‘Nesting’ is a recognised part of becoming a new parent and one way that new mums often ‘nest’ is to start gathering clothes for their soon-to-arrive! However, this is rarely much of an issue as baby showers and donations of barely worn baby clothes often mean that many new mums have more baby clothes than they know what to do with.
Then we get sudden cold snaps, or out of-the-blue heatwaves – and how can we be sure that a precious little one will have all the clothes they need to cope with whatever the weather throws at us?
The Maternity Nurse Company essential newborn clothing list
We asked our maternity nurses – who would know better what a baby really needs! Here’s what they told us:
10 all-in-one bodysuits
These are the simplest way to dress your baby, with poppers along the legs to make getting baby in and out easily. With a cardigan over the top and/or a vest underneath, they make up most of what your baby will be wearing for the first two months. Ten means you don’t have to do too much laundry too often.
7 sleep sets
Sleepwear for your newborn can vary from one pieces like the bodysuits described above, two pieces that come as trousers and a top, to nightgowns and sleeping bag type approaches. Whichever you choose, it’s vitally important that sleepwear be snug, to prevent any risk of accidental suffocation, and to ensure that the clothing doesn’t ‘ruck up’ and create ridges that can irritate sensitive baby skin, or leave gaps that expose your delicate newborn to the night air.
Cardigans are a much better option than jumpers, because something that buttons or zips up the front is much easier to get on and off your baby than something you need to pull on over their head. In most modern housing, cardigans are going to be something you slip on and off as you take your baby out to the car, or out in the buggy, but not necessarily worn indoors.
Winter baby? A coat or all-in-one outer
This will probably only be necessary if your baby arrives in the winter months. Again, it’s something for trips out in the buggy if the weather is really cold, but probably not essential for car journeys – babies are more likely to overheat than underheat as modern clothing is very effective and cars and houses tend to be much warmer than a couple of generations ago.
Winter babies need warm hats
Having said that coats may not be necessary, a soft, warm hat is vital for winter – baby’s lose a lot of heat through their heads, and tiny ears are particularly sensitive to cold weather.
Summer babies need sun hats!
Conversely, a summer baby needs a hat with a brim to keep off the sun. There are several options, from baseball cap styles with fabric neck covers through to traditional wide-brimmed hats with a chin strap.
Finally, because it’s really difficult to know how fast your baby will grow, or even how tall she’ll be when she’s born, it can be tricky to know what sizes to choose. Some babies outgrow ‘newborn’ clothing within a couple of weeks, others gain weight but not necessarily size and can wear their 0-3 month onesies for the whole twelve weeks. So the answer is to go for two or three in the larger size, just in case your little one is a rapid gainer!