No two babies in the world are alike. From the day a precious little one is born, that child will exude his or her own personality, quirks, likes, and dislikes. So don’t you want to make your babe’s bedroom just as unique? While retailers offer plenty of cookie-cutter options for furnishing a nursery, one of the best ways to achieve an inimitable space that has as much character as your cutie is to include custom furniture pieces. And with a bit of creative vision, DIY elbow grease, and low- or no-VOC paint, you can make much of what you need in a nursery from some unexpected pieces of home furniture.
Any solid, flat-topped case, such as a dresser or a sideboard, can be converted into a changing table with the addition of a contoured pad and a lively paint job. I like to play up the interesting details (think wood appliqués, decorative trim, and drawer pulls) of an antique piece by utilizing two different paint colors that complement your room’s palette. To prevent the changing pad from shifting while you’re in the midst of diaper duty, set it atop a stretch of nonslip rug pad or rubber shelf liner.
While typically thought of as a piece of living room furniture, an entertainment center converts nicely into a sweet stand-alone closet for your little doll. Outfit the large opening that’s usually intended for a television with a hanging rod to hold a tidy row of tiny clothes. If desired, include a tension rod and pretty curtain panel to hide everything away. Use the shelving behind the cabinets to organize blankets and linens, burp cloths, shoes, and other essentials. You can even dedicate a drawer to bundling those masses of miniature socks. For a personalized touch, jazz up a plain painted finish with an inspirational message or charming stenciled picture.
Repurpose an end table as a rocker-side bookcase by taking advantage of its open lower shelf. Use whimsical bookends to keep your child’s favorite reads in line or slide a basket underneath to stow them away. If the end table features a full cabinet door rather than open shelving, consider removing the door to allow your tot easy access to his or her books. By using decoupage to apply a lively wallpaper or printed craft paper to the interior walls or the top surface of the end table, you can punch up an otherwise plain piece of furniture so that it’s a perfect fit for your little one’s personality.
What ideas do you have for putting together a unique space for your one-of-a-kind kiddo?
Angelo Digangi is a Home Depot store associate in the Chicago area, where he has been helping customers since 1994. Angelo is also a contributor to Home Depot’s home decor website, Home Decorators.com, on furniture and DIY plans. He enjoys providing advice on bookcases, room dividers, bathroom cabinets — pretty much everything homeowners need tips on.