How to Decorate a Twin Nursery on a Budget

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Twin Nursery

Decorating a nursery is so exciting!

I know that having a perfectly decorated nursery is not a necessity, but preparing for a new baby is such a joyous time that the combination of excitement and pregnancy hormones makes it seem like it is. Decorating a nursery for our twin boys was so much fun! We wanted something that wasn’t “cookie-cutter.” We both love the “vintage” feel, and we definitely wanted two coordinating themes so that each kiddo had his own space defined. We are more than pleased with how our twin boy nursery turned out.

Is there anyone who has watched Chip and Joanna Gaines and not immediately fallen in love? I think it’s impossible. I tried to avoid watching their show, I tried to avoid jumping on the Chip and Jo Bandwagon…but I failed… and I am obsessed (does that really count as a failure? I think having the Gaines as part of your life is always a win.) I was still avoiding Chip and Joanna when we were decorating our nursery, but lucky for me, I have my own personal decorator who is every bit as wonderful as Joanna Gaines–my wife!

Steph is truly fantastic at making any space feel cozy and inviting–whether it is a one-bedroom apartment, a house, or a classroom.

I am not a decorator. I have never been a decorator. When my parents bought their house when I was eight, I chose a paint color for my room (pink) and it didn’t change until I moved out for college. When I met Steph, she came to my apartment for the first time and I had zero decorations. I was renting a duplex that had hunter green carpet, a coordinating green linoleum in the kitchen and bathroom, and green counters. In addition to that, I had a giant red couch, and I wasn’t going to buy a new couch to match a home I was renting, especially considering I wasn’t even sure how long I would be there. I had no idea how to decorate around a shade of green I didn’t like and a bright red couch, so I didn’t. I didn’t even have curtains.


Here’s how we managed to create a twin nursery we love on a budget.

1. Don’t Rush

Needless to say, when we moved in together, Steph did the decorating. So when we found out we were expecting we made a deal–I would grow the babies if she would make the nursery. 9 months later, and I still think it’s absolutely perfect. 

I am not usually superstitious very superstitious, but most of the time I am not very adamant about sticking to my superstitions. Decorating the nursery was a time I put my foot down. I had heard an old wives tale about it being bad luck to decorate the nursery before 20 weeks, so I wouldn’t let Steph do anything. It drove her crazy.

Honestly, I was just trying to protect myself and her. If something had happened to one or both of the babies and we had to undo a nursery, it would have done us in. In the meantime, Steph sketched out all of her plans, so when it was time to start shopping and decorating, she knew exactly what she was looking for and what she wanted to do.

2. Choose a Theme for the Nursery

One of the first steps in making a space for your little one should be to choose a theme or color scheme. We wanted two themes so we could have a specific theme for each baby. Since we had two boys, we chose airplanes and hot air balloons. If we’d had a girl and a boy or two girls we probably would have done hot air balloons and kites. Everything is an object that flies. But we had two boys–baby A would have his side of the room decorated with airplanes and baby B would have his side decorated with hot air balloons.

There are so many cute things to choose from, and people are not afraid to offer their input on how they think it should look. Babies are exciting for a lot of people and it’s fun to talk to others and dream about it. However make sure that whatever you choose is true to you, fits the personality of your family, and is something that you genuinely love.

3. Choose the Space That Will Work Best for Your Nursery

When we moved into our house, we set up the master bedroom (room with the largest closet) for us. The second largest room was a guest room, and the smallest room as an office with the intention of turning it into a nursery someday. Then two sweet babies appeared on the ultrasound and we knew there was no way they could share that room. So we did some major rearranging.

We moved the office downstairs to the extra room in the basement, moved the guest room to the small room, turned the guest room into the master bedroom, and turned the master into the nursery. And when I say “we,” I mean Steph. I was pregnant, so I was very little help.

Don’t be afraid of re-purposing spaces. Could we have stayed in the master bedroom and moved the babies in the guest room? Yes. But we didn’t want to repaint and that room is pink while the master is a soft green. Also, we needed the closet to store the baby supplies we were gifted until the boys were older. 

4. Find Ways to Save Money on Nursery Decorations

We are frugal people anyway, but with TWO babies on the way, we had to be extra frugal. One kid is expensive enough.

One way we saved money was by letting go of the Type A tendency for everything to match and be brand new. Our whole house has a kind of comfortable, eclectic/primitive mis-matchy vibe. We had already painted the room a nice, soft green. It was gender neutral and baby appropriate. All we had to do was a few touch ups.  Instead of spending hundreds of dollars on all matching, brand new furniture, we pieced together coordinating furniture from a few different places. One crib came from Facebook Marketplace. We bought all the other furniture from an auction. The wagon we use to hold books our neighbors took out of their flower garden and handed to us. We furnished the entire room (2 cribs, 2 rocking chairs, a bookshelf, and a changing table) for less than the cost of one crib.

We bought vintage suitcases for cheap at a thrift store. Besides super cute decor, we have re-purposed them as props in a photo session and storage for toys. 

Re-purposing furniture for the nursery is a great idea, too.

