1. Fun Onesies (carry on/star) / 2. Slip On Shoes / 3. Wrap Front Set / 4. Eared Sweater (similar) / 5. Soft Fur (or faux) / 6. Aden & Anais Swaddle Blankets (organic) / 7. Sophie La Girafe Teether / 8. Pacifiers with Clip (also in store at Target) / 9. Diaper Bag / 10. Bugaboo Cameleon3 Stroller with Breezy Shade (dark khaki)/ 11. Ergo Baby Carrier (organic)/ 12. Car Seat / 13. Eames Rocking Chair / 14. Bloom Alma Urban Mini Crib / 15. Stokke Tripp Trapp High Chair / 16. Bloom Baby Bouncer (or Mesh)
When I was pregnant Aiden, my first son, I was on baby overload. I had every single item ever recommended for babies and then some. It was a little crazy and overwhelming. So when my second son, Søren, came around I had a more defined list of what we actually needed. I’ve teamed up with Munchkin today to share my favorite minimalist baby essentials along with their Latch Pacifier (cute blue one below). This list may not be for everyone, but when I looked for baby items for Søren I had design and a small space in mind.
My idea of baby clothing is probably not as minimal as it could be. I enjoyed clothing that was fun and well designed for my little ones. I didn’t overload on sizes or leave items unworn with the tags still attached. Everything I picked out for him he wore multiple times. That’s the point of clothing, isn’t it? Some babies can be messy (and he was some times) but most of the time they aren’t. A little pro-tip; you can get most stains out by laying your baby’s clothing (or blankets) in the sun! I did not include diapers in this list because it’s a very personal choice, but we used cloth wipes and bum genius diapers.
1. Fun Onesies (carry on/star) / Onesies are a necessity, why should they not be fun? Anything that makes baby cuter when they’re awake at 2 A.M. will help. Søren was born in April so he spent a lot of time in a simple onesie if we weren’t leaving the house. I also really loved this style of tank-top rompers when we did go out in the heat.
2. Slip On Shoes / I really love the freshly picked moccasins. They’re high quality and I never had a problem with them falling off Sørens feet. He didn’t wear his first pair until he was around a year old, so they have his tiny footprints on the bottom. I’m going to save them (and every other pair) forever.
3. Wrap Front Set / I really love this style for newborns because it is gentle on their umbilical cord and easy to dress them (especially when you’re just learning how to dress a baby). I had 2-3 of these that I rotated through. He even came home in a set of them!
4. Eared Sweater (similar) / This goes along with number 1 in the awake at 2 A.M. sense, but really, babies look really cute in anything with ears. Load up, especially for the “you’re lucky you’re really cute” stage comes along.
I leaned toward the minimal end of this. Søren had a few toys, but not ones that were obnoxious. His favorites were Sophie and the Lucky Boy Sunday Candy String (sold out, in photo below). I spent a lot of time talking to him, playing with him, and reading to him. I breastfed exclusively, so I didn’t use bottles. I did end up using a pacifier though and it worked out perfect. For snacks we bought one of these snack holders, and it’s lasted almost 3 years now. We don’t have much to baby proof, but have used a couple of these baby gates reliably. I just took it one step at a time as far as baby proofing goes, every child is different. I really liked these organic pads since we didn’t have an official changing table. They also worked well as a co-sleeping pad in case there were any midnight leaks. Later on they work great as a supplemental mattress pad for potty training.
5. Soft Fur (or faux) / I couldn’t find a more natural play mat for Søren so I used a natural sheepskin rug. It was soft and he loved the texture of it. It also doubled as a pad for the rocking chair.
6. Aden & Anais Swaddle Blankets (organic) / Swaddle blankets were our friend. We learned to swaddle Søren nice and tight, but he could kick out of anything. They worked well for a breastfeeding cover, or a light blanket during travel as well. They also worked well tied around the carseat or stroller while being carried or pushed somewhere that was too bright or didn’t have a lot of privacy.
7. Sophie La Girafe Teether / This is a godsend. I wish I were joking because the squeaking aspect of it can get old, but Søren (and every other baby I’ve ever met) loved this teether. Don’t even ask questions, just buy it.
