3 min read
The smallest room in the house as a nursery
It’s well known that second babies tend to get a rough deal – they have to put up with an older sibling, they tend to get less attention, they have to put up with the hand-me-down wardrobe and they will probably have the smallest room in the house.
This is true of my Number 2, due in November – particularly it having to have the smallest room in the house.
My three-year old’s room is spacious and beautifully decorated – thoughtfully styled. With this nursery, however, although I’m still as excited to decorate it, there’s more of an emphasis on practicality than style. I simply have less time!
So here’s how I decided to decorate a very small nursery…
PATTERNS AND COLOUR
It’s easy to veer towards whites and veer away from patterns but strong colours can actually make the space look bigger and lighter. I went for a spotty patterned wallpaper because I loved it and thought it would make the room appear bigger. If you don’t want to commit to wallpaper, why not try wall stickers that can peel off easily.
Utilise all of the space you have! I’ve bought baskets to store on top of the wardrobe to keep blankets and anything that isn’t needed regularly. Shelving is also a good option – this time around we haven’t needed any but high shelving can make the room seem bigger and more spacious.
Choose furniture that can be multi-functional. We have decided to get Mokee’s top cot changing mat that fits onto the cot- this means there’s no need for a changing table. Clever!
CLEVER LIGHTING – LIGHT LIGHT LIGHT
Although we have a lovely ceiling light I wanted to make the room as light as possible so I bought a cute cloud light that emits a really soft glow.
I had a lot of plants in my son’s nursery which swiftly died when he was born when I neglected them! This time around I couldn’t resist some foliage and decided on succulents – easy to maintain, minimal watering and hopefully, they won’t die!
There were a lot of items that were in my son’s room that he no longer cared for – like the wooden animals he loved as a baby. Re-use!
I am not good at craft but I have lovely friends who are. My son’s Godmother is a true ‘fairy godmother’ and has made baby Number 2 a beautiful teething ring and spit up cloth. Handmade items are really special and you’ll never want to throw them out.
I’ve decided to keep items to a minimal in the nursery because I know that once baby is born people can’t help but buy presents. I’ve asked people to not buy anything but I know it’s difficult not to!
How have you decorated your nursery? Share your photos on Instagram and tag us #wearemokee!
Why children love to hide (and why they’re bad at it!)
3 min read
‘PEEKABOO’!! One word you find yourself saying a lot when you have a baby! I remember my son laughing his head off at my attempts to play peekaboo with him. It’s a great way to start engaging with your baby and trying to get their first smile in the early months. And this idea of hide and seek seems to stay with them as they grow.
Hide and Seek must be the most popular game for children- but why? And why are they so bad at it?!
I’ve been doing some digging and there’s been some interesting research into this age-old game. According to child psychologists, children expect and strive to create situations in which they can be reciprocally involved with others. Children thrive off social interaction and so before they have the ability to use language to communicate, hide and seek is a simpler option.
But why are they SO bad? My son constantly runs into the same hiding place but generally leaves his head sticking out whilst closing his eyes. Why do children think that if they close their eyes, no-one can see them?
Well, apparently it comes down to the idea that children are hopelessly ‘egocentric’ creatures. Children believe that everyone sees the world through their own eyes – this theory has been universally acknowledged, that pre-school children cannot distinguish their own perspective from someone else’s shows that they firmly believe they are the centre of the universe and inherently egocentric!
But according to a recent study in the U.S, this could be wrong.
Apparently, young children believe that mutual eye contact is a requirement for one person to be able to see another.
This is the idea of bidirectionality- unless two people make eye contact, it is impossible for one to see the other.
So, children might not think that the world revolved around them. But in reality, that’s exactly what happens!
The most useless baby product according to UK parents.
3 min read
We asked and you told us!
What was the most useless baby product you bought? Speaking with UK parents we found that a Baby Bathtub was the most useless baby product bought in their baby’s first year. Coming in a close second was a nappy bin and in third, the changing bag.
For me the baby bathtub was useful for about a week and then got annoying and was quickly put away in storage. We only bathed our son a few times a week and found that it was perfectly fine holding him. Yes babies are incredibly slippery when wet but fairly easy to bathe for 2 minutes. They are usually really large and as more and more families have smaller and smaller homes with barely any storage, we found some interesting places to store it (hanging from a wardrobe and as a DIY pond in the garden)!
The nappy bin was something we didn’t buy and for one reason only. I hated the idea of storing lots of dirty nappies in the nursery for any length of time. Instead we bought a small bin with a lid and any really smelly nappies were put in the main bin out of the nursery. It really wasn’t that annoying to do and saved us from spending money on an expensive, large, nappy bin!
