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A newborn baby sleeping in a white baby grow and matching baby hat.


What clothes do you need for a newborn?

Baby on the way? As an expectant parent, you're bound to be really excited (if not a little nervous too) about meeting your new arrival and dressing them in all the adorable baby clothes on offer. But when it comes to clothes shopping for a newborn, there's a lot to consider in terms of practicality, comfort, sizing and so on. Of course, it also depends which time of the year your baby is due as well. 

For the first three months, your baby will be mostly sleeping and eating, so you will want to have plenty of comfy clothing to hand. These should include babygrows, bodyvests, day gowns and, not forgetting, a selection of comfy daytime outfits too. It is also just as important to know what newborn babies should wear at bedtime. Don't worry, we have covered everything for you so you can be fully prepared.

14 Jan 2021

Practical clothing for a newborn baby

Baby clothes are adorable and, like every new parent, you'll be raring to fill the nursery drawers with a bundle of tiny outfits before their arrival into the world. However, in those early weeks, your baby will need very little in terms of clothing, and the main things to consider are washability and having multiples of the basics. Want to know more? Read on to discover our clothing, sleepwear and accessory must-haves for newborn babies . . . 

Dressing baby tips for new parents:

1. Consider sizing

The sizing all depends on your baby's weight at birth. Newborn baby sizes start at 0 but, depending on their birth weight, some will fit into sizes of up to 3 months from day one, whereas smaller babies or premature babies are barely going to fill a size 0. 

They will also grow out of their clothes very quickly, so only buy what you need. Opt to buy a small number of newborn size 0 and 0–3 size clothing and once the baby is born you can gauge which size is best.

TOP TIP: When gifting newborn clothes, consider 3–6 month sizing as parents are likely to have smaller sizes already.

2. Make baby dressing easy for you

Your baby will go through a lot of outfit changes every day, so the easier you can make their routine, the better. Look out for baby clothing that features easy-on-and-off features, such as poppers, envelope necklines and full-length zippers.

3. There will be a lot of sleeping

The more comfortable for the baby, the better. There will be a lot of snoozing and day-time naps so comfort should be taken into consideration. Decide on breathable cotton fabrics that are lightweight and also kind to delicate baby skin.

4. Feeding and winding

In the early months, there will be a lot of feeding and at times, milky vomit. You may find you have to change baby more often than you thought. Always have a baby bib attached for these incidences! Also choose clothes that are both good quality and easily washable.

Muslin cloths are a great baby feeding accessory - you can use them to clean away any milk or vomit whilst feeding. They are also used during winding and placed over the shoulder to protect your clothing from any potential mess.

TOP TIP: It is advisable to have at least seven muslins (one for each day of the week) in your newborn baby inventory.

5. Be prepared with layers

It’s best to have multiple layers for the new arrival. This way you can adjust baby's outfits depending on the temperature, to maintain both warmth and coolness, depending on the time of the year. You can layer bodyvests under babygrows to keep them warm in the winter or layer a pair of bloomer shorts with a body vest to keep them cool in the summer.

Newborn baby wearing a baby hat and a babygrow.
Newborn baby wearing a white baby grow and matching baby hat.

What do newborns wear in the day?


Babygrows, the one-piece wonders - a must-have for your newborn. They are not only super comfortable for babies but are practical and allow for easy dressing. Choose from cotton fabrics, instead of man-made fibres this will ensure maximum comfort and will be suitable for delicate baby skin. Babygrows are ideal for layering and adjusting to temperatures, by adding bodyvests underneath or jumpers over the top, you can keep baby warm in the colder seasons.

Beautiful Babygrows

Baby Rompers

Rompers are another great clothing choice for newborns. Similar to babygrows, they are a one-piece outfit but are traditionally made with long sleeves and long footless legs. The footless leg design allows for more freedom and movement when ‘romping’ and playing, hence where the name comes from. Rompers are typically an ideal option for playdates, family outings or photoshoots as they are an easy outfit option and can come in fun, fashion forward styles. They also have easy fastening poppers or zips and allow for easy nappy changes.

Baby Cardigans & Jumpers

A couple of cardigans or jumpers will always come in handy. Choose from soft materials and fabrics that are appropriate for the time of the year. You can place these over babygrows or rompers for day-time outings and it will keep them warm and comforted.

Baby Trouser Sets

If you are taking a trip out for the day, trouser sets are a great alternative to bodysuits and rompers, if you want to create a sweet two-piece outfit. This is a comfortable outfit choice for a baby and will keep them settled. It is also more practical for you, a pair of jeans for example, would make baby changing more difficult.

Tiny Trousers Sets

Baby Dresses & Gowns

For daytime dressing, gowns and dresses are a suitable option during the warmer seasons. In the colder months, layer your dress of choice with a pair of leggings underneath to create an oh-so-sweet outfit. Lightweight cotton materials will be kindest to babies skin and make her most comfortable, so opt for these when choosing a sweet dress to compliment her mini wardrobe. 