8. Munchkin Latch Pacifier with Clip / I waited so long to introduce pacifiers to Søren because I was worried about nipple confusion, but in the end we used them and they were perfect. These Munchkin Latch pacifiers are great because they are lightweight, and have a natural shaped nipple that is sized according to baby’s age, and they are also shaped to fit perfectly under baby’s nose. I also love that they have a clip in case baby drops it, and that they are bright so they are easier to see while digging through your bag, crib, etc.
On The Go
We made a few trips while Søren was a baby, some via air, but most were around our house. Walking to get his older brother from school, attending other functions, getting groceries, running errands. All of this gear really helped us along the way.
9. Diaper Bag / I had a few diaper bags with Aiden, none of which I was happy with. So I was very adamant this time about not having a diaper bag that looked like a diaper bag. I wanted to be able to carry it as a normal purse afterwards. This one does a good job of that while still offering some great organization capabilities.
10. Bugaboo Cameleon3 Stroller & Breezy Shade (dark khaki)/ I know it’s pricey, but we absolutely love our C3 and use it on a daily basis. I walk a lot and Søren still (at age 3) rides in it often. I love the breezy shade because it is able to close completely while still allowing airflow. We even took this stroller on our trip to Denmark when Søren was 14 months old. If you don’t do as much walking and live a more urban lifestyle I’d look into the Bugaboo Bee 3 stroller. It’s very versatile as well (we took one to Seattle and Alaska). Honestly I can’t say enough great things about the Bugaboo strollers. They are not well-loved without good reason!
11. Ergo Baby Carrier (organic)/ I had the organic version of this carrier, and it was a lifesaver. I first used it at the grocery store when Søren was a newborn, and although he was a little big for the newborn insert, I used a rolled swaddle blanket without any issues. I also used it to wear him in places where a stroller wasn’t as appropriate, in transit, changing flights, during school events, etc. It was easy enough (and properly sized) for my husband to wear him as well.
12. Infant Car Seat (or convertible) / I know an infant seat may seem excessive to some, but my car is not garaged so in order to avoid the elements it was easier to use an infant seat. I love how light the cybex is, and how easy it was to install. It clicked in and out of the car, and fit perfect on the stroller using the maxi cosi adapter. It is also FAA approved for use in planes (big plus!). If your car is garaged or you don’t do a lot of travel, I’d suggest starting off with a convertible seat. When we switched him over to a Clek Foonf, I sold the seat via a local mom’s swap board. Now Clek offers an infant insert, accommodating children from 5 pounds. If I did it all over again, I’d probably just start with the Foonf, I have nothing but great things to say about it.
We don’t have a lot of space in our house for extra stuff for baby, and the stuff I did buy I wanted to be well-designed and easy to look at. Most of it also served a dual-function. Items that were outgrown (bouncer and crib) were sold to friends and family.
13. Eames Rocking Chair / We opted not to spend a lot of money on a rocker and used one I had on hand. It helps to pad it with the sheepskin I mentioned earlier. Although the boys each have their own room now, this rocker still sits in our living room and Aiden loves to curl up and read in it. Sometimes the boys rock in it together, or I rock Søren for a few minutes of quiet before bed time.
14. Bloom Alma Urban Mini Crib / I really loved this crib. We co-slept for most of the first six months at night, but this was perfect for naptime or rolling from room to room as a play yard of sorts. I could even fold it up if I needed it out of the way. He slept in it until he was 18 months old and moved to a twin mattress.
15. Stokke Tripp Trapp High Chair / Again, another avid love of mine. Aiden has had one since 2008, and Søren has had one since just before birth. We used Søren’s with the baby seat from the time he started to sit on his own to now and will continue to do so for many years to come. The seats adjust on these and Aiden (11 years old) still uses his. I even sit in them from time to time. They’ve been an essential piece in our dining room.
16. Bloom Baby Bouncer (or Mesh) / We opted for a bouncer over a swing because I had a bouncer for Aiden and it was perfect. Søren was very much a “mama’s boy” (and still is) and I can not count how many hours I spent rocking this with my foot while I worked at my desk. The design is stunning and it was definitely not something I hated to look at. It’s something I might pass or wait on if you aren’t sure if you’ll use a bouncer. Søren napped in his quite a bit because it was one of the only ways I could get a break (albeit short) from him.
I hope that you’ve found this post helpful, and that my experience as a two-time mom can help guide you on your journey. If you’re ever questioning a baby item, just skip it. You can always buy it when you need it.