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Guide to buying the best Baby Cribs and Accessories of 2018

There's nothing more exciting than bringing a new baby home to Baby Cribs and accessories. We prepare weeks ahead of time to make sure the baby has everything he or she needs to make their “welcome home” as comfortable as possible. Probably one of the first concerns parents think about is what will the baby sleep in.

There are so many cribs, cradles and bassinets to choose from it can become a frustrating endeavor. However, smart parents think ahead and research what types of cribs are available and what will suit their baby in the best possible way.

A Safe Baby Crib Is An Important Concern

We should realize that the Baby Crib, bedding, mattress and accessories are key to assuring that our baby develops sleeping habits that allow for safe and sound napping and bedtime sleep. This translates into facts like a baby should sleep in a crib and not with their parents. Sharing a bed with baby could lead to suffocation of entrapment.

A baby up to a year old should always sleep in a Baby Cribs on their back to reduce the risk of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome). In early infancy, some parents prefer to place the baby's in a cradle and house it in their bedroom to keep closer contact with the baby and to reduce the risk of sudden death syndrome.

Keep these tips in mind:

  1. During the baby's first year, place the child on their back to sleep.
  2. Never place an infant on loose bedding, pillows, waterbeds or air mattresses.
  3. When traveling, make sure the infant has a proper place to sleep. There are portable baby cribs available.
  4. Make sure the baby is sleeping in a quiet, dark and cool room
  5. Dress baby in a one piece sleeper to avoid using blankets.

The Cradle Or Bassinet We Purchase

There are safety guidelines for cradles and include a wide, sturdy bottom and a firm mattress. Most cradles come with a mattress. A substitute should not be used as the fit not be right and any gaps could be a hazard to a new baby. If the cradle locks, make sure they are locked when the baby is sleeping.

Make sure to check all screws and bolts to make sure none are missing or unsecured. Know the weight and limitations on the cradle and make sure to fill out and return the registration papers in case of a recall. Only use a mattress cover of a fitted sheet made for cradles. Using a larger sheet make be a risk for suffocation. Never place blankets, toys or pillows in the cradle to prevent additional risks of injury or suffocation.

A bassinet is similar to a cradle except it is designed with fixed legs sometimes with casters. Both should only be used for babies up to four to six months old to avoid the possibility of the child tipping the cradle or bassinet over. Shopping for cradles or bassinets can easily be done at most stores who sell Baby Cribs as well as online.

The Baby Crib We Purchase

Our main concern when purchasing a Baby Cribs is it meets safety standards noted on the crib at the time of purchase. A safe Baby Cribs should have no gaps two fingers or greater between the crib's sides and mattress. A Baby Cribs that is modified, broken or older than 10 years should never be used because something as simple as a broken slat can cause strangulation or injuries should a baby catch his or her head in the gap.

Always pay strict attention to the instructions on assembling the Baby Crib. It's important that all parts are properly installed in order to prevent harm to the child or the Baby Cribs. Make sure the Baby Cribs is not located by windows with blinds, shades or electrical cords that a baby can tinker with and cause extensive, even fatal, injuries.

What About A Drop Side Baby Crib

Gray-drop-side-baby-crib-with-dragers-and-a-dressing-tableDrop side Baby Cribs present a problem because if the sides are loose because of broken or missing pieces, the side could drop and baby could fall out or get stuck between it and the mattress causing suffocation. There are immobilizers that prevent the drop side from moving up and down or outward. Immobilizers should only be used on cribs that do not have missing or broken pieces.

Because of the frequency of tragic events involving drop side Baby Cribs, there have been millions of recalls on several makes including Simmons, Evenflo, delta, Million Dollar Baby, Jardine, LaJobi and Childcraft. The effort is ongoing in the hopes of removing all unsafe Baby Cribs on the market. Be sure to return any registration forms that come with a baby crib in order to be notified of a recall.

New regulations put forth by CPSIA (the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act) of 2008, state that the traditional type of drop side Baby Cribs can neither be sold or made and repair kits and immobilizers are no longer available. Any Baby Cribs manufactured with slats must use strong wood in order to prevent breakage.

All Baby Cribs hardware is required to have anti-loosening devices to prevent the hardware from falling off or loosening. It's required that all mattress supports are made for more durability, and safety testing will be more rigorously enforced.

We Know Not To Buy An Unsafe Baby Cribs – What Do We Look For?

