Emily Padan, Creator, Entrepreneur and Slow Living Advocate on Setting Up Her Nursery

Emily Padan, Creator, Entrepreneur and Slow Living Advocate on Setting Up Her Nursery

There are certain things about getting pregnant that really stood out to me – realizing that I’d finally be a mom (something I had wanted for as long as I can remember), accepting I had to stop eating sushi, and maybe completely superficially, becoming excited about how I would decorate my baby’s nursery and have a fun new project at hand.

Do I Want a Theme or Not?

The first thing I thought about when beginning this little project was if I wanted a theme or not. My husband Mauricio and I absolutely love nature and are both essentially minimalists when it comes to design. We live and breathe Scandinavian/Japanese design when it comes to our hotel business in Quebec, and so we tend to carry over that philosophy at home as well. After some consideration, we thought of incorporating a forest theme into our nursery, but decided that it would be done in a minimal and subtle way. My advice if you’re thinking of using a theme; choose something genuinely important to you or something that resonates deeply, so that you don’t get tired of it. You can also simply choose a colour palette that speaks to you and go from there.

Select Your Focal Pieces

Charlie Crane KUKO Moses Basket in Camel with Beech Stand in Living Room


Once we had our idea, we did not know where to start at first. Do we start buying furniture? Do we begin with a registry? The idea of it pretty much overwhelmed me, but eventually, we decided to choose a few high quality items we really loved, in colours that spoke to us, and then fill in some of the other pieces with inexpensive items. It was upon my early research when I came across Maude Kids Decor, and saw the Charlie Crane KUKO Moses Basket. I realized this would in fact be the first thing I would need, before the crib, before really anything else, so it felt right to start there. We chose the Camel colour, as it brought an earthy feeling which also felt very us, and we ordered the stand in Beech as well. Once I was on Maude Kids’ website, I ended up falling in love with the Charlie Crane LEVO Baby Rocker in Beech and Organic Milk with the LEVO Activity Arch. The simple design and natural materials fit exactly with our values and vision for our daughter’ nursery as well as with our home. We really wanted to choose items that, if left around the house, would still go with our design and feel authentic to our style.

Charlie Crane LEVO rocker in Beech with Milk cushion and Beech Activity Arch in Nursery

Mix High and Low Elements

At this point, we had chosen two high end pieces, and knew we didn’t need the highest end for every single piece. We then took a look at Ikea and actually found that the Sniglar crib was perfect for our vision - minimalist, simple, Scandinavian feeling…and only $140! We also loved the Poang chair in sage and decided that would be our feeding chair. To make the crib feel higher end, we went with the organic crib mattress from Obasan and dressed it with gorgeous sheets from Mushie. From there, it became clear our look would revolve around light, natural wood, earthy greens like olive and sage, terracottas and creamy whites, and the occasional splash of rosewood pink. We chose a Montessori type book/toy shelf that we found on Amazon, and then found a nice 3 drawer dresser and the Leander Matty Changing Mat in Cappuccino. We decided not to buy a changing table and rather go with the dresser and pad on top since it could grow with her and eventually just be a dresser for her when she’s out of diapers.

Add Personality 

Next, we felt the room needed a little more warmth, so we added a cozy rug from Ikea, and some really unique leather and wood shelves from Etsy. We also found these amazing little felt mushrooms by Muskhane. They added such a cute touch and we added in some stuffed bunnies and foxes to bring the forest feeling in full swing. Lastly, we received a beautiful bunny mobile at our baby shower, which we plan to hang above the crib, and another one with a variety of forest animals that my brother and sister-in-law used and now gifted us, which we will hang above the changing table.

Muskhane Felt Dotty Mushrooms on Shelf in Nursery


Next up, we had decided the last few touches would be some beautiful linen curtains, either dark green or terracotta, and of course we’d need to mount our mobiles, add in the monitor, and buy a dim light for night feeds. Life has a way of surprising you though, because just when I thought I had all the time in the world, 4 weeks before my due date, my water broke in the middle of the night and baby Olive decided to show up early! Was my nursery fully ready? No. Was it picture perfect and fully “Pinterest ready”? No. But at the end of the day, I had what I needed; a place for her to sleep, a few outfits, diapers and wipes, and a whole lot of love.

Be Present and Enjoy

Needless to say, when you’re planning your nursery, start with the essentials, things you’ll need first, like a bassinet, and remember that you don’t need to get the most expensive option for every piece. Choose a few that you absolutely love, and fill in the gaps with some more accessible items and pre-loved ones. The room as a whole will look put together and unique with just a few really special pieces. Another thing to note is that it doesn’t need to be perfect, or look like a vision board. It needs to be safe, cozy and feel like home to you. It can also be a work in progress, where it evolves with time, and items are added in as time goes on. We still don’t have curtains, and that’s ok. Babies sleep in their parents rooms for the first three-six months anyway, so really, there’s a lot more time than we think when it comes to completing the nursery. On the other hand, our babies grow so fast, and evolve quickly as little humans in this world. So stop and notice. Worry less about the perfect room, and focus more on being present in it. You’ll be trying to catch every millisecond that goes by, as we know it’s just a tiny moment in time, soon to be a memory.