buying guide nursery

baby-room basics.

The nursery will soon be the hub of your baby universe.
Make it a comfortable and safe space for everyone.

  • the ABCs of organization.

    Maximize cuddles and minimize crying by being organized. Stock the changing table with essentials, and keep a diaper pail and clothing hamper within arm's reach. A table near your rocker is helpful for a pacifier, bottle or glass of water, and a nightlight will help with late-night feedings. For safety reasons, ensure the crib is kept away from lamps, cords, windows, heaters and climbable furniture.

  • safety.

    Look for the Juvenile Products Manufacturing Association (JPMA) certification, which ensures furniture was tested for quality and safety.

  • get cozy.

    The stress of being a new parent may make you want to cry like a ... well, baby. Design your nursery to be a relaxation room. Place an MP3 player with calming music on the dresser. Get lighting just right with low-wattage light bulbs, nightlights and curtains. Find a comfortable glider or
    rocker for feedings and story time.

  • décor galore.

    Pink or blue, yellow or green? Have fun with a pretty palette. Soothing colors can help calm both you and your baby, while fun accents like a mobile or wall mural can be stimulating. Colorful cloth bins are great for storing clothes and toys, and throw rugs are easy to toss in the washer for quick cleaning.

furnishing the nursery.

Here's a peek-a-boo at essential items for your nursery.

  • cribs.

    Sleep through the night knowing your baby is in a safe place. Cribs are used until babies are about 2 years old, when a convertible crib can transition into a toddler bed.

    read more about cribs shop all cribs
  • crib mattresses.

    Set the foundation for a restful night of sleep with a durable innerspring or foam mattress. The greater the coil count or foam density, the more firm the mattress–which will help support your baby within a safe sleep environment. And dual side mattresses will last longer and can convert to a toddler bed. If you can fit two fingers between the side of the mattress and the crib, the mattress is too small.

    shop all crib mattresses
  • dressers.

    Storage and organization are
    important when selecting a dresser.
    Tall dressers provide a surface out
    of your baby's reach, while a short
    dresser can double as a changing
    table. Attach safety brackets to secure dressers to
    the wall and help prevent them from tipping over.

    shop all dressers
  • gliders & ottomans.

    Smooth gliding calms both you and your baby, and a wide seat comfortably cocoons both of you for supreme snuggling. An ottoman lifts the lap for easier feeding—and some ottomans include a nursing stool. Be sure that reclining gliders have a locking feature.

    shop all gliders & ottomans
  • bassinets & bedside sleepers.

    At 3 a.m., you'll be happy one of these portable beds is nearby. Babies can sleep in them until they are about 3 months old. Important features are a sturdy bottom, and lock-in stationary positions for a bassinet or cradle that rocks.

    shop all bassinets & bedside sleepers
  • changing tables.

    Pick a model that puts diapering items and clothing within arm's
    reach. A waterproof pad keeps the table clean, while a changing pad cover can be easily washed. A
    safety belt should be handy to
    secure around baby's waist, and be sure to never leave your baby alone. Use safety brackets to secure a changing table to the wall and keep it stable.

    shop all changing tables

swaddle the room in style.

Shake a rattle at traditional baby décor—create a room with color and character.

  • bedding.

    A cozy crib will have your baby cooing. Start with a waterproof mattress pad to protect against accidents. Then find fitted sheets that are snug to the mattress—test by pulling on each corner to make sure it's secure. Breathable or mesh bumpers can keep a baby's limbs from getting caught in crib slats and allow air to flow. Blankets, pillows and toys should not be kept in the crib.

    shop all baby bedding
  • window treatments.

    Your baby's room décor can be stylish as well as it is practical. Select a window treatment that filters light and provides privacy when you want it.

    shop all curtains & blinds
  • décor.

    Bring a little personality into the nursery. Wall decals can be removed and reused, and wall hangings can match bedding or display favorite family photos. A fun diaper stacker can liven up the changing table. Rugs help buffer sound and provide a soft area for tummy time and playtime for your baby.

    shop all wall décor shop all rugs
  • mobiles.

    Mobiles provide great stimulation—just remove them from the crib once your baby can push him– or herself up on hands and knees. Some mobiles can also hang in a corner, functioning as both decoration and distraction.

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  • lighting.

    Get light just right by installing a dimmer switch for midnight feedings and naptimes. A soft nightlight will also provide your baby with a sense of calm.

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