29 September, 2019

Baby On The Way? Home Hacks For House Proud Parents

Getting your home ready for a baby is one of the more pleasurable aspects of pregnancy – at least it is something else to focus on instead of any pregnancy aches and pains.  There’s a particular joy in planning a nursery and buying those cute bedding sets and soft toys.

It’s more of a challenge, of course, to keep the home looking spick and span once baby has arrived and you may find that the way you use your home space changes entirely.

I think I missed a trick because I probably should have got myself a bit more organised before I had kids and, when you’re in that nesting phase, it’s a great time to prepare yourself for the nappy onslaught whilst still maintaining an elegant home.

If you’d like to know how your home can look more polished than demolished, then here are some tips from Tommee Tippee ambassador, Sommer Pyne, owner of House Curious and mum to Lyla and Indy.

How to get your home ready for a baby

1. Get organised

As boring as it may sound getting organised and having everything in its place before the baby arrives will help you feel empowered and in control.

When you have the energy, start sorting through your cupboards and do a big cleanout. Get rid of anything that you don’t need to make space for all your new baby supplies!

Some things you’ll want to store away such as bottles, sterilising equipment and toys, but there may be other things that you need on display for quick and easy access.

Go through each room and think about how you’ll use the space.

Make a list of the things you need quick access to or that can be put away.

2. Feeding

Like many of us, Somer had a hard time with breastfeeding the first time around.  “I was feeding hourly and my daughter never seemed to get enough milk”, she says. “My saving grace and something I recommend to all my friends is to swap the night feed for formula. It was life-changing for me and my daughter slept through and gave my body a much-needed break”.

With formula feeding, you have a lot more equipment so that’s why it’s good to be organised. Make things easy for yourself so when you need to prep the baby’s bottle at 3 am you have everything to hand.

3. Storage solutions

Baby station

In the rooms that you spend most of your time in – like the living room, bedroom and kitchen – set up baby stations with all your baby essentials neatly packed away and on hand whenever you need them.

Baskets

Somer says “my daughter has a lot of toys but we cleverly hide them away so our house doesn’t look like a toy shop”.

Baskets not only look great but can also hide a mountain of things. Buy a decorative basket, put a sheet inside and fill it with all your child’s toys. Tie it up or just twist the top so it keeps everything together.

On top place a lovely woollen blanket or throw to hide the sheet and toys. This makes a great decorative piece just like you’ve seen in those stylish boutique hotels.

Chest

If you don’t have money to buy storage units or cupboards, a nice vintage chest is a great way to store games, toys or even blankets. You can also use them as a side table for when guests show up.

Built-in units

If you’re doing a renovation or redecorating it’s worth investing in good storage. Don’t go to branded cupboard designers, a good carpenter should be able to knock something bespoke up for half the price.

4. Practical and fuss-free interiors

Somer doesn’t like to compromise on her interior style so she still has velvet and fabric sofas. “My house probably doesn’t seem that kid-friendly but it is in so many ways”, she says.

Sofas

If comfort and style are high up on your list, what can you do to protect your furniture? The simple answer to this is to have a large throw or sheet to hand that can be easily stored under the sofa or in a cupboard.

When you are nursing or playing with your baby on the sofa cover it with the throw or sheet so that it’s protected.

Let’s be honest there are going to be moments of projectile vomit and if you’re already a mum/dad the chances are you have enough poo stories.

Flooring

If you’re redecorating consider the flooring carefully because this not only has a huge impact on the overall style of your home but we also know how messy kids can be… carpet may not be the smartest idea!

In Somer’s house, she only has concrete floors and wooden floors. So, no matter how many accidents there are, they’re easy to clean.

Clutter free

Get rid of the clutter and simplify your space with just the essentials and decorative pieces you absolutely love. In Somer’s family room, there is no coffee table in the middle and most of her decorative pieces are up high on the fireplace or on shelves. This way her daughter can run around freely without bumping her head on sharp edges. The other alternative is to have a soft ottoman.

Different zones

Have areas that are no go kid’s zones. Somer has a great family room and her daughter’s bedroom for her many toys, but there are certain rooms that are out of bounds.

Low cost interiors

It can be expensive prepping for a baby’s arrival but there are so many low-cost options. Ikea is brilliant for nursery furniture, Primark Home and the baby section for your essentials and Next is great for affordable clothing.

5. Decorating your nursery

Decorating the nursery can be a lovely experience but I know for some parents it can be a bit overwhelming. Here are some of my tips to help ease the pain:

Don’t worry about matching furniture I think it looks more eclectic and fun when you mix it up.

Don’t be fooled into thinking you must buy nursery furniture. Other than the cot the rest can be furniture that you already own.

For example, for Somer’s first baby she didn’t buy a changing station but simply used a vintage chest of drawers and placed a changing mat on top with all her essentials on display.

Be bold and creative; think about what colours appeal to you and how you want the room to feel. The baby won’t notice the décor but you will and you’ll be spending a lot of time in the nursery.

It’s important to create a relaxing environment so you will want to invest in a comfy chair – you don’t have to buy a nursing chair – buy something you like that will outgrow your children. Soft rugs are always a good idea and don’t forget your throws and cushions.

Are you getting your home ready for a baby?  How are you preparing your home?

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