• Baby Room Decorating on a Budget

    Decorating the baby's room can take time, but it doesn't have to take a lot of money. Here are some helpful hints for expecting parents who want to do right by their baby without breaking the bank or going into debt.

    Safety First

    Remember this rule every step of the way. You want to be frugal. You want to save money. But you definitely don't want to do anything that can jeopardize your baby's safety. A crib may look nice and come at a reasonable price. But if it's old and rickety, you don't want to put your child inside it. Baby things are constantly being tested and rated for safety. A little research on the Internet or in one of the popular baby magazines can help you decide whether products are safe enough for your child.

    Buy Used

    There are tons of baby items out there that look as good as new. They may have gotten very little use. Some of them got no use at all. They were received as shower gifts and never taken out of the box. You can find cribs, mobiles, toys, and decorations of all sorts in consignment stores, garage sales, and flea markets.

    Free is Good Too

    Indeed, you may not have to buy these kinds of items at all. Your friends with slightly older children may have plenty of baby things that are just taking up space in the garage. Make your interest known and you may find yourself being offered more baby things than you can put to use.

    Borrowing Also Works

    Your friends and neighbors may not want to give away their old baby things, but they might be willing to lend them to you. Mobiles and pictures and such that don't get a lot of wear and tear are ideal for borrowing. A bassinet is also a good item to borrow since it only gets used for a little while when the baby is quite small.

    Do it Yourself

    All right, you're probably not going to build your crib from scratch (although you could). But there are plenty of other baby things that you can make yourself. It's not too hard to learn to quilt, for example. You can put together several baby sized quilts with some time and effort and relatively cheap material. You can also make pillows, curtains, chair cushions, and even stuffed animals for your child. Check the baby magazines and the Internet for more suggestions. There are lots of ideas out there with step by step instructions that are very easy to follow. And at the end of it all, not only have you saved money, but you'll have a warm sense of accomplishment that you put something together for your baby with your own two hands.

    Plan Ahead

    If you're going to paint the walls and put up decorations, plan for the future. Don't decorate the room so babyishly that you'll have to change things when the child is three. That doesn't mean you can't put up bunnies and teddy bears. But you'll be glad later if you put up the sort that can be removed easily.

    Prioritize

    You can't always have everything, so make a list of the things that are most important to you. A bassinet is nice, but a crib works equally well and for longer. You may want to consider getting only a crib.