Baby nursery ideas for small spaces – how to maximize space in the nursery.
For tiny humans, babies sure require a lot of equipment. There is so much stuff that you are expected to have for your newborn…cribs, changing tables, bassinets, diaper pails, a swing…and the list goes on and on!
When you are getting ready for your new baby, one of the first challenges is figuring out how to fit everything “baby” into your home. You might have a dedicated nursery, or maybe you are trying to carve out some space in your master bedroom, but the same basic challenge applies to both; how do you make a beautiful nursery in a small space?
Today I want to share with you some strategies and products that can help you make the most out of a small space for your baby nursery.
- 11 Baby Nursery Ideas for Small Rooms to Maximize Space
- 1) Use a Mini Crib
- 2) Choose Double Duty Furniture
- 3) Maximize vertical space
- 4) Use the back of the nursery door
- 5) Utilize under-the-crib space
- 6) Embrace minimalism
- 7) Maximize your closet space
- 8) Think outside the box
- 9) Rolling cart storage
- 10) Forgo the glider
- 11) Make sure you’ve got adequate lighting
- What Should Be In a Nursery Room?
- Does a Baby Really Need a Nursery?
- How do you make a small nursery look bigger?
- The Final Word on Baby Nursery Ideas for Small Spaces
- More Reading
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11 Baby Nursery Ideas for Small Rooms to Maximize Space
There are many different ways to approach maximizing and organizing the space you have available for a baby nursery. You can choose one idea from the list below or do a combination of several nursery ideas for small rooms.
1) Use a Mini Crib
Not only are mini cribs adorable, they are actually quite a clever product choice for a small nursery. A mini crib is exactly what it sounds like, a miniature version of a baby crib that takes up far less space.
The average mini crib is designed to fit a baby up to around 35 pounds and 35 inches. Depending on the size (and agility) of your baby, a mini crib could save TONS of space in your smaller nursery and still last until baby is around 2 years old, by then you’d probably want to switch to a toddler bed anyway!
This is our favorite mini crib because it’s on wheels (so you can move it wherever you need it) and folds down really well for storage.
2) Choose Double Duty Furniture
Making thoughtful baby furniture choices can also maximize your small nursery space. You can purchase a changing pad and place it on top of a normal dresser. Or you can forgo the dresser altogether and buy a crib with built-in drawers. A changing table isn’t a necessity either… many parents change their baby on the floor or in their crib.
3) Maximize vertical space
There is a lot that can be done with vertical space to make a smaller nursery feel more spacious and organized. A few useful ideas: add peg board to walls, put up basket shelves that are stylish and useful, display and store books on wall shelves, use a wall hanging rod to make a useful and cute clothing hanger.
4) Use the back of the nursery door
There are also many products that can even make the back of your nursery door usable space. Consider basket over-the-door organizers, pocket over-the-door organizers, or stick-on heavy duty Command hooks with cute hanging baskets
5) Utilize under-the-crib space
Another spot that you can find extra space is under the crib. If your crib doesn’t have built in drawers, you can purchase an underbed wire bin, an underbed cart with wheels, or even a wooden drawer designed especially for under cribs. Just be sure to check height and length measurements before buying!
6) Embrace minimalism
Choosing to limit the decor and toys in your small nursery will help immensely with how large and organized it appears. It is so easy to fall into the trap of buying #allthecutethings but if you keep in mind how much your baby actually needs during their first few years of life you can keep their nursery pretty sparse while keeping your baby perfectly comfortable.
7) Maximize your closet space
If your small nursery has a closet, you can make smart choices that will help you use every square inch of it. You could install closet organizers, hanging shelves, add a second lower clothes rod, hang organizers on the backs of closet doors or even take off the closet doors to provide easier access.
8) Think outside the box
There are creative ways to make a smaller nursery more manageable. You could take the doors off the closet and use the added square footage for the crib or changing table.
Consider separating some of the nursery essentials into a different room. You could keep a glider or chair for nursing in your bedroom or living room. Or keep baby’s dresser/changing table in your master bedroom closet. It might even be more convenient that way!