A changing bag was something I was really against having. I didn’t like the idea of the traditional changing bag with the pockets and the awful colours and patterns. They all seemed so big and seemed to just get in the way and fill up the pram. I also didn’t want to give up my handbag and the idea of carrying two bags was just silly. So, I opted for large, fashionable totes that definitely weren’t changing bags and didn’t scream BABY!
Comment the post and tell us what was the most useless product you bought!
Nursery Furniture: What (not) to buy for your baby
3 mins read
When preparing to welcome a newborn it is hard to imagine how this tiny baby needs so much stuff – I certainly wasn’t prepared for the amount of nursery furniture I thought I had to buy. Advice, neither wanted nor asked for told me I ‘must’ get this and ‘baby just has to have that’.
Well, I wish I had ignored this advice as a lot of the ‘stuff’ my husband and I had bought we simply didn’t need. So here is a baby checklist which I hope explains what is absolutely necessary for a baby’s first year and what is absolutely not necessary - from furniture to baby bath accessories.
It’s the first thing parents probably decide upon and rightly so as it should last a good 2-3 years and is the main feature of any nursery. I discovered moKee’s Mini Cot when searching online for cots that weren't astronomical in price yet were highly designed and simply looked cool. Mokee ticked all the boxes and I loved the simplicity of it – it’s not huge so perfect for a very small nursery and can even fit in the parent’s bedroom. The cot mattress has lasted and still provides comfort to my son- what is absolutely necessary is a water-proof sheet too. moKee's team has a wide collection of baby textiles too! I didn’t get the draw inserts at the bottom but will definitely get one for when Baby Number 2 arrives in the Autumn – nursery storage is essential now! My firstborn is 2 and still in his baby bed, which now has the side taken down so it is his ‘big boy bed’. Baby Number 2 will be using the same crib meaning moKee’s Mini Cot is seriously excellent value.
2. Baby Changing Mat
Wipeable! It will get messy! moKee’s Changing Mat is particularly good as it fits on top of the Mini Cot – saving space and the need for a changing table which are absolutely NOT necessary. In fact I think they are simply a waste of money and only used for a few months. Mokee has recently launched the Pokee – a storage unit which can be attached to the side of the cot where all your nappies, creams and wipes can be stored. Genius!
3. A portable sleeping pod
moKee’s Mini Pod is great. Sadly I didn’t get it for my firstborn and regretted it as it would have made life a lot easier! It provides comfort for the newborn, cocooning them and making them feel safe and what’s more, you can pick it up whilst baby is still sleeping, put them on the sofa and then when it’s bedtime put them up in their cot, still asleep in the pod. Sleep is hard to come by in those first few weeks and the Mini Pod definitely makes it easier to get some!
4. Nursing Chair
5. Moses basket
Now this isn’t an absolute necessity but I found it really useful for moving baby into different rooms and for those first few weeks when the baby was sleeping in our room. They’re probably not useful if you have limited space – a cot will suffice- but if you want to set a Moses Basket up in your living room for when the baby sleeps in the day then moKee’s WoolNest is a game-changer. It comes with a stand meaning baby is elevated and secure. If you have an excited dog this helps to save a baby from getting a good licking!
Buy muslins and then buy some more! You will get through many many muslins each week and they are so versatile. Larger muslins can be used to swaddle baby too and are breathable. moKee’s Bamboo Muslin Squares are particularly soft and I love the colours they come in too.
7. Sleeping Bag
Once your newborn weighs enough you can move it into a baby sleeping bag. These are great and should definitely be on your checklist! I got two so there was a spare in case of any sicky accidents and I loved moKee’s Sleepy Bag. You can zip all the way around meaning changing a nappy in the middle of night makes it super easy! They can also be used when travelling and have an opening for car seat belts and pram straps.
8. Baby Monitor
An obvious essential. There are many to choose from- I didn’t go for one with a video monitor as I thought I’d end up just staring at the screen rather than enjoying a film or eating my dinner. But of course, it is a personal decision and should be based upon what gives you peace of mind!
ABSOLUTELY NOT NECESSARY
1. Manual breast pump
Too much hard work. Go for a battery-powered or plug-in one. Quicker and more efficient.
2. Nappy Bin
A bin with a lid is a must but expensive nappy bins are not! As long as you empty the bin regularly you can avoid smelly nurseries!
3. Bath thermometer
Use your elbow and common sense to test the water. Various thermometers I used broke and went mouldy in the bath. Dipping your elbow or wrist in the water to test the temperature is best because they are more sensitive to heat.
And what do you think? What is the most important product to buy when creating the nursery? And what wouldn't you recommend? Share your opinion in comments!
The most stylish moKee nursery by Julia & Max
3 mins read
When moKee took up a search to find the most stylish moKee nurseries we didn’t expect to have two winners – it was too hard to choose just one! Here’s the first instalment of one of our winner’s nursery- their style and design inspiration!
