Thrifty Ways to Turn Your Baby’s Room Into a Toddler Room

Thrifty Ways to Turn a Baby Room Into a Toddler Room
Image via Flickr/ abardwell

It seems like only yesterday that you were painting the nursery and preparing for your little one's arrival. And somehow, the months have flashed by, and your baby has grown-up to the point where she is already trying to climb out of the crib! Your toddler is speaking to you in short sentences (who knew he would be so funny?), and your little baby is now his own little person! So it's time to upgrade that beautiful little baby room into a more grown-up toddler bedroom! Here are a few thrifty ideas showing you how to do it!

Painting a Toddler's Room
Image via Flickr/ Augie Schwer

Add some color

Chances are your toddler has a definite opinion about his or her favorite color! And while you may not want to paint an entire room bright orange, you can certainly paint the walls a neutral shade and add pops of color to the room with artwork, painted trim, or even a wallpaper border. Paint is a great, inexpensive, do-it-yourself way to completely change the look of a room!

{ MORE: Two Cute! How to Match Your Mini-Me }

Kids Bed
Image via Flickr/ Clarkston SCAMP

Invest in a big-kid bed

Once your baby is able to climb out of the crib on his or her own and is doing it on a regular basis, it's time to look at a big-boy or big-girl bed! I suggest skipping investing in one of those adorable toddler beds, and instead moving right into a regular twin-sized (or even full-sized) bed. That way, in a few more years, you won't have to make another investment in kid furniture.

If you're concerned about your little one rolling out of the bed, you can purchase an inexpensive removable bed rail that slides under the mattress. It will help to make your toddler feel more secure, and it will give you peace of mind that he or she is not going to fall out of the bed! Another great way to transition from a crib to a big-kid bed is to not put the bed on its frame immediately. Let your child get used to sleeping on the mattress, with or without the box spring, placed right on the floor. Once your child gets used to the new bed, you can add the bed frame and headboard to the room.

Kids Closet
Image via Momof6

Keep a tidy closet


We made a decision that when our kids were toddlers, we were not going to invest a lot of money in kids dressers to hold clothing. We decided that we wanted to maximize the space in their closets so that could be the one place where we kept all of their clothing–both folded and hanging. Having all of your child's clothing organized in his or her closet will greatly free up the floor space in the bedroom, giving your toddler more room to play!

You can find simple do-it-yourself solutions at the ContainerStore. You can also customize and install your child's closet system yourself using, which will run you half the price of what it would cost to have someone come out to your home and do it for you.

Kids Bookshelf
Image via Flickr/ amy.gizienski

Buy shelves and bookcases

Chances are that your child has a pretty nice collection of dolls, trucks, building blocks, trains, picture books, etc. You'll need a place to store them, as well as a system that makes it easy for your child to clean up after him or herself. I highly recommend storing toys and books in bookcases. You can find great, inexpensive bookcases and fabric bins at Target or IKEA to store similar items together.

{ MORE: 7 Kids Nursery Design Ideas You Hadn't Considered }

Make sure that you take the time to properly attach your bookcases to the wall, so that if your toddler decides to climb the bookcase, it will not fall on top of him!

Art Table
Image via Flickr/ woodleywonderworks

Skip buying a desk for their room

Do you really want your toddler creating art projects in his or her bedroom? I don't think so! Those projects are better off tackled under Mom or Dad's supervision in the kitchen where it's much easier to clean up! So I suggest that at this time you skip purchasing the desk or a small table for your toddler's room. You can make the investment in a regular kid-sized desk when they are closer to entering kindergarten.

Kids Bookshelf and hamper
Image via Momof6

Stick clothing hooks and a hamper in your toddler's room


Make sure that you hang some toddler-height hooks on the wall or in the closet so you can ask your child to hang up clothing. It's not realistic yet to get your toddler to place clothes on hangers or fold them neatly, but you don't want them to get into the habit of dropping everything on the floor!

{ MORE: The Number of Kids Sent to the ER for Doing This Has Gone Up 90% In 20 Years. Know the Risks. }

Also provide a fun hamper and encourage your child to put his or her dirty clothes in the hamper every day. Use a pop-up bin to hold large stuffed animals and ask your child to clean them up when he or she is done playing with them. Teaching these habits now and creating easy ways and spaces for them to do it is a great investment of your time!

Kids Artwork
Image via Flickr/ KatyZaf

Decorate the room with original artwork

I love decorating a toddler's room with some of their own artwork. Finger painting is especially awesome for this! It demonstrates how proud you are of their creations. Kids also love to have pictures of themselves with their family, so take some of those favorite family vacation photos or birthday memories and frame them in inexpensive plastic frames to either hang on the wall or place easel-style on top of the bookshelves. Be careful not to use glass in the frames, as they will certainly get knocked over, and you don't want broken glass in a toddler's room!

{ MORE: 4 Tips for Kicking the Kid Clutter }

What tips do you have to converting your baby's room into a toddler room? Please leave a comment and share!

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Thrifty Ways to Turn Your Baby’s Room Into a Toddler Room

My name is Sharon and I am the busy Mom of six children ages 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, and 8. People often ask me "How do you do it?" I tell them that my key to success lies in planning ahead, with a whole lot of creativity and organization thrown in! ... More

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  1. JJAMES says:

    we have a large “walk thru” room that we used room dividers in..painted the whole thing a Robins egg blue, and striped the walls with a Chocolate brown ( only 3 stripes in the whole room, tastefully placed to center the eye), then used white for the borders and the 2 built in wall shelves/cabinets. on the side with the wall cabinets we sectioned off, is where our convertible crib (converts to both a toddler bed & grown up bed) is chocolate brown in color. the Shelves are his Toy box and media center storage (movies etc.) area.. We also bought a large used TV Armoire( with drawers -we added a closet hanger pole and hooks) that is also Chocolate brown and we are using this as his closet, as the closet in the room (doors are chocolate brown) is now housing out of season wear for the whole family. The room will have a TV and Roku, etc. in it. We also have a sleeper couch for guest in this room.. we call it the “kid’s romper room” as well as the nursery. It converts quite nicely this way, when he gets older. (We have 2 older sisters, one of whom is old enough and lives elsewhere, but comes to town for visits and stays in this room as well)

  2. Loved your ideas! In the process of doing this for my LO, but she will be sharing with baby brother soon. Still, I am determined for her to have her space, so we divided it into her side and his side, and she gets some drawers and shelves just for her stuff. Found some plastic bins with different colored lids (pink and blue) so she will easily know which ones are hers. Still trying to find an optimum solution for our stuffed friends, maybe a hammock? Not sure. She loves stuffed animals, but then again, so did her Mommy. (and I still do!)

  3. mommy nhoj says:

    Great ideas. It makes me excite to have a new home soon we’re still renting. Hahaha… Targeting 3-5 years feom now!

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