Wow- it really is Spring! TWO pairs of our close friends were blessed with new babies Monday, despite the fact that they were due at opposite ends of the month. What are the odds? In celebration of little Benjamin and Cade, I’m inspired to write on current nursery trends that I’m loving right now. Since there are a lot of elements and styles out there to consider when designing a nursery, I’m breaking this down into a couple of posts. We’ll start with the crib, because most importantly, the baby needs somewhere to sleep. Also, aesthetically, it is the anchoring piece in the nursery and sort of sets the tone for what sort of style you are going to run with.

There are a few general trends that seem to be dominating the baby/ child design world these days. I would say I mostly favor a whimsical, fairly contemporary look, when it comes to kid stuff. Although I love certain elements of the posh / French provincial aesthetic that places like Restoration Hardware have been pushing over the past few years, ultimately I find that when overdone, this palette and aesthetic runs the scale from appearing a little too contrived and a bit dreary to sometimes bordering on a little creepy, like something out of The Addams Family.

The nursery in Addam’s Family Values.

Morticia- “Oh, Gomez, it’s dark, it’s depressing, it’s desolate…”

Gomez: “…it says “Toddler”!”

Morticia: “It’s a dream.”

Now obviously this is far from dark or depressing, but to me, this room just feels too adult. Where’s the happy baby stuff? As a whole, this isn’t very stimulating or whimsical for young eyes. However, a piece here or there (because Restoration Baby does have some beautiful things) used with other, more eclectic items can be adorable.

When it came time to do my son’s nursery, I found that I was actually drawn to a bright, modern, eclectic look, rather than a more precious, formal one. This was actually a bit surprising, since I tend toward antique and cottage-chic in most of my decorating (and it’s what I grew up with). After months of searching and deliberating, I went with the Babyletto Modo Crib in white with espresso feet, since it matched the  espresso wood changing table we already were given and everything else that I wanted to get in white. Also, the price was right, the construction and finish are safe, and it converts to an adorable toddler bed… rail included (which is rare these days)! Also, I love that it’s lower to the ground than a lot of other cribs, keeping it easy to get him in and out as we lowered the mattress.

One thing to keep in mind- your toddler will most likely become a little beaver and devour the side rails…. although I had not anticipated this, I am glad I chose a crib with a non- toxic finish. I am a little bummed, however, that it will not be pristine for the next baby we may have one day. Oh well.

However, if cost had not been an option, I most certainly would have considered the Stokke Sleepi round crib. I love that this (like their amazing high chairs) will grow with your child from birth, as a bedside bassinet, to a big kid’s bed, to chairs! We splurged and bought the high- chair, which also grows with your child (through adulthood!) and it is awesome. Really well built.

The high chair is shown here as well, in green.

However, you don’t have to go contemporary to get a sweet, eclectic, and personal look. I love mixing and matching old with new, modern with traditional, so starting with a more conservative crib can be a great starting point for a lovely, layered space.  One of my favorite cribs is the Jenny Lind, by DaVinci. It’s only about $200 and looks like a beautiful family heirloom (except with all the safety regulations required now).

Next time: we’ll discuss other nursery furniture must haves and fun accessories.

– Chelsea