Having a baby is exciting, but there’s lots to do to prepare for the big day and ensuring that you have everything in place can be daunting.
Having the right kit will save you time that you can spend with your baby - or even on pampering yourself.
Nurseries are often converted from a tiny spare room or study and making such a space both functional and inviting can be a challenge.
With her second child on the way, Carly Marsh, 35, from East Sussex, decided it was the perfect opportunity to turn a small study in her four-bedroom house into a stylish nursery.
The room came with challenges, such as a sloping roof, limited space and little storage, but also provided Carly with a blank canvas.
“I decorated my first child’s room in neutral shades of ivory and mink, but when I found out I was expecting a boy this time, I decided to go with a more updated palette of soft greys and fresh white, with a charming woodland animal theme,” she says.
“I fell in love with the new Oxford furniture collection from Mamas & Papas and when I saw that it came in pebble grey it was like a light-bulb moment.”
The cotbed has a handy underbed storage drawer and the dresser has lots of drawers and dividers to provide plenty of storage.
After going into the store, Carly was impressed because it was laid out as a one-stop shop, making it easy to coordinate the collections. “I’m thrilled with the finished results. It all came together so easily and made my last few months before baby a stress-free time.”
THE ESSENTIAL KIT FOR THE NURSERY - AND TIME-PRESSED PARENTS
By Faye Greenslade
1. MAMAS & PAPAS
This one-stop shop has collections featuring prams, pushchairs, baby products, furniture and maternity wear.
“I couldn’t resist the bunny-shaped rug, crochet cushion and White Star Moses basket,” says Carly. The Mamas & Papas Patchwork and Welcome to the World ranges include soft furnishings and decor in a confection of baby-inspired motifs and she adds: “When I saw the bunny ears hooded blanket, grey pompom curtains and the 3D suede-effect bunny wallpaper I was sold!”
2. TOMMEE TIPPEE
Tommee Tippee do a range of stylish, time-saving gadgets, such as the Complete Feeding Set, which provides all the essentials to bottle feed safely, (electric steriliser, bottle warmer, eight BPA-free bottles), with colours in white, black or red. The Perfect Prep Machine gets a bottle ready in less than two minutes.
When it comes to breast-feeding, try their Electric Breast Pump followed by the Express and Go, which comes with 12 pouches to store in the fridge or freezer. The Sangenic nappy bin can hold up to 28 nappies.
3. KNUMA HUDDLE
The Knuma Huddle is the perfect bedside crib for keeping your baby close while they sleep in their own space. Soft, strong breathable mesh sides let you see your baby and can be lowered to make night feeds a breeze. It’s one of the highest cribs on the market, up to 70cm high (most only go up to around 50cm).
The base can be set to gently rock and once your baby has outgrown the crib the Huddle converts to a child’s desk and bench. You can choose from solid rustic beech, painted white or grey.
4. SILVER CROSS
Pram systems often have shocking price tags, so parents often look at secondhand or nearly new solutions, especially from family members or friends. However, famous name Silver Cross has come up trumps with their relatively affordable Wayfarer pram and pushchair system in seven colours that you can update by swapping the hood and apron and the changing bag - instantly making it look brand new.
5. MINI MAISON
Mini Maison is an Instagram hit, started by an interiors-loving mother aimed at style-conscious parents seeking unique accessories. Treats include Sass & Belle’s star suitcases, the Bunny Face Kraft Paper Storage Bag and a gorgeous LED white cloud light.
We also love the DIY Lightbox by A Little Lovely Company for displaying your own messages, Love You To The Moon and Back Banner Flag and fabulous prints like You Are Loved - perfect in a chunky monochrome frame. You can even get your baby’s name made up in a personalised wooden or neon sign.
The Snugglebundl hammock has won many awards for its nifty design. It has complete head support, making it safe to move your baby between car seat, pram and crib without waking it, and it doesn’t put any strain on your own muscles. It’s also ideal for gentle rocking, to reduce colic pain, and can also be used as a play mat, breastfeeding cover, pram and car seat liner. Choose from bright funky spots, cream, red or grey star designs.
For paint solutions, Carly used Valspar, which does a complete coverage emulsion for walls and ceilings and a paint matching service which let her to paint a cream shelf, cream wooden tie backs and a curtain pole in the exact shade of pebble grey to blend seamlessly with the nursery scheme. Available in tester pots, one litre and two-and a-half-litre pots, £28 for 2.5L, for stockists visit valsparpaint.co.uk