I'm not one for gadgets or excess baby paraphernalia. In fact, I think many first time parents get sucked in by long lists of must-haves, only to realise that so much of it is unnecessary.
When I was collating this list I asked Daniel what he remembers as being an essential in the first few months of baby. "Things to clean up with," he said. Which just about sums it up. Babies are beautiful but they create a lot of mess, hence a good supply of clothes, burp cloths and wraps are absolutely necessary. I'm also a fan of a neutral colour palette in those first few months; it ensures that everything can be washed together (you'll need to do at least one load a day) and it means that future siblings or friends' babies, regardless of their sex, will use the clothes, too.
As I start to prepare for my little one's arrival, I'm conscious of how often things will be used and where they're going to live. Two boxes of teeny tiny clothes are sitting in the laundry waiting to be washed and I'm proud to say that most of them were purchased or gifted when Che was born (quality stands the test of time and baby vomit).
In my opinion, this is what you need for baby:
1. Booties that stay on the feet (there aren't many on the market). These Nature Baby Cotton Drawstring Booties are a must-have and are, in my opinion, the best sock/shoe for those first few months.
2. I distinctly remember the few hours after Poet was born: I was holding her little hand and realised that her nails were quite sharp. And I'd forgotten to get mittens! It's probably the last thing you would think about but mittens are quite important in the first week or two as your baby's arms will flail about and they very easily scratch themselves. These fog linen mittens are simple and beautiful and come in their own calico bag for easy storage.
3. Nature Baby make a beautiful kimono-style bodysuit which ensures that dressing baby is easy. Sometimes slipping a top over baby's head is a little nerve-wracking, hence the kimono takes the stress out of the experience.
4. An Australian icon, the Bonds wondersuit is a staple from birth-two years. Nothing quite like snuggling your terry-towelling clothed newborn!
5. I recommend a good selection of cotton singlets for baby - these organic ones are my favourite.
8. A hooded towel for bath time will be used from birth till toddlerhood. If you know the sex of your baby, I also love these ones.
9. I used a moses basket for Che and Poet but this time I'm buying a Tetra Organic Snuggle Bed to ensure safe co-sleeping (they can also be placed inside a cot so you don't need to invest in a bassinet). It's also easy to move around the house and comes highly recommended by many, many mothers.
10. Slings and carriers are the best way to settle your baby and keep your hands free. I love the Sakura Bloom linen sling.
11. Classic terry towelling nappies make fabulous burp cloths and will, I promise you, be used for all manner of reasons in your child's life. I still have the 12 that I bought when Che was a baby and they are still going strong.
12. Aden and Anais bamboo muslin swaddles have a bit of a cult following - for good reason. The bamboo range is divine - soft, silky and perfect for swaddling baby or using as a pram or feeding cover. I love these!
13. A soft, lightweight blanket comes in very handy. I recently bought this handmade four-layer cotton gauze blanket and it's ideal for our autumn weather which, at best, is unpredictable. I also love the fact that it's a practical heirloom.
14. My favourite newborn beanie features a quirky top-knot and is very easy to put on.
16. Every household needs a tub of Tui Bee Balm*. This miracle balm cures everything and is the only product you need to consider for nappy change time (it's also great for eczema).
17. My auntie makes the best muslin facewashers (she cuts squares of muslin and overlocks the edges). If you're not handy with a sewing machine, these are a great option for bath time but also make great clean-up cloths (we always have a few in each room of the house).
Whilst I'm sure I have forgotten a few things, I have no doubt that this collection will come in handy for you and your baby. If you have an item that you couldn't live without, please leave a comment below. I'm more than happy for this post to become a collaborative effort!
*an affiliate item that earns me a small commission when purchased.