New Baby | What essentials do you really need for the first weeks?

There’s a lot you can buy for your baby. And there’s a lot you really don’t need! Admittedly, I have made my share of useless purchases in the past (for example, a nappy trash can which produces giant nappy sausages). Now, expecting our fifth baby, I think I have more of an idea of what I really need. And, I had given away most of my new baby essentials after baby Casper, so now I have to get them all over again. Taking money and space into account, I’m more picky of what I really need…
So here’s my list of new baby essentials that I think are crucial (or at least very handy) to have the first weeks. Remembering: less is more, and simple is best! : )

new baby essentials CLOTHESNew baby essentials: CLOTHES

  1. White envelope onesies (size 1 month). The envelope opening is the easiest when babies are curled up and tiny.
  2. Baby hats, a few different thicknesses, styles and sizes
  3. For winter: a warm, all-over suit for taking baby outside.
  4. Long knitted socks and/or booties, newborn size.
  5. White pyjamas (Size NB and 1 month). The simple white style is so sweet. All my babies have worn these the first 2 years of their lives!
  6. A few little outfits, size NB and/or 1 month. I like these cute little overalls with feet for the first weeks! A little knitted baby cardigan is handy too.

Note: My babies typically are not big (they were all between 3200 to 3500 grams so far), so I know size newborn or 1 month will be ok. But some of my friends have had huge babies, so they needed size 3 months straight away!

new baby essentials CARENew baby essentials: CARE

  1. Newborn nappies and wipes (I’m trying Naty and Lilydoo)
  2. A cosy receiving blanket to keep baby warm
  3. Baby shampoo and body wash, baby ointment, baby cream bath (I like this one from Weleda), and a nice baby massage oil
  4. Baby nail clippers, saline water and a simple nose sucker to clear up a stuffed nose. And a soft baby hair brush if you expect your baby to have hair (I don’t!).
  5. A few cosy hooded bath capes, hooded towel or blankets to wrap baby in after a bath
  6. A (natural rubber) dummy (so far, all of my babies have used dummies!)
  7. Muslin squaresXL muslin squares and muslin wash gloves. Also: burp cloths.
  8. A Tummy Tub. So cute and my babies have all loved bathing in them! (They are also quite compact, compared to a regular baby bath.) I also use the sink, the first few weeks. (When baby gets bigger I like the folded Flexi Bath until they are sitting up confidently and can go into the ‘big bath’.)

Note: If you’re planning to bottle feed, you obviously need formula, bottles and bottle cleaners.

new baby essentials NURSERYNew baby essentials: NURSERY

  1. A swaddle blanket (I only started using a sleeping bag after the first weeks.)
  2. A changing table (I like using a vintage chest of drawers — handy for storage of the baby essentials!) with a wedge shaped changing mat and one or two washable covers. Plus a cute basket for little tidbits!
  3. Crib sheets and blankets (cotton and/or wool). And a hot water bottle with cover — a very Dutch thing and used to warm up the baby bed the first weeks. In the UK, when I had Sara and Pim, this was unheard of!
  4. A crib or bassinet. (I actually have a crib set up in our bedroom, and a sweet woven bassinet downstairs in the living room for daily naps.)

Note: if your changing table doesn’t offer enough storage, you will also need a cabinet or something else for storing baby clothes etc.

new baby essentials GEARNew baby essentials: GEAR

  1. A pushchair with rain cover and carseat attachment so you can click the carseat straight onto your pushchair. I have a Bugaboo Cameleon, but the new Bugaboo Fox looks cool too. I’ve heard great things about the BabyZen YoYo as well — so compact!
  2. A baby carrier. I like the soft style wraps (slings) for newborns, initially.
  3. Carseat with isofix base (so you can click it straight into the car — not an absolute necessity but SO fuss-free and handy!)
  4. Bouncing chair with a cosy sheepskin cover (there are special sheepskins available fir this purpose, but you can also just buy a natural, non-bleached sheepskin and cut holes in it).
  5. A cosy, washable cover or footmuff for the carseat.

Of course, as always, I’m curious to hear if you feel there are any new baby essentials I have missed, that you feel are essential for the first weeks!

xxx Esther


Comments (13)

March 2, 2018

Isn’t the tubby tub great?? It is super for soothing tummy problems as well.
My fourth baby was colicky, and the tummy tub really helped…
also probiotic drops from BioGaia completely changed her life! Apparently it doesn’t work as spectacularly for everyone, but for us it was nothing short of miraculous! Have a lovely quiet nestingtime as you wait to meet your new baby Esther…

Esther in Amsterdam
March 2, 2018

Thank you!! xx

Sarah hughes
March 2, 2018

Thank you for this timely post Esther! All the very best to you! 💕

Esther in Amsterdam
March 2, 2018

Thanks!! 🙂

March 2, 2018

What a great post. Random q but you don’t have any recommendations for nice hot water bottles do you?! thanks x

Esther in Amsterdam
March 2, 2018

I borrowed mine (from Alies, one of our Babyccino team members here in Amsterdam!). They’re plain ones from Hema and with covers like these. But for my other kids, last year, I gave them very pretty hot water bottles from Omibia for Christmas!

March 4, 2018

Thanks so much! I love the stainless steel hot water bottle! Tried to order but for some reason it won’t let me here in the U.K. – randomly you can buy the covers and the lids but not the bottles themselves – great tips though, thanks again x

March 2, 2018

Hello from Canada, love your tips ! Who makes the bouncy chair you pictured? It looks very simple I had the best chair for my two little ones and they no longer make it anymore and I’m on the hunt for something simple like the one you have pictured 😊 all these newborn posts make me want to have another baby 👶

Esther in Amsterdam
March 4, 2018

Apologies, I realise the links were messed up! The bouncing chair is by Baby Bjorn — the one we have is an older model (nearly 13 years old now, still from Sara!) x

March 2, 2018

Thank you Esther for this post! I am currently pregnant with our first child (due in June), and this recap of what is essential for baby’s first weeks is exactly what I’ve been looking for. This is extremely helpful 🙂 Wishing you all the best

Esther in Amsterdam
March 4, 2018

Thank you, and all the best to you too! x

March 2, 2018

The hot water bottle to pre warm the baby bed is genius! I am from the US and had my 2nd in Amsterdam and had never heard of this until then. I’m back in the US now and expecting my third and will for sure be using that hot water bottle again. It was like an instant sleep aide once they were in that warmed up bed!

May 17, 2018

I wish I knew about the Tummy tub when mine were newborns. What a great idea! For us a white noise sound machine was a MUST. Oh! and black out blinds.

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