Newborn Baby Clothes Checklist 0-3 Months: What Do Babies Wear?

Newborn baby clothes checklist 0-3 months

A guide to newborn clothing essentials

If you are expecting a baby you might be wondering what should be on your newborn baby clothes checklist? What do newborn babies wear? And how many baby clothes do you need?

You’ll be pleased to know for the first 0-3 months your newborn clothing essentials are really quite basic, and your newborn clothes list is really not that long.

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All you really need are:

  • Sleepsuits
  • Vests
  • Cardigans
  • Socks
  • Scratch mitts
  • A coat
  • A hat

Let’s take a closer look at each of these.

Newborn clothing essentials

0-3 months baby clothing

There are some clothes newborns actually need. They are also practical for them to wear, as you will find if you are doing outfit changes several times a times a day.

1. Sleepsuits

Also known as stretch suits or babygrows, sleepsuits have long sleeves and long legs with feet. They have poppers at the front, legs and crotch, and are easy to open and take off.

Sleepsuits are comfortable for your baby to wear both day and night, and during nap times, so you don’t need to change your baby’s outfit for day time naps (newborns sleep a lot in the first few weeks).

Look for sleepsuits with built in scratch mittens (turnback cuffs) at the ends of the sleeves. You can fold these over to prevent your baby scratching at their face, or just leave them unfolded as normal sleeve cuffs.

Choose sleepsuits with poppers that go straight down the middle rather than ones with poppers down the side; the side without the poppers makes it more awkward to get the baby’s leg out.

Try to avoid sleepsuits with poppers down the back, they may be uncomfortable to lay on and as you can imagine a complete nightmare at changing time.

2. Vests or bodysuits

Vests, or bodysuits, are legless underwear that can be short-sleeved, long-sleeved or sleeveless. Poppers fasten at the crotch for easy nappy changing.

Babies wear vests under sleepsuits or under other day time outfits.

Bodysuits with poppers at the crotch do not ride up underneath the baby’s outer clothes. They also help to keep the nappy in place and contain random poo explosions.

Look for bodysuits with lapped shoulders (envelope-style neck openings). These are easy to slip on and off over your baby’s head with minimal fuss.

Envelope neck vests can also be rolled down, which is handy if a nappy leaks upwards or out the sides. You don’t have to pull the soiled vest over your baby’s head or resort to cutting it off and throwing it out.

3. Cardigans

You will need a couple of soft cardigans to keep your baby warm in cooler temperatures. Choose a close knit pattern to prevent fingers and toes getting entangled in the holes.

If you know someone handy with a knitting needle, why not ask them if they would like to knit something? Close knitted patterns are best for safety.

4. Socks

If you dress your newborn in sleepsuits with enclosed feet, or if the weather is warm, you’ll find you have little use for socks.

When you start dressing your baby in other outfits you might need to buy baby socks.

But you may have difficulty with socks staying put on your baby’s little feet.

You could try these nifty little inventions called ‘Sock Ons‘ from Amazon if it’s cold and the socks just won’t stay on!

On another note related to footwear, tiny shoes look cute and irresistible. But they are completely unnecessary until your child is walking.

5. Scratch mitts

Some babies scratch their faces, leaving red marks and even drawing blood. Scratch mitts are a solution but they don’t stay on very well and often get lost because they are so tiny.

As previously mentioned, sleepsuits with integral scratch mitts are an alternative to individual pairs of mitts.

6. Coat

For a winter baby who will be outside in very cold weather, a one-piece snowsuit/pramsuit with a hood will keep them warm. Otherwise a warm cardigan/jacket over their clothes and a pram blanket will suffice.

If your baby is wearing a bulky coat or snowsuit, for safety reasons this should be removed before travelling by car in the car seat. Remove it as soon as you get indoors so your baby doesn’t overheat.

7. Hat

It is not necessary for your baby to wear a hat indoors. Put a knitted hat on your newborn if it is cool outside.

Keep babies under six months old out of the sun. When they are older they will need a wide-brimmed sun hat.

What are the sizes of baby clothes?

Unfortunately, newborn baby clothes sizes can be confusing, and vary from brand to brand.

As a general rule of thumb, newborn clothes are categorised as:

  • Premature (up to 5 lbs)
  • Tiny baby (up to 6 lbs)
  • Newborn/first size (up to 9 lbs)
  • 0-3 months (up to 12 lbs)

So how do you know what size baby clothes to buy before your baby is born?

