Best Baby Nursery Checklist: 10 Must-Haves for 2023
When you’re expecting a baby, whether it’s your first or your fifth, setting up the nursery is a most exciting times. Read our best baby nursery checklist: 10 must haves for the things that just have to get done! Given the number of must-have nursery items available on the market today, it can be a bit overwhelming to figure out exactly what you and baby will truly need.
Liz and Roo is here to help you sort out the needs from the wants. Our best baby nursery checklist: 10 must-haves is a great place to start. Next up? Our free nursery interior design consultation!
Even if you’re planning to have baby sleep in a bassinet during the first few months, you’ll want to select and purchase a crib right from the start. It’s a great, safe place to lay baby down, and he or she will get comfortable with the space when it’s time to make the nighttime move.
Getting a crib is harder than it used to be - shipping delays are the major problem. Be sure and order early. You'll want to have the crib in place and the nursery finished before you come home from the hospital.
The Westwood brand uses a durable, non-toxic lacquer finish. They test finishes for lead, phthalates, cadmium, and other heavy metals and harmful substances. You’ll find Westwood Designs at Buybuy Baby and Amazon.
If you live in a small condo, Westwood offers scaled-down furniture pieces (the company calls them “euro-sized”) for folks trying to fit furniture in a small nursery.
In specialty stores, Westwood is sold as Stella Baby, which has its own web site (stellababyandchild.com). Stella has four collections with prices that range from $400 to $800 for convertible cribs. Basically, the same furniture as Westwood but with fancier finishes and detailing.
Million Dollar Baby has a fantastic line of mini cribs, which are small, affordable, attractive and well made. You can see them here. We love the sleek look of the Abagail Mini Crib, shown below in two different "mood boards" to give you some inspiration!
Once you have chosen your crib, it is time to think about crib bedding. Purchase the coordinating crib bedding before baby is born and get your crib set up and ready to go, and you’ll be happy once baby arrives. Look at some fresh ideas on our bedding collections page: https://lizandroo.com/collections/bedding-sets
Late night feedings will be so much more comfortable for both you and baby when you have a designated place to snuggle together. Your husband will love it too. He’ll be doing some nighttime duty, too! Gliders today are a must-have nursery item and have come a long way from what your mother used (a rocker) but a rocker will do the job, too!
For the best value, and ranked one of the highest by most glider reviews is the Pottery Barn Kids Comfort Swivel Nursery Glider & Ottoman It is currently priced at $449. We found it on Very Well Family's The 9 Best Nursery Gliders for 2023. The Pottery Barn Kids Glider comes in multiple colors. Other features:
- The soft seat cushion is made using 20% soy-based foam surrounded by recycled fiber.
- A round base made of 80% recycled metal swivels 360 degrees.
- This chair silently swivels and glides for ultimate comfort.
- Eco-friendly construction includes hardwood certified by the Sustainable Forestry Initiative.
- Hardwood frame is kiln dried and corner blocked for structural integrity.
- Springs are made using up to 70% recycled heavy-gauge steel.
- GREENGUARD Gold Certified to contribute to healthier indoor air, keeping you and your family safer.
Help baby sleep more soundly, and help the rest of the family live their lives without constant worry about making noise that will wake baby.
Take a look at the top five sound machines. We find at least 3 out of 4 moms (with babies in tow) come in the Liz and Roo store with a shushher in their stroller!
There are lots of options available – from super simple to high-tech cameras with sensors and alarms. Gauge your comfort-level to decide the best fit for your family and you’ll breathe easier knowing you can keep an ear and/or eye on baby at all times. The new monitors with video can provide real peace of mind. Check out this extensive review of all the pros and cons and tips for buying.
You will never regret this purchase, especially after you’ve dealt with your first few blow-outs.
The Munchkin Step Diaper Pail takes the prize in this category.
Like a regular trash can, the Munchkin Step Diaper pail filters dirty diapers into a plastic sleeve, keeping the unit clean (and dry) and allowing you to easily empty the pail. The key difference between a Munchkin Step and your run-of-the-mill kitchen can is a mechanism that has a self-sealing system that locks in odors. Bag stays sealed when lid is opened - no stinky blast of odor.
We recommend blackout curtains because they fake nighttime when it’s time for that morning or afternoon nap. A valance may be adorable, but it will do nothing to block out sunlight. Same for simple lined curtains. And, most babies are smart enough to know that sunlight means playtime, and darkness means bedtime! You’ll be the one who benefits the most from this.
Looking for inspiration? Take a peek at these custom curtains available in over 50 different fabrics. They are hand sewn (custom) to your requirements for length and finished in tab top, rod pocket, or pleated!
Having a designated spot for changing baby makes it much easier to keep your nursery and changing materials organized. Plus, a contoured changing pad (the most popular style) gives baby a soft, safe place for diaper changes. Contoured changing pad covers can tie into the overall nursery theme and add a stylish touch to the room. Make sure that it is high-quality, durable, and washable. This is an item that will get washed regularly for sure! Check out the Liz and Roo selection of contoured changing pad covers here.
Give baby a place to spread out and play. Tummy time and crawling practice will become a part of daily life as baby grows, and you’ll be happy to have a safe spot for baby to hang out. We suggest these stunning, machine washable Lorena Canals rugs. They make a great finishing touch to nursery decor. When they get dirty (and they will), just pop it in the washing machine. We’ve tested these rugs and they come out of the dryer looking like a new rug.
Another thing we absolutely LOVE about Lorena Canals is their social mission. With the purchase of a rug, you’ll help a child in India attend school. Believing that education is the key to mobility and vital in breaking the poverty cycle, those who purchase Lorena Canals’ rugs not only help children to get an education but also the opportunity to live a better life.
Their Sakula project built a nursery in India for children who were on the streets without protection and security. They provide a place to go, meals, and education. What is not to love about that!
It was also ranked one of The Top 10 Best Washable Rugs of 2023 by The Spruce!
This item is likely to become your best friend and sanity saver. You’ll soon realize you don’t know how you’d function without it, especially if you ever need to do anything that requires 2 hands, like cooking dinner! Here’s a great link to a review of the top baby swings/bouncers of 2023!
You want baby to love their nursery (it makes night time so much easier!), so make sure it’s a fun and inviting place for them. Get lots of books. Reading to baby should be a nightly event. Remember never to put anything in the crib, no matter how cute, with your newborn. Stuffed animals belong outside the crib. One of our favorite stuffed animal is by Jellycat. These are the absolute softest animals you'll ever cuddle with! We also love cuddle+kind which are adorable, handmade stuffed animals that would make the perfect friend for your child.
Round your best baby nursery checklist with plenty of clothes, diapers and wipes, and bathing and feeding supplies, and you’ll be ready for your new baby!