One of the first things many parents start thinking about when they register for baby items is their baby's bedding -- there's so many cute patterns and themes.
Basic baby bedding includes the mattress cover, sheets, bumper pads, quilt, and baby blankets. The following tips will help you buy baby bedding.
- When you start designing your baby's room, you may want to pick your baby's bedding first and design your child's room around it. Most baby bedding has themes. Boys' themes include space, cowboys and trains. Girls' themes include flowers and castles. If you don't know whether you're having a boy or a girl, a gender neutral theme such as teddy bears, Winnie the Pooh or animals may be perfect.
Consider choosing a theme that can grow with your child. Animals, outer space and flowers are easily adapted to toddlers and pre-school aged children.
Once you pick a theme, you may find it easier to choose décor colors, murals, wall paper and wall hangings for your child's room.
- Think about safety when buying your baby's bedding. Your baby's mattress should fit in the crib tightly. Your baby's sheet should fit your baby's mattress snugly. Reduce the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) by removing anything overly soft from your baby's bed. Your baby's bed should never have blankets, quilts, loose sheets, pillows or stuffed animals in it. Some experts even recommend taking bumpers out of your baby's bed, though other experts worry about the baby bumping into the slats or becoming stuck between the mattress and crib. While no one knows what exactly causes SIDS, your chances of experience will decrease if you remove all soft materials from your baby's bed and place your baby to sleep on her back.
- If you receive a blanket or a quilt that you want to show off, use it as a wall hanging or across the back of a chair. You might find yourself wrapping that blanket around yourself and your baby and snuggling in that chair when your baby needs comforting in the middle of the night.
- If you've removed all the blankets and quilts from your baby's bed, but are worried about your baby being cold in the night, consider getting a sleep sack. A sleep sack is a blanket that has been sewn closed at the top and bottom, with holes for your baby's arms and neck. A sleep sack covers your baby's arms and legs, but not her face and chest. The sleep sack is designed to avoid becoming loose and smothering your baby; the sleep sack will remain in place even when your baby begins to move and turn over during sleep. I've included a link to the right about sleep sacks. You can get a sleep sack at most baby supply stores.
It's important not too keep your baby too warm at night though. Consider the number of layers you need to stay warm at night (be careful with this if you are normally a 'cold' person). In the summer, a t-shirt and sleep slack may be all your baby needs. During the winter, a light pajama set and a sleep sack will likely keep your baby warm and cozy. Watch for signs of overheating, like flushed cheeks, difficultly sleeping and sweating.
- Think about thread count. The higher the thread count, the softer and nicer the sheets are on your baby's skin.
- Consider getting bedding like baby blankets that are personalized. Many baby stores such as Pottery Barn Baby personalize items for a modest fee. Many online sites such as Buddy Blankies (link to the right) also personalize items. Your baby will have a wonderful keepsake that's hers forever.