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Welcome Home Baby -- Hot Nursery Trends For 2016

One of the most fun things to do during pregnancy is designing and decorating your baby-to-be’s room as you get ready to welcome him or her to the world. While you are choosing a crib, bedding, wallpaper or wall stickers, you are anticipating and picturing the tiny being that will soon fill not only the room, but your heart.

Many people have long known exactly what they want baby’s room to look like. Others need inspiration. So what are some of the current trends you’ll be seeing in the months ahead? We talked to some designers to find out what’s hot. And note: most of these can be done on budget without breaking the bank.

The good earth: Consumers are becoming more educated about the health impact of products in their homes and they are increasingly choosing those that are eco-friendly and sustainable, “especially when the occupant’s body and upper respiratory system is still developing,” says nursery design consultant DeAnna Radaj of DeAnna On Design. “They are looking at flooring, carpeting and furniture that are healthy and safe for baby.”

Product labeling continues to improve, she notes. Avoid furniture made with formaldehyde (some compressed wood contains this), she suggests. Check labels for any components or ingredients that may be toxic and potentially harmful to baby, or ask manufacturers for their safety data sheets. Expect to see an increase in bedding, rugs and furniture made of bamboo, a “green,” natural element.

Calming colors: Pantone's colors of 2016 are a pale pink Rose Quartz and baby blue Serenity, while Sherwin-Williams is celebrating Alabaster and Benjamin Moore chose Simply White. “All are very calming and Zen-like,” says Radaj. She anticipates soft pastel colors to be prominent in nurseries this year instead of bolder primary colors.

Back to nature: Nature pictures (clouds, moon, trees, etc.), whimsical woodland designs and playful animals continue to be popular for nursery décor. “It’s very soothing for baby,” according to Radaj.

New metals: Move over gold and silver and enter rose gold. This is the new color for all things metal, including dresser pulls, lamps, side tables and photo frame accents, says celebrity nursery designer Vanessa Antonelli.

Interesting features: While wood panels have been popular since 2014, “trendsetters have moved on,” says Antonelli, owner of NessaLee Baby, a luxury baby boutique in the NJ Metro area. Marbleized wallpapers, fabric panels and stone elements are all going to make their debut in baby rooms.

Bye, bye bedding: Once upon a time the nursery’s focus and color palette were determined by the crib’s bedding, but now less is more due to safety fears about suffocation. Instead, says Antonelli,“Parents are adding tons of colors, décor and accents throughout the room and toning down bedding choices, sometimes to just a mattress.”

Focal art: Eclectic photo and wall art is so “last year,” she adds. It’s now being replaced by bigger, single pieces of art creating an impact and making a statement. “It’s a great opportunity for the parents or even young siblings to make something special for baby’s room.”

Think long term and multi-functional: “Babies grow fast, and decorating and designing these spaces can be expensive,” notes Radaj. Thus parents continue to look for simple lines, repurposed/upcycled and multi-use furniture. “I always work on a 4-5 year plan for the room that parents can easily implement as the child goes from baby to toddler to preschooler.”

Image : Getty

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