Nautical Nursery Theme Ideas

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Nautical Nursery Theme Ideas
Shells are just some of the decorative elements for a nautical nursery. (Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images)

A baby fortunate enough to sleep in a nautical-themed nursery faces each new day greeted by schools of fish on the walls, sailboats on high seas and brilliant colours. A nautical theme is a treat for baby's newly developing eyes and a simple style for parents to replicate in the nursery. If you're creating this style in your baby's nursery, allow yourself to experience enjoyment mixing and matching furniture and accessories from different eras and regions to create a room where the fog horn's echo isn't far away.

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Colours of Sand and Sea

Colour affects the mood in a room and helps to set the decorative tone. The colours common in nautical decorating typically gravitate toward the blues of the sky as well as the aquamarine of the ocean below it. Sandy yellows are also favourites, as is red. In the nursery, this might play out with you painting the walls yellow and adding a beach wall mural to it. Paint the ceiling and the trim blue for contrast. Carpet and throw rugs can be yellow as well. For bursts of colour, use throw pillows made of red canvas for a rocking chair, and adorn the baby's bed with a red comforter. Other colours in the style include greens, beige, greys, whites, browns and corals.


The nautical theme has much to offer when you're looking for decorative motifs to bring into your baby's bedroom. Look for wallpaper trim and curtains with sailboats on them. Stripes figure into nautical decorating prominently. Mix and match the wallpaper by hanging some striped wallpaper below the sailboat trim. Paint decorative shells on the crib or dresser.


Add nautical-themed drawer and closet pulls. Display a collection of sailor dolls on a shelf --- including some antique ones --- as well as some model ships or toy boats. Create shadowboxes filled with postcards from the seaside, decorative shells and a captain's spyglass. Make a matching mirror by gluing an assortment of shells onto the mirror's frame. Hang some fishing nets as well as some old-fashioned glass floating balls on the wall. Look for ways to bring the fish motif into the room by hanging colourful ceramic fish on the walls or by adding a fish- or mermaid-themed mobile above the baby's bed.


Nautical by its nature is a bit eclectic. Often the room decorated in the nautical theme mixes furniture pieces from decorating styles like African, Asian and Europe, which reflects the influence of trade routes on furniture styles. For your baby's room, look for pieces like a wicker rocking chair and diaper hamper. Pick up a dresser that's a bit weathered, and hang bamboo shelves on the walls. Choose a more expensive piece like a mahogany changing table.

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