Registry: Baby Clothes


2017 Update: We still stand by this advice on what should moms register for baby clothes— links have also been updated below.

Welcome to installment three of our registry for working moms: general baby clothes. What should new moms register for clothes for their baby? Which are your favorite brands and types of baby clothing — and have they changed through the months and years with kids? We’ve already talked about carseats and strollers, cribs and sleeping gear, and now: baby clothes for the registry. As I mentioned last time, I envision the entire series going through these categories (stay tuned!):

  1. Carseat — necessary from coming home from the hospital!
  2. Stroller — how many have you tried? How many do you keep? (e.g., big stroller, umbrella stroller, jogging stroller)
  3. Cribs and sleeping gear — crib and bassinet rocker, if necessary
  4. Clothes — daytime clothes, baby socks
  5. Babywearing carrier — infant and 15-lb.+
  6. Baby toys — swings, seats, and other Big Things to register for (Exersaucers, etc)
  7. Essential books
  8. Diaper bag
  9. Nursing clothes
  10. Breastfeeding pillow
  11. And one final category: The Biggest Flops (stuff you hated).


First, some general tips on baby clothes:

  • If you can, register for things like onesies and footed sleepers in multiple sizes — that first year you end up needing a ton of different sizes, and it’s nice to just have them on hand.  Note that for season-specific clothes it’s hard to do this in advance because you don’t totally know how big your kiddo will be when born, or how he or she will grow.
  • Don’t get too crazy registering for baby clothes, though — you may end up hating some things (for me it was sleeping gowns); you might end up loving others. It really is a matter of taste — as well as what time of year your baby was born in. For Harry (born in May), for example, we kept him in a diaper and swaddle for pretty much the first 3 months — mostly SwaddleMe, but we also had a Woombie Air and an Aden + Anais Easy Swaddle we liked. After that, to be honest, we’ve kept him in footed sleepers for most of his first year.
  • Try a few brands of clothes — but in general I found it easiest to pick a few brands I like and stick with those for all of the boys’ clothes. Things fit differently (length, width), wear differently, and so forth — right now I pretty much exclusively buy Carter’s, Old Navy, and Gap for the boys. For round #2 these have held up… fine, I suppose. I’ve heard that some people who know they want a lot of kids think the fancier clothes (Splendid, Petit Bateau, etc.) hold up better for various rounds of hand-me-downs — so you get more for your money. As they say, your mileage may vary.
  • Randomly: try a few brands of diapers for your little one too — they’re a bit like pants. Each brand fits a bit differently in the rise, the leg holes, etc., etc. We were big fans of Huggies for both boys. (I have no experience with cloth diapering — if anyone would like to write a guest post on your experiences with it, please contact me!)

Specific Recommendations

Swaddles: I like the SwaddleMe; the Woombie Air and Aden + Anais muslin ones were both nice alternatives for a summer baby. (Again, for H, this is pretty much all he wore for the first few months of his life. We would stick him in a onesie or footed sleeper if we were wearing him.

registry baby clothesPajamas: I’m a big fan of the footed sleeper, at least after the swaddling months — bonus if it has a zipper instead of snaps. Sleepers without feet don’t make any sense to me (babies do NOT do socks) and pajamas as separates, while adorable, just seem like they ride up and get all bunchy while the kiddo sleeps. Once the kiddo is out of swaddles, the sleepsack (a wearable blanket) is a must. We’ve always liked the Halo sleepsacks in jersey and fleece; we’ve also had a few Aden + Anais sleepsacks for summer. (Pictured: Harry in one of his zip-up footed sleepers.) 

Socks and Shoes: Do not underestimate the ability of a baby to kick off every sock you try to get on their feet — this goes double for shoes. So for my $.02, for the first year I’m more a fan of footed pants or footed sleepers to keep their little toesies warm, at least until the baby is crawling and needs the traction of bare feet. For the rare outing where we wanted booties, we loved the Zutano baby booties for the first year, which the boys wore as “shoes” — they were super warm and, amazingly, kickproof. (I’ve read that it’s better, developmentally, to let them be in bare feet rather than shoes, so there’s that.) In general, I would not consider any socks without grippers on the bottom for traction until the kiddo is 3 or 4.

