Baby Furniture Buyers Guide
Communication between the guests would be wise to prevent any duplicate gifts. The guests could also choose to get together on something more expensive such as a piece of nursery furniture. The parents need items that will hold up well for their newborn, so check to make certain the item you choose is sturdy and built for safety.
Purchasing an expensive gift such as a piece of furniture for the nursery would help the new parents tremendously as they are probably strapped for cash at this point. What with the pre-natel care and the upcoming hospital and doctor expenses that come with any childbirth.
Cribs will be the most important piece of furniture the new parent will need for the baby. They come in a wide variety of styles and finishes to match any nursery theme or color scheme the parents might have for the nursery. They come as standard cribs, canopy, convertible, sleigh and various other types. Some of the more common features available would be adjustable mattress heights, metal mattress supports, one of three different kinds of release mechanism, rolling casters and/or a teething rail. A baby can use the crib from birth until around the age of 3. A safe and sturdy crib will cost from $150 to over $1000 depending on the quality of the wood and the features provided.
A crib mattress is a very important item for the baby as she/he will be spending over 50% of his time on the mattress until he/she is around 3 years of age. Mattresses come in basically two types: foam or innerspring/coil. Foam weighs less while the innerspring/coil will last a much longer time. Accessories include bedding, crib sheets, crib wedges and waterproof mattress pads. High quality foam mattresses will cost between $80 to $100, while an innerspring/coil mattress will cost from $75 to $200.
Most standard, canopy and convertible cribs will use standard size crib bedding. A round crib, porta crib, cradle and bassinet will all need special bedding to fit the size of the particular item. A bumper is a necessary item that is needed to keep the baby safe by keeping the baby's arms and legs from getting stuck in the slats. A quilt or comforter should not be used in the crib, but rather as a play mat for the baby. A diaper stacker is used to store your diapers and to keep the nursery more organized. Pillows are a safety hazard for the baby and should never be used in the crib. Most bedding sets can cost from $50 to as high as $700 for a set with better quality fabrics etc.
A changing table should be well padded, have guardrails and include safety straps for the baby. They come in several types such as the combination sytle, dresser drawer and one with open shelves. Accessories include changing pads, oraganizers and wipe warmers. A changing table can be used from birth until about two years of age. They range in price from $90 to $200 depending on the accessories and storage space they have.
A rocking chair would be a welcome addition to the baby nursery or living room. The rocking chair would give the mom-to-be lots of quality time with her newborn baby.
Moses baskets are a rather unique piece of furniture. A moses basket would be an unexpected but welcome baby shower gift. Also something the mother could pass on for a heirloom. This is an item that could be passed from generation to generation.
Child's Rocking Chair
A children's rocking chair would make a great gift. One that most people wouldn't think of giving. You wouldn't need to worry about duplicating your gift with some other guest with this gift.
Playpen & Play Yard
Play yards come in 3 different types. The basic which can be used as a playpen or a crib. One that has a bassinet built in for the newborn. A canopy style to keep you infant shielded from the sun and to keep in cooler in the outdoors. Accessories you can purchase seperately include a changing station, netting for outdoor use and sheets. A play yard can be used from birth until about 2 years of age. Good quality play yards cost between $60 to more than $200.
Portable Travel Crib
A portable travel crib would be great for those over-night trips out of town or state to family or friends.
A cradle is used from birth until 4 months or the baby is able to roll from side to side. Cradles usually include a padded bumper, fitted sheet and a quilt or comforter. One of the advantages of a cradle is that you can rock it and it is lower than a crib.
Every nursery needs a chest of drawers for the newborn. You can buy them with a theme, in different styles, shapes and colors. If you know how the new parents will be decorating the nursery, you can match the baby dresser to the theme.
All new parents need this very essential piece of furniture. There are several types of high chairs: Adjustable, conventional, booster and wooden. The high chair should have an adjustable tray, locking mechanism, some kind of restraint system and possibly rolling casters which are allowed to be locked easily. Parents can use the high chair as soon as the baby is born for bottle feeding if it is capable of fully reclining.
A traditional piece of nursery furniture would be a bassinet. The baby can use the bassinet from birth until about 4 month of age. Bassinet sets usually include a hood cover, fitted sheet, plain sheet and a bumper.
A car seat is a necessity because every state requires the baby be restrained while in a car. Newborns must travel in the back seat in a car seat that faces the rear of the car. After the baby is a year old you change to a forward facing car seat. Car seats come in several different types. An infant car seat, convertible and booster seats. Infant and convertible car seats cost between $60 and $300.
Strollers come as a standard stroller, single, umbrella, double strooler or as a travel system which is a combination stroller and car seat. Most strollers have a canopy, front bar, harness, reliner and a storage space. Accessories available include accessory bars, attachable toy and activity bars, infant headrests, rain sheilds and stroller connectors for attaching two strollers together. A stroller can be used from around 4 months of age until about 3 or 4 years old. Depending on the style and quality strollers can be purchased for as little as $15 to as much as $1,000.
A monitor may be a luxery item, but it can give the parents added reassurance that their baby is safe. There are several types: audio, audio/movement and audio/video monitors. Monitors can be used from newborn to toddler. Depending on the type of monitor, you can buy them for as little as $20 on up to $400, with the audio/video monitor being the most expensive.
A very useful item is a bouncer seat. They can come with an accessory toy bar, canopy, restraint and variable speeds. A bouncer seat can be used from newborn until the baby is 9 months old. The standard non-battery operated bouncer seats cost between $40 and $75 while the battery operated seats tend to cost a bit more.