Baby Coat

It is always great to be fully prepared with at least one extra-warm outerwear ensemble for your newborn baby. Especially for colder regions, be sure to get a full-body outerwear snowsuit that you can pop over their clothes to make sure they are kept warm and snug in the winter weather. For summer, a lighter coat can be carried in your baby bag and layered over clothing if the weather changes whilst out and about. 

Töastie - Navy Blue Padded Snowsuit | ChildrensalonTöastie
Mayoral - Baby Boys Beige Duffle Coat | ChildrensalonMayoral
Mayoral - Green Stripe Padded Baby Snowsuit | ChildrensalonMayoral

Newborn Accessories

Winter and Summer Accessories for Baby

Accessorising your baby outfits is not only cute but helps you to complete any little ensemble. Make sure you are fully prepared with all your miniature must-haves! Again, it depends on the season so let's make this easier for you.

Winter baby

Be prepared with a selection of socks, a cute pair of scratch mittens and other outdoor essentials such as cotton beanie hats - all to keep your baby warm and cosy. Not forgetting, an essential winter coat or snow jacket for when you are outdoors in the cold winter weather. 

Read our blog on how to keep your baby warm in the winter.

Summer baby

With temperatures rising in the summer months, accessories are not needed as much. The only item we would recommend for summer babies is a sun hat to keep them protected from the sun's harmful rays.

Read our blog on keeping babies safe in the summer heat.


Cotton Baby Hats

Cotton baby hats are great for keeping them warm and comforted and the cotton material is ideal as it is comfortable and kind to baby's skin. For extra warmth when you are heading outdoors in the winter, opt for at least one knitted hat too.

Good to know: A baby hat is usually included in the labour bag essentials list. Some hospitals will not let you leave without a baby hat as it is considered an essential and is required, so be prepared with one when packing your hospital bag.

Scratch Mittens

You might be wondering, what are scratch mittens? Babies tend to scratch their face with their nails and scratch mittens are there to stop any breakage of delicate baby skin. They will keep little hands warm in the winter too. You may also find baby grows with scratch mittens attached so check before buying separately, as it may save you money!

Shop our full collection of scratch mittens.

Baby Socks

Pamper little feet with a selection of baby socks to hand, a must-have for all seasons. If your baby is due in the winter, buy a few more pairs as you are likely to use them more often.

Shop our full collection of baby socks.

A baby girl sleeping in a floral matching babgrow and hat.

What should babies wear to bed?

Baby Nightwear

You want your baby to be as settled and comfortable as possible at night-time. Make sure that your baby's nightwear clothing is not only lightweight but breathable too. Here are different options you can choose from:

Zipped Baby Grows/Body vests

Babygrows are also just as good for night-time, as they are for day-time dressing. You can add extra layers and pop a body vest underneath, depending on the temperature but always make sure to use light cotton layers to prevent overheating. In the summer, sleeveless body vests are the best bet to keep them cool.

TOP TIP: Opt for zipped babygrows and body vests for night time. They will make baby changing a lot easier for you. 

Babidu - Pale Blue Cotton Jersey Bodysuit | ChildrensalonBabidu
Molo - Ivory Organic Cotton Rainbow Bodyvest | ChildrensalonMolo
Minymo - Blue Cotton Bodyvests (2 Pack) | ChildrensalonMinymo


Newborn babies spend a lot of time in swaddles. Why? It is known that babies like to be swaddled in the first couple of months because it feels womb-like and keeps them comforted. It also helps prevent their startle reflex from waking them up in the night. So, swaddles are a great sleeping option for your newborn and there are many benefits of swaddling. However, please also be aware that there are potential risks if used incorrectly which you can read in the linked page from NCT above.

Two baby girls wearing baby grows.

Baby Nests

Recommended for supervised sleeping in the pram or a moses basket, baby nests are like mini sleeping pods for your little one. They are lightly padded with easy-access fastenings which allow you to get baby in and out with ease. 

Baby Sleeping Bag

Baby sleeping bags or as some people call them ‘sleep sacks’, allow you to place baby inside for when they are sleeping. They differ from baby nests and are known more as a wearable blanket. Always check the product information as they differ in minimum weight size, most are suitable for when the baby is more than 8lbs in weight.


The purpose of a sleeping bag is to not only stop babies from wriggling around too much but it prevents them from kicking off their blanket and making them cold at night. So, for that reason these are great for keeping baby warm and settled whilst sleeping.

Have fun with it!

This guide has covered practical newborn clothing options and the clothing that your baby will actually need. But it all depends on what you personally want and need for your baby. Depending on your budget, climate and lifestyle - what you choose to buy will vary. Add more clothing to their wardrobe, if you feel it is necessary and have fun with it. Baby clothes and accessories are adorable and can bring a sense of joy when you are dressing your little one!

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