baby clothes registryOther clothes (onesies, pants):  We rarely used these (really just for babywearing and parties) until the boys were older, like 6 months. My big tip with onesies: if you can, register for ones that have a VERY wide opening at the neck, if not a V-neck or kimono-like folds and snaps. My boys’ heads were both so wobbly and soft that it freaked me out to put clothes on over their heads. (We loved our Kate Quinn Organics kimono/wraps. The designs aren’t my favorite, but I liked the functionality of the Petunia Picklebottom onesies we were gifted by friends.) We haven’t tried them, but these Zutano wraps look good. As a second-time mom I was ok with the boatneck openings on Carter’s onesies, but when I was a first-time mom they freaked me out.  We got a TON of denim for baby gifts from friends — denim jackets! denim overalls! jeans! — and I will say that these were some of the least-used things in our boys’ wardrobes — they were just so stiff it felt cruel to make the boys wear them. (Pictured: a rare photo of Jack in clothes!)

Summer clothes for babies: I always get freaked out at the possibility of either boy getting a tan, so I make them wear rash guards whenever we go to a sprayground or pool, and a hat (with a chin strap) pretty much all the time. Amazon has a million rash guards; Land’s End and Old Navy both do sometimes as well. I like this blanket with UV protection (ROSK Sun Cover) for chilly but sunny weather.

registry winter clothesWinter clothes for babies:  Be very careful with a puffy jacket — you never want it to interfere with a tight seatbelt in your carseat or stroller. (The CarSeat Lady has a very thorough tutorial!) It depends on your situation, but a lot of times a stroller/carseat cover like JJ Cole or 7 A.M.® Enfant will be better for the baby because he can be fastened in tightly but warm and snuggly under his stroller cover. In general, for our boys we would just add a fleece bunting/coverall on top of their footed PJs and then either put them in the stroller/carseat with bunting or the carrier. (To be extra careful, bring the cover with you when you get your carseat-installation checked to make sure it’s safe to use in the car.) We loved the Zutano fleece hat, and have used a million mitten clips to keep their mittens attached to the coat. (Pictured: Jack in his monkey/sherpa coverall from Carters.) 

Boy-specific items:  I don’t think you really need anything specific for boys. A friend gifted us Peepee Teepees, which were cute, but honestly we just kept a washcloth near the changing pad for this purpose.


What are your favorite baby clothing brands? We’d love to hear your thoughts on: 

  • swaddles and blankets
  • PJs
  • socks and shoes
  • general clothes
  • spring/summer clothes
  • fall/winter clothes
  • boy/girl specific items


N.B. These substantive posts are intended to be a source of community comment on a particular topic, which readers can browse through without having to sift out a lot of unrelated comments. And so, although of course we highly value all comments by our readers, we’re going to ask you to please keep your comments on topic; threadjacks will be deleted at our sole discretion and convenience. Thank you for your understanding!

Picture below via Stencil.



  1. Don’t spend a lot of money on any baby clothes. They grow so quickly and it’s just not worth it. With that being said, I’m obsessed with Kickee Pants pajamas. They are a little pricey, but they are always sold on Zulily at a discount and they last a LONG time since they are so stretchy and soft.

    • mascot says:

      On the subject of pricey pajamas, the Hanna Andersson pjs are the best I’ve used (haven’t used the Kickee). They don’t pill or fade and hold up for multiple kids. Costco has them in infant sizes.

      • OCAssociate says:

        Love Hannas, but I have trouble paying for them until the kids are a little bigger and don’t grow out of them so fast.
        On that note – Hanna pjs are 25% off right now!

    • Love Hanna Anderson and Hatley brand pajamas. They’ve both stayed so soft and held up well through two boys.

  2. shortperson says:

    we save money by sending lo to daycare and spend some of that to make sure she’s dressed nicely every day. her daycare is great but she definitely gets extra attention because of her outfits, so IMO it is a worthwhile investment. we did receive a lot of nice handmedowns, organized by size, but we supplement with clearance purchases from carters (if you look carefully they have cute stuff ), jcrew baby (love), gap and various gilt purchases (egg, tea collection, etc.)

    I recommend not registering for or buying in advance any sleepwear. it’s hard to know what will work and needs change very quickly. we registered for a bunch of woombies in different sizes, needed to supplement the tiny sizes with more, and then didn’t use the bigger sizes at all. We got a bunch of 0-3 month pajamas but she only wore a woombie + diaper at that size. We got a halo fleece sleep sack and some fleece pajamas but baby does not like to sleep in fleece, she likes the $$$$ aden multilayer sleep sacks only. Just go with the flow and buy as needed.

    • She gets attention because of her outfits? I don’t understand what you mean by this.

