving blanket, diapers, wipes and ointment. Baby needed changing I threw down blankie and changed him. In hubby and I's room we changed on our bed. We are doing the same with this one. Never bought a "nursery dresser because drawers tend to be to small when they get out of baby clothes. Instead swap meets, flea markets and second hand stores sell long 9 drawer dressers which are perfect. Plenty of room for not only clothes but for storage as well. And it grows with them. As their taste change you can change the drawer handles to keep it up dated. We also never used a toddler bed. Our son went from crib to twin bed with side rails so a smaller crib works great. We are the type of family were bedrooms are only used for sleeping. So we splurged instead on a swing for living room and a nice high chair.

cfiretruck |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

My fiance and I had a one bedroom apartment before we found out we were expecting. I've just been decorating a little office corner in the living room - I've found that mounting shelves and hooks for bags, toys, and other miscellaneous items is really helpful!!

magecenarius |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

If you would like tips about how to design a small nursery room, you could talk to people who have mobile homes. They could surely offer useful advice about that. Good luck!!

PowerFlowerPower |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

My husband is an architect and he designed a very nice and small nursery.We've put there only a bed and a changeing table.Last week I've visited a local store and I seen some little vanity sinks which look great and I am thinking to buy one as it would be very useful in my baby's nursery room.

Roysandy |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I usually browse the Tulsa classifieds and find a lot of good deals, I bought a convertible crib for my baby for a very cheap price, the other day I found a portable drawer that fitted perfectly in the nursery. There are so many ideas for designing a nursery, unfortunately a lot of these ideas cost a lot so we should find alternative where to buy cheaper stuff.

miracraig |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

My husband and I are putting pressurized walls into our Brooklyn apartment so that we don't have to worry about moving with a newborn. My daughter's nursery will be 4'3x8. It's basically a glorified walkin closet but I'm confident that it will suit just fine the first year. We are using a pack-n-play with an extra mattress as a bedding. The one we chose by Greco comes with a newborn napper

algruchacz |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

Sorry, didn't finish ...and a changing area so that helps with space. She should be able to use the pack-n-play for the first year if not beyond. We were also sure to get a gender neutral design so we can use it again for baby #2. As for storage, shelves are the best way to go. My husband and I are both tall so we are putting them as high as we can reach! We're also purchasing a clothes hanging rod from ikea for all of 5 dollars do that we can hang the majority of her clothes.

algruchacz |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

Organizing nursery stuff for storage is never easy. Especially when you have your baby on the way, you have already spent more than you can remember on preparing his new room and your husband get a great job offer in a foreign country. I can tell you, this is a job for an international moving firm. They is no way you can do it without them.

conquerer |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

If you wanna have more space for your nursery, than my advice is to look after a new home. I would recommend you to check http://www.sildycervera.com/, I'm sure you will find there the perfect home for you.

deanjohnson |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

Although the room is small you must have large windows to let the natural light to enter the room. If you want to change the windows I recommend you the windows replacement Chicago services. I worked with them and I was pleased by their service. I am sure that they will do a great job for you too.

marta8080 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

You should think about a pretty large amount of things, from the light that comes into the room to the floor your baby's going to crawl on. I'd suggest ground protection mats covered with fluffy carpets. They're easy to clean and you can display them alone, later, when the baby grows up.

jessicanaoko |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I've recently gave birth and my husband created a little nursery room that looks great.I have everything there from portable furniture to a little vanity.I still have to contact an air conditioning tucson company in order to install a cooling system in the nursery room.

suniscomming |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

Might seem weird but Our home was a 3 bedroom.. one bedroom upstairs... sooo I wanted our babies downstairs.. One was 2 years old and the other is due soon. We dont use our dining room... it held our two dog cages... big dogs.. I lined the top of the dog cage with boards and covered them with fabric so its like a soft top dresser then i bought a small basinet and we are using that as our changing table.. our crib fits in our living room.. we co-sleep.. we use crib for daytime naps if needed and storage.. and we have a basinet in our room beside bed in case we choose to put her in bassinet for private time.. lol then we used the other dog cage top to store diapers-wipes. under the crib that converts to a toddler and twin bed we store clothes that the baby will be in after her smal dresser clothes... for example.. all clothes newborn -3 months are in a drawer we used for storage of dinner ware before we converted dining rooom into a nursery.. all the clothes 3 months to 12 months are under the crib in the plastic tubs. :)

Woodruff111211 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I use plastic storage boxes with lids to store items that can be fold. We also have small space for my kid but Im tryin' to adjust... hope this could help.

dhenz88 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

We've opted out of a change table all together. We have change pads on all levels in the house, so baby will get his bum changed wherever there is floor space. Lol! Also, I'm sharing my dresser with baby, and making better use of my unused closet space. Lastly, plastic 3 drawer units stored in a cubby in our nursery work great for creams, lotions, diapers, etc. working with the space I've got... Easier than I expected.

Laurie1983 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

we will be in our 1 bed apt at least until baby is 6 months or so, so we got the day2night graco pack-n-play that comes with a portable bassinet. the portable bassinet hardly takes up any space in our room and the playard is in the living room for naps and also has a fold-away change table plus extra storage on it. so no need for a "real" crib or change table for us. since our living room is hardwood, we bought a foam mat puzzle to create a play area/soft floor space that can be as big or small as you want and taken apart and stored away easily.

mikesbride12 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

I have a 3 year old girl in a room that's about 9'X6' and we are about to add a newborn boy to that tiny room. For us the best idea was to maximize closet space. We built shelves into the bottom to store more items. We added shelves to the walls. And don't overdo it. There really aren't a ton of things a baby needs besides a crib, a dresser and some play space. If you ask me a changing table is entirely unnecessary, Just put down a blanket anywhere and change them. Store the diapers, wipes, creams in a dresser drawer or in a diaper bag you can hang up. Good luck!

stacey72hbs |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

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gantengsekali |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

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gantengsekali |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

We are putting a hanging crib above the foot of our bed to help save space. I have so many people telling me that the idea is brilliant

pumpkinxoxo14 |

Q&A: Tips for small nurseries?

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