Unfortunately, you won’t.

You will not know the exact size that is right for your baby until he or she is born. Your midwife can take a guess at how big your baby will be, but midwife guesses and even ultrasound predictions are often way out!

Clothes size 0-3 months will be big on a 6 lb baby. An 8 lb baby will never fit into tiny baby clothes and therefore the clothes will never get worn.

If you want to play it safe, buy sleepsuits and vests in first size and 0-3 months.

For an early baby, check out the Mothercare premature baby range.

If you have clothes in various sizes, keep the tags, packaging and receipts so they can be returned if unsuitable.

Babies grow fast and out of their clothes quickly, especially newborn size, and you will need to buy larger sized clothing before you know it. If you buy too much clothing in newborn size they will never get to wear it (so go easy on the number of items you purchase in this size)!

How many baby clothes do I need?

How many baby clothes of each size do you need? This probably depends on how often you intend to do laundry.

But as a rough guide, your first newborn baby clothes set should include:

  • 10 sleepsuits
  • 10 bodysuits/vests
  • 2 cardigans
  • 1 jacket/snowsuit for a winter baby
  • 1 knitted hat for a winter baby
  • 3 pairs of socks (not essential)
  • 3 pairs of scratch mitts (not essential)
  • A few nice day outfits (not essential)

Buy your first set of baby clothes in newborn/first size, and size 0-3 months, to see you through the first twelve weeks. Then replace the clothes as your baby grows with size 3-6 months.

Baby clothes checklist 0-3 months info about sizes and more tips

Does a newborn need nice day outfits?

It is lots of fun shopping for new baby clothes, especially if it’s your first baby. And who can resist those adorable tiny newborn outfits?

In addition to the essential items mentioned above, there is a range of cute little outfits you can dress your newborn in during the day if you fancy a change, or if there’s a special occasion, or for when you have visitors.

Choose from 2 piece sets, T-shirts and leggings/trousers, dresses, rompers and dungarees.

But you don’t have to waste your money buying lots of these kinds of newborn clothes; you don’t really need them. Your little one will be quite happy living in sleepsuits and vests for the first 0-3 months.

Babies don’t care what they wear (there’s plenty of time for that when they’re older). They just want to be warm and clean.

Bear in mind clothes make popular newborn baby gifts. You may find you get given lots of lovely outfits by friends and family (who also can’t resist those cute little clothes).

When your baby is born you may even be given enough clothes to see you through the entire first year, as often other people will buy size 3-6 months + to ensure they fit.

If you know someone who wants to buy your baby something special, you can get some very cute baby outfits from Etsy.

Where to buy baby clothes

Supermarkets sell good quality, cheap packs of sleepsuits and bodysuits. Many other clothing shops, department stores, specialised baby shops and websites also have a wide variety of clothes to choose from.

Whatever newborn clothes you buy and wherever you buy them from, the fact remains your baby will go up a size roughly every three months for the first year. Keep that in mind when you’re looking at the price tag.

If you spot some bargain baby clothes on sale that are currently too big, you can always buy them and keep them in storage until your baby grows into them.

Take hand me downs from friends and family (unless you have too much stuff already); often you’ll find the clothes are in excellent condition because their baby wasn’t in them for long.

You can also buy good condition second hand clothes on selling sites such as eBay, Gumtree and Facebook Marketplace.

People often sell their baby clothes as bundles for a bargain price, sometimes including items that have never even been worn, and it could save you a fortune.

Tips for buying baby clothes

  • Buy sleepsuits and bodysuits in white or light colours. Put them all in the same wash and spend less time sorting light colours from dark.
  • Keep mainly to non-gender specific colours for sleepsuits and bodysuits. If another baby comes along, you can use the clothes again and save some money.
  • Read clothing labels before purchasing. Make sure everything you buy is machine washable and can be tumble dried, if you have a tumble drier.
  • Your baby’s clothes will spend a lot of time in the wash gradually acquiring stubborn stains, so consider this before you blow your budget on an expensive newborn wardrobe.
  • If you’re on a budget, just buy the essentials. You will have to change your newborn’s outfit several times a day due to nappy explosions and milk vomit! Sleepsuits and vests are far easier to change.
  • Don’t buy clothes with decorative ribbons or tassels. They are unnecessary and present a choking hazard.
  • Don’t get rid of clothes your baby has grown out of if you haven’t completed your family. Keep them for your next baby or sell them on the market place to get some cash back.

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