      • Meg Murry says:

        Me either. We sent our kids to daycare in the “sleep and play” footed lightweight one piece pajamas/outfits most of the time until they were 6-12 months (depending on season, the one piece shorts rompers in summer instead), and daycare appreciated that the kids were in practical clothes where they could roll around on the floor or get peas and mashed sweet potatoes on their clothes and it wasn’t a big deal.

        Our daycare specifically asks that you not send kids in extra nice clothes, because they want them to have the opportunity to get messy, and don’t want to mess around with extra large bibs to protect those nice clothes. Your kid might get an extra minute of “oh, doesn’t she look so cute!” attention, but other than that I don’t think the clothes actually make that much of a difference.

    • You save money by sending your daughter to daycare and dressing her in more expensive clothing? Not only are you nonsensical, you sound delusional!

  3. So far, nine weeks in, my favorite things are zip up footed sleepers from Carter’s. However, as my kid is a Houdini who does best with a double swaddle, she usually wears just a onesie under all that right now.

  4. Stephanie says:

    I agree with finding a few brands and sticking with them. Tea makes adorable clothes, but they just aren’t designed for my little guy’s shape. I wish I had known that before I bought a bunch of Future Clothes for him! We have a mix of Carter’s, Zutano, and Hanna Andersson. Zutano and Hanna Andersson can be pricey, but they have pretty reasonable sales and you can find them on zulily every so often. I do think that the Zutano and Hanna pieces hold up better over multiple washings compared to Carter’s. We decided we were willing to spend a little more on higher quality clothes, but not buy as many outfits, and just do laundry more often. (Of course, if you don’t have in-unit laundry, that’s not practical.)

    I try to buy matching onesies and bottoms at the same time, so that we have outfits ready to go. The three piece sets from Carter’s are great for this – one l/s onesie, one s/s onesie, and one pair of pants. I roll up each outfit and they each fit into one square of a drawer insert made for organizing bras. It makes getting ready in the mornings a lot easier.

    I agree with PP’s comment – I do think LO gets a little more attention because of his outfits.

    As far as socks and booties, we love the Zutano booties, too. Those Trumpette socks are oh so cute, but they tend to run small. We like the socks from Robeez and Old Navy.

    • Just want to offer a different perspective, because I’m having a hard time understanding the idea that having nicer clothes gets your kid more attention at daycare. My baby wears hand me down Carter sweats and onesies to daycare everyday. His teachers are fabulous and I can’t even fathom the idea that they would pay more attention to him if he was dressed more nicely. He is constantly covered in drool/sticky food/sunscreen/etc. and the thought of spending a substantial amount of money on baby clothes seems wasteful. But that’s going to depend highly on budget of course. We’ve supplemented the hand me downs with Old Navy/Children’s Place/Gymboree, but constantly come back to Carters because it seems like the easiest brand to find basics that are a reasonable quality for the price.

      • hoola hoopa says:

        I’m more than a little scandalized by the idea, too. If I thought my daycare was varying their care based on the children’s clothing, I’d be finding a new daycare pronto.

        • Sarabeth says:

          Yes! I find the idea vaguely horrifying! Maybe they comment on one baby’s cute clothes, but I trust that they find other ways to engage with the other babies so that everyone gets equal attention and interaction. That is, literally, their job (and in that sense, it’s not at all the same as complimenting an adult on their clothes). It may be naturally to have your attention drawn to a cute outfit, but a daycare provider should be proactively making sure that each kid gets sufficient and roughly equal engagement.

        • Stephanie says:

          I can’t speak for the person who originally posted “her daycare is great but she definitely gets extra attention because of her outfits”, but in our case, people comment on LO’s clothes. Maybe “attention” wasn’t the right word.

          • My daycare comments on cute outfits too, but they’ve also told me that they’ll change kids dressed in too nice clothes. A frilly dress doesn’t let a toddler run and climb, and a stuffy vest doesn’t let a child reach to grab the markers. They appreciate when kids arrive in clothes designed for PLAY, because it’s less changing time.

            I know each budget is different, but I’d rather spend 3.88 on a Garanimals shirt that I know is going to be covered in markers and glue stick, than spend $15 on a cute top that sits in her cubby all day.

      • Stephanie says:

        I don’t think the attention is any different from when an adult receives attention for their clothes – it’s not like they’re neglecting the kids who aren’t wearing “nice” clothes. For all I know, the attention is because LO wears the same 8-10 outfits over and over and over again. :)

      • Pigpen's Mama says:

        Late in the game here, but I think it’s just something they say when you drop off and pick up. Or what any one says when they see a baby — what else is someone going to say — “Who does baby think is going to be the Republican presidential candidate?”? Plus, baby clothes are inherently cute because they are tiny and on babies.

