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When it comes to baby’s nursery, it is a balancing act between comforting and stimulating. You want your baby to be able to relax and sleep, but you also want baby’s brain to be stimulated when awake.
According to Health First and Enfamil, a baby raised in a stimulating environment is more likely to reach his developmental milestones faster. He is also more likely to have improved nervous system development and demonstrate a superior attention span, memory and sense of curiosity. A stimulating environment is one that arouses the senses. You can create a stimulating environment in your baby’s nursery by focusing on colors, textures, shapes and sounds. ~LiveStrong
So, how do you design a nursery that can meet both comfort and brain development? As Live Strong has pointed out, a great place to start is with a variety of colors, textures, shapes, and sounds. This will help baby feel balanced as he or she grows while stimulating all the senses.
Play with colors and textures for an inviting nursery and don’t forget the ceiling where baby will be looking from his or her crib.
While babies can only see black and white as newborns, they see the full spectrum of colors by the end of their third month, according to the editors at Bausch and Lomb. Fill your baby’s room with bright, appealing paint colors and wall decorations that enhance eye coordination. The distinction between pastels is harder for an infant’s eyes to distinguish, so avoid soft hues. Colorful textured toys, mobiles, shape sorters and teething rings help your baby learn about the world around her — not only through sight, but also through touch and taste. Since babies spend a lot of time lying on their backs, extend the colorful theme to the ceiling. Avoid hanging anything heavy over the crib, and remove mobiles when your baby is old enough to pull to a standing position — typically around 5 months of age. Smell can be either soothing or stimulating. A baby’s favorite and most familiar scent is his mother, but other scents can be used strategically to induce a familiar bedtime ritual. Potted lavender or jasmine plants are not only decorative, but they also add relaxing fragrance. Avoid using skin-irritating artificial sprays, and keep all plants out of baby’s reach. ~SFGate
Not sure what colors to choose? Check out this post via HOMEDIT: Color Psychology for Nursery Rooms
Each color has different effects on the human body and mind and it’s important to take these into consideration, especially when decorating the nursery room. After all, you want what’s best for your baby. Learn how color influences the development and behavior of your child and find the best color for his or her room. ~HOMEDIT
Now that you have your color choices down, let’s add a variety of…
Offering your child lots of opportunities to see and experience large simple shapes such as stars or circles will expand her familiarity to the shapes and will help her recognise shapes as they appear in the world around her.Showing your baby repeating shapes that increase or decrease in size will assist in your child’s understanding of size and progression (things getting bigger or smaller), and therefore promote brain development. ~WittyDoodle
Varying textures can be added to the nursery from soft bedding to fabric on the walls, to textured rugs. Just make sure materials are washable and hypo-allergenic if possible.
Check out this creation by Interior Designer Catherine-Lucie Horber for a visual idea of how varying colors, shapes, and textures can make a room come to life…
You can read the full interview here: How To Create a Stimulating Nursery
But, remember, it’s ok to keep it simple. You do not have to have the expertise of an interior designer to create your nursery. Just do some brainstorming and get creative. It is tempting to surround baby in pastels, but adding in some contrasting patterns, colors, and textures will create a happier, more stimulating environment for you and baby.