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5 essential tips for starting out with baby

Babies are superbly designed. Better than anything we or anyone else could make. The best we can do is to design things that work perfectly with baby, helping them to grow safely and naturally. A lot of companies claim to be baby experts. At IKEA we’re a little different. We have learnt from experience that a baby is part of a family, and if everyone who cares for baby is feeling good, baby will feel good. We know it’s not just about baby – it’s about baby and you. Together.

Mother sitting on a wooden chair and baby sitting in white open-sided cot with blue textiles both looking at each other.
Mother sitting on a wooden chair and baby sitting in white open-sided cot with blue textiles both looking at each other.

Tip 1: Baby prep checklist

If you only do 4 things, make it these:

  • Blackout blinds or curtains mean you can make baby’s room dark when necessary.
  • But get a night light so you have a slow-glow option when you need it.
  • A nursing pillow, such as LEN, can make feeds easier and more comfortable.
  • Stock up on burp cloths. Babies burp a lot.

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Tip 2: Natural baby zone

Babies are born with very thin skin, they take lots more breaths than an adult and they’re highly sensitive to light and sound. All this means they’re a fragile package. Make home as chemical-free, soft and calm as possible. You can trust that everything we sell for baby is designed with their safety in mind, with zero tolerance for harmful chemicals.

See more baby textiles

Tip 3: Music for baby

In their first months, baby’s eyesight and hearing is still developing. Light and shade matter more than colour, and melody matters more than words. The movement of leaves or a mobile over the cot will capture baby’s visual attention, and a voice in song or a musical toy such as the KLAPPA caterpillar will make them prick their ears.

Discover more baby toys

Tip 4: You need less than you think

If you’re a seasoned pro you already know this, but for the first-timer, baby can feel like a step onto another planet. You are ready to buy 10 of everything, plus back-up supplies in case you run out. Surplus guaranteed. Sure, baby deserves your best – but quality is more important than quantity.

Tip 5: Seriously, you’ve got this

A mountain of advice awaits every baby carer. The deeper you dig, the more contradictory it seems to become. This reality could turn you into a bundle of stress – which is the last thing baby needs. So our advice? Relax, trust your own gut instincts and remember that it’s only advice.

When positioning your cot, it’s best to put light sources, cords or hooks out of reach, and position the cot flush to the wall if possible, avoiding gaps that little hands and feet can get stuck in.

Jenny Wik, Interior Designer at IKEA

Made for baby milestones

One thing’s certain with babies – they’re always changing. It can make buying products feel like a waste. No sooner are they bought than babies are past them. At IKEA, we design with that in mind. From adjustable cots with detachable sides to the SUNDVIK changing table that transforms into a chest of drawers, our products can adapt as baby grows.

Discover our full changing table range

Designed and tested for baby

Babies are the world’s smallest explorers. At IKEA, we make sure our products have child safety designed into them. This means rounded edges, no gaps or openings small fingers can get stuck in, no small parts or loose cords, and wall mounting kits for all furniture that requires it.

How IKEA develops safe products

Close-up of father lying with baby on his chest with arm around the baby and SOLGUL yellow blanket over them.

Sleep

Babies love sleep. Just like the rest of us. They can happily do up to 20 hours a day in their first six months. But not in one go. They are the kings and queens of the nap. Just imagine up to five solid naps per day, with a mere four hours of awake time to play with. Sound good? Maybe baby could teach us all a thing or two?

Discover the secrets of baby sized sleep

Baby sitting in IKEA ANTILOP highchair with safety belt on and arms on the tray table smiling.

Eat

Can you remember the first food you ever tasted? We know from a baby’s face that every new eating experience can be intense, whatever first foods you offer. From making sure you have the perfect place for feeding to the earliest attempted aeroplane flights from bowl to mouth, we’re with you.

4 tips for feeding baby (and you)

Father playing with a baby and their small soft toy while the baby stands in a white IKEA SUNDVIK cot against window light.

Play

We believe every child has the right to play. We are so passionate about play, we’ve even created the IKEA Play Report, showing what we’ve learnt from both children and adults about what play means to you. Since the whole world is new for babies, play is a multi-sensory feast. What to try first...?

Here’s why baby time equals playtime

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