Baby essentials: just how many baby blankets do I actually need?
“Help! I’m a first-time mum and I’ve an idea of WHAT I need, but how many will I actually use?”
Short answer…it depends. Long answer… well let’s get to it, shall we?
It really depends on:
how much help you have
how often you do laundry
how spit-up or blow-out prone your mini-me is
how you use your gear
if you have multiples
your climate and the season
The main thing to consider is how many might be out of action at one time, i.e. in the wash or drying, or packed in a diaper bag. Here’s a rough overview of typical use of each of the big essentials - yours might look quite different!
Onesies / Babygros: 6 - 15 per baby, depending on how you use them. At any one time in the first 3 months we had about 12 long sleeved, long legged ones, and maybe 6 legless ones that could go under them (short or long sleeved according to season). They also slept in them in their sleepsac, so they doubled as pyjamas. Honestly, our babes were in onesies at least 75% of the time in the first 3 months. They grow out of them QUICKLY, so remember that before stocking up on newborn size.
Muslin Cloths: 6 – 12 per baby (although you will never have too many). Muslins are your best friend. Their uses are endless, especially when you find the one that’s just the right size and weight to throw round you as a scarf-slash-nursing cover, a pram shade or impromptu changing mat, but also as a newborn swaddle, soft bath towel or burp cloth. Between one in the diaper bag, a few at my nursing chair in the living room and some in baby’s bedroom, I had about 12 in constant rotation. The biggest, prettiest ones two were the most versatile, became my absolute favourites and saw more use than any of the others. Find our faves here
Sleepsacs/Swaddle Blankets: 2 – 3 per baby, per season. Babies can overheat easily, so whether you swaddle or not, make sure they are wrapped appropriately for the temperature. Spit ups, milk dribbles and blowouts WILL happen, so make sure to have at least one spare close at hand for fast changes.
Baby Blankets: 1 – 3 per baby. Most people will end up with a few blankets, but which to get is going to vary a bit depending on your lifestyle and the local weather. Consider whether you’ll use a blanket for sleeping and if you’d like to be able to keep using it when they are toddlers (The Quilted Blanket is awesome for this). Will you use one in the pram or stroller or in the car? While out and about, Toronto babies, for example, might spend much of their time in super snug pram cosies, while in Vancouver, we’re more concerned about the rain and could need thinner blanket layers to regulate temperature - which is probably why the Jersey Blanket is our bestseller. At least one decent blanket is pretty essential, more will still come in handy.
Cloth Diapers: 24 – 36 per baby. Some babies are BIG wetters, and some not some much. Likewise, bowel movements can vary incredibly from child to child (ask me how I know…) If you go the cloth diaper route, and supposing you do a diaper wash every second day, 24 diapers will just about do, but more than this is handy in case of tired evenings when the laundry doesn’t get done (they happen) or to keep in your diaper bag.
Whatever you end up using, start small and work up as you go along!