I love buying presents for new babies. It’s a chance to buy something really special.
People always say that you don’t need to buy much for a new baby, and I have to say that I agree. Everyone’s different, of course, but tiny babies really don’t need very much other than warmth, love and clothes at first.
However, that doesn’t mean that the baby’s parents won’t appreciate a lovely gift. The baby won’t notice, but the parents will. Ideally, it needs to be something pretty and useful. Nothing too precious, but something a bit less mundane than the piles of newborn babygros they’ll already have. Pretty clothes are always tempting, but not always the most useful present.
Here are some of my favourite ideas…
Muslins…. You don’t see the point of these until you have a baby, when suddenly they become the most useful thing ever. Use them when feeding over your shoulder, to mop things up, as a sun shade or a blanket. They’re invaluable. I still have a few of mine knocking about and they’re surprisingly useful. If you can find some colourful or patterned ones, then they’re even better. I have recently started stock these beautiful woodland themed muslins. They’re the prettiest I’ve ever seen!
A lovely book… The earlier you start reading to a baby, the better. Buying a book is a thoughtful present that will be cherished. I like to choose something that I remember from my childhood in a board book edition. Books by Janet and Alan Ahlberg, like Each Peach Pear Plum, always go down well.
A homemade gift… either made by you or someone else. A crochet blanket or a knitted hat make wonderful presents and mean a lot. If you lack the time or inclination, buy something interesting and unique made by someone else! These soft, squishy rattles are hand-made in the UK and make a fun and unusual present.
An eye-catching soft toy… Soft, pastel coloured bunnies look wonderful, but aren’t actually that interesting to a little baby. If you’re going to buy a cuddly toy, make it something eye-catching and bold that will capture the attention of those newly focusing eyes. Both of my children loved Lamaze toys and responded to them from an early age. You can hang them on a buggy and they’re just so useful.
Vouchers… OK, maybe not as meaningful, but often the best solution. The parents get to choose exactly what to spend it on. Something for the baby, or maybe something for themselves. You can’t go wrong with John Lewis.
What are your favourite gifts for new babies?