8 Budget Nursery Decorating Tips All New Parents Need to Know

Updated 05/23/18
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Between conversations about “modern heirloom nurseries” and the “Rolls-Royce of strollers,” it’s very easy to get wrapped up in the idea that you have to spend a fortune on décor and furniture to end up with a beautiful nursery. Let’s not forget that this room will likely be redecorated after two or three years, so while you want to achieve the snug heavenly nursery look that makes everyone ooh and aah, there are a few tricks to keep in mind to keep your budget in check.

Ahead, we’ve pulled together some of the best budget nursery decorating tips—accompanied by some of the most awe-worthy nurseries that lead by example—so you can smartly shop your way to a gorgeous room for your little one, all while staying within your budget. Keep scrolling for our favorite money-saving tips for nursery décor.

Be Minimal With Your Crib Bedding

Budget Nursery Decorating Tips
Tessa Neustadt , design by Amber Interiors

It might be tempting to decorate your baby’s crib with a cloud-like array of pillows and plush toys, but you only need one of each. Stick to pretty patterned bedding and minimal styling to decorate on budget.

Serena & Lily Wave Crib Sheet $38

Don’t Splurge on a Crib

Budget Nursery Décor

Designer cribs are a thing, and they will cost you. Luckily there are tons of well-designed, affordable options out there. Before you go shedding thousands on a crib, shop around for budget alternatives, and look for three-in-one convertible options that will transform into a toddler bed when the time comes.

Babyletto Hudson 3-in-1 Convertible Crib $379

Be Smart With Art

Nursery Décor
Courtesy of Ashe + Leandro

The cuteness factor is always a winner in nursery décor, and no one beats The Animal Print Shop in that department. Are the larger prints a little out of budget? Opt for an assortment of four smaller prints. You’ll get four times the charm at a fraction of the cost.

The Animal Print Shop Baby Giraffe No.3 $25
Babyletto Lolly 3-in-1 Convertible Crib $400

IKEA-Hack Your Way to Beautiful Storage

Nursery Shelves
Sarah Sherman Samuels

Not a lot of storage space? No problem. All you need are a few IKEA Lack shelves and some attractive baskets, and you’ve got yourself a makeshift storage option that tucks away toys and clothes while allowing books to be on display.

IKEA Lack Wall Shelf $15

Make Use of Versatile Seating

Nursery Daybed
Ashley Capp , design by Christine Dovey

You might want to add seating in your nursery, like a sofa where guests can come and swoon over your newborn baby. We suggest a daybed that can be converted into a child’s bed so you can repurpose it when your toddler has outgrown the crib.

Pottery Barn Kids Jumbo Giraffe Plush $99
The Land of Nod Jenny Lind Daybed $699 $559

Use an Existing Dresser as a Changing Table

Changing Table
Emily Henderson

If you have an unused dresser lying around, use it as a double-duty changing station. You can also scour vintage stores or Etsy for budget alternatives. The dresser above was purchased at MintHome, an Etsy shop that specializes in refurbished vintage furniture. It was outfitted with a removable changing tray and pad.

Babyletto Lolly 3-Drawer Changer Dresser $399
Serena & Lily Diaper Changing Pad Insert $36

Add Color with Paint

Nursery Paint

Sometimes all you need to make a statement in a room is to add a bold geometric design. Or opt for something a bit more subtle, and paint the window and door trims in a bright contrasting color. It's a great way to decorate a nursery on a budget.

Kelsey McNatt Adventure Limited Edition Print $21

Buy Vintage

Vintage Nursery Décor
Joe Schmelzer via The Animal Print Shop

Visit your local antique and vintage stores or turn to eBay or Etsy to find vintage items, especially when it comes to pieces that you might not use once your baby is grown. A rocking chair is a perfect example.

Chairish Original Thonet Bentwood Rocker $600 $190

This post was originally published on February 9, 2016, and has since been updated.

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