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How to decorate a nursery for under $50, from a mum who's been there.

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Thanks to our brand partner, Kmart

I’m heavily pregnant with my second child, and guys, I’m nesting so hard right now. Just like a mama bird, I’m busily preparing my nest so that it’s perfect and cosy for my new baby bird.

Okay, I’m not a delicate bird, but instead, I’m a giant, waddling pregnant woman with a Magnum icecream permanently jammed into my mouth. But I do have one thing in common with our feathered friends: I’m on a mission to get my home just right for the baby son I’m expecting.

The nesting instinct is impossible to deny. Every single day, all I want to do is pack a trolley full of Kmart homewares, and then go home and rearrange my furniture. Seriously, it’s so bad that my 2-year-old daughter’s new favourite game is “decorating” – copied from her mum, of course.

Yet, as much as I joke about my home décor obsession, there is some method to my madness.

As a second-time mum, I know that life with a newborn is two things: chaotic and messy. Yes, there’s certainly beauty and joy in those extremes. But from experience, I know that a tiny, sweet newborn baby can turn an ordered life into a blur of screaming, marathon breastfeeding sessions and explosive poos in the most incredible colours.

“As a second-time mum, I know that life with a newborn is two things: chaotic and messy. Yes, there’s certainly beauty and joy in those extremes.” Image via Instagram @carlaandthegoodstuff

I’ve learnt that setting up an organised, beautiful nursery can make all the difference – especially when it’s 3am and I’m being summoned via hysterical cries to breastfeed and change my baby. Those small touches of colour, design and efficiency can help to brighten a day and lighten the load.

My nursery decorating hack is to get everything at Kmart, because I can gather all of my homewares from the one place, in one go. And have you noticed how chic the designs are, lately? It also doesn’t hurt that everything is so affordable.

Here’s my nursery essentials, that would look and feel marvellous in any baby’s room. My nursery is now cheerful and welcoming, and all for under $50, too.

Baby, you’d better get ready to pose up a storm in your Instagram-worthy bedroom.

1. Forrest cotton cover cot comforter set, $20.

We’re heading into the cooler months, and I can’t tell you how hard it is to find the right warm bedding for a newborn. Heavy quilts in frumpy covers can be stifling in every way. Not only is the Forrest cotton cover cot comforter set decorated with on-trend triangles and juicy colours, it’s also breathable and soft.

I know I’ll be spending most of my time in my new son’s nursery, so I love how this comforter is reversible. If I need to change things up a little for a fresh look, I can easily flip over the comforter so that the muted grey side with white spots is showing.

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Image: supplied. Disclaimer: Pillow not suitable for children 12 months and under.

2. Hanging wall pockets, $3.

This genius storage solution will keep all of your baby-related doo-dads in one spot, within easy reach.

No longer will you have nappies, face washers, socks, nipple pads, dummies and muslin wraps scattered on all surfaces. Instead, you can shove everything into these dreamy, moon-and-star patterned pockets, and voila! Your floor is clear, you’ve fooled everyone into thinking you’re tidy, and there’s also room to stash some fun-sized chocolate bars for those late-night feeding sessions.

This genius storage solution will keep all of your baby-related doo-dads in one spot, within easy reach. Image: supplied.

3. Round confetti rug, $15.

A rug quickly and easily adds a homey element to any room. This one has an irresistibly joyful confetti pattern, set against a stylish grey background. The round shape creates a soft contrast against my angular cot. The smooth, quilted surface is also ideal for tummy-time with baby.

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affordable nursery
An easy homey touch. Image: supplied.

4. Forrest friends canvas, $4 for 2 canvases.

These two canvases add a charming finishing touch to my nursery. Babies love staring at things, and the bold lines and nature-themed colours have plenty to keep young eyes entertained. The simplicity of the designs also means that they’ll appeal to discerning grown-up tastes, too.

affordable nursery
"Babies love staring at things, and the bold lines and nature-themed colours have plenty to keep young eyes entertained." Image: supplied.

What’s your best nursery decorating tip?

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