What You Do Need in Your Baby’s Nursery (And What You Don’t)

Designing your baby’s nursery is an exciting milestone for expecting parents, but it can be hard to decipher what you really need in baby’s nursery and what you don’t.  With so many products available on the baby market and so much information out there, getting caught up in the baby nursery ideas and “must haves’ can also become overwhelming. Let’s cut through the clutter in this quick blog post.  I’ll give you my expert opinion (and Mom opinion) on what you actually do and don’t need in your baby’s nursery.

Do Need:

  1. Bassinet: Having a independent safe sleep space in your room for baby is essential.
  2. Crib:  A well made, sturdy crib is crucial for your baby’s safety and comfort.  Look for one that meets safety standards and provides adjustable mattress height options.  You will not need the crib right away when baby arrives, so there is no huge rush to have this.
  3. Crib Mattress: A firm, waterproof mattress that fits snugly into the crib.  Make sure that there are no gaps on the sides between the mattress and the crib.
  4. Dresser/Changing Table:  Look for one that has a combination of the two.  This way you have lots of storage space for clothing and necessities, while also having a area for diapers, wipes and other essential baby items.  Make sure that if you do get a combination one that it is designated as a change table and comes with the proper safety straps.
  5. Glider/ Nursing Chair:  Choose one that is comfortable and supportive for the late night feeds with baby.
  6. Blackout Curtains: Making sure that your baby’s nursery is dark is very important for their melatonin production and for their circadian rhythm. Blocking out excessive light, these are essential to creating a sleep friendly environment for your little one.
  7. White Noise Machine: If there is a lot of environmental noise happening in your home or around your home, you may want to consider a white noise machine.  Be sure to keep it on the lowest volume and away from your baby’s crib on an opposite wall.

Safety, Storage and Lighting:

  1. Baby Monitor:  Having a reliable baby monitor is a great investment to ensure that you can keep an eye on your little one when you are not in the room.  I recommend a video monitor if possible.
  2. Baskets and Storage:  Keeping that change table organized can be super helpful for those late night changes!
  3. Diaper Genie: While maybe not an essential, as a Mom of two, these great tool kept our nursery from getting smelly, so I highly recommend.
  4. Dimmable lights:  Installing dimmable lights if possible can create a soothing atmosphere during your baby’s bedtime and naptime routines. They also can be very handy for late night feeds and diaper changes.  If you are not able to install these, chose a soft yellow, orange or red nightlight that you can turn on for those moments and then back off when you need the room.

 Don’t Need:

  1. Crib Mobiles: These actually add to stimulation for baby and when we want baby to fall asleep, the last thing that we want is for them to be more interested in a hanging mobile or a video mobile attached to the side of the crib.  Save your money here.
  2. Crib Bedding Sets and Pillows: Baby is not allowed to have anything in the crib, except the crib sheet and mattress..  They can have a stuffed animal at the age of 12 months and a blanket or pillow at the age of 18 months.  To read more safe sleep guidelines, refer here to American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) guidelines.
  3. Projector lighting:  This again can add to stimulation. Sticking to dimmable lights and a soft nightlight for changes and feeds are all you need.
  4. Stuffed Animals: Baby is not allowed to have anything in the crib until at least 12 months of age.
  5. Crib Bumpers:  Refer again to the safe sleep guidelines, as these pose as a suffocation risk.
  6. Dock a Tots, Crib Nest:  As cute as these are, they do pose a suffocation risk for sleep. You can use these during times that you are fully supervising them and they are awake.

Remember as you prepare your baby’s nursery that less is often more.  Focus on the essential items that are safe and practical and will create a calming and sleep- friendly environment for your little one.  Remember to follow your baby’s awake windows (Cheat Sheet here) , newborn’s can only stay awake for a short time. Establish both a naptime and bedtime routine to help cue your baby that is is time for sleep. Enjoy this amazing time and create a space that is filled with comfort and love.

Are you interested in setting up your newborn baby up for complete sleep success? Book my newborn sleep support package here and ensure a peaceful and well-rested start for your baby’s sleep journey.  Be sure to sign up for my Getting Started Guide to have access to my top sleep tips to help baby get the sleep that they need every night.  The more you know!

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