5 Hot Nursery Decor Trends for 2016

Courtesy of Project Nursery. Photo by YuriPettengill.com.
Project Nursery co-founders Melisa Fluhr and Pam Ginocchio are experts in all things related to baby's room. (After all, with parents and interior designers uploading photos to the ProjectNursery.com project gallery, the two witness the latest nursery decor trends in real time.) We asked them to share their predictions for the top nursery decorating trends in 2016. Click through—and get inspired!
Courtesy of Project Nursery. Photograph by John Woodcock Photography.
Courtesy of Project Nursery. Photograph by John Woodcock Photography.

Back to Pastels

In 2016, nursery decor will go back to basics with pastels. "When you think 'nursery' and 'baby,' it's a natural fit to think pastel," Ginocchio says, "but this is the new, updated version. It's still sophisticated; it's still going to draw on modern furnishings or blend in other trends, but it gets back to that soft feel." 

In addition to the tradtional blush pinks and soft blues long associated with nursery decor, other pastels like periwinkle, lilac, and pale green will be popular. (Babyletto's new Bingo crib, for example, is pale green, and its shelving has pops of pastel accents.)

Supporting the trend, Fluhr says is the fact that Rose Quartz and Serenity (a slightly richer, more saturated shade of pale blue) were recently named the two Pantone Colors of the Year.

Shown: J&J Design Group designed this whimsical nursery full of pastels.

Courtesy of Project Nursery. Photo by DustyLu Photography.
Courtesy of Project Nursery. Photo by DustyLu Photography.

Natural Wood Accents

From furniture to wall art, the look of natural wood is also gaining popularity in nursery decor. "This blends in a little bit of that midcentury look," Ginocchio says. "A lot of this is playing out not only in cribs but in wall art, as well. The wood panel wall was a big deal last year, but now we're seeing it in a little bit of a different way with wood-paneled pieces for the wall with sayings like, 'You Are My Sunshine' or one wood letter for the child's name."

While white cribs have been a mainstay for a while and traditional espresso woods have been inching back into popularity for the past couple of years, now lighter wood and even reclaimed wood is preferred. The result: A natural look that adds texture and earthiness to the room, according to Ginocchio.

Shown: Designers Annalisa Thomas and Dorte Anderson of Oilo Studios created this rustic-looking nursery.

Courtesy of Spot on Square.
Courtesy of Spot on Square.

Statement Cribs

Cribs are back as the centerpiece of the room with manufacturers offering pieces like the Alto Crib, with its colored acrylic panel (shown), the Gradient Crib, with its asymetrical and fluid shape, and the Novella Crib with rose gold legs.

"The [the clear acrylic Vetro Crib] from Nursery Works that Beyonce and Jay-Z used took the nursery world by storm, and I think it sparked a little bit of creativity around the idea of a statement crib," Ginocchio says. "It's not for everybody. It's definitely a splurge item in the nursery, but they're kind of like, 'Boom!' when you walk in. It's the shining star of the room."

"It's fun to see that manufacturers and designers are getting really bold with their cribs again," Fluhr adds. "In past years, we've seen it's all about the wallpaper, all about the accent wall, but it's nice to see the focus on some really fun, bold design for the crib again."

Courtesy of Project Nursery.
Courtesy of Project Nursery.

Everything Modern

From mid-century sleek to bright white, to clean and minimal, expect modern design to continue make a strong reappearance in the baby's room. After two years of florals, iron cribs, frills, and traditional style dominating nursery decor, "now we're seeing a move to a cleaner, modern nursery," Fluhr says.

While furniture styles for the rest of the house have been trending to the clean lines and simple design of mid-century and modern since the Mad Men love affair, this is the first time those looks have shown up so prominently in the nursery, Fluhr says. "This trend in the nursery is sudden. Every day we get up to 10 new nurseries loaded to our gallery, and it's been kind of shocking to see how many reflect this 'cleaner' nursery style."

Shown: Mom Trisha Grasmann designed this modern nursery with a simple animal theme for her daughter.

Learn how to create a modern nursery for your little one with these creative design tips.

Courtesy of Project Nursery. Photo by YuriPettengill.com.
Courtesy of Project Nursery. Photo by YuriPettengill.com.

Up in the Air

Clouds, moons, and stars are the new whimsical trend in nursery accents. "Typically, there is a shape, symbol, or icon that people are drawn to, whether it's the arrow or the triangle," Ginocchio says. "Last year it was hearts, but this year it's all about clouds, moons, and stars. It's just a sweet accent that really feels nursery-ish, but isn't overly baby."

Clouds and other celestial symbols first started showing up in layette patterns and other gear and have since morphed onto unique wallpaper, decals, pillows, and mobiles. So in 2016, the sky's the limit (or not, as it turns out!) in nursery decor.

Shown: Mom Yuri Pettengill created this cloud-themed nursery for her son.

Share the gallery

All Topics in Nurseries

Parents may receive compensation when you click through and purchase from links contained on this website.