How to create a stimulating & inspiring nursery for your baby?
Create the right balance.
You want to offer a stimulating environment where your baby can play and learn, but the nursery is also where you want your little one to find the calm and soothing he needs to rest, nap and sleep. To create the right balance, combine calming wall colours, warm, neutral floor coverings and soothing bedding with brighter and bolder accents, such as colourful wall art, patterned curtains, brightly coloured blankets and toys.
Resist the temptation to surround your baby in soft pastels.
The key to creating a stimulating nursery environment is to keep things simple. Use warm, bold colours, and simple shapes and patterns so your baby can differentiate between them. At birth, a baby’s retina is not fully developed and can only distinguish the strong contrasts between light and dark.
So, although pale, soft pastels are appealing to adults, they do not contribute towards a baby brain development. These soothing colours are barely visible to your newborn, who may only see them as a single shade all blurred together. To create a really inspiring, baby-friendly nursery space for your little one, avoid the allure of pastel pinks and baby blues.
Instead, choose a bold and bright palette that includes the powerful contrast of black and white or yellow, then watch your baby’s eye light up as she is drawn into the world with wonder and excitement!
Simple shapes and repeating patterns boost brain development.
Offering your child lots of opportunities to see and experience large simple shapes such as stars or circles will expand her familiarity to the shapes and will help her recognise shapes as they appear in the world around her.Showing your baby repeating shapes that increase or decrease in size will assist in your child’s understanding of size and progression (things getting bigger or smaller), and therefore promote brain development.
Look up! The sky’s the limit!
Babies spend a lot of their time on their backs, looking at the walls and ceiling. Therefore, it’s a good idea to decorate the ceiling in such a way that helps develop brain growth. Babies often wake up in the night-time and can find it difficult to learn to settle themselves, especially if it’s light.
Having a strong visual stimuli in the nursery that your baby can see from the cot may have a positive calming effect on your little one. When the baby wakes up, she has something of interest to focus on and which can act as a distraction and help with resettling. Brightly coloured pictures and mobiles that hang from the wall or ceiling will engage babies and by regular exposure they will become fixated on the items. This interest will lead to babies stretching their arms out, trying to reach it, building up body strength. Stick glow-in-the-dark stars on the ceiling, buy bright and cheerful lampshades, or choose a simple and brightly patterned wallpaper border to decorate around the edges of the ceiling.
Summary: To create a stimulating environment for your baby chose nursery accents providing variety of bright, contrasting colours, repetitive shapes and patterns.
Article written in consultation with a Leading Child Psychologist, Dr. Amanda Gummer.