If you're a mommy or daddy-to-be you probably have a few Pinterest boards full of ideas for the new little one. If you already have your bundle of joy in this world, it's a busy time of year planning for summer or just wiping the mud off shoes from the slushy April weather! We've been watching our favorite retailers and spoke with parents about why they planned a gender-neutral nursery for their little ones.
Gender-neutral nurseries that grow with your child
While we still see new parents decorating in traditional blue and pink, research from Pinterest shows that searches for "gender neutral nursery decor"rose more than 50% in 2017. It's a sign of the times as today's parents are rethinking stereotypes on children. However, one advantage of gender neutral decor is that it can also save parents money if they plan on having more children in the future. Many are looking for pieces and style to reuse in the future regardless of sex. Nicole Buster and her husband, Brandan, from Minnesota chose not to know the gender of their baby until he was born, "When we painted the room, we obviously went with a neutral color because we didn't know if we were having a boy or a girl, but also if we have another baby it would work for her. We used wood tones and bought pieces from antique stores that would last forever – we didn't want to buy anything that we'd need to replace in 2-3 years."
Parents are also starting to design spaces that have more "runway" as baby grows. "I thought about designing a space that can grow with my baby, not one that my baby will grow out of," says Minnesota mom of 5, Nicole Owens, "Instead of crazy patterns, we went more with warm tones that made it feel more natural. I wasn't worried about not making the room seem fun and cheerful though. You can add that with fun bedding or rugs that are much easier to change out as your child grows into their own personality."
Many parents view designing gender-neutral nurseries as a practical need. New mom, Nicole Berkeland in Minnesota tells us, "We wanted to paint the room a color that we wouldn’t likely need to repaint in a few years, even though we knew he was a boy. We wanted something that would stand the test of time." Sometimes, you're also limited by the size of your house or apartment. Shruti Mathur Desai, a mom of a 1 and 3 year-old in London is limited by the constraints of urban living. "When we started we had 1 room and now we have 2 rooms that both my daughter and son share," explains Shruti, "It is more important for me to design around playfulness and creativity rather than the gender since we have both. Everything is themed around our animal nicknames for them - We call him the bear and her the bee."
Misia Machnowski, from Toronto, has a more personal reason for going with the animal theme. "My name means baby bear in Polish, so that was a big driver for me when choosing a theme," tells Misia, "We decided not to find out if we were having a boy or girl and wanted a happy and warm space. We also started calling our little one baby bear before he arrived. We knew an animal themed nursery would work regardless of boy or girl and simply felt little one would be our little bear regardless."
It doesn't matter if you go with blue, pink, or neutrals, there is no right or wrong way to personalize your nursery. We know your room will be perfect for your special baby!
It might be the Minnesotan-Scandinavian roots where Jacobs HQ is located, but we're in love with the highly texturized details that make a neutral white and gray color palette more playful.
Nicole Berkeland chose a woodland forest themed because "animals can go either way". Animals can cultivate a love of exploration, play, and curiosity.