        My daughter wears mostly Carters (is that tacky, because if it is, I really don’t care) and she (usually) matches because I’m slightly OCD, yet her teachers still coo over her when she gets dropped off. And they also coo over her when she gets picked up when she’s got food and general baby grime all over her (where the heck does that come from anyway??). They also tell me she’s oh so smart because she jerkily waves bye-bye when we leave. I think all of it is sincere because they do seem to genuinely like their little charges, but I also don’t read too much into it or think it’s because I think my baby is looking particularly cute that day.

        • I never comment but I feel compelled to ask: what is tacky about Carter’s????? I love Carter’s for my almost 6 month old. They have great sales which is nice since clothes only fit babies for a couple months. Right now I’m liking rompers and onesies with shorts or pants over them, although at home we usually don’t bother with shorts or pants. I have a different opinion about socks. While my son does try to take them off and eat them, they keep his feet warm when needed.

          Personally, I did not register for any clothes. I was gifted quite a few items in many different sizes so I could do my own supplementing with things I discovered I liked.

          • Pigpen's Mom says:

            No idea — I was mostly joking, but have heard people call Carter’s tacky (mostly people on anonymous competitive parenting forums, so I take it with a grain of salt). Maybe the silly graphics and sayings? There are some that are a bit too twee for me, but I think a lot of their outfits are cute.

            I’m actually a fan of their stuff — it fits my daughter’s body type pretty well — she’s on the long, less-chunky side, but has a big old belly. Before a kid I had no idea babies had body types, btw.

  5. Maddie Ross says:

    I generally stock up each season on cotton or cotton-blend “play” clothes for LO at Target and Old Navy. I find these two places less “twee” than Carters. I definitely lean toward more basic, less twee baby clothes.

    I then blend in smocked items (various sources and boutiques), and other “nicer” items. As was mentioned above, I love Hanna Andersson and Zutano. I also love Burts Bees Baby. The nice thing about Zutano and Hanna Andersson is that I’ve had great luck reselling on eBay.

  6. quailison says:

    We registered for some basics (sleepers, neutral sets of onesies/pants) and no one got them for us. Everyone got us clothes, but wanted to pick out something themselves. Worked out great, save a few people who got summer outfits in sizes that were too small by the time it got worn. I think it did give gift-givers an idea of what kinds of clothes we were looking for.

    And what have we ended up using? Only sleepers for the first three months! Zippers preferred to snaps! This kid didn’t wear pants until last week. As we move into summer I think he’ll mostly be in onesies, which I still hate putting over his head but it’s a lot easier now than it was when he was a newborn.

    Also, we registered for cloth diapers and no one bought those for us, either. We use prefolds and covers and it has worked out really well so far. I’m not expert enough for a guest post but am happy to answer questions/give my opinion about cloth diapering!

    • UpstateNYatty says:

      Oh no, my reply disappeared with the s*te problems! I responded- ME please!! Along with a bunch of questions. I’m due in November and though I’ve read a bunch online and watched tons of you tube videos, I don’t know anyone who does it in real life. Am I crazy for attempting this when hubby and I both work 50+ hours a week?? Baby will be at day care starting at 3 months. Does your child go to day care, and how has cloth worked out there? Did you start using cloth right at birth in the hospital? Did you buy newborn sizes to get you through the beginning? Wash or service? Use disposables ever? How many do you buy upfront without knowing which brand(s) work for your baby? HELP!!!

      • due in june says:

        FWIW, my daycare refuses to use cloth. Almost all the daycares in my area require disposables. So make sure that your daycare will use cloth before you get your baby used to cloth while you’re on maternity leave.

        I’m trying to figure out how many trees I need to plant to offset the environmental destruction my child will cause with her diapers.