9) Rolling cart storage
A very useful way to add storage is with a rolling cart. You could convert a cart into a diaper supply holder with wipes, onesies, lotion and diapers. Or even use it as a dresser for your baby’s clothes! Each level could hold a different type of clothing.
10) Forgo the glider
A comfortable place to feed or rock your baby doesn’t have to have as large of a footprint as a traditional rocker/glider. Take into account how much space you have for a chair and look at smaller options that can still be cozy and comfortable.
11) Make sure you’ve got adequate lighting
Another important component of a comfortable nursery is appropriate lighting. Consider adding a warm-toned wall lamp for nighttime feeding and changing. It will free up surface space for other items and help make nighttime easier on both parents and baby.
What Should Be In a Nursery Room?
Let’s talk about what you actually need in a baby’s nursery. What are the essentials and what things are nice-to-have (but you can you live without)?
Baby Nursery Essentials
- Sleeping space: Whether it is a bassinet, a mini-crib, or a full size crib, somewhere safe for your baby to sleep is an absolute nursery necessity.
- Baby Clothes: Having clean clothes nearby will make changing a wet/crying/tired baby so much easier.
- Diapers/Wipes: Again, you’ll want all of the things for changing your baby nearby especially at nighttime.
Nice-to-Have Items in your nursery
- Chair for feeding: So helpful for late night feedings or reading books to your baby during the day.
- Small table next to your chair: It is so helpful to have a place to put your water, snack, book or phone while you feed or rock your baby.
- Changing table: If you can fit one, a changing table will help reduce strain on your back and make an unpleasant task more bearable.
- Diaper Pail: This is definitely NOT a necessity but can make diaper disposal easier and less smelly. If you use cloth diapers a good diaper pail is more of a necessity. (psst… we talk about the best diaper pail for cloth diapers here.
Unnecessary Items in your nursery:
- Toys: Your baby won’t need these for several months and even then will not use them very often in the bedroom
- Decor: I know. It’s cute… but let’s face it, decor is more for you than for the baby. All they need is milk, a clean diaper, a cozy spot for sleeping and people who love them.
Does a Baby Really Need a Nursery?
A dedicated room for your baby is nice, but if you are short on space a nursery is definitely not a necessity.
Your baby can sleep in your room in a bassinet or bedside sleeper. You can change him or her on your bed or a portable changing mat. You can feed baby on your living room couch or on your bed.
Nurseries are adorable but your baby will get along just fine sharing a space with his/her favorite people.
How do you make a small nursery look bigger?
If you are working with a small room but want to make your baby’s space look bigger there are a few design tricks you can use.
- Paint Color: Warm colors like orange, red and yellow will make space feel cozy. To make your nursery appear bigger, choose cool paint colors including shades of green, blue or purple.
- Go Monochromatic: Keeping materials in your nursery all one color will make the room appear bigger (and is so on trend right now!).
- Move Furniture: Try different configurations of furniture to find the layout that best utlizes space and makes the room look bigger. Generally, if there is a clear path from the door to the window it will help expand the space visually.
- Add reflective surfaces: If there is space to hang a mirror, it can help your nursery appear larger.
- Let in Light: Use airy fabrics for window treatments and add lighting to the nursery. Nothing closes in a space like dark, unlit corners.
- Simplify Furnishings: As noted earlier, use furniture that serves dual purposes OR let go of furniture that isn’t a necessity. The less furniture, the more spacious the nursery will appear.
- Clear out the clutter: If you have space to store larger size clothing/diapers in another room or closet do it! The nursery will appear bigger if it doesn’t have every inch jam-packed with stuff.
The Final Word on Baby Nursery Ideas for Small Spaces
One thing I’ve learned over my years as a parent is that we put too much pressure on ourselves in the early days of parenting. Simplifying things… even when it comes to your baby’s nursery, will help lower your stress levels during this emotional time. As a bonus, a simplified nursery will help maximize your small nursery space.
I hope these tips will help you carve out a perfect spot for your baby. If your nursery is small (or non-existent!) take heart that you have the ability to make your baby’s space organized, comfortable and filled with the simple things that your baby needs to thrive.