I was approximately seven-and-a-half months pregnant with Scout before it began to dawn on me that this beautiful bump I had been cherishing for more than half a year was actually going to have to come OUT. And aside from feeling mildly nauseous with terror, and narrowing my eyes at the suddenly-enormous-looking circumference of Mr B’s head, I also started to panic about what I would need to have ready for the baby.
After several hours of Google searching, during which each new page left me even more confused than the last, I called my Mum and between us we did our best to create a “new baby checklist.” Two babies later I’ve honed that list and I thought maybe, just maybe, I could save YOU some Google-related anxiety and share some of my discoveries.
Today’s tips are about baby clothes for a baby born in the warmer months. This is a short list, just designed to get you through the first week, after which you will probably need to buy more clothes. Why such a short list?
* It’s hard to estimate what size your baby will be, so if you buy too much you could end up with a lot of clothes that just don’t fit * Babies grow incredibly fast (Scout moved up a size at the end of her first week), so if you buy too much of any size your baby will probably grow out of them* before they get a chance to wear them
This is the part where I say every baby is different and every family is different and what worked for me might not work for you, and all that. Which is true, but I still HOPE my list helps. Here it is:
1// Short sleeved onesies x 6
Your baby will probably live in these. They’re better than t-shirts and nappies because they still keep your baby cool but will also help keep the nappy in place (you can probably imagine but it will become abundantly clear that this is rather important)
2// Light cardigans x 2
If you step out at night, or if the weather turns windy or cool, you might want to layer your baby and that’s where the cardigans come in handy. I know those little knitted cardigans that people make you when you’re pregnant are adorable, but they’re probably too hot and bulky for a summer baby. You want something a bit lighter weight but still long sleeved
3// Bibs x 3
These are handy to catch dribble and spit-up. Without them, your baby will quickly end up with a soaking-wet top and you’ll end up having to change (and wash and dry and fold and put away) even more clothes
4// Nappy-covers x 2
These are cute little bloomer-style things that fit over the nappies. On really hot days when your baby is dressed only in a nappy, or just a nappy and a t-shirt, they look quite sweet and more “dressed.” They also go a little way towards holding the nappy in place (again, more important than you ever want it to be)
5// Long sleeved onesies x 2
Mostly for a warm weather baby you are better off layering short sleeves with little cardigans when it's cold, rather than having to get them completely changed. But it’s good to be prepared just in case (as was the case for my summer baby Ralph) the weather is so unseasonably cold that you need proper long sleeves in that first week.
6// Long pants x 2
Again, while little blankets may serve to keep your baby warm enough, if the weather is unexpectedly cold you do want to be able to cover their little legs, especially when they’re out of bed such as when you’re feeding them. (A little tip: you can get onesies with the legs included, but in my experience those are a LOT harder to change in the middle of the night - all those press-studs! argh! - and if your baby gets spit-up all over his or her top, you'll only have to change and wash and dry and fold and put away HALF the outfit)
7// Socks x 2
Just to keep those little toes cold in the night (or unseasonably-cool day) air
8// T-shirts x 4
As I’ve said, I prefer short-sleeved onesies for newborns because they hold the nappies in AND they don’t hitch up, exposing tummies or making backs uncomfortable while your baby sleeps. But t-shirts are still good to have around as backups, to swap over soiled onesies, or to add an extra layer if necessary
So there you have it. My Week 1 "dressing bub" survival list. After you’ve made it through this week, you’ll have a much better idea of what size your baby is, how fast they’re growing, what the weather is doing, and the kind of clothing/blanket/cot/pram/baby-wearing schedule that suits you, so you can go (or send someone else) shopping to buy more clothes. Have fun!
* Ralph was a summer baby and I’d bought a whole lot of adorable little newborn singlet-tops and shorts ready for his arrival. But when he was born the weather was unseasonably cool, and Mr B had to rush to the shops to buy him some little pants and long sleeved tops. By the time the summer temperatures returned, Ralph no longer fit those cute little singlets and shorts. We gave them away never-worn.