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baby in cribNew babies are adorable and sweet and they come with a lot of stuff. If you have any doubts about that, just go to a baby shower or browse through the gift registry of someone who is expecting. Babies may spend most of their early years asleep, but the things you need for their waking hours are astounding. Clothing, toys, diapers and accessories, bath items, and bedtime supplies all take up space — and need to be stored somewhere in your nursery.

The rules of storage remain the same as in other parts of the home. You just need to apply them to your baby’s room.

1. Use All Available Space

Unless your chosen nursery room has abundant closets and built in shelves, you’ll need to get creative about where to store things. The first thing to do is expand your idea of the “available” space. For instance, there is plenty of space above your head that you probably ignore. Install floor-to-ceiling cabinets or shelves or simply put a round-the-room shelf 12 inches from the ceiling and you have “extra” storage space.

Look under, behind, and on things to find even more useable space. There are storage solutions that fit under the crib or changing table, hooks or systems that hang on doors, and you can even attach pouches or boxes to the outside of a bookcase, dresser, or the crib itself.

2. Multi-function Rules

It should become second nature to look at a piece of furniture and ask “what else does it do?” A dresser that doubles as a changing table is the most obvious example of multi-function nursery furniture. An ottoman that lifts to reveal storage or a window seat with built in drawers are other options.

3. Think Outside the Box

changing areaThe box is never big enough for creative solutions. Here are just a few to get your creative juices flowing.

  • Mount baskets or boxes on the wall for shelving
  • Use small suitcases to store seasonal clothing or items your baby will grow into
  • Install a shelf or cabinet above the changing area
  • Use table top drawers for small toys or personal care items
  • Put an extra rod in the closet to hang additional clothes or bedding
  • Re-purpose that hanging basket from the kitchen by placing it over the changing table or near the feeding chair
  • Consider using a ladder to drape blankets and towels
  • Attach a pocket or pouch to the side of the chair or crib to keep baby’s favorite rattle or toy in easy reach

Many of these ideas can be purchased or are easy DIY projects. It’s also good to paint or cover purchased items in fabric that matches the color scheme of your nursery. The result will be a seamless, functional nursery with nearly invisible storage.

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