Julia and Max
Julia and Max have created a simple, minimalist and natural nursery for their twin boys, Joshua and Marlow. They felt that the nursery wanted to be an extension of their Parisian flat – reflecting the aesthetics of their beautiful minimal and simple home. They didn’t have an idea for a specific theme as they wanted the design to have longevity.
Julia and Max knew they were having boys but it didn’t impact their design choices. The nursery is neutral and has a colour palette that they simply like – it was a reflection of their own taste and stereotypical gender colours were not in play here.
Starting with Pinterest Julia and Max came across moKee whilst searching for other, more expensive brands. moKee ticked a lot of boxes, with quality materials yet at a competitive cost price, the Mini Cots were the best quality-price ratio on the market.
Wooden toys are dotted throughout giving the room a Scandi feel and throws back to a by-gone, more traditional era with a Brio racing car parked up by the cots.
The Pokee has been helpful for storage – something very much needed with twins! Julia says: “When you have twins it’s even more complicated, think 364 diapers for a month for example! You need two of everything. This is why we bought the mini drawers after several months because we needed extra storage. It’s a very good storage trick and we are very pleased we got them.”
Being made in Europe, Julia and Max felt that they were buying quality products that would most importantly last. This was a key factor in deciding to buy the cot as it will last up until the babies are 3 years old.
Quality can be found in the wood of the cots- natural beech. The beech wood is set off by the wooden floors in the nursery – this is a theme throughout- natural materials creating a wild and back-to-nature feel. Beech is a hardwood, so it won’t scratch or dent easily, like softer woods. It is flexible and shock absorbent. The Beech wood is also 100% FSC certified meaning it is grown in forests that are sustainable and approved by The Forest Stewardship Council.
The natural materials used in the nursery give it a wild and natural vibe – this is helped by the large windows and natural light that floods the nursery. There is even a swing in the nursery -making you feel like you could be outdoors!
Julia and Max absolutely love their nursery and feel that it is their favourite room in the house – ‘super cool, super pretty and importantly, super cosy’!
11 tips to help you design a small or large nursery
4 mins read
Whether you have a large or small nursery, designing your perfect room is something most expectant parents look forward to. I certainly did and got a lot of inspiration from Pinterest and blogs. I’m about to design the nursery for our second baby, due in November. It’s a small room and I will be blogging about the process of creating a functional yet stylish nursery in a small space. But first here are some tips to make the most out of your space for your new arrival.
Small can be beautiful
Small spaces can work really well when you spare some thought for each piece of furniture and products you buy.
If you don’t have a spare room for the nursery and you are using the corner of your bedroom for example, then choose furniture that can be multifunctional and can be completed with useful accessories. Choose a small cot – the smallest standard cot on the market is 120 x 60.
Shelving is essential in small spaces and particularly in nurseries where you don’t want to take up too much floor space. I found myself playing a lot with my son on the floor of his nursery before bedtime so keep storage high. Also, shelving above changing stations means you can have everything you need to hand.
Think about what you need and where it needs to be stored. Do you need winter clothes in summer? Think seasonally and move unneeded items out of the nursery or into the loft.
CLEVER CHANGING STATIONS
Changing tables aren’t essential, in fact, I think they are pretty much a waste of money – a chest of drawers with a changing mat is perfectly fine. Mokee goes one better though with a top-cot changing mat that fits on top of the Mini Cot and can be easily stored away when not in use. There is also Mokee’s Pokee, the Cot organizer which straps to the side of the cot where you can store nappies, cream and wipes.
DON’T BE AFRAID OF COLOUR
In small spaces, it is easy to veer towards whites and light colours. But strong colours can actually make the space look bigger and lighter. Don’t be put off my patterns or wall stickers too.
Make the most of large nurseries
If you are lucky enough to have a large nursery for your newborn then make use of all of that space and make it more than a nursery!
A NURSERY FOR DAY AND NIGHT
You don’t want to spend all of your time in the nursery but you will be spending quite a bit of time in there, so make it somewhere the whole family can enjoy both day and night. In my son’s room, we have a large library shelving unit which he uses daily. If he wants to read a book, he’ll go up to his room and quietly read meaning his nursery is both somewhere he can sleep and relax. It’s nice to make the space relaxing with bean bags and cosy rugs so it can be an enjoyable space for everyone.
DON’T FILL IT
It could be tempting to fill it with a lot of furniture and decorations but from experience, it’s worth staying minimal. You’ll soon collect more and more items for the room as your baby grows up so allow some space.
DON’T LET IT SPREAD
With a large, two or even three-storey house it could be tempting to have baby stuff everywhere. With our son, we were in a three-storey house and I didn’t want baby stuff to take over and be in every room. Downstairs there was a storage basket with essential changing items such as nappies, muslins, wipes and creams meaning I wasn’t up and down the stairs all day long and the house still kept its identity and it wasn’t one big nursery.