According to Consumer Report, Best Cribs Report, a full sized, stationary side baby cribs certified by JPMA is the way to go when purchasing a Baby Cribs for the first time. With that in mind, there are options to explore. For example, that are the standard Baby Cribs that are pretty easy to put together, well built and reasonably priced. However, standard sized Baby Cribs aren't the easiest to move around and they don't come with any frills or options and accessories found in more expensive models.

  • Convertible Baby Cribs
  • Portable Baby Cribs

 Gray Convertible Baby Crib

The convertible Baby Cribs is designed to grow with babies. Convertible cribs are made to convert to a toddler bed, daybed and some even expand to a full-size bed. It's a well spent purchase because it lasts for a child and a teenager's lifetime. The cons to a convertible Baby Cribs include the challenge of putting one together and the expense. Although the extra money spent can certainly be considered a longer term investment.

 Black Portable Baby Crib with art finishing

Portable Baby Cribs are for those of us who are short on space or like to travel with our baby. They are foldable with wheels and can be easily moved in and out of vehicles or into different rooms, making it possible to keep an eye on the baby. One drawback is there are less design options when choosing a portable crib. Another con is portable cribs are not supposed to replace a full-time crib. Those who own them consider it money well spent.

Next Comes The Mattress

Buying a baby cribs mattress is not the most exciting endeavor, but it is an important element in making sure our baby is safe and comfortable. When our goal is to find a Baby Cribs mattress, the first consideration should be whether to go with innerspring or foam mattress.

Years ago foam mattresses tended to break down easily and become brittle due to the quality of the foam. However, over the years advancements and better manufacturing have solved this issue for the most part. Still, there are cheaper foam mattresses manufactured using packing foam in order to cut down on cost. This too will cause the foam to deteriorate over a length of time. We must make sure the quality of the foam is up to par by checking the density because the heavier the mattress, the denser the foam will be, and this is a sign of very good quality.

Foam baby crib mattresses are for the most part less expensive than innerspring mattresses. This can be a factor when it comes to deciding on any baby products we purchase. Foam mattresses are also much lighter than innerspring mattresses. The heaviest foam mattress usually weighs between 10 – 15 pounds, where as an inner spring mattress can weigh up to or slightly over 25 pounds.

Innerspring mattresses hold coils or springs that determine the density of the Baby Cribs mattress. We should look for approximately 150 coils and a 15.5 or lower gauge in the mattress to assure its quality and comfort. Also check the rods that surround the mattress perimeter. Broader rods offer much more stability and less mattress sagging.

Baby Crib Mattress Size Is Important

When choosing a mattress for our baby, it's comforting to know that full-size Baby Cribs mattresses fall under the safety regulations set by the federal government. However, this is not the case if we choose cribs that are not full-size. To rectify this, any Baby Crib that is less than full-size must come with a mattress. This assures a proper fit and safety for our baby.

When purchasing a full size mattress, keep in mind that it has to be 27 1/4 inches in width and 5 11/4 inches in length. It cannot be any more than six inches thick. These measurements assure that the mattress will fit in a crib's interior width between 27 3/8 inches and 25 5/8inches with an interior length of 51 2/4 to 53 inches. All of these measurements are required by law to be visible on the carton as well as the instructions for assembly.

We realize that mattress cribs that are not standard can vary in size. When the mattress is placed in the crib's center, make sure there is no gap greater than 1/2 inch around the circumference, and if pushed to the side of the crib, there is no gap greater than one inch on all sides.

Convertible Baby Cribs With Drawers

With a new baby on the way, why go shopping for a crib, changing table and storage drawers when our choice can be a convertible crib? A convertible Baby Cribs combines all of the above into a one piece design that satisfies all of baby's needs.

Although multipurpose convertible cribs are more expensive than a traditional crib, they are certainly less expensive than purchasing a bigger bed, dresser and a changing table. So price is certainly an advantage, as is the need nor to have to purchase additional furniture.

One disadvantage is in order to keep convertible Baby Cribs less bulky, the attached units may be cut down in size, making the storage areas a bit tighter. An advantage is convertible cribs with storage space are meant to last for a long time, and there are many combinations to choose from.

