Many new parents are surprised at the multitude of items required by a newborn baby. Here’s a checklist of the basics, as well as some extras you may want to get if you have the money. Keep in mind that these are just guidelines, each baby and family will be different in what they need or like.
Your baby will need a place to sleep. You may want to get a crib, a bassinet, a cradle, a sidecar bed, or nothing if you plan on co-sleeping with your baby. You may also need a set of drawers to keep your baby’s clothes in if her room doesn’t have a closet.
The amount of clothes your baby will need depends on how often you plan on doing laundry. Get things in the 0-3 month size; most babies grow out of newborn size clothes very quickly, and some are too big for the newborn size altogether. You will need: 4-7 bodysuits or onesies, 4-7 footed pajamas, 3-4 rompers, 4-7 pairs of socks, 1-3 hats, and 2-3 outfits to dress your baby up in when going out. If your baby is going to be born in winter, you’ll also need a winter coat, mittens, winter hat with ear flaps, 2-4 sweaters, and 1-3 blanket sleepers for cold nights.
The items you need depend on whether you’ll be breastfeeding or bottlefeeding. If you’ll be breastfeeding, you may want to get breast pads to deal with any leaking and some lanolin, which can soothe sore nipples. You don’t need anything else unless you plan on pumping milk. In that case, you will need a breast pump as well as a set of bottles. How many you get depends on how often you will be giving a bottle. If you plan on formula feeding, you will need about 5-8 bottles with slow flow nipples, a bottle brush for cleaning, and formula.
You will need about 3-5 sheets, depending on how often you’ll be doing laundry. Get 5-7 burp cloths to use in case of spit-ups, and 4-7 bibs to keep your baby’s clothes clean. You’ll also need one or two hooded towels for bath time, as well as a set of soft washcloths. Get 2-3 receiving blankets for swaddling.
Body Care and Health Items
Your baby will need some baby shampoo, body wash, baby lotion, and a tube of diaper rash cream. You will need a set of infant nail clippers, a nasal aspirator, and a thermometer.
You will need diapers and wipes. You can get diapers in size 1 or newborn; however, keep in mind that babies
outgrow the newborn diapers very fast so get a small pack. If you will be cloth diapering, you will need some cloth diapers and covers or inserts, depending on which type of cloth diapers you will be using. Expect to change about 8-10 diapers a day during the first few months, so buy diapers accordingly.
You will need a carseat for traveling; in fact, many hospitals will not let you leave with your baby without one. You will also need a stroller for walks and outings. Alternatively, you could get a sling or baby carrier. You may also want to get a car mirror that allows you to see your baby while driving, and some carseat toys to entertain your baby during drives.
These items are optional because many babies do fine without them, but if you have the extra money and think they will makes things easier, you may want to get them. These include a bouncer (gives you a place to put your baby down while doing things around the house) a swing (not all babies like swings), a glider or rocking chair (rocking can be soothing for both of you at the end of a long day), and a changing table (you can change your baby on any flat surface, however, a changing table will have baby high up so you don’t have to bend over, and many changing tables double as storage space).