5 Zones for a Perfectly Functional Nursery
When thinking about designing a nursery, some parents get lost in cute blankets and wall art. Over the next year, you will be spending more time in the nursery than possibly any other room in your house (ok, probably the laundry room!) You need to make the nursery as functional as it is adorable. Here are a few nursery design tips to separate your space into five purposeful zones:
- The Sleep Zone. Most new parents agree that getting baby to sleep through the night is a top priority. Sticking with a bed time routine and getting baby familiar with night time surroundings is the key to success. Keep it simple with the “Four B’s,” Bath, Bottle/Breast, Book then Bed. You won’t believe how quickly baby starts to learn this routine and be completely relaxed and ready for a good night’s sleep. For most nurseries, the sleep zone will be the crib and mattress. Baby will spend around eighteen hours a day asleep for the first several months; make this time as relaxing and comforting as possible with a top of the line crib mattress. Be sure to keep excess blankets and toys out of the bed when baby is asleep. They can cause distraction when trying to sleep and can even cause injury and suffocation.
- The Quiet Zone. Having a designated place to read, sing, snuggle and bond in baby’s room is very comforting for them. They will learn very quickly that pleasant things happen in their room, and they will become more confident about being left alone in there. A quiet zone could be a nice rocking chair or even a plush rug on the floor. Anywhere that you and baby can spend time awake together is perfect.
- The Feeding Zone (can be combined with the Quiet Zone). I highly recommend a nice glider with an ottoman. Especially during those early months, you want to give baby cues that they can begin to learn and follow. For instance, always nursing or feeding in a glider in the nursery lets baby know it is time to focus on eating. If you always feed them in a different place, it can take baby longer to latch on and eat properly. Night time feedings are a fleeting privilege of parenthood. Take advantage of these precious times and make the most of it.
- The Play Zone. When baby is very young it can be a play mat or interactive bouncy chair. As your child grows you can rotate in age appropriate toys. It’s handy to have a wall-anchored shelf with low bins so that kids can access their own toys, and even learn to put things back from where they got them.
- The Diapering Zone. This is possibly the most important (and messy) zone of the room. With some organizational skills and simple products, this zone can be tidy and functional. It’s helpful to have a small bin or organizer that you can leave on the changing table. Put essentials like diapers, wipes and diaper cream in the bin so that the important things are always within arm’s reach. Keep a high quality diaper pail right next to the changing table to keep those odors away.
It is great for kids to know that they have their own space to get dressed, play, relax and sleep. Kids tend to sleep better when we have some down time in their own rooms before bed time. Now here’s your chance to take these zones and make them your own.
Julie McCaffrey, Pish Posh Baby
About Julie McCaffrey, Pish Posh Baby
Parenting expert Julie McCaffrey is a proud mommy to 3 kids and owns BabyNav Baby Planners where she offers personalized consultation to new and expecting parents along with functioning as the Chief Brand Officer at PishPoshBaby.com—the high-quality baby store that supplies the facts and advice, along with the right choice, to parents who are completely lost in the whirlwind of baby gear. She loves to help moms and dads navigate everything from baby gear, preparing for multiples, getting back to work and getting the whole family on a routine.