Getting ready for baby is one of the most exciting aspects of pregnancy – there's something about picking out clothes, painting the nursery walls and stocking up on things you need for a new baby that's just so fun. It's the nesting phenomenon at its finest. But before you start going crazy over the little details of your child's nursery, you might want to take a moment to read up on some of the mistakes that many new moms make. There are several ways decorating the nursery can go wrong – here's what not to do.
Choosing looks over function
Pretty much everything that goes in a baby's room is adorable, which can make for some really great shopping trips when you're trying to improve your mood during pregnancy and get your mind off of those pesky pregnancy symptoms. But some moms pay too much attention to what looks good and not enough attention on what's going to make taking care of their baby easier. Think carefully about how things are going to work when you're considering placement. Are the diaper changing essentials stored near the changing table? Are those cute curtains going to block out enough light or present a strangle hazard? Are there shelves with knickknacks on them placed too near the crib where your toddler will be able to reach them? Is the crib placed too close to the window? All valid questions.
Packing it all in
Clearly, there are tons of baby products out there that you might be itching to get your hands on – but you don't need to pack all of them into your baby's space. A nursery should be comfortable and uncluttered – not a space where every single toy, book and kids' furniture item is displayed. Your baby probably won't feel as comfortable in a room that's filled to the brim with bright accessories and more toys than he or she knows what to do with. Keep it simple. Remember that your baby will outgrow many of these items sooner than you think anyway. Opt for the necessities and a few things you know your baby will use.
Putting toys, pillows and blankets in the crib
The safest way for a baby to sleep is on a firm mattress with a mattress cover and nothing else in the crib. Pillows, blankets and stuffed animals are all suffocation hazards when your baby can't move around on his or her own yet. Resist the urge to give your child what you think are bedtime comforts. Save the pillows, plushies and soft blankets for when your baby is older and they no longer pose a risk.
Using too-bright colors
It's well-documented that colors have a big impact on mood. For example – when you're stressed about pregnancy, would you rather stare at a red wall or a blue one? The blue one would probably help calm you down! Babies may not be as intuitive about color as we are, but they can pick up on visual cues. If you surround your child in a nursery full of fire-engine red, yellow, orange and lime green, it's probably going to have an effect on how well your child is able to get to sleep. Save the bright colors for the playroom when your child grows older, and stick to soothing or neutral shades in the nursery. It'll help you both relax whenever you're in the room, which could lead to longer naps and more nights when you don't have to wake up several times to comfort your child and get him or her back to sleep.