Preparing for a new arrival can be overwhelming - especially for first-time parents-to-be! But in fact, there are only a few 'essential' items you'll need to have ready for your new baby.
Most things can be bought afterwards - when you know more about your baby (like the sex and the size) and your own parenting style.Here is a list that can help you- future parents in preparing the newborn essentials.
Unless you plan to co-sleep you will need the following items:
Cot sheet set x 2
Blankets/swaddles/wraps x 3
You can always bath your baby in the sink or the laundry tub, or you could take a shower with her. And you only need a towel and a bench/floor/bed to change a nappy. If you do want to make things a bit easier on your back you will need the following items:
Baby bath - one with a "plug" will make life easier
Towels x 3
Facewashers x 3
Nappies (if you're using disposables get just one large pack to start, in case your baby grows out of them fast)
Terry cloth nappies - have a few on hand as spew rags, or to put under baby on the change table.
Basic toiletries - nappy wipes, cotton wool balls, cotton buds, a good nappy rash cream
In the early months you might do without a pram, preferring to carry baby in a carrier or sling. But a good-quality pram, one that converts into a stroller for a toddler will be something you might need eventually.
Pram (look for one with a sunshade)
There is no need to buy many clothes before bub arrives. Just have a few necessities on hand, then go shopping once you know what size and sex your baby is. Otherwise you could end up with a heap of cute 0000 outfits that never see the light of day. Also, it pays to be practical. Sure little baby jeans and T-shirts are cute but they aren't comfortable and you won't get much use out of them, especially in the smaller sizes. Keep in mind that people will usually buy clothes as gifts too.
Singlets x 5 (or, even better, singlet suits - as they dont't ride up!)
Short-sleeved bodysuits x 5 (can be used under clothes in winter)
Long-sleeved growsuits x 5 (you'll still need one or two even if your baby is born in summer)
Socks x 3
If you're planning on breastfeeding, you won't need much in the way of equipment. If things dont't go as planned then you'll find that feeding equipment (sterilisers, bottles, formula) will be readily available in most towns and cities. If you want to have just-in-case formula you can buy packets with individual sachets as tins of feed need to be used within a certain time period once opened.
Breastpads (cloth can be a money saver)
2 bottles, more if you're bottlefeeding, and bottle-cleaning equipment
A special 'feeding' pillow or a 'very' shaped cushion
Useful (but not essential, if you're on a budget):
Mattress protectors (one for your bed as well!)
Bassinette (+ bassinette sheets x 2)
Digital ear thermometer
Nappy bag with a change mat
Sunshades for car windows
Beanies, mittens (if you're having a winter bub)
Breastpump (if you want to try giving bub the occassional bottle of EBM)
Playmat for tummy time
Baby powder/baby soap/baby sorbolene