How to design the ultimate nursery

Ready to start nesting for that new babe, but don’t know where to start? Figuring out the perfect nursery decor doesn’t need to be complicated. We talked to the brains behind these four kids’ rooms to get some simple strategies for pulling together your own baby’s cozy escape.

1. Pretty in pink

Lifestyle influencer Jillian Harris’s daughter’s nursery is the stuff of fairy tales, with its cotton-candy-pink accents and oversized feathery friends.

jillian harris nursery decor baby room

Photo: Rachelle Beatty

Jillian’s tips

Pick a focal point

Instead of choosing a theme for the nursery, Harris recommends finding one thing you really love (like the wallpaper) and using that to inspire your other choices.

Choose pieces they can grow with

Harris purchased a large dresser (in place of a change table) that can be used for clothing well beyond the baby stage.

Go big with curtains

Floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall curtains give the room a feeling of spaciousness and add a pop of colour and texture, says Harris. If custom curtains aren’t in the budget, doctor up inexpensive drapes with a glue gun and decorative pompoms from a craft shop.

Invest in the right pieces

“A rocker or a glider is great for when they’re babies, but it’s also a space where they can curl up and read a book as they get older,” says Harris.


Once a month, Harris spends an hour or two sorting her kids’ clothes to remove anything that no longer fits. This makes bedtime and getting dressed easier and also ensures the room isn’t filled with unnecessary clutter.

Get the look

products from jillian harris nursery decor baby room

Pehr pom pom pint storage bin, $28, bedbathandbeyond.comMelissa and Doug flamingo, $140, indigo.caPaladino 6-light traditional chandelier, $537,“To the Stars” framed print, from $24,

2. Bohemian jungle

DIY details and a wall-sized mural make Two’s a Party influencer Sana Alvi’s boho-meets-jungle nursery truly one of a kind.

bohemian nursery decor baby room

Photo: Sana Alvi

Sana’s tips

Don’t get overwhelmed

With so many places for parents to shop, Alvi stuck to one store (she loves Buy Buy Baby) for staple items, like the crib and dresser.

Do a feature wall

Alvi fell in love with this bold wall-paper mural, which became the centrepiece of the room.

Add personal touches

Alvi made this DIY tassel chandelier, which brings some personality to the space.

Don’t overstimulate

If you’re going to have pattern and pops of colour, Alvi suggests keeping other items clean and neutral.

Get the look

nursery decor products

Fela tasseled chandelier, $248,; tan leather pouf, $120,; jungle wallpaper, from $245,; Babyletto Lolly 3-in-1 crib, $549,; Distinctly Home Marketplace fringe area rug, $80,

3. Minimalism and clean lines

With clean lines and sophisticated furnishings, interior designer Montana Burnett created a nursery that is elegant and stylish.

minimalist nursery

Photo: Montana Burnett Design

Montana’s tips

The nursery should match the house

By sticking with a neutral colour palette and pops of bright colour, Burnett and her team kept the nursery design consistent with the rest of the home.

Keep the walls interesting

“Walls are a great place to add visual interest. We painted one-quarter of the walls black and had wooden animal cut-outs placed along the bottom, which acts as a modern landscape,” says Burnett. “Using wall space for decoration also lets you avoid cluttering the space with unneeded accessories.”

Work with what you’ve got

The space already had a beautiful ceiling detail that she wanted to accentuate, so by placing the crib directly under it, that area naturally became the room’s focal point.

Get the look

products to get the nursery look

Large fan, $42,; cushion cover with tassels, $20,; Westinghouse 28-Inch Cape May ceiling medallion, $119,; Mud Pie unicorn wall mount, $75,; FLÅDIS seagrass basket, $15,

4. The big kid transition

Moving into a big-kid bed doesn’t have to mean a bigger room. Interior designer Nyla Free shows us how to make the most of small-space living.

kids bedroom by nyla free

Photo: Phil Crozier

Nyla’s tips

Take advantage of height

Even though children are small and can’t reach high places, it’s still beneficial to use the height in a room, says Free. It’s a great way to increase storage, especially in a compact space, while also adding impact.

Choose a colour scheme with longevity

Rather than redecorating the entire room every three to five years, Free suggests enhancing or updating what you have with simple, cost-effective changes like a new paint colour or fresh bedding.

Under-the-bed storage is your friend

Whether you create built-in storage, as Free did in this room, or you use baskets and bins, this oft-forgotten space is within reach for even the littlest of kids, making it an ideal place for toys and books.

Make it their own

Try incorporating a favourite colour or a special design to create an aesthetic they will look forward to spending time in, says Free. “Creating a positive space for children builds confidence and an environment they feel safe and comfortable in.”

Get the look

products to buy from nursery

Esra Polychrome 5 x 7 rug, $288,; paper mache fox head, $44,; Skyline Furniture MFG kid’s tub chair, $305,; Aurelia art print by Tracie Andrews, from $27,

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