5 Tips for Sharing a Room With Baby

How to design a shared bedroom/nursery space

Whether you’re a new parent with a small place or an old pro in a squeeze to make room for your newest bundle of joy, a big, private nursery may be out of the question. Sharing a room with the baby? Create a beautiful and functional space for three using these five simple tips.

  • 01 of 05

    Create a Distinct Nursery Space

    A mum playing with her children on a bed
    Catherine Delahaye / Getty Images

    Just because your little one doesn’t have his own room doesn’t mean he can’t have his own space. If you’re lucky enough to have a large bedroom, think about setting off the nursery space with a physical divider, such as a screen, curtain or bookshelf. (IKEA’s Expedite shelving units make excellent room dividers with the added benefit of storage for baby’s clothes and toys.)

    If your space is too small to accommodate a physical divider, try using color to set the nursery area apart. Choose a shade that ​complements your existing décor, and make it the signature of all things baby. Paint an accent wall behind the crib, or create a concentration of color with bedding and accessories. Another trick? Invest in a bold and beautiful rug just big enough for the nursery area. A base of bright color creates a visible foundation, giving clear definition to baby’s space.

  • 02 of 05

    Ditch the Changing Table

    A dad with his baby on the changing table
    Catherine Delahaye / Getty Images

    When baby bunks in, every square-foot counts. If you want to make the most of your space, skip the traditional changing table and try one of these clever alternatives.

  • 03 of 05

    Create Nursery Stations Around the Home

    Mixed race mother nursing daughter in living room
    JGI/Tom Grill / Getty Images

    Can’t fit all your nursery necessities into a single, shared space? Why not spread out and create baby-friendly stations around the home?

    Try setting up a breastfeeding station next to the couch. (Hello DVR!) Toss an attractive changing pad and some cute storage bins onto the bathroom counter, and convert your bathroom linen closet into an easy-to-access wardrobe for daily dressing. Ta-da! You’ve got a changing station! Running around the house may seem less than ideal, but let’s face it: You probably don’t have far to run. As long as you have everything you need to do the job at hand, it really doesn’t matter where you do it.

  • 04 of 05

    Get Creative with Your Closet Space

    Mother & daughter playing Hide & Seek in closet
    Klaus Vedfelt / Getty Images

    Sharing your bedroom with the baby is one thing. Sharing your closet is another.

    When it comes to apartment living, closet space is hard to come by. Making room for baby can be a real challenge. Since baby clothes only require about three feet of hanging space, you might try installing a second rail below your shorter garments. You can also make room by tucking winter coats and other bulky, out-of-season items into vacuum-sealed bags or under-the-bed bins. Of course, you may determine that nothing short of an act of God could ever free up enough closet space for all those adorable, little outfits. Need a better solution? Check out these creative closet alternatives.

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  • 05 of 05

    Invest in a White-Noise Machine

    His favorite napping spot
    PeopleImages.com / Getty Images

    White noise creates a comfortable, womb-like atmosphere that calms anxious babies and contributes to longer, more restful sleep periods. These magical little gadgets also do an excellent job of drowning out household noise - A pretty significant benefit, especially if your “household” only consists of your room and the room next to it.

    While no one wants to wake a sleeping baby, life can’t come to a screeching halt every time your little one closes his eyes. After all, there are dishes to be washed, hampers of laundry to be put away, and well-deserved showers and blowouts to be had! Switching on a white noise machine is like deploying an invisible force field. Once the baby is safely inside “the bubble,” you can stop tip-toeing and move about the bedroom freely.