Wednesday 08 September 2010 by Helen

Tips for decorating the nursery

It might sound a bit new age and kooky, but feng shui is something a lot of people consider when making decisions about their baby’s nursery. Some obviously take it more seriously than others, but it is a common belief that the arrangement of a room can have a real effect on its general aura, and on the well being of the people inside it.  So it might be worth some consideration, if for no other reason than to help you settle on a decision about where the cot should go, when you’ve grown tired of pushing it back and forth from one side of the room to the other!

a colour photo of a baby's nursery

What is Feng Shui?

It is a 3,000 year old Chinese practice of interior decorating. It is said to encourage the open flow of energy, the idea being that you arrange a room so that the energy can flow freely, and fill everything and everyone in it with positive vibes.

Why is Feng shui important for babies?

Experts agree that the nursery is a really important place to start putting the feng shui principles into practice. I think it’s the main room that most parents will spend the majority of their time preparing, it’s the baby’s  personal space, even if they’re not necessarily conscious of that fact, they will subconsciously be affected by what surrounds them in their first little kingdom. It is said that in maximising the energy in baby’s room, there are several factors to consider, such as room location, colours and furniture arrangement, all of which lay good foundations.  According to feng shui consultant Kathryn Weber, feng shui can promote well being and help to make babies less fussy.

Striking a balance

You’re going to want to put your own stamp on your baby’s nursery, make it special, and fill it with all the lovely presents you’ve been writing endless thank you cards for. But, I do believe, whether its related to feng shui or not, there’s a lot to be said for the notion that a clutter free space promotes a clutter free mind. In order to create a calming environment when it comes to the nursery, it might be worth trying not to get carried away with too many toys and decorations. I guess it's hard to strike the balance between a room that has character and is cosy and welcoming for your baby, and a room that is a bit hectic and claustrophobic.

Furniture

  • Apparently it is a good idea to set the nursery up towards the back of the home. It is believed that rooms at the back of a house have a more peaceful energy, while rooms at the front have a more lively and active energy.
  • Place furniture securely. In particular, ensure that any furniture you or your child are likely to rest on is against a solid wall and is placed somewhere with a clear view of the window. It’s also recommended that you don’t place furniture facing a door and that you don’t place any shelving above cots or changing tables.
  • The use of natural materials is recommended when it comes to baby’s bedding, curtains and furniture, and choose wood over plastic where possible.

Choosing colours

    Image of a feng shui colour chart
  • Common colours for nurseries are pink for a girl and blue for a boy.  I found it interesting discovering what vibes these colours give off. It is said pink encourages love and blue promotes relaxation, but there are other colours to consider in feng shui practice. Orange, for example, is often referred to as the ‘social’ colour. It promotes lively conversations and good times in your home, so it might not be the best colour for baby’s nursery if you’re trying to get a peaceful night’s sleep.
  • Other advice suggests the use of simple shades that reflect nature, such as trees, birds and flowers.  The consensus seems to be that calming neutral colours are more suitable for newborns .  You can always move onto purples and oranges, the more playful colours, when the nursery becomes less of a sleep-zone and more of a play-zone.

Technology-free zone

Every article I've read has emphasised the detrimental effect that an electrical overload can have within a baby’s sleeping environment. Where possible, keep electric gadgets to a minimum in the nursery.  So it’s definitely time to peel that iPhone or BlackBerry away from your palm and perhaps even create a designated technology-free zone in your home, assuming there isn’t one already. Technology and electrical devices are pretty hard to escape and obviously (this advice is within reason) some devices are necessary, for example baby monitors. Keep the necessary items, just cut back on the number of plugs in sockets, around the cot in particular. This does also extend to the nursery in general, and in an ideal world, to the surrounding bedrooms. But, these are just cautionary words, don’t let them stop you from nipping in on baby occassionally, armed with a video camera, to capture their feng-shui induced peaceful sleep!

Photo and image credits: via Flickr Home Space & AnnaHape Gallery

 

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Tags: Baby |  new babies |  sleep |  tips | 
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