Get ready for baby’s arrival with a nursery color scheme that is soothing and cheery.
Designing a color scheme for your new nursery is a fun way to get ready for baby’s arrival. You’ll choose colors not only for your walls, but also for bed linens, rugs, window treatments and accessories to build a look that creates the perfect environment for your new addition while also reflecting your family’s decorating style.
You want your baby’s room to be a nurturing, comforting place for your family’s new addition. However, especially if you have a small budget, you want to choose colors that will allow the room’s look to grow with your child without a lot of work.
Color brings personality to any room, and you want your baby’s bedroom to be nurturing as well as cheery. For colors, you can go soft or bright, or you can use a combination of the two. Neutral shades can create a nice backdrop for a non-gender-specific nursery that will have more staying power than pastel shades well into childhood as your baby grows. A room with neutral walls can be brightened by color in rugs, window treatments and accessories.
Oranges, blues, greens, purples and yellows are good choices for sunny colors, and earth tones work nicely for either a little girl or boy. A girl’s nursery with sage green walls and warm pink accents in curtains or an accent wall creates a pretty look that will last as your daughter enters grade school. Blue and green makes a great combination for a boy’s room.
For a serene look, incorporate an analogous color scheme with shades that are next to one another on a color wheel. A monochromatic look, which uses varying shades of the same color, creates depth and serenity if you’re using neutral or cool colors. Or imagine a nursery with creamy white walls and soft white bed linens and curtains. Vary the textures you incorporate into the nursery through rugs, bed linens and window curtains.
If you desire more energy from your colors, try a triadic color scheme, which uses shades spaced evenly apart on the color wheel. Some color combinations lend themselves to certain themes, particularly in a baby’s room. Themes such as airplanes, animals or storybook characters are popular, but keep in mind these furnishings, wallpaper and coordinating colors may be quickly outgrown and need to be changed sooner than more flexible, simpler color schemes.
When pulling your look together, keep in mind that many designers advise against having more than five large areas of color. Too many wall colors can be distracting and cause visual tension. Also, too much red, such as red walls, can confuse a small baby, because their eyes see that color before others. The best colors for babies to wake up to are softer shades, such as blues, greens and pinks, because those colors develop at around the same time in a baby’s eye.
When babies are first born, the only colors they can see well are black, white and grey. You’ll want to introduce a few colors into baby’s room, but experts recommend avoiding painting the walls red because it is the first color a baby sees, and a room with mostly red can be confusing. The best colors for babies to wake up to are shades that are softer, such as blues, greens and pinks, because a baby’s eyes can perceive those colors at about the same time as they develop.
If you like, you can launch an idea for your baby’s room from a nursery rhyme or children’s story. Favorites include the classics “Goodnight Moon,” “Peter Rabbit,” or “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.” Consider painting a mural or even painting the words on the walls.
Neutral walls are nice if you’re waiting until birth to learn your baby’s gender. You can add and change framed artwork in colors you love, and neutral walls can work as your child gets older. Neutrals are also a good choice if you want to showcase bedding, a hanging quilt, wall art, photographs or heirloom furniture pieces in your baby’s nursery. Neutral shades work well with either traditional or modern furnishings.
Other colors that can be gender-neutral include robin’s-egg blue, sage green and golden yellow. These colors also have more staying power than traditional pastel pink and blue.
White, also a good choice for a nursery that is soothing and airy, works particularly well with traditional-style furniture and cuddly bedding.
By eschewing “babyish” pastel shades and choosing brighter hues, you can paint the room in colors that will still be appropriate as your child’s own tastes develop. Your chosen colors can even go on the ceiling in a lighter hue than you would paint on the walls.
A mural can be a fun way to bring a baby’s room to life, and it doesn’t have to be fancy; simple blocks of color in the shapes of animals, trees or flowers will do. Keep in mind that a very “baby-themed” mural will probably need to be changed sooner than a solid wall or one with a simple stripe, damask or other pattern. You can also pair or group complementary colors together to create a cheery look.
Beautiful Baby Rooms
Create a nurturing haven for your newborn with decorating ideas from these 15 precious nurseries.
For Girls: Pretty Stripes
Vintage prints and a color palette of green and pink create a truly sweet girl’s nursery.
For Girls: Pink and Chocolate Confection
As one of the trendiest color combinations, pink and chocolate are the perfect base for this elegant girl’s nursery. A crystal chandelier tops off the design, while alternating stripes anchor the space.
For Girls: Sweet Pink Palette
Looking to create a traditional girl’s nursery? Try a pink and white color palette combined with classic furnishings.
For Girls: Purple Whimsy
In this whimsical nursery, the home owner complements a pastel palette with warm wood tones and white accents.
For Boys: Transitional Style
For Boys: Contemporary Flair
Create a minimalist nursery with sleek, modern furnishings and simple window treatments.
For Boys: Mod Pad
Get creative with circles and stripes in bold colors. Not only are they visually interesting, but they also create a whimsical and inventive environment.
For Boys: Chic Circles
A great design repeats an element throughout the space to tie the look together. For this nursery, designer Angelo Surmelis uses circles in the window treatments, area rug and even the mobile solar system.
Gender-Neutral: Cottage Style
A combination of fabrics, including toile, polka dots and plaid, are used to create a cottage-inspired nursery for a boy or girl.
Gender-Neutral: Organic and Stylish
Designer Stephanie McWilliams creates a calming environment using all green products, including a solid wood crib, non-toxic paint and 100% organic accessories. The walls are painted green to represent growing and blue to add a calming effect.
Gender-Neutral: Bold Red
Not all baby rooms have to feature a pastel color palette. For this nursery, the homeowner uses bold colors and whimsical animals for a modern and playful environment.
Gender-Neutral: Modern Pastels
Pastel greens, yellows and blues are used to create a colorful grid wall that highlights the brilliant white crib and simple fabrics.
Room for Two: Neutral Palette
A small space can still be transformed into a room for two with an elegant daybed and some smart space planning. The traditional crib and neutral palette also help to expand the room visually.
Room for Two: Nautical Inspiration
A calming blue hue, horizontal stripes and nautical accents are perfect for this seaside home.
Room for Two: Royal Elegance
For this room for two, designer Sherri Blum had the unique challenge of creating a nursery that wasn’t too masculine or too feminine. To make the space appealing to a boy and a girl, she used a soft apple green for the wall with accent colors of lavender, blue and yellow.