      • We cloth diaper twins working 50 hrs a week, so definitely possible. However we use a nanny – not all daycares will take them. Definitely start with prefolds (I like the ones from Diaper Junction) and Covers (I like the Thirsties duo wraps) as those work best for newborns and are the cheapest. They worked great for us so I never felt the need to move to the fancier, more expensive set-ups.
        Started with the newborn size once we got back from the hospital (they provide diapers so didn’t feel the need to bring our own). You can also do a rental program with a place like Jillian’s Drawers, but it didn’t seem as practical for twins.
        I had thought about using a service, but the thought of keeping them around for an entire week kind of grossed me out. And I realized, no matter what you will be washing poop in your washing machine when your kid has a blow out. If they are EBF you can just through the dirty diapers in. Once they are on solids, you have to shake off the dirty diapers in the toilet. Invest in a sprayer. Gross, but you get used to it. We use Charlies Soap and haven’t had issues.
        A few months in we had some leaking overnight, but now we just use their original newborn prefolds as an insert and it works like a (very bulky) charm. We use disposables when we travel and sometimes for errands, etc.
        It’s totally doable and worth it IMO for the cost, environmental and non-chemical reasons. It can be super overwhelming at the start just due to information overload so if you can find a class at your nearest hippie baby store, I’d heartily recommend it. Also feel free to circle back with any specific questions.

        • UpstateNYatty says:

          Me again! What kind of prefolds do you like– cotton, hemp, or bamboo? And velcro or snaps on the cover?

      • NewMomAnon says:

        I tried to do cloth diapers but my kiddo HATED the feeling of wet diapers, and the only thing that kept her from screaming all the time was the super absorbent night time dispoables in one size up….so sad. I didn’t mind doing the diaper laundry before she switched to solids; b*milk poo rinsed off pretty easily (although it can stain if you let it sit too long). The solid food poo probably would have sent me to disposables if my kiddo hadn’t sent me there first. You do so much laundry with a new baby anyway, the diaper laundry is just a blip on the radar.

        I tried a bunch of different kinds (flats, prefolds, fitteds, pockets, AIO) and found I liked the pockets and that babysitters didn’t mind the pockets because they are *just* like disposables, except with snaps and adorable colors. If I had another kid, I would probably do disposables for the newborn stage (or rent newborn diapers) and then do just pockets or snap-ins once the kiddo was big enough.

        And on the environmental front; my understanding was that cloth and disposables are basically a wash environmentally. They have different downsides (cloth use lots of water and electricity, disposables use petroleum products and generate landfill waste). Cloth is cheaper (especially over several kids) and cuter (IMO), but disposable is more convenient and has a trimmer silhouette.

      • quailison says:

        Haha, I know the feeling! I had no idea what I was getting into. I did a bunch of research on cloth diapering while pregnant and got completely overwhelmed. Then, I talked to my friend who cloth diapers and he and his wife explained it to me and I ended up following their model.

        So, here’s what I have: 36 unbleached prefolds from OsoCozy (size 1), Snappis fasteners (which are awesome) and three covers from TinyTush (made in Wisconsin and reasonably priced). That’s it. I also use cloth wipes with a spray bottle with water, a little baby soap and olive oil(my husband refuses and uses wet wipes). We do a load of diapers every 1.5 to 2 days now that he’s 3.5 months. He pees what seems like constantly, but only has one or two poopy diapers a day. We started out with 24 prefolds and found 36 is the best for keeping a doable laundry schedule.

        At the beginning, we used disposables. We used what they gave us in the hospital, used those up, and got one more package from the store. I would not try to bring your own diapers to the hospital – you’ll have too much else to focus on. Then we switched to cloth for most times and only use disposables when traveling. We used cloth before his cord stump fell off and were just careful to keep the diaper and cover away from the stump. We just got back from our first trip using disposables and it reminded me how much I like the cloth diapers day-to-day. I’ve never had a blowout with cloth and we did with disposables on this trip.

        Currently, the kid is not in day care. He’ll start in September when I start work. Our day care does not cloth diaper, but others in our area do, so you can always ask. Our child care market is super tight and we only got in at the one place, so we have to go with it and I was nervous about rocking the boat on the diaper issue. Some will cloth diaper if you go with the “all in ones” that basically work like disposables. Honestly, I don’t know why all day cares won’t use those – the cloth diapers just go in a wet bag rather than in the trash – but not my hill to die on at the moment.

        We don’t use a service now, just do the laundry ourselves. We have our own laundry, which would be a huge factor for me if we didn’t (though the aforementioned friends have shared laundry and are now cloth diapering two kids, so it can be done). When I start work and my husband goes back to work, we might switch to a service – but since we’ll be using disposables at day care, it might be enough less laundry to not make a service worth it.

        Laundry – we wash the whole load (save 1 or 2 for the duration) on hot, with regular detergent, with an extra rinse. This takes a long time in our HE washer, but it’s passive time so we can do a load in the evening no problem. The way I look at it is I’d rather be able to throw a load of laundry in if we run out of diapers rather than have to drive to the store.

