Thank you for visiting baby's first! I'm always working to bring you the very best in everything baby. From baby's first blankets to Christmas ornaments to rattles and birth announcements, I've researched our vendors to bring you the best that the web has to offer -- from the comfort of your home, of course.
Baby's First Blanket
One of my favorite experiences in life has been the care of my babies. It's both magical and fulfilling, and incredibly fun, too! Buying for baby's first is just one of those times that I always remember and keep close to my heart.
I thought I'd start with the most important thing to all babies--that comfortable "mommy substitute", the ubiquitous baby blanket. There are literally tons of companies and websites that sell baby blankets. After 20 years of buying them, I've certainly seen some very pretty ones that don't last very long, as well as those that are worth the price. I won't write here about the lower end variety. Anyone can pick up a baby blanket from Toys R' Us, Target, and even Sears. Instead, I'm going to talk about your choices from mid-to-higher end, and the plus and minus points of each.
First, not all blankets are, of course, made the same. In some cases, a synthetic blend will last longer than most 100% natural fiber blankets, but there are certainly people who simply don't want a synthetic fiber on their baby. If you live in colder climes, a thick, natural fiber blanket will last half a lifetime. But that kind of thickness isn't reasonable for people living from southern California through the western plains, to Texas, the deep South and Florida. So, my first suggestion is to decide if the blanket thickness is reasonable for your local environment, and then secondly, decide whether to go synthetic blend or all-natural. I do not personally appreciate a 100% synthetic blanket. They absorb stains that can't be removed easily or completely, giving the feel of a constantly dirty or worse, contaminated blanket.
Once you've made those choices, you'll have narrow the scope of your shopping enough to be able to look at a lot of blankets without getting headache or wondering too much whether this one or that one is right for your needs.
As a first stop, I'd recommend checking out the first blankets at: My Blankee. They do a beautiful job with luscious materials, but I've never been able to find a 100% natural fiber blanket on their site. When their pricing was in the $60+ range, this was ridiculous for 100% polyester, which is what their blanket are made of it you read, read and find it in the finer print. Nevertheless, their do a beatiful job with design. And, the site is neatly arranged according to animal prints, traditions pastels, polka dots, etc. You'll get a very good idea of a wide design pallette that will assist you in determining your own, personal aesthetic.
One of my personal favorite shops is this natural fiber baby blankets store. They're a little short on high fashion, and you won't find many of the designs so easily made in fake fabrics, but you'll not only find cotton, you'll find 100% certified organic cotton, and made in the USA, too! These blankets last for practically ever, and you'll never feel badly about baby snuggling up close. Cotton fabric breathes!
The current one-stop-shop winner are the first blankets from Corner Stork Baby Gifts because they have both blended and natural fiber blankets. They also have a rather talented buyer. You won't find poor quality or bad design at this shop. I like them. One of my favorite's is this baby blanket not only for it's 100% content content, but it incorporates cable knit styling and will last forever. I don't always see "far out" designs there, but they have traditional, dots, animals and the usual range, and all in good taste and quality. Plus, they have a wonderful personalization (more...)
Baby's First Christmas Ornaments
Baby ornaments. Oh, my. I think there are even more baby Christmas ornaments than there are baby first blankets. Where to begin?
OK, let me start by saying there is so much competition in this niche that you can literally find everything. Let's start with price. You can find a first ornament -- even on the web -- for under $10. Interestingly, though, if you're willing to spending around $12.95 - 14.95, a whole new world of quality opens up. There are not a great number of choices between $15 - 30. In the $10-15 range, you'll find blown glass, resin, polymer clay and some hand crafted dough varieties. Above $30 up to around $50, you'll find larger, hand-painted, somewhat exquisite options from established artists, as well as your standard plated silver ornaments. Sterling comes in around $100, and then there are a few sky-high options in the $200-$300 range with hand appliqued lace, Swarovski crystals, etc.
For the $15-30 range, my favorite web store is this first Christmas ornament store dedicated to selling only baby's first ornaments. About 90% of what they offer can be personalized with your baby's name, the year, and sometimes a heartfelt saying or sentiment. They do a good job at offering a large variety from the inexpensive up to around $30. Their best baby Christmas ornament is 100% hand-made, hand-blown glass personalized with your baby's name and either his or her birthdate of first Christmas date. At just over $30, it's an heirloom that you'll love 30 years from now.
For a wide range, I recommend stopping by the personalized baby ornaments at Russell Rhodes. What I like about this shop is that their ornaments arrive in a beautiful black velvet pouch for safekeeping, and it also makes a really good gift for a baby (more...)
Gift Giving Ideas for Baby's First Christmas
I'm compiling additional research this Spring and will publish again soon.
Christmas is nearing, most of the names on your shopping list are getting checked off, but you're having trouble finding a gift for one name on the list -- the "littlest" name of all!
It's a common feeling this time of year. A relative or friend has a new baby, and you don't know what gift to purchase for the child! You were at the baby shower, and the little darling received enough cute outfits to wear one a day until it's too big for any of them! Cute stuffed animals? He or she already has a crib full of them, and one more would hardly be noticed or appreciated! Are there any other great ideas?
Yes, there are, and we're here to help! Here's a baby gift giving guide with suggestions for the perfect gift the child and its parents will love!
Organic is In!
Organic products are important to today's young parents. They frequent coffee shops that serve organic, free-trade coffee. They choose organic fruits and vegetables whenever possible. And these parents want organic, safe options for their children.
Swaddle Designs offers an Organic Collection that includes receiving blankets, wash cloths, crib sheets, burp cloths, gift sets and more. Cute designs in pinks, blues and other colors give you plenty of great options for organic baby gifts parents will notice and appreciate!
For more info: Organic is in!
Chew on This!
It won't be long before the little guy or gal is looking for something to chew on as those baby teeth start to push their way to and through the surface.
Combine teething with the fact that moms avoid wearing gold necklaces because babies love to grasp them, possibly scratching mom's neck in the process, and occasionally breaking the jewelry.
Enter the Chewable Bleecker Necklace! That's right, it's an attractive necklace crafted from chew beads that are perfectly safe for babies! The beads are 100% silicone similar in texture to pacifiers. They DO NOT contain BPA, phthalates, cadmium, lead or other metals, and they are dishwasher safe! The breakaway clasp will let go safely before the necklace breaks!
The Chewable Bleecker necklace is pretty enough for moms, but so practical dads might be found wearing it too!
Put Baby Into Orbit
No, we're not talking about a million-dollar ride on a private space flight. This gift idea is a fabulous baby stroller from Orbit Baby! One of the unique features of these leading edge buggies is that the baby seat can be rotated 360 degrees -- hence the “Orbit” name! It rotates on the stroller, and when you remove the seat from the stroller, it rotates on its base when placing it into or taking it out of the car. Yes, it doubles as a very safe car seat!
Orbit Baby: Orbit
This video from Crash Test Mom shows the good and not-so-good points of the Orbit Baby Stroller Travel System G2. Orbit makes a few additional top-quality strollers, not just the top-of-the-line G2 travel system.
Video: crash test