Combinations can include infant crib to a day bed or youth bed to a full-size bed with attachments that can include changing tables, storage drawers attached to the side of the crib or underneath the base of the crib. There are also combinations that include bookcases and shelves for televisions, stereos and knickknacks, etc.The choices are our decision and can be realized any way we wish. The mix and match elements that we can pick and choose is a definite positive.

Aside from making the decision as to what type of convertible bed we would like, the other concern would be to make sure the color of the unit matches the color of the room it's placed in. The versatility of black or white tends to be a very popular choice, since both colors blend into most color schemes.

Shopping For A Convertible Crib With and Without Drawers

The Dream on Me Crib with changer and drawers is a big seller, with drawers, shelves and a changing table built in to a five in one crib. The Baby Cribsis fit for an infant and converts to a full crib, toddler bed and a full-size bed. The changing table can eventually be converted into a nightstand, and the drawers and shelves will always be an asset. The only extra we will need are the parts to covert the crib to bed assembly. Prices range between $300 – $500.

Another popular convertible drawer crib is the Graco Solano, which is a four in one model. A great option for our baby's nursery the Graco Solano grows with our child from a crib to a toddler bed, daybed and a full-size bed. Rails for the day bed and toddler bed are sold separately, but the price for this unit is quite reasonable at around $200. The mattress is height adjustable and can be lowered to keep up with baby's growth. The large under the crib drawer is perfect for storage and easy to get to. The crib is certified by JPMA (Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association) and complies with all safety standards. These cribs are very moderately priced at approximately $200.

Convertible Baby Cribs with drawersSome of us love elegance for our babies and the DaVinci Meadow Convertible crib is the epitome of elegant. It comes in a stunning white color and converts from a crib to a toddler bed with a solid white headboard. Great for a girl or boy's nursery, it comes with the conversion kit for a toddler bed. Additional accessories may be purchased to convert the unit into a daybed or full-size bed. This bed does not come with drawers, but DaVinici offers stunning furniture to go with the crib including dressers, shelves and changing tables. It sells for approximately $580.

We love to pamper our babies with style and grace and the 4-in-1 Convertible Winchester Lifetime Crib by Suite Bebe will do just that. It begins as a crib and moves on to a toddler bed, daybed and ends as a full-size bed. Additionally, it also offer under the crib storage with two drawers to store diapers, blankets, etc. Reviews are generally five stars for this crib that also notes assembly is easy. Prices start at around $400.

By purchasing accessory kits, the Stork Craft crib comes with drawers and can be converted to a full bed, daybed or toddler bed. It also has a changing table and offers a shopper to buy in a bundle that includes the mattress as well a rocking chair. The changing table can be transformed into a nightstand once there is no longer a need for diaper changing. Overall, this piece is long lasting and well designed. These cribs sell from $200 to $400.

Baby Relax Ferris is another great find and can be used as a crib or daybed simply by lowering the mattress by removing the crib's side. If the child is ready for a daybed but still needs the support of a guard rail, one can be purchased. The Baby Relax Ferris has a beautiful design and matching furniture is available to complete the look. The white crib has a solid back and takes no time at all to assemble. These cribs sell for approximately $400.

When we set up our crib, our next step is to find the right Baby Cribs bedding sets to complete the look. For those who know they are having a girl, it's easy to select from any number of adorable bedding sets in beautiful pastel colors with tiny flowers, Disney characters or a combination of soft colors that will complement the style of the crib and the nursery room. But for those of us who are expecting a boy, the selection can become more of a chore. Of course, we can always go with a basic blue ensemble, but that can be slightly boring.

In reality, there are several designs and styles for a boy's crib bedding. Like any concerned parent, our first priority is to make sure whatever crib set we choose, fits securely on the crib mattress and are easy to care for made using safe materials. We at times find ourselves not able to run to several different shops to find the ideal baby boy bedding sets, but there is an easy way to meet our needs by turning to the Internet.

Some recommended choices include:

DK Leigh

DK Leigh

The DK Leigh Nursery Bedding Set is 100% soft cotton and comes equipped with a fitted sheet, quilt, crib skirt, toy bag, bumper, window valances, pillows and a toy bag. The pillows won't be used in the crib, but might be when our the child moves into a regular bed. The colors in the set are shades of green, white and brown with an adorable frog to complement the look. The set sells for approximately $200.