        Kind of diapers – well, this I can’t really speak to because I kind of hated the idea of buying a “system” so I just went with prefolds and covers. The prefolds are thick rectangles of cloth that you fold and secure with the Snappis (you should be able to find examples and directions online – it’s easier than it seems). The covers are waterproofish fabric with adjustable snaps. I see the appeal of the inserts and whatnot, but I didn’t like the additional drying time and the fact that you can’t easily change if you don’t like whatever system you chose. The prefolds are basic and will be useful as rags or cleaning cloths after we’re done diapering. Otherwise, order one of a few different styles and see which you like. I didn’t like Thirsties DuoWraps – they felt like a cheaply made version of the TinyTush ones but were the same price, basically.

        • Forgot to add – if you laundering your own diapers get cloth wipes. Cheaper, safer and easier not to have smelly wipe trash. There are lots of single ply flannel wipes for sale on etsy that are cheaper than those from diaper stores and far better than the ones my husband bought from Amazon. We just have a plastic bowl next to the changing table and squirt water onto the cloth from my hospital peri bottle to wet it just before using. I haven’t found a need to use any sort of solution or soap, although there are plenty of solutions available.
          I like CJ Butter as a barrier cream. I’ve also used earth mother angel (think that’s the name) and coconut oil

        • UpstateNYatty says:

          Thank you ladies for all the wonderful advice!! I copy/pasted into a doc to save for reference. My first concern was that the day care wouldn’t take them, because I had a large center here tell me NYS did not allow them “for sanitary reasons.” I then read somewhere that centers would only take them if you used AIOs, and read somewhere else that they were only accepted if you used a commercial laundry service. I finally received this information from our local Child Care Council:

          The NYS Family daycare regulations 417.11(i) infection control #11 and 13, Group Family 416.11 (i)11 and 13, and Day Care Centers 418-1.11 (p) say that when cloth diapers are used they must be supplied by the parent or commercial diaper service, not be laundered in the child care facility, stored in a securely covered receptacle until returned to diaper service or securely tied in plastic bags and sent home each day with parent. The NYS daycare regulations can be found on the OCFS website ocfs. ny. gov/ main/ childcare/ daycare_regulations. asp I’m not sure if these apply in NYC as I know often regulations differ. I was advised centers “are not supposed to refuse a child based on use of cloth diapers.” Now, we’ll have to see how this works out in practice but I was very pleased to learn this.

          Great tips on diaper selection and laundry!! As well as intermittent/hospital use of disposables (this sounds the most practical) and advice on creams and cloth wipes! I’m nervous about this journey but also really excited about it. As mentioned above, for us it’s a combination of cost, environmental and non-chemical reasons… but I’ve also promised myself to be realistic and not too hard on myself with all these lofty goals. Natural labor, cloth diapering, EBF til back to work and then pumping… can’t hurt to have goals but who knows, I just may say bring on the epi and get me some pampers! It’s easy to have these ideals when crying, pooping, won’t sleep baby is a far off concept. And I’ve read the same, it’s practically a wash environmentally.

  7. EB0220 says:

    I actually find it a little disturbing to think that the teachers would consistently pay more attention to a baby because of his/her outfit. Attire and appearance will be important as my kids get older. I don’t like it, but I recognize that it’s going to happen. But for a baby? No, no, no.

    FWIW, my girls wear functional and comfortable clothes from Old Navy, Carter’s and Kohl’s. I like pajamas from Carter’s and play clothes from Old Navy. I’ve gotten a few decent pieces from The Gap, but I find the clothing generally to be a bit more fussy and expensive than I like. Kohl’s is a great option for reasonably priced basics. I don’t like Target’s clothing as much – it runs small for my girls and the fabric always feels stiff/coarse to me. I try to buy simple neutral bottoms (pants/shorts for my preschooler and pants/capris for my crawler). Then I buy a ton of colorful but simple tops.

    There are always good promotions for Kohl’s, Carter’s and Old Navy. I never buy without a coupon code, because – again – most of these clothes are good for 3 months- 6 months max when they are young.

    My source for fancy/cute clothes is Grandma.

  8. hoola hoopa says:

    I don’t think of clothing as registry items, but I suppose the idea is to generate brand recs and tips.

    swaddles and blankets: Aiden and Anais, hands down. I swaddle with blankets, but they are also great for a nursing cover, carseat sun shade, etc. Every one of my kids has a personalized double-sided minky blanket, too (like Carters’ Valboa blankets), which gets a lot of use well into school age.

