It might seem an impossible task to keep your home looking stylish when you share it with young children – but that dream might now be closer to becoming reality with these top tips.
Tommee Tippee ambassador Sommer Pyne, owner of House Curious and mum to Lyla and Indy, gives her advice on how to keep a stylish home when you have small children.
1. Get organised
As boring as it may sound getting organised and having everything in its place before the baby arrives will help you feel empowered and in control.
When you have the energy, start sorting through your cupboards and do a big clean out. Get rid of anything that you don’t need to make space for all your new baby supplies!
Some things you’ll want to store away; like bottles, sterilising equipment and toys, but there may be other things that you need on display for quick and easy access. The Tommee Tippee steriliser from the Complete Starter Set is handy to keep within easy reach because of its compact size and it looks stylish.
Go through each room and think about how you’ll use the space.
Make a list of the things you need quick access to or that can be put away.
I had such a hard time with breastfeeding the first time around, I was feeding hourly and my daughter never seemed to get enough milk. My saving grace and something I recommend to all my friends is to swap the night feed for formula. It was life changing for me and my daughter slept through and gave my body a much needed break.
With formula feeding you have a lot more equipment so that’s why it’s good to be organised. Make things easy for yourself so when you need to prep the baby’s bottle at 3am you have everything to hand.
The Tommee Tippee Perfect Prep machine is brilliant because it looks cool and matches my black steriliser, so I don’t mind having it on display and it makes prepping a bottle a breeze, even when I’m half asleep. I’ve got the black version and have it on my kitchen counter. It’s quick and easy to use and anything that makes my life easier is welcome to stay!
3. Storage solutions
In the rooms that I spend most of my time like the living room, bedroom and kitchen I’ve set up baby stations that have all my baby essentials neatly packed away and on hand whenever I need them.
My daughter has a lot of toys but we cleverly hide them away so our house doesn’t look like a toy shop. Baskets not only look great but can also hide a mountain of things. Buy a decorative basket, put a sheet inside and fill it with all your child’s toys. Tie it up or just twist the top so it keeps everything together. On top place a lovely woollen blanket or throw to hide the sheet and toys. This makes a great decorative piece just like you’ve seen in those stylish boutique hotels.
If you don’t have money to buy storage units or cupboards, a nice vintage chest is a great way to store games, toys or even blankets. You can also use them as side table for when guests show up.
Built in units
If you’re doing a renovation or redecorating it’s worth investing in good storage. Don’t go to branded cupboard designers, a good carpenter should be able to knock something bespoke up for half the price.
4. Practical and fuss-free interiors
I don’t like to compromise on my interior style so I still have velvet and fabric sofas. My house probably doesn’t seem that kid friendly but it is in so many ways.
Comfort and style are high up on my list. So, what can you do? The simple answer to this is to have a large throw or sheet to hand that can be easily stored under the sofa or in a cupboard. When you are nursing, or playing with your baby on the sofa cover it with the throw or sheet so that it’s protected. Let’s be honest there are going to be moments of projectile vomit and if you’re already a mum/dad the chances are you have enough poo stories.
If you’re redecorating consider the flooring carefully because this not only has a huge impact on the overall style of your home but we also know how messy kids can be… carpet may not be the smartest idea! In our house we have concrete floors and wooden floors. So, no matter how many accidents we have they’re easy to clean.
Get rid of the clutter and simplify your space with just the essentials and decorative pieces you absolutely love. In our family room there is no coffee table in the middle and most of my decorative pieces are up high on the fireplace or on shelves. This way my daughter can run around freely without bumping her head on sharp edges. The other alternative is to have a soft ottoman.
We have areas that are no go kid’s zones. We have a great family room and Lyla’s bedroom for her many toys, but there are certain rooms that are out of bounds.
Low cost interiors
It can be expensive prepping for a baby’s arrival but there are so many low cost options. Ikea is brilliant for nursery furniture, Primark Home and the baby section for your essentials and Next is great for affordable clothing.
5. Decorating your nursery
Decorating the nursery can be a lovely experience but I know for some parents it can be a bit overwhelming. Here are some of my tips to help ease the pain:
Don’t worry about matching furniture I think it looks more eclectic and fun when you mix it up.
Don’t be fooled into thinking you must buy nursery furniture. Other than the cot the rest can be furniture that you already own. For example, for my first baby I didn’t buy a changing station I simply used my vintage chest of drawers and placed a changing mat on top with all my essentials on display.
Be bold and creative; think about what colours appeal to you and how you want the room to feel. The baby won’t notice the décor but you will and you’ll be spending a lot of time in the nursery.
It’s important to create a relaxing environment so you will want to invest in a comfy chair – you don’t have to buy a nursing chair buy something you like that will outgrow your children. Soft rugs are always a good idea and don’t forget your favourite candle.
Sommer Pyne is an ambassador for Tommee Tippee.