If you’re like most people, the room that starts out as a nursery for your little one ends up being his/her domain well into the teens. That long-term situation is the main reason why you should make or buy the best baby bedroom furniture that you can. A wrong decision in the beginning of life is something you will have to live with—or waste even more money to correct. Here are some tips for choosing the furniture you need.
Baby Bedroom Furniture Basics
1. Choose baby bedroom furniture that fits into your budget. Depending on how your nursery will be set up, your initial expenses will be $650 to $1000 or more to stock the whole bedroom. Unless you are extremely wealthy or have very generous relatives, you will need to choose which pieces will be investments (spend more) and which pieces will be good enough (spend less). Advice on how to spend your money is below.
2. Find furniture that fits. Just like with the rest of your home, having a room crammed with furniture is cumbersome, inconvenient, and visually unappealing. Have a place in mind for each piece of baby bedroom furniture and measure twice to confirm it will fit. Consider the height, width, depth, and how much surrounding space is needed for comfort and activity (changing diapers, putting on clothes, playing, etc.). Keep in mind that you do not want to block vents or doors. Also decide whether you want to place furniture in front of windows if necessary. The best way to ensure you have enough space is to draw your nursery on graph paper or plot it with online drawing software. Then draw each unit of baby bedroom furniture to scale and move the graphics around to discover the best configuration. Advice on how to fill tight spaces is below.
3. Decide upon a theme or style. While some parents decide to go baby crazy, I suggest a long-term approach. Do not buy “childish” furniture that your kid will outgrow—unless you plan to replace the furniture later. Instead, buy classic, traditional, or modern baby bedroom furniture that will fit with your overall décor, and then just go crazy with the decorations. You can paint the room in fun colors (which can always be repainted later), buy stick-on decals in a certain theme (which can be removed later), and buy inexpensive accent pieces (which can be donated or recycled later). To save money, choose baby bedroom furniture that will look good with different color schemes, bedding choices, and child interests.
Finding the Best Baby Bedroom Furniture
Here are some items you should consider adding to your baby’s bedroom:
Baby Crib / Bed
A crib is basically a baby bed. Your child will likely sleep in a crib until the age of two, although some babies will outgrow the crib earlier due to their size or activity level. Make sure that the crib you choose meets federal safety standards. When organizing your baby’s bedroom, keep the crib at least a foot away from all other furniture and walls and never place the crib near draperies or blind cords. These precautions will minimize your baby’s risk of being trapped between furniture or being strangled by cords.
Before your baby arrives, decide whether you will 1) purchase or build a baby crib, toddler bed, and full-size bed when the time comes or 2) invest in a convertible crib and then just use conversion kits to transform the baby crib into a toddler bed, day bed, or adult bed. If you do not have the money now, you can easily buy or build each piece when you need it. On the other hand, convertible cribs are very popular because they are less expensive than the individual units, they come in a variety of styles and colors, and they more convenient than dealing with three separate furniture pieces. Whether you buy a convertible crib or make one with baby furniture woodworking plans, it will typically be one of the “investment” pieces mentioned earlier.
Changing Table / Dresser
As with the baby crib, you have another decision to make. Do you use a changing table and then switch to a dresser when the time is right, or do you buy or make a changing table/dresser combo unit?
A changing table is generally used until a child is about a year old or until he/she outgrows it, so it will not be a permanent part of your baby bedroom furniture. Understand that changing tables are not just designed for babies; they are also constructed with your back in mind! Hunching over a bed or rolling around on the floor can take its toll. The best changing tables are constructed at a height that minimizes bending and have enough convenient storage space for diapers, wipes, lotions, powders, and other baby supplies.
A dresser is similarly used for getting dressed, but for older children. Top-heavy dressers should be secured to a wall so they are not a tipping hazard, and the drawers should not be able to fall out onto your child. Plenty of storage for clothes is the goal of a dresser.
Since a dresser is one piece of baby bedroom furniture that can last into the teenage years, you may want to start with an inexpensive yet safe changing table. Hand-me-downs are fine as long as they are sturdy, do not have splinters or broken bars, and do not have chipped paint. You can then transition to a more expensive—and more permanent—dresser when the changing table can no longer be used. Otherwise, I would recommend buying or building a combo unit that does not look like a changing table, such as one with removable rails and guards. These units will match your decorating scheme and can often save you money.
Buy or Build the Best Baby Bedroom Furniture
With a few thoughts and a little planning, the best baby bedroom furniture is easy to find. Whether your taste falls toward cottage cozy, modern chic, or traditional comfort, you can locate all of the furniture that meets your needs. I hope that you will decide to construct at least one piece of baby furniture yourself with BestBabyFurniturePlans.com’s free woodworking plans. If, however, carpentry does not fit into your parenting or pre-parenting schedule, there are plenty of furniture manufacturers who can meet your tastes and budget. Look for a sale, shop from store to store, and snag the best price. I hope this advice will help you to choose the best baby bedroom furniture.