Favorite Things for a New Baby in a Natural Home

Although I feel that a label for my parenting style isn’t quite fitting, I consider myself more of a “natural” or “intuitive” parent. (You can read about my view on this type of parenting here.) I just raise my baby naturally, like millions of women all around the world have for ages–which simply means that I try to raise my baby in a natural environment and follow my motherly intuition.

Now that I’m in my second trimester, and thinking about what I want to collect for this next baby, I decided to compile a list of my favorite things that I either had when Fae was born, or that I wish I had–mostly things that seem to be common favorites among moms like me.

Here are my favorite things for a new baby in a natural home.

{Clothing}

I like clothing that’s quiet, calm, and soft for newborns. Light and neutral colored basics are a must for me–items that can be worn in many combinations, and keep a gentle atmosphere around the newborn. I like to put natural fibers on babies, so clothing made of cotton or wool is my favorite.

A soft cotton outfit with an un-dyed cotton hat.

Fae, in a soft cotton outfit with a plain cotton hat.

My favorite clothing items are: footed pants; cotton tees and onesies; cashmere wool pants; thick cotton or wool socks; a knitted sweater set consisting of a sweater, booties, and hat; baby-legs (leg warmers); neutral thin cotton hats; and a thick cotton bonnet or wool pilot cap.

My mom had saved my sweater set from when I was a newborn so I was able to use it for Fae. They’re not that easy to find, so I was very grateful.

Sweater set with a pointy bonnet hat. She's not wearing the matching booties.

Wearing her sweater with a matching pixie bonnet hat, without the matching booties.

And just a little something to add: I had an outfit that I used as a 7th day outfit, and I’m going to do this again with our next baby. When my daughter was 1 week old she wore this outfit, and I continued on with it until she grew out of the newborn size. It may sound a little silly, but when I look back through my plethora of newborn photos, I can tell her age when I spot that outfit.

Wearing her 7th day outfit, half-way in an organic cotton knit sling that I made.

Wearing her 7th day outfit, half-way in an organic cotton knit sling that I made.

{Diapering}

When I first bought my cloth diapering supplies for Fae I chose cotton prefolds with pul covers, a wool soaker, and a pair of wool longies. I had planned to use the pul covers through the day and the wool overnight, but I eventually ended up wishing that I had bought only wool covers. That’s when I drafted my wool soaker pattern and began using those for Fae. Wool over cotton or hemp diapers is my favorite way to diaper now. (I wrote about cloth diapering Fae here, about the different fibers for cloth diapers here, and about drafting my wool soaker pattern here.)

Fae in her wool longies.

Fae, in her wool longies.

My favorite things for diapering are: wool soakers; wool wraps; wool longies; cotton flats or prefolds; a few pins or a Snappi; a wool changing mat (or “puddle pad”); cotton wipes; and a natural wipes solution (there are so many easy homemade recipes online, or you can just brew a cup of chamomile tea with honey each morning to use).

{Sleeping}

My favorite things for sleeping are: a wool sleep sack; a wool puddle pad; cotton and wool blankets; and a nightlight.

3 days old wrapped up in a cotton knit blanket, with an un-dyed cotton hat, in her knit pouch sling.

3 days old, wrapped up in a cotton knit blanket, with an un-dyed cotton knit hat, in her organic knit (homemade) pouch sling.

I had a fleece sleep sack for Fae (before I knew that I could get one in wool), and I loved how it kept her so cozy at night. The three of us dressed warm to sleep so that we wouldn’t have to rely on a lot of blankets while co-sleeping with our infant. I plan on using a wool sleep sack for my next child, so I just recently drafted a pattern for them.

I didn’t have a puddle pad for Fae in the beginning, but I’ve been told by some of my customers that they love how it makes it easier to move their baby around at night for nursing, especially when the baby is sleeping in a co-sleeper. And of course, it’s great for keeping the sheets dry, and also for holding the warmth of the baby.

An organic, un-dyed wool puddle pad from my shop, Fae Arbor.

An organic, un-dyed wool puddle pad from my shop, Fae Arbor.

When Fae was born we slept with a nightlight on every night. I woke up constantly to check on her–even though we slept touching bodies–and it was so nice to not have to strain my eyes in order to see her. It also helped me to keep an eye on our cat and make sure that she stayed away from our newborn–which she did (although, things have changed now that Fae’s older).

{Daily Life}

My favorite things for daily life are: baby carriers (I like my pouch sling, Baby K’tan, and mei tai carrier best); a Co-Sleeper (certainly not necessary, but a great luxury item); a backpack; a Boppy pillow (or similar); a rocking chair with a shelf or end table at arms reach; baskets; and a sheep skin.

