Newborn Baby Clothes: Must Haves

Filed under: Babies, Baby Essentials, Fashion, Gear Guides: Pregnancy, Gear Guides: Babies

newborn baby clothes

Could shopping for baby clothes be more fun? Credit: Getty

They're totally adorable. And sweet. And oh-so-snuggly. If you're a shopper, one of the best things about having a new baby is the chance to buy newborn baby clothes. But doing a little research before you start splurging on all the darling offerings is a must. See, what a parent purchases and what a baby actually needs are sometimes completely different things.

Here are some tips on what to look for before you start shopping.

Be a Softy. The first thing to consider when shopping is a baby's tender, sensitive skin. Buying 100 percent cotton clothing helps ensure the fabric will be soft and washable. Feel the inside of everything you buy. Often, the things which make newborn baby clothes so cute, such as embroidery, elastic gatherings, zippers and other embellishments, also can make an outfit uncomfortable to an infant. If you do end up with some scratchy things on the inside of an item, dress your baby in a softer under layer such as a onesie first, and then layer the cuter outfit over it.

Layer it on Thick.
Layering is often necessary with newborn baby clothes. Onesies worn under sleepers, or paired with cotton pants and a little jacket are good ideas. Hats keep heat from escaping from the head, socks keep little feet warm -- just make sure you opt for socks that are long and go up toward the knee, not little ankle socks that fall off every few minutes. And some people get little mittens for their baby's hands, mostly to keep those tiny fingernails from scratching lovely new cheeks. Just be sure the layers are loose and comfortable.

Size Matters.
Babies grow so quickly that newborn baby clothes your child wore last week might not fit today. When you shop, don't get too many items of the same size. Newborn sizes sometimes only last a week or two, and some babies are born so big they may not fit into newborn baby clothes at all. If you receive new clothes, it's wise to leave the tags on until after the birth to make sure you'll be able to use them. By keeping the tags on, you can exchange the baby clothes for a larger size.

Wash Up.
Make sure to wash all new clothing before putting it on your baby to remove excess dye, starch and other detergents. Wash the clothes in a baby friendly, dye- and perfume-free detergent and don't use fabric softener.

Go for Gowns.
To make life easier in those first weeks, you'll probably want to get some baby gowns. They come in simple patterns and colors, and have an opening at the bottom to make diaper changes easy. It can be difficult to get newborn legs to fit into pants, and often the challenge makes your baby fussy. Gowns are easy newborn baby clothes to get on and off, and comfortable for your little one to wear. Layer a onesie underneath, add a hat and wrap baby in a soft blanket. Those first weeks are great for cuddles and snuggles.

So, in addition to gowns, what are the absolute new baby clothing must haves? Check out this list:
  • 6 to 8 undershirts/vests
  • 2 to 4 receiving blankets
  • 1 to 2 double receiving blankets
  • 4 to 6 sleepers
  • 1 to 2 sweaters
  • 1 to 2 shawls or cotton blankets
  • 1 to 2 pairs booties
  • 1 to 2 caps
  • 4 to 6 pairs socks
  • 1 to 2 pairs scratch mittens
  • 1 to 2 side-snap T-shirts
  • 1 to 2 bodysuits
  • 2 to 4 rompers
  • 2 to 4 bibs
  • 6 to 8 hangers

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.