    PJs: Carters footed sleepers for pre-walkers. Hanna Andersson/Kirkland for walkers.

    socks and shoes: Trumpette (sized way up) for cuteness. Hanes, Old Navy, or Children’s place for everyday socks that stay on. See Kai Run Smallers for pre/early walkers.

    general clothes: Hanna Andersson wiggle pants for crawlers and/or cloth diaper babies. Otherwise, this and that from the usual suspects. I buy most infant and toddler clothing from consignment sales. For the first couple of months, I keep newborns in sleepers and only have 1-2 cute outfits per size. My babies mainly wear comfy, casual clothing from Carters, Old Navy, Gap, Children’s Place, and Target, although Hanna Andersson and Tea get mixed in. Gymboree and Zatano didn’t fit as well. I also like American Apparel, mostly for t-shirts (I prefer to onesies) and to break out of the typical baby colors.

    • blueridge29 says:

      Agree, love see kai run shoes, expensive, but so great for little feet learning/first walking.

  9. due in june says:

    While I haven’t tested this myself, a friend suggested skipping leggings/pants/socks altogether and instead using baby leg warmers, which can be pulled down to cover feet or scrunched up to expose feet. She dresses her baby in onesies and leg warmers and says they make diaper changing much, much easier than actual pants and that baby can’t lose them like socks. Her favorite brand is BabyLegs, which are pricey but do go on sale, so I registered for a slew of those.

    +1 to being scandalized by the idea that kids dressed in nicer clothes are treated better by daycare. Mine will mostly be wearing a mismash of nice handmedowns, not actual outfits.

    • We just skip pants altogether most of the time, unless it’s particularly cold. Baby was born in March and spent a lot of March in footed sleepers, but now mostly just onesies or sleepers if it’s cold. He seems happy. I also buy most of his clothes at Goodwill or get them as hand me downs (with a couple cute Carters sets from his grandma). But you won’t know which brands fit your particular kid at the beginning. For my long and lean baby, Carters definitely fits the best.

    • UpstateNYatty says:

      Hope this doesn’t generate hate but… I think the leg warmer trend looks so silly!!! Although I do understand how it would make diaper changes sooo easy.

      • due in june says:

        I didn’t realize it was a trend, but anything that keeps baby warm, makes diaper changes easier, and prevents baby from throwing my money away in the form of losing socks on the daily…well, *shrug* if she looks utterly silly :).

      • UpstateNYatty says:

        Agreed that the advantages are key! And I second not wanting to throw away money on basically disposable socks. I said trendy because the only time I have seen them worn are in professional baby pics–like a first birthday princess themed photo shoot with a tutu and leg warmers–definitely not serving any utility there. They just bring me back to my ballet days, but I’m all for warm babies, saving money, and easy diaper changes!

      • I tried baby leg warmers. Unfortunately, she inherited my round thighs, and the suckers just roll down. :(

  10. We loved the NuRoo swaddlers. Baby was an amazing escape artist, and those were the only thing that worked. I highly recommend them. Other than that, the baby has lived in footie PJ’s almost exclusively. Now that it’s warming up, she’s in one-piece rompers. It’s just easier not to deal with outfits and multiple pieces! We have a few cute dresses and outfits, but unless there’s a good reason to wear them, we go for comfort and convenience every time. As far as nicer items/smocked items, I’ve had great luck at higher end consignment stores. And I concur with the Zutano bootie recommendation for the colder months.

    Honestly, I wouldn’t register for baby clothes at all. They don’t need much at first, and you won’t really know what you like until you’re in the thick of it. Plus, you won’t really have a good idea for size until the baby is here. Also, lots of people will gift you baby clothes even if you don’t ask for them. I say save your registry picks for gear and buy a few clothing items yourself to get started. A swaddler to try, a few footie PJ’s, maybe a few gowns, and some of the wrap style shirts (until the cord stump falls off). Carter’s return policy is generous, which is helpful. Then you can re-evaluate after a month once you see what works for you.

    • I forgot to add, you could consider registering for the Merlin’s Magic Sleepsuit. It’s a great product for transitioning out of a swaddle. You won’t need it until around 4 months or so, but it was a lifesaver for us!

  11. PregLawyer says:

    Yes, let’s be practical . . . BUT! What are the fun things!? What about splurges? Even if it’s just for special occasions?

