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Designing a Minimalist Nursery


We’re moving. Again. Exactly one year after moving across country, we’re packing the house. Again. This time, we’re putting all of our belongings in storage and staying with a cousin for 3 months, before we can buy a house. Trust me—it’s a long story…

I hate packing. I mean, is there anyone who likes packing, really? It’s tedious, time consuming, and honestly? It’s a little (ok, a lot) depressing to put your favorite things in boxes and tape them shut.—especially when it’s for longer than just a move. But, I digress… Let’s move on to the point.

Just one year ago, we designed our son’s nursery. I love his room. It’s my favorite in the house, and thus, the hardest for me to pack up. But, not wanting to wait until last minute, I’ve already started—sort of. I’ve packed up the books we don’t read and all of the clothes he’s outgrown. As I was boxing up books, I looked around the room and sighed. I’m not emotionally attached to our house. It’s a rental, it has tons of issues, and honestly? I’m ready to leave it. But, knowing that it’s the house Holden came home to from the hospital and that he’s slept in this room since he was 3 days old has made it a little harder to swallow. I’m proud of his room and of the way we designed it. It follows our minimalist aesthetic, but it’s warm and cozy and both bright and cool at the same time. We did a lot of research on what a nursery “needs” vs. what many nurseries actually have. Seriously, I must have Googled “minimalist nursery” and “nursery must-haves” a million times. We must have done alright, because now, a year later, there are very few things in the room that I’m packing up that we haven’t used. So, today I’m sharing my list of essential items for designing a minimalist nursery:

The Needs:

These are items I couldn’t live without aka necessities.

minimalist nursery crib and mobile

Crib – We wanted something simple and modern but didn’t want to break the bank. I had a hard time fathoming spending $900 on any crib—no matter how beautiful. We went with the Babyletto Hudson crib. It’s under $400, with a high safety rating, and has beautiful, simple lines.


Dresser (that doubles as a changing table) – When we lived in California, I had every intention of buying a plain Ikea dresser and attaching a changing pad to the top. Well, when Ikea is no longer 20 minutes away, plans change. I wanted something simple, that could grow with our baby and continue to be used for years to come after the diaper-changing phase. After hours of research, we finally decided on another Babyletto piece. It’s since been discontinued, but this one is similar. The changing pad frame attaches on the back side and can be easily removed.

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Rocker – One of my first projects for Holden’s room (before he was even born) was painting this rocker. A replica of a vintage Eames rocker, it was originally bright red and lived in our last home’s bedroom. I painted it teal and white for Holden’s room and it turned out gorgeous. Side note: Looking back over the last year, I would have preferred something a little more padded for nursing. It served it’s purpose, but I definitely spent more time nursing on the sofa or our bed than in that chair.

The Aesthetics:

These accessories made the room feel warm and cozy but uncluttered.


Rug – Rugs USA is my best friend. 60%-70% off at all times. This rug was under $100, is super plush, and has a modern design. Rugs are expensive, folks, and this one feels like a million bucks—for way, way, WAY less.

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Art – Photographs are a minimalist’s best friend. Throw them in a simple frame, and even the brightest, busiest snapshot becomes cohesive in a simple room. We have a small collage of family photos over the dresser and a framed Sharon Montrose print (a shower gift) over Holden’s crib.
IMG_1487     minimalist nursery books and shelves

Books/Toys – We love books. Holden has tons of them. We built some floating shelves on the wall with poplar and copper for our favorites, and a small cube bookcase holds the rest. The cube bookcase is also home to a few stuffed animals and other special items.

By keeping the room and the furniture white, the books and other special items become the focal points. Quilts made by aunties and a felt ball mobile add color to the bright white, and light curtains are sufficient for nap time but still make the room feel bright and airy. I’m sad to pack up Holden’s room. It’s so perfect, and its ‘s him. However, I know that wherever we go, whatever we do, we can always recreate it. To me, that’s the beauty of keeping things simple.

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One Response to Designing a Minimalist Nursery

  1. Alana September 23, 2015 at 7:30 am #

    I really like the crib and dresser/changing table. I’m a book lover too. Thanks for sharing!

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