Yes, you can…for a time and if you really need to. Just ask clients, Jen and Chris, who were able to stay in their one-bedroom even after their baby girl turned one.
Generally, it’s best to have a nursery, even if it’s a small one. But if moving isn’t in the cards quite yet, you should be able to make do until your baby is at least 2 years old. Here’s how:
Create a nursery space somewhere in your apartment but NOT in your bedroom. After the initial weeks and months, your baby needs to learn to sleep alone and you need your private space. Optimal spaces are small nooks – or even closets, which can be converted to small rooms by adding lights and removing/replacing doors. Dining areas sometimes work, if you can spare the space. In this case, we made use of an indented area on one end of the living room. By moving the desks and sofa to the other walls, we cleared out a space about 10 feet wide by 2 feet deep.
Of course, when you’re short on space you must focus on having just the essentials in your nursery area. A small crib and a dresser is all you really need. For Jen and Chris, we placed the crib in the center and suspended curtain panels from the ceiling. The curtains are pulled around the crib at night and at nap time to block out light and other distractions. We had enough space to bring in a garment rack to hold all of baby’s clothing. We also added decorative bins to store toys and linens. An under-bed container slides out from under the crib to store books. Finally, we filled the dresser with diapers and other changing supplies. A changing pad can be used on top of the dresser instead of having a separate changing table.
Mom and Dad have their bedroom to themselves and can put off moving until baby gets older. Baby girl loves her new space!
Tips for a seamless look: You can get as fancy as you wish with your nursery space, or keep it very simple and inexpensive. When your nursery is part of your main living space, it’s best to decorate it in colors that blend with the style of your home. Instead of pink bunnies, for example, choose fabrics in bright but mature colors, with playful but sophisticated patterns. Incorporate artwork and light fixtures that coordinate with the rest of your decor.