Bed and Bath

Bed and Bath

Bed and Bath carries another popular choice for boys. The Little Bedding Crib set showcases cute monkeys rather than frogs. This ten piece set includes two sheets, comforter, diaper stacker, mobile, wall decals, wall hanging, dust ruffle and a birth certificate. Brown and blue are the color scheme of this set, which is 100% cotton. Little Bedding Crib sets prices start at $100.

Walmart

Walmart

Go to https://www.walmart.com's baby bedding section and check out Bedtime Original that offers a budget-saving nautical theme for little boys that featuring light houses, sailor suits and sailboats. It is a polyester and cotton mix and comes with a striped fitted sheet, a sailboat and anchor fitted sheet and a comforter. This set is a real value selling for approximately $50.

Heavenly Soft Chenille

Heavenly Soft Chenille

Heavenly Soft Chenille Crib Sheets are for those who prefer fitted sheets only offering soft chenille crib sheets in a variety of colors including baby blue, white green and gray. They are 100% polyester and a two pack sells for approximately $40.

Zutano

Zutano

Zutano sells a 5-pc. Crib Bedding Set that are nothing less than adorable with a whimsical wild animal theme of a bouncy zebra, lazy elephant and rowdy tiger blended into a palette of aqua blue on one side that when revered becomes bold stripes. The five pieces include two fitted sheet, a reversible comforter, a crib skirt and a tiger wall hanging. Prices on this set varies starting at approximately $150.

Buy Buy Baby

Buy Buy Baby

Buy Buy Baby has an extensive selection of crib bedding sets for boys including: Sweet Jojo Designs Woodsy Crib Bedding Collection in navy/mint with pricing ranging between $20 for fitted sheets up to $190, depending on the package selected. The Peanut Shell® Woodland Trails Crib Bedding Collection is a mint, white, grey and navy mix depicting the great outdoors and offers fitted sheets at $20 up to $150 for sets. Baby's First created by Nemcor Gingham Parade features crib bedding of gingham prints in a colorful blend of ABCs, animals and other cute prints and sells for a great price of under $65. Buy Buy Baby offers free shipment on any order placed over $20.

Children Bedding Boutique

Children Bedding Boutique

Children Bedding Boutique is another great website that features quality crib bedding sets for boys. For example, they offer the Animal Safari 9pc Crib Bedding Set from Sweet JoJo Designs for approximately $190. The black and beige palette made from micro soft suede features a fitted sheet, a comforter, crib skirt, toy bag, diaper stacker, two window valances and a pillow.

Target

Target

If budget is a concern,Target has a great price of $119 for Trend Lab's Wild Woods Crib bedding collection that comes with a fitted crib sheet, crib skirt and quilt that fits a standard sized crib. The material is 100% cotton and easy to care for.

 

Why We Need Baby Furniture Sets

A-set-of-Baby Cribs-furnicture.

Baby nurseries are fun and exciting to design. Let's start with our basic needs for the nursery that include bedding, furniture and accessories. Next in line comes a changing table, a chair (preferably a rocker) and a dresser. Once our furniture is selected, we can then go on to create our room around the fixed elements we have purchased.

A Baby Needs A Nursery With Furniture

A baby needs a room to call his or her own. It should be fun, safe and comfortable. To make this happen, it takes careful planning to fill the nursery with baby furniture sets that accommodate a baby's wants and needs. Since babies and parents spend a lot of time in the nursery, it must be designed and aesthetically pleasing.

  1. Many parents like to place their newborns sleeping in a cradle or bassinet. These are mentioned because either one may be the first bedding furniture the baby sleeps in. Although they may stay in a nursery, many parents prefer to have a cradle or bassinet in their bedroom for the first few months
  2. The Baby Cribs is a must have in a nursery and is usually the first piece of furniture selected. There are many crib styles to choose from including standard with stationary sides, convertible cribs that evolve into a toddler bed on to a full-size bed and cribs that have useful attachments like a changing table or drawers.
  3. A changing table makes life easier for all those involved in changing diapers and dressing the little one. It also adds valuable storage space with features like attached drawers or open shelves. Most baby furniture sets will usually include a changing table option in order to match it with the design and style of the chosen Baby Cribs. For additional security while baby is on the table, a changing pad with a contoured shape and safety straps are recommended.
  4. Rocking chairs or gliders are highly recommended as moms and dads will certainly be spending hours on this nursery jewel. A rocker or glider should be selected with good back support in mind. Either should have good padding especially on the arms of the chair. There should also be good head support to put less strain on the neck/shoulders.
  5. Chests, armoire, and drawers are meant to organize baby's clothes, shoes and any other accessories they may have. These items are easily found in the same crib collection that's been selected. They really pull the look of the nursery room together and are well used. Just make sure that safety features are added like anti-tipping kits and stops for drawers.
  6. Kids' toy chest storage is a safe place for storing the hundreds of toys a child usually accumulates as they grow. Alternatives to toy chests are bookcases, wall storage units, lockers, and bins. Just make sure that whatever is selected holds a lot of toys!