    • mascot says:

      Those are grandmother gifts. My mom buys my son Janie and Jack, Heartstrings, Bailey Boys type outfits. I generally won’t pay that much.

  12. All of my baby clothes have been hand-me downs, gifts or consignment sale purchases, so it is a definite mismatch and not always my style, but between the food and poop, it’s practical. And I like to think my babies are cute enough to get attention despite their style or lack thereof.
    I had really good luck buying a big bag of cloths from local moms group. You just have to find the right size and season. You can then supplement with specific needs like a swim rash guard or sleep sack. And speaking of sleep sacks, the Baby Deedee Sleep Nest is awesome for cold months. So much better than the halo fleece. It feels like a wearable duvet.

  13. NewMomAnon says:

    I probably should ask for a commission since I say it so much – I really like H&M for play clothes. They have good prices, the clothes are soft and there are lots of choice, and they hold up well (although sizing can be a little tricky). For newborns, I think we stuck with the footed sleepers from Carters and occasionally I branched out and did the legwarmers + onesies. Once kiddo was crawling, it was onesies and pants (onesies to keep her little belly covered, pants to keep her knees protected). Once she was walking, tunics/dresses and leggings and socks with grippers, if she wore socks at all. I don’t know why, but oneies just seem too restrictive now that she is mobile.

    I lust after the mini Boden clothes but they are SO EXPENSIVE and we destroy or outgrow clothes so quickly. My splurge is a dress from the Baby Gap clearance rack, and now that we are going outside to the playground I may be buying more shoes than a toddler should ever own. She has Nikes (gift from grandparents, so CUTE), canvas sneakers from Target, and patent leather mary janes from Target.

    My one piece of advice on baby clothes is not to keep anything sacred as “nice clothes.” They will outgrow it before they wear it. My kiddo wore her Christmas dress to daycare, wears her special Easter shoes to the playground, her “good coat” out to play in the snow, etc. I had such a hard time giving away all the “nice” dresses she wore once (or never) as a newborn.

  14. shortperson says:

    OP here. Don’t kill the messenger — or her down to earth montessori daycare. I received the dress-your-baby-well advice from multiple sources whose kids went to all different daycares and have found it to be true for us as well. I actually expect the benefit of dressing well to decrease over time — as she gets older she’ll have more of a personality. She doesn’t wear designer clothes to school or anything, we just generally put in more care to dress her in a cute outfit that fits and matches, with matching socks and headband, than we do on days off.

    I agree that outside of daycare situations baby clothes are a waste of money, but what can I say. I enjoy dressing a cute baby, especially while my own postpartum wardrobe is so ugh. So I give myself permission to enjoy this aspect of babyhood. Soon enough she’ll have strong preferences with respect to her clothes and this moment will be over.

  15. CPA lady says:

    I have a ridiculous number of gerber brand footed zip up pjs. They’re about $10 for a 2 pack on amazon, and I got them in all of the colors I liked. My daughter haaaated being swaddled from day one, and I was terrified of dressing a floppy tiny fragile newborn in clothes that went over the head, so she wore footed zippy pjs pretty much every day for the first 4-5 months of her life and now wears them every night to sleep in. I like the gerber ones because they are nice and roomy, though the size newborn ones were so big they didn’t fit her until she was a month old. I’m really sad they only go up to size 9 month, because she’s pretty much grown out of them and I’m in denial about having to buy (twice as expensive) Carters ones.

    • Katarina says:

      I like the Children’s Place footed sleepers pretty well, and they go on sale for ~$6-7.

  16. Love2babywear says:

    I am kind if obsessed with babywearing so I want to address the recommendations. I love that they were mentioned! I think they are essential for bonding and to get anything done! It is usually easier to babywear than to use a stroller. Having said that, I wish you hadn’t recommended the Bjorn. They are horrible carriers that are usually not comfortable for long periods of time and can exaserbate hip issues. Facing out is not recommended in most babywearing circles. Consider a ring sling for quick ups and downs. A lot of people prefer the Tula over the Ergo. Also, you can never go wrong with a good quality woven wrap like a Didymos or Natibaby. Lastly, seek out your local babywearing group so you can try out a bunch of different carriers

  17. Anonymous says:

    My kid does not fit carters. He is too chunky. We like whatever people have given us for free- literally I have enough clothing for three babies. For splurges Stella MC is our favourite brand and we love Moschino but most of what baby wears is BabyGap or American Apparel.