Have a nice desk or dresser that is going unused? Put a changing pad on top of it and you have a super cute changing table. Baby furniture is a niche market that is designed to look cute and make money. You can still have an adorable nursery using items you already own–as long as it is safe for the baby.

There are some things that should be bought new, though. The big one for me was crib mattresses. I didn’t mind buying a used crib, but the mattress needed to be new. Luckily, we found them for a great price at Target.

4. DIY What You Can for the Nursery (Or Ask Friends To Help)

Another way we saved money was by using a lot of DIY.

We decoupaged wooden cut-outs together (which was a super fun date night) using the same scrapbook paper I am using in their baby books.

We put together a shadow box of vintage baby clothes. A local antique store had the vintage baby clothes for very cheap, and the shoes were my mom’s when she was a baby, which makes it even more special.

One of my amazing, wonderful co-workers cross-stitched the quilt that hangs on the wall. Another incredible coworker used an old quilt I had to make custom crib bumpers.

We bought the Bessie Pease Gutmann prints for cheap from a little Mom and Pop place in town and matted and framed them ourselves.

We also painted the letters that spell their names over their cribs.

5. Shop Smart

Finally, we shopped for the best deals. We wanted giant clothespins on their collages above their cribs, which we found at Hobby Lobby for 60% off. Our original plan was to repaint them, but once we got them in the room we liked they way they looked so we left them alone. The picture frames are from the Dollar Tree. We snapped the photos ourselves (the day the boys came home from the NICU, but that’s a different story entirely).

6. Splurge Sparingly   

Finally, we splurged on a few items. Our idea of splurging is very different from others’. Even a “splurge” was fairly inexpensive. Steph found these incredible string art pictures on Etsy, as well as the dictionary prints. The dictionary page prints were a fun addition; Steph and I are both English teachers, we had a literary themed wedding, and ALL our boys (human and doggo) have literary names.

We bought the hot air balloon and metal planes hanging from the shelf above the changing table on Amazon. After we decorated the shelf with a few thrift store finds, we were done.

I love the way the room turned out. It’s adorable, unique, functional, and–best of all–thrifty!

What are your best thrifty nursery decorating tips? Share in the comments! Want more decorating ideas from The Same Sunset team? Sign up for our email list so you never miss out!

I asked a friend for advice on simplifying my home and what she said was the best advice I could have received. “For me personally, it didn’t start with the ‘stuff’ in my home. It began with a decluttering of the stuff in my heart, mind and soul.” She is so right! So I am offering–for free!!!–a 28 Day Follow Your Dreams Inspirational Journal, where you can work on letting go of some of the clutter in YOUR mind, body, and soul and work toward a fresh, confident future!

6 Ways to Overcome Self Doubt and Follow Your Dreams

I once heard someone say something like “If you ever notice your preacher discussing the same topic often, it’s most likely because he/she struggles with that topic.” I’m certainly not a preacher, but the concept applies to me today.

Self doubt is definitely my greatest hurdle. As I mentioned in my “About Me”, I have always wanted to start a blog. I even made a feeble attempt once before. I had no idea what I was doing (still don’t) and was way too intimidated to actually share the URL with anyone (that still scares me). BUT ten years after that disastrous attempt…I am trying again. Self doubt is coursing hard through my veins. I don’t know if it ever really goes away altogether, but I have learned how to push it aside, set goals, and make an effort to overcome it! These are the six things I recommend doing when self-doubt tries to take over.

1) Forget about what everyone else thinks of you.

I started with the hardest one first. I say all the time that I don’t care what people think about me–and I mean it. There is no way I would have survived 8 years as a teacher if I worried about popularity.

But what I mean when I say that I don’t care what people think about me is that I don’t care if people like me or not, but I do care about how people perceive  me. It’s okay for people to disagree with me, but for someone to judge me or weigh my worth makes me a big ball of nerves.

The intersection at the end of our street is busy, and I often have to make a left turn. I stress out when someone pulls into the turn lane behind me. I squirm in my seat, my palms sweat, my heart races. What if I could have gone then? My brain says. What if they are getting frustrated because I am taking too long? Being perceived as a competent driver by these strangers suddenly becomes more important to me than driving safely.

I had to delete TimeHop from my phone because I was so embarrassed by the stupid things I posted on Facebook ten years ago. I was an embarrassingly pretentious teenager. And when I think about that, my mind starts racing. What if I am still obnoxiously pretentious and I just don’t realize it? What if no one tells me? Worse, what if someone DOES tell me? What if I accidentally embarrass someone else with something I write? What if I misrepresent myself to the entire world?  I just shouldn’t do it.

See how easily it gets out if hand? I allow my concern for how others think of me cripple my ambition. And here’s a truth: others are a lot less concerned with you than you think. When I let the opinions of others go, I am able to work toward my goals. It’s easier said than done, I know, but it is possible. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be reading this now.

2) Give others the benefit of the doubt.

This goes hand-in-hand with number 1, but when someone does give you positive feedback, believe it. When someone offers constructive criticism, accept it graciously and use it for growth, but don’t stew on it.

