How to Design a Nursery on a Budget

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I love designing and creating things, and have really been working to do more around the house to make it feel more homey.  I recently decided to set up a nursery area for baby Henry.

Have you ever wondered how to create a nursery on a budget?  Check out these tips for an inviting nursery without all of the fuss.
The hardest part of any project I do always seems to be getting started, so when I hit up Walmart last time, I took a stroll through the baby section and looked at their nursery sets.  The Disney Baby line has come out with some brand new, absolutely adorable bedding sets.

I instantly fell in love with the Nemo set because of the bright, fun colors.  Since the older two kids both had a jungle theme, I knew I was going to have fun with this water theme.  Best of all, I absolutely knew that I could do it on a budget and whip it all up in a day.  Before I left the store, I hit up the fabric section and got some 2 inch wide strips of fabric in the 3 colors I wanted to focus on to match the Nemo set.  A blue, orange and marigold color.   We finished up our shopping and headed on home.

Disney Babies In Store PhotoI love the Disney Baby bedding sets because they come complete with a comforter, bedskirt and sheet.  The comforter make the perfect wall decoration to really add that pop of color and fun to your walls.  The Nemo sheet is so stinking adorable with the schools of fish swimming around.  These sets are so budget friendly that they make fantastic baby shower gifts too.

Nemo BlanketI love this crib sheet with schools of fish.  You can find it in the Disney Baby Nemo crib set.
I love to reuse things that we have laying around the house, and all of the projects I had in mind for the nursery came from things I already had.  Another thing you should probably know, I really love spray paint.  We own a ton of different colored spray paint because we never seem to leave the store without some new colors.  This time I grabbed a pretty blue and a marigold color.

DIY Burlap Knot Shelf
To give the nursery an underwater look, I spray painted some different size lids blue.  I had a mix of canning lids, canning rings and some other odd shaped covers I had laying around.  Once they were dry, I hung them up starting at the changing table and getting bigger as they went up.

Nemo NurseryThe next step was to take an old picture frame and remove the glass.  Then I used my scrapbooking software to create an 8 x 10 picture of the letter “H” for Henry.  I chose a large dot background paper with a white H overlaid on it.  I used the marigold color spray paint to paint the picture frame.  Once it dried, I hung up the letter H picture inside the frame and hung it on the wall.

I love how simple and easy this nursery wall art was to make.  Using only the computer, an old frame and spray paint it makes a great nursery accent.Taking our wipe case that we have been reusing for over 4 years now, I used some teal ribbon to wrap around it to add some color.  I had planned to redo the entire case and cover it with some fabric but I didn’t buy enough fabric so this is what I went with.

Wipe ContainerLastly, I put together my burlap shelf made from a cardboard box.  I’m hoping to get that tutorial posted in the next day or two, so be sure to check back.  I love how it turned out.  It’s the perfect diaper shelf and it was so easy to make!

DIY Burlap Knot Shelf
While the decorating was fun and easy to do and REALLY inexpensive, there are still things you will need – mainly furniture, that isn’t as affordable.  Here are a few tips to help you save on that as well.

When buying a crib, check out the clearance in the baby aisle.  They will be clearing out old designs to bring in the new things.  You can get some great savings this way.

Designing a small nursery?  Use a combination dresser and changing table to save some room.  The other item we love having in our nursery is this combination changing table/dresser.  Not only does it save on space in a small nursery space, but it saves the budget because you only buy one thing instead of 2.  This style we have is great because we can also use it for a toy shelf that holds games or whatever else when we no longer need a changing table.  My confession – I bought this one at a garage sale for $20.  Shop around because I see things like this quite often at garage sales.  Even just a regular changing table can be used as a dresser by putting the clothes on the shelves or in bins.

Personalizing a nursery doesn’t have to be expensive.  Start with a bedding set like this bubbly Disney Baby Nemo set and let your imagination take over with fun DIY crafts.  While Henry doesn’t much appreciate the nursery look, I sure love it.

How to Design a Nursery on a Budget

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  • Disney Baby Bedding Set
  • Spray Paint
  • Fabric
  • Scissors
  • Hot Glue Gun
  • Random Objects
  • Cardboard Box
  • Crib
  • Changing Table or Dresser


  1. Start with a crib. Look at clearance shelves in the store to score a great deal on old inventory.
  2. Find a changing table or dresser - bonus for the combination.
  3. Pick up a Disney Baby crib set.
  4. Decide what you want to create to go along with your theme.
  5. Create, create, create.
  6. Hang your creations or display them in the room.

What tips do you have for creating a budget friendly nursery?  Have you ever done a DIY project in your nursery?  


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