KEEP BABY MOBILE
With a large house it could be helpful for baby to nap where you are- the kitchen or living room for example. A Moses basket is a great way to carry your baby around the house without disturbing them.
With all of that space, it’s worth investing in some stylish storage. Boxes and baskets have been a lifesaver for our nursery, keeping everything organised and it means it’s easy to move favourite toys into other rooms.
Cots & moses baskets. What to choose?
3 mins read
A cot is probably one of the first things you will buy when expecting your first baby and it’s one of the most important. When I was looking for our first cot I spent a lot of time on the internet trying to find one that wasn’t too pricey but would be a feature of the nursery and had style. Stumbled upon moKee Mini Cot and almost 3 years later my son is still loving it!
When searching for a cot I also came across Moses Baskets – but why do I need a moses basket if I have a cot I thought? Well, I wish I had bought one as with hindsight it would have made life a lot easier. So, here’s the low down of everything you need to know about cots and moses baskets.
Moses baskets are useful from the first day.
You probably won’t put your newborn straight into the cot, unless the cot is with you in your room. Current NHS guidelines recommends keeping your baby in the same room as you in a separate cot for the first six months. For us we moved our son out of our room at around 12 weeks – we all slept better but for the first few weeks in our room he was in a travel cot. Now this is where a moses basket would have come in handy; they double as beds for day naps as well as sleeping at night - useful from Day 1.
Moses baskets can help your baby sleep better.
They are designed to make baby feel safe and because they are smaller than cots and most travel cots, they really do give babies the feeling of security. With high sides they are also designed to reduce noise. If babies are sleeping in the moses basket during the day and at night then they will become used to the basket which can only be a good thing and make for peaceful naps!
Moses basket means mobile baby!
Moses baskets can be carried around and being able to move baby from one room to another without disturbing their sleep means happy baby. They are also great for travelling and make overnight trips easier- there’s no bulky, heavy travel cots to lug around and assemble.
Keep baby high.
Some moses baskets have stands you can sit the basket on which makes it easier picking up baby at night. Stands are also good for elevating babies away from excitable, nosy pets!
Cots can last years (if you choose the right one).
Most cots today can be used up until your child is 3 and some have a removable panel meaning the cot can be changed into a toddler bed. Our Mokee cot has lasted for almost 3 years with our son and with a new mattress it will be changed back into a cot when the new baby arrives. Great value and less waste!
Moses baskets can be useful for storing other things than babies!
Once baby has grown out of the moses basket it can be turned into a cosy place for the cat to nap or a toy box. Mokee’s WoolNest is particularly cosy with it’s soft, natural wool felt material and I’m hoping baby number 2 will agree!
The TOG system explained! How to dress the newborn?
5 mins read
Any new parent will fret over how hot or too cold their newborn is. Even before baby arrives, parents are inundated with information at antenatal classes which explain how newborns cannot regulate their body temperature. It’s a constant worry during those first few months and I can remember checking the variety of thermometers in my son’s room and still wondering if he was too hot!
As the days get shorter and winter fast approaches, here at moKee we thought we would try and explain the universal TOG rating and how and why this is important for all parents to understand.
What is the TOG rating?
The tog is a measure of thermal resistance of a unit area, also known as thermal insulance. It is commonly used in the textile, baby textiles either, industry and is a European warmth rating and has nothing to do with weight; the higher the tog rating, the warmer the product.
How many TOGs should I use?
What should a baby wear using a sleeping bag?
If the room is warm (26 degrees), then the baby should be in a 0.5 tog sleeping bag and wear a short-sleeved bodysuit.
If the room is warm (24 degrees), then baby should be in a 1.0 tog sleeping bag and wear a short-sleeved bodysuit.
If the room is warm (22 degrees), then baby should be in a 1.0 tog sleeping bag and wear a long-sleeved bodysuit.
If the room is slightly cooler (20 degrees), then baby should be in a 2.5 tog sleeping bag and wear a long-sleeved bodysuit.
If the room is slightly cooler (18 degrees), then baby should be in a 2.5 tog and wear a long-sleeved body suit and pyjama top.
If the room is slightly cooler (16 degrees), then baby should be in a 2.5 tog and wear a long-sleeved body suit and sleepsuit/pyjama set.
How will I know if my baby is too how or too cold?
When looking at this subject I found the NHS to offer great advice as seen here:
“Your baby may wake during the night which may be a sign that they are not at a comfortable temperature. If the back of their neck (or their tummy) feels nicely warm then they are fine, if their skin feels damp they may be too hot. Do not worry if their arms, hands or feet feel cool as this is quite normal and helps them to maintain a regular temperature. It is not recommended to put a hat or hood on your baby when they are in bed as this can cause them to overheat. It is better for your baby to be cool rather than hot, and if they are too cold they’ll soon let you know!”