As an expecting parent, you've got big dreams for your baby. You want them to learn, explore and imagine, and to do that, they’ll need a place of their own that inspires creativity. Start with your family's new DIY nursery, and the craft-friendly family of Canon PIXMA printers. Because before you start encouraging creativity in your little one, you’ve got to get a little creative yourself.
1. Going Galactic
Imitate deep space with dark blue walls accented by stencil-painted stars. After you’ve finished the solid blue layer of paint around the whole room, print your stencils on heavy paper stock using your PIXMA printer and go with glow-in-the-dark paint for a space-themed touch. Position your stencils however you choose — in the shapes of constellations or randomly across the wall. When it comes time to decorate, print out color patterns that resemble the surfaces of different planets, then cut and assemble them into spherical paper lanterns using a printable template. For a finishing touch, raid NASA's archives of the Astronomy Picture of the Day and use a large format PIXMA printer (like the PIXMA PRO-100) to print out high-def images. Mount them using sleek, frameless photo displays for an ultra-modern look.
2. Outside In
Encourage your child’s love of nature by bringing a little outside in. Calming blue walls, lots of light and bright green shag rugs give the illusion of exploring the woods on a summer day. Set off the look with lots of earthy wood textures on cribs, lamps, dressers and fans. Bring it all together with paper flower garlands hanging from a real (washed and clear-coated) tree switch, printing paisley patterns on your paper flowers for a stylish touch. PIXMA-printed sun designs on iron-on transfer paper make for extra-sunny cloth curtains, while drilling a few holes in mason jars and stringing white Christmas lights through them evokes summery feelings of fireflies.
3. Simply Academic
For an academically themed nursery, ABCs on the wall are a classic, but you can give them a photographic twist. Start with wooden letters, then print out personalized photos that correspond with them — like a picture of mom for "M" or a photo of the family cat for "C." Use the letters as stencils to cut the photos into shape, then decoupage and varnish them onto the wood for an instantly smart pop.Bookshelves, a spinning globe and a collection of toy blocks are all must-haves for an academic-themed nursery. Complement them with a ruler-like growth chart to the side of the door using a few upcycled wooden planks, acrylic paint and some number stencil templates brought to life by your PIXMA printer.
4. Nautical Nursery
Vibrant color and lively movement go hand in hand, like those unforgettable moments you captured at that summer concert, food festival, or 10K race. To recreate that same sensory excitement, give the DIY photo gallery clipboard a shot.
You just can't go wrong with sea creatures, sailing ships and pirates. Rustic wooden textures and various shades of blue form of the core of this nursery, which can be accented by sea life mobiles and hand-collected sea shells glued into patterns on the walls and furniture. To get a little adventurous, use your PIXMA printer to print sepia-toned images of swashbuckling ships on tracing paper, then cut and tape the images around a white lampshade for a soothing DIY photo lamp.
For extra authenticity, use Canon Creative Park's templates of aquatic cut-and-fold animals printed on matte photo paperto print and create your own 3-D aquarium. Throw in a nursery sound machine with wave noises, and you’ll almost be able to smell that salty air.
5. It's a Jungle in There
For a baby that's destined for big adventures, inject the classic jungle theme with a touch of modern DIY sensibility. Animal-print rugs, hunter green or chartreuse walls painted with creeping vines and as many oversized stuffed animals as you can fit make the room feel like a cozy rain forest.
Add some extra inspiration to high-res jungle animal photos — printed in a large, bold and borderless format by your PIXMA iP8720 — by using the free A Beautiful Mess app to add striking neon text to them before framing them in exotic wood. Try "Strength" over a lion photo or "Grace" on a gazelle, for instance. Get whimsical by crafting origami parrots and toucans from sturdy paper printed on vivid geometric patternsthat evoke the spirit of the wild, then hang them from the ceiling at varying heights with twine or jute string. Just don't let your baby start swinging from them.
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