Buying basic baby clothes
> 3 sizes of clothes are required for the first six months. Bear in mind that “newborn” size will only fit babies of low weight such as twins or premature babies. Size 1 clothes are a better choice.
Do not buy them too far in advance, so as to be sure, but do get them early enough that you have spares between two loads of washing.
You will mainly need pyjamas, body wrap-arounds and a wool or cotton cardigan, depending on the season, bootees, socks, a small hat, a baby sleeping bag or a warm romper suit for baby’s first outing.
For bathing, you need towels or a hooded bathrobe.
> 2 important items of baby clothing which will improve their comfort and safety:
- cotton body suits with long or short sleeves and snap buttons to allow them to be slipped quickly onto baby without going over the head.
- a sleeveless sleeping bag: a small sleeping bag which goes over the pyjamas instead of a duvet, which is dangerous for babies. You can choose different togs according to the weather and room temperature. Or a warmer one-piece suit with sleeves can be used instead.
Furniture for baby’s room
With a few basic precautions, baby will be safe in their room, which must be clean and easy to maintain:
- make sure that the floor is smooth and that no sharp corners are protruding at their head height when they begin to crawl.
- electric sockets must be out of their reach or equipped with secure socket covers.
- avoid thick curtains, rugs and carpets, as they risk creating a breeding ground for allergens and exposure to dust mites.
- if you have to renovate the room, carry out the work several weeks before the birth, as paint and new furniture can release toxic substances.
A cradle or a cot?
A cradle will last your child until the age of 3 months.
They will be able to sleep in a cot until they are 2 or 3 years old.
Cradles and cots must be stable and meet the most rigorous safety standards:
- if there is an inner fabric lining, it should be removable so it can be easily washed.
- in the case of a cot with bars, the space between the bars must be between 45 and 65mm.
The mattress must be firm and match the cot’s size so that baby cannot get stuck in a gap. Cover it with a rubber undersheet to protect it from the little accidents which will happen sooner or later.
Midwives and paediatricians will recommend that you let baby sleep in their sleeping bag without a pillow or duvet, to prevent any risk of smothering.
Consider protecting the bed with a mosquito net if necessary.
The dressing and changing table
The important thing is that this is very stable so that there is no risk of baby falling when they wriggle around on it.
It is best to place it in the bathroom close to a washbasin to make it easier to wash baby, but it can also be located in the bedroom.
A basic washbasin can be used to bathe baby to begin with, but you should invest in a small bathtub for later.
Seats and bouncers
The most urgent of these is the car seat, since you will use this as soon as you leave the maternity ward. All models are equipped with safety locks. Some are multi-functional: they can be carried by hand like a basket and easily attached to a car seat or a pushchair. Generally speaking, they should only be used to transport baby from one place to another. Overuse could harm your baby’s motor development.