Decorating a nursery is one of the most fun and exciting parts of being pregnant. It’s also the biggest question new parents get from friends and family, right behind asking the baby’s gender and name.
White, pastel and light colors are the predominant colors used in nursery rooms. It’s not hard to understand why these colors are popular. They brighten up any room and make the nursery look fresh and clean. These colors also fit right in with the popular minimalist decor trend.
As mentioned in our post on 2020 nursery trends, the tide is slowly shifting towards using more unconventional color palettes. Many parents are opting for dark colors in the nursery for a number of reasons. Whether you go with dark colors for the walls or the furniture itself, there are benefits to favoring rich colors instead of the traditional pastels.
Should you use dark colors in your nursery?
There is no right or wrong answer to this question. It all comes down to your decorating style. There’s no reason you should stick to white and pale pink in the nursery if the rest of your home uses vibrant or dark, earthy colors.
Calm and soothing environment to sleep
However, there are good reasons to use dark furniture or dark colors in general for a nursery. Light colors are nice to look at but a dark room is more conducive to sleep. Babies tend to be sensitive to light and a dark room indicates it’s time to sleep. Soothing walls and dark-colored cribs are calming and can help your little one fall asleep faster.
Easier to clean
It is a fact of life that dark furniture is easier to maintain over the long run as it hides scuffs and smudges much better. You can pair a dark dresser and crib with light bedspreads for easy cleaning. Light-colored fabrics throughout the room can be washed and switched out far quicker than changing the heavier furniture pieces.
Another advantage is that you can re-use dark pieces even as your child outgrows the nursery. If it doesn’t work in their room, you can move it into other parts of the house. It’s a good reason to use dark furniture in the nursery when it coordinates with the overall decorating style.
Elegant and glamorous look
Dark furniture suits an elegant or glam nursery style, especially when you combine it with colors like royal purple, scarlet or even metallic gold. If your home sports farmhouse or rustic decor, the Rustico Moderno in dark colors is a great idea for the nursery.
Other collections that are suitable for a dark-colored nursery include Tulip Juvenile’s Rio collection. Its smooth walnut wooden finish fives off an elegant feel coupled with its glossy facades available in grey, black or white.
Tips on using dark furniture in the nursery
A good rule of thumb is to use contrast when working with dark colors. Pair dark walls with white furniture or opt for light-colored walls and dark furniture. It’s not the only way to use a dark red or antique dresser but it’s a good jumping-off point.
Don’t go overboard on colors
Another thing to remember is to not use too many colors when working with a dark palette. A rainbow-colored nursery might work well with light walls but it’s much harder to pull off with dark furniture. Stick to 2 or 3 colors for a start. You can always introduce more colors later.
Use pastels for highlights
Pastel colors like pink and lavender work really well with dark furniture. You can use white or pastels as highlights throughout the room with fabrics. There is room to experiment and get creative when it comes to rugs, curtains, pillows and soft toys in the nursery.
Use small patterns
Large patterns don’t really work well in a nursery with dark furniture. Large shapes can make a small room look even smaller. A better solution is to use small repetitive patterns throughout the room.
Less is more
When working with dark colors, it is always important to remember that less is more. The key to making a nursery look good with dark furniture is to reduce clutter as much as possible. Select concealed storage or multi-purpose pieces to minimize visual noise. Store extra towels in bins under the crib or get a bench with hidden storage. Open shelves are not your friend in a nursery, especially one with darker shades.
Use lighting to your benefit
Mix and match different light fixtures in any room with dark colors. You will want task lights in some places (like the changing table) and more diffuse lighting near the crib. A string of lights can be used to highlight framed artwork on the walls as well.
Keep in mind that nursery decor is more for your benefit than for the baby. Infants don’t care much about decor. You and your family will spend a lot of time here, so make sure it’s a room you can live with!