Obviously, having a baby costs money, but it isn't necessary to spend a small fortune getting ready for your new arrival. While some purchases are essential for safety reasons (crib and car seat), other items are musts for some parents, but not for others (baby monitor, changing table, rocking chair). And then there are some purchases that are out-and-out frills (adorable wallpaper with matching curtains, bedcover and bumper pads).
Perhaps the most sensible advice about equipping your baby's room comes from Sharon McKay, author of The New Parent Survival Handbook. She writes, "Instead of sinking every last cent into baby's layette, think about what would make you a better parent." For example, instead of buying a changing table... buy a hands-free phone headset. Or, she says, "Buy a dishwasher instead of a rocking chair."
You need to free yourself from some preconceived idea about what a baby's room should look like, and instead strive for a baby's room that works for you.
If you'd like to create a beautiful nursery for your baby without depleting your bank account, keep these tips in mind.
Use paint instead of spending a lot of money on wallpaper. Invite friends and relatives to come over and dip their hands into a bucket of paint and then place their handprints on the wall. They can then sign their names underneath. This way, your baby gets to enjoy a room covered in the type of highly contrasting pattern that most appeals to young infants. What an interesting way to introduce your baby to the numerous significant people in his or her life!
Other ideas for decorating inexpensively include drawing hundreds of happy faces with colored markers, purchasing brightly wallpaper borders, stencilling your own borders, or hanging either baby quilts or other wall decorations, like these adorable letters from Quilts Just 4 Kids.
If you are good at crafts, you can also save yourself a pretty penny by making padded wallhangings and other decorations.
If you do decide to spend a little more money and wallpaper your baby's room, try to find something that isn't too babyish. Pastel ducks may look cute now, but just try to convince your five-year-old boy that ducks are where it's at when he has his heart set on race cars or Pokemon!
Also, make sure that any wallpaper that you choose is scrubbable. The wallpaper is likely to be hit with any number of substances from spitup to crayons to things we don't even want to mention.
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