I was very fortunate to receive some really lovely gifts when I had Rowan. There are many more than just these 7 that we’ve really enjoyed, but if I had to pick favourites these would be it. If you’re shopping around for gifts for a new or young baby, have a look at these! You can also check out my Newborn Essentials post for more gift ideas.
Top 6 Baby Gifts
Zoocchini Receiving Blanket Gift Set
These blankets from Zoocchini are my favourite blankets by far – and we got a lot of blankets! They are 100% cotton and are just the right weight and size for different scenarios. If you want to cover up baby lightly then use it as a single layer, but if you want a bit more warmth just fold it up to make it thicker. The fabric is soft and it tucks in easily around baby or in the pram. I also love the patterns and they come in a pack of two as you’ll see in my picture below. They’re definitely a wonderful gift that’s versatile and attractive. I found them to be just different enough to be that bit more special too.
Yoofoss Bibs Gift Set
These bibs from Yoofoss are another great gift that have that extra quality feel to them. I didn’t start using them until Rowan was a few months old and, when he’s sitting up by himself, I’ll definitely use them more. They are made with 100% cotton and a fleecey feel to the inside and smoothness on the topside. I find them relatively thick compared to other bibs I’ve used. The shape of them is also really effective at lying flat on the chest with a little ridge that sits under the chin to help catch the various spills! The patterns on them are really nice too – very modern and stylish!
I knew I wanted a baby bouncer early on even though a newborn baby can’t use it for bouncing! The one that my mother-in-law got for us provided a great ‘day bed’ for Rowan in the early weeks. I would lay it flat with the toys detached and put it close to the window so he could get some sunlight (he was born in January!). He now goes in it every day to bounce and play with the toys. There was a brief period where he hated to go in it – I think this was when he had a clingy phase and didn’t want to be put down on anything! But it’s just such a versatile bit of kit: when he’s tired he is easily soothed by the bouncing motion and when he wants to play he can grab at the toys.
Where to shop
I found Amazon or Argos are the best places to look for more affordable bouncers (they can get quite pricey). The one bought for us was from Amazon and is by Just4baby. This one, as well as many others, features a vibration and music box that fits at the bottom of the bouncer. We don’t play the music very often but I have found the vibration unit has helped to calm him down (but it’s not a must-have feature for me). The best thing is the bounce motion, which I feel is preferable to the rocker motion that some of them have.
Play mat / Baby gym
A play mat was another item I wanted early on with a new baby, even though he couldn’t use all it’s functions. It’s a great gift to give at the beginning because it grows with the baby. To begin with Rowan could simply lie on as a comfy, flat spot to sleep. He could also start to move more in a way he couldn’t on the bouncer. Then I would lie him down on his front for tummy time, which I still do now at least once a day. And when he could see the toys dangling from the arches he loved to stare and reach out to them. He particularly loves the bear that hangs from ours and I got some great video of him chatting to it in his 10 week Rowan’s Roundup. Eventually, once he’s rolling over, he’ll be able to play with the soft attachments on the mat itself.
Where to shop
My mum bought ours for us from Amazon. Again, this seemed the best place to find some affordable ones. This one in particular from MiniDream is made with more muted tones and is all fabric which is a bit more pleasing on the eye than some of the garish ones (our bouncer is garish enough!).
We got lots of clothes given to us before Rowan was born. Most of them were hand-me-downs but there were also plenty of new ones. I’ve used a variety of brands, from John Lewis to Matalan, but a couple have really stood out.
My favourite thing about the Sainsbury TU range is the fit of the newborn clothes. Their long-sleeved bodysuits in particular were the easiest to get on and off and allowed enough room for the nappy while still being a snug fit. Unfortunately, I don’t have any pictures of the bodysuits I was given (he always had more layers on top with him being born in the winter!). But the ones my friend bought for us had attractive dinosaur patterns on in white, blue and turquoise.
Another friend has given us a variety of baby clothes from H&M and I’ve found myself reaching for them more than any other brand. The style and fabric is great quality and they are easy to get on and off. I’ll definitely purchase clothes in the future from H&M and will try out their sustainable range of consciously sourced cotton.
There are lots of toys on the market, but again, my friend’s choice of IKEA was a great one. The two gifts she has got for Rowan from there are definitely his favourite so far. The first is a soft rattle in the shape of a cat that came in a pair – one orange-striped and one grey-striped. I love how he can get hold of it so easily and give it a good shake. While he’s still a little uncoordinated it’s good to know he won’t hurt himself if he bops himself on the head with it! They’re a really nice design and he can give the legs and tail a good gumming as well (they wash easily too!).
My friend also picked up a zebra comforter from IKEA for him. He’s been given a lot of different comforters but so far this has been the one he’s held onto most often. Other comforters tend to come with a little teddy attached but I think the stuffed zebra head on this one is easier for him to hug and squeeze. The black and white contrast is also great for holding his attention.
What have been some of your favourite gifts for babies and newborns? Let me know in the comments if you got any of these given to you!