Tips On Pricing Baby Furniture Sets

Obviously, the price spent on creating a nursery depends on the money we have to spend. Baby furniture prices are based on quality, detail and design. We might consider purchasing a convertible crib set that grows with a child if our intent is to get as much use out of our purchases as possible.

We can also select pieces like dressers, etc. that easily adapt from a baby's room to an older child's room. This can be done by choosing simply designed furniture that mixes and matches nicely with other pieces that might be purchased in the future. For example, there are changing tables that can be easily converted into a nightstand or storage unit.

It might be wise to draw a sketch of the nursery laying out where furniture will be placed. Considerations should include efficiency, sleep, comfort and safety. To avoid drafts and cold, keep the crib away from windows and outside walls. Figure out when there will be direct light shining into the nursery to avoid bright light while the baby is sleeping. Street lights shining directly into the room can also be a distraction in the evening.

Things To Know About Baby Crib Bumper Pads

Even though Baby Cribs bumper pads are still on the market, there have been years of safety issues and warnings regarding using them. Parents use them thinking they are protecting their babies from bumping into the hard sides of a crib hurting their arms, legs or heads. However, the general consensus is they are simply not worth the risks involved. The CPSC (United States Consumer Product Safety Commission) has reported that the risks outweigh any benefits and may be one of the causes of sudden death syndrome and/or suffocation.

Years ago, Baby Cribs bumper pads were used because crib slats were further apart and a baby could trap his or her head between the slats and suffocate. Today's cribs have less of a gap between slats to guarantee this does not happen. Still many organizations including the American Academy of Pediatrics, First Candle/National SIDS Alliance, Health Canada and the National Institutes of Health have recommended that crib bumper pads should be removed from cribs.

Calling bumpers “deadly clutter”, the Commissioner of CPSC released a study which showed 292 nonfatal and 107 fatal accidents with babies involved bumper pads, occurring between 1990 to 2016. Currently, Ohio and Maryland are the two states that have banned Baby Cribs bumpers, but there are other states that have pending legislation to ban them. But because most states have yet to secure bans, many stores still sell them.

Why Do Parents Still Purchase Baby Cribs Bumpers?

One of the main reasons parents still buy baby crib bumpers is because they can. We notice that shopping in a store or online most baby crib bedding sets come with bumpers, and many parents assume they are supposed to use them. Until parents realize that most organization for children's safety advise that there should be nothing inside a crib other than a fitted sheet, or until bumpers are totally banned, there will be those who continue to buy and use them.

With So Many Warnings, Are There Solutions?

For those of us who are still concerned that our baby may be injured by banging into the sides of a crib without bumpers there are some alternatives.

With all the negatives about crib baby bumpers, the easiest solution is just not purchase one. There are many companies that now make baby crib sets that have eliminated baby crib bumpers. They include:

  1. Serena & Lily's Sage Penny Tile Crib Collection
  2. HALO SleepSack 5-Piece Bumper-Free Crib Set
  3. Persnickety Lily Matilda Bumper-less Crib Bedding
  4. Olli & Lime Forrest Bumperless Crib Set
  5. Lottie Da Baby Square Dance Dream
  6. Skip Hop Complete Sheet
  7. Zig Zag Baby Bumperless Crib Sheet

All of these bumperless crib sheets sets can be found on the Internet by googling “companies selling bumperless crib sets”.

More recommendations

There are bumpers that are considered alternatives to the traditional crib baby bumpers. They are designed to eliminate the concerns associated with the traditional bumpers. Made of mesh and single layered fabric they are breathable and allow for more air to filter through them and are individually attached to slats on the crib using Velcro. The following companies offer alternative bumpers:

Breathable Baby mesh installed on a Baby CribsAmazon sells Breathable Baby mesh individually attached mesh units that can be affix using Velcro to the