Napping on the Boppy pillow in a cozy cotton outfit.

Napping on the Boppy pillow in a cozy cotton outfit.

I can’t quite express how valuable baby carries are to me. I didn’t use an infant car seat or a stroller with Fae when she was an infant; I instead wore a pouch sling for going in and out of the car and for shopping. I bought a Baby K’tan carrier (which is by far my favorite wrap carrier) when Fae was a couple of months old and used it daily (along with the pouch sling) for months on end. The mei tai carrier was always great to have, but I got the most use out of it when Fae was older and began riding on my back. I was also able to turn her around to the front position to nurse without taking the carrier off, which made walks and shopping easy.

Fae, as a newborn, outside of the grocery store in the mei tai carrier.

Fae, as a newborn, outside of the grocery store in the mei tai carrier.

We were gifted an Arm’s Reach Co-Sleeper when I was pregnant with Fae, and even though we didn’t use it as a place for Fae to sleep, it became such a useful item. We had it set up next to the bed when Fae was born and I used it as a place to keep some diapers, a changing pad, water and a snack, and nursing accessories (I pretty much lived in bed the first week postpartum). It was also a safe place next to the bed in case Fae were to roll over in her sleep (which never ended up happening, but I was at peace knowing that it’d be alright if she did). Later on I used it for some naps (although Fae had a lot of trouble sleeping if she wasn’t on me), and it ended up next to our big wooden table, which made meal times a little more romantic for Jared and I.

You can see the co-sleeper in the background.

You can see the co-sleeper in the background.

I’ve collected a bunch of baskets since having Fae. At first, I used them to organize her baby things (bath things in one; blankets in another; hats, booties, and socks in a third), and then when she was able to sit up I began using them as a way to organize a few toys and books for her, at her level, like low shelves. I still organize her toys in baskets, along with lots of other things, and I’m growing my collection (along with wooden boxes and trays) to have enough for crafts and activities.

Fae, playing with cloth diaper laundry. You can see some of her baskets in the background.

Fae, sitting with cloth diaper laundry. You can see some of our baskets in the background.

Instead of a diaper bag I chose a tan backpack by Ergo, assuming that I’d be wearing our baby, and Jared would be carrying the bag. This was such a great choice, and we still use this bag on all of our outings.

Digging through our backpack at the local pub.

Digging through our backpack at the local pub.

And I wish I had a sheep skin. The calming nature of wool is amazing. I hope to get one for the next baby.

{Play}

My favorite toys to have are: a wooden toy; a cloth toy; a rattle; silks; and wool balls.

In her co-sleeper at the end of the table, playing with the wool balls that I made her.

In her co-sleeper at the end of the table, playing with the wool balls that I made her.

I like to have a few simple toys for infants made of only natural materials. A few of my favorites were a wooden Kringelring clutching toy by Haba, the Sophie giraffe by Vulli, and a Rainbow Baby by Kathe Kruse. (I wrote about infant toys here.)

With her rainbow baby in the co-sleeper.

Fae, with her Rainbow Baby in the co-sleeper.

That’s my list of new baby things. I’m saving my favorite items for moms for a separate post.

If there’s something that you absolutely loved having with your new baby please leave a comment below so we can all see. Thank you!

Fae is drinking her morning cup of milk and cream, with super messy hair, and rosy cheeks.

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3 responses to “Favorite Things for a New Baby in a Natural Home

  1. Eva loved her pillow so much that we actually had to wean her off of it when we got pregnant again! She’d still be sleeping on it now if we hadn’t. We started taking all of the stuff out for the baby last month, and she took a nap on it the first day! She’s leaving it alone now, so I hope she let’s it go. She’s such a bruiser, I could see her walking over and yanking it out from under her sister one day! I also have to agree that a carrier, really is invaluable. We went through all the trials and tribulations with our first. He tested them all out! Now we have an Ergo carrier that carries E comfortably even now at 2 years old. I put O (3.5) in for fun one day and it was still pretty damn comfy! I can’t wait to cart our new baby around in it. We have a sling as well, but I find it very frustrating to not have full use of both of my arms! Especially with toddlers running around! We really only used it for the first little while with O, and on really short trips. It’s nice that it rolls up so it can just stay in the diaper bag for backup. I think a carrier is a great asset when you have 2 close together like we did. I never would have made it out to run errands and go to doctors appointments if I didn’t have her in the carrier and him in the stroller. We have a bigger stroller as well, but at first he was so little too that it was much easier that way.

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