When I first met my wife, I assumed she had ulterior motives in everything she did. After all, that’s what many of my previous friendships and relationships had been like. I had built this huge wall around me and I was trying to keep everyone else out. Otherwise I was nothing more than someone who could be used.

One day she finally said to me, “Unless I give you evidence otherwise, assume I want what is best for you.” I remember the moment clearly. We were in her car and were on the brink of an argument because I had to do something for work, and I was stressed out and refusing help because why would she help me? How was helping me going to benefit her? It seemed completely counter-intuitive to just believe that she wanted what was best for me, but in rearranging my mindset to believe it, I have learned that she truly does want what is best for me. All the time.

And in learning to trust that my wife has good intentions, I have learned to give the benefit of doubt to others.

When strangers or acquaintances try to talk to me now, I don’t get shy am still super shy, but I make more of an effort to hold conversations. I assume they are genuinely being friendly and not targeting me. I’ve made more friends as a result. I’ve made quality friends as a result. In a few weeks, I am officially leaving the “real” work force to be a stay-at-home/work-from-home mom. I am over-the-moon excited, but I am also very sad that I will not be seeing my friends every day. I have grown close to some incredible people.

Sometimes I am still not so great at this.

We only have our yard mowed every other week because 1) I’m not going to mow it and 2) we can only afford every other week. A man stopped outside our house the other day and rang our doorbell (he better be glad the babies weren’t sleeping!) to give us his business card for his lawn mowing service. My replies were something like, “So my yard looks bad? Your yard looks bad. Your MOM’s yard looks bad!” (Don’t worry. I was talking to the babysitter. The wifey answered the door).

There’s no way I would have ever found a way to actually attempt this blog thing if I still allowed myself to be paranoid about other people. To me, this is a lot of vulnerability and opening myself to a lot of judgement. Rearranging my mind to believe the best in others–and myself–made it possible.

3) Surround yourself with positive people.

Repeat after me, it is okay to be choosy about who you let in your inner circle.

My friend Kelly explained life to me like this: Imagine your life is a production, but YOU get to decide who attends the show. When someone buys a ticket to a show, the people in the front usually have more interaction and are more involved–they’re closer so they can see better and hear more. So, your life is a production. Not everyone gets a ticket. You’re in charge of who does and who doesn’t, and you decide where those guests sit. YOU decide who is in your front row and involved in your life, and you decide who observes from the back, and you decide who isn’t invited at all

It is okay to cut toxic people from your life. It is okay to cut people who are not necessarily toxic, but expect more from you than they are willing to give back to you, or who expect you to give more of yourself than is healthy for you. Your mental, emotional, and physical health are important and it is okay to value your health. And allowing self-doubt is not good for your emotional health or mental health. Anyone who is holding you back from believing in yourself needs to be moved to the nosebleed section or escorted out. (And did you notice I did not specify that you could/should only cut friends? Sometimes family can be the most toxic people. You are not a bad person if you limit them, too.)

Most productions are not a one show deal.

They sell tickets multiple times. You might have to show someone out for a while, but that doesn’t mean they can never get a seat again.

Surround yourself with positive people and a quality cheering section. When you’re feeling down, when self-doubt is sneaking in, call them and let them become your inner voice. My front row makes me feel like I can take on the world.

4) Don’t be afraid to be yourself.

You might not know this yet, but I am funny. Like, super funny. But I am also socially awkward and often lost in my own head and a little uncouth so sometimes people don’t understand that I am funny. Give it time. You’ll warm up to my humor.

I read others’ blogs and think Man, I wish I was funny like her/him! But if I was, I wouldn’t be me. I need to find and use my voice, and it’s okay if others don’t like who I am. (See number 1 above) 

5) Find some inspiration.

Find a quote, Bible verse, or mantra that you can repeat to yourself to motivate you to keep going. My personal favorite quote is one my middle school choir teacher made us all memorize:

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” -Aristotle

I’m not going to be an awesome mom or kick-ass wife or successful blogger if I allow myself to drown in self-doubt. Excellence is a habit. If I am going to succeed I have to strive for excellence until it comes naturally.

You can get ideas for a personal mantra in many places. Google inspirational quotes, do a Pinterest search, or, if you’re religious, look for Bible verses that encourage you.

Don’t overthink this and don’t overlook it.

Words are powerful. Albus Dumbledore says that words are “our most inexhaustible source of magic. Capable of both inflicting injury, and remedying it.” Find words that remedy your self-doubt and cling to them.

6) To quote Nike, “Just Do It.”

Whatever it is you want to accomplish–just go for it. If you never try, you’ll never know. 

I have no idea right now if I will be a successful blogger, but it’s worth a shot, so I’m going to do it.

What are YOUR tried and true methods for battling self-doubt? Share them in the comments!

Knowing and following your dreams is not for the faint of heart. It is hard to honestly evaluate yourself and assess your possibilities Click below receive a download for this FREE 28 Day Inspirational Journal. Use it to take a few minutes each day to focus on YOU. Read the inspirational quote and the daily prompt to reflect on who you are and where you are headed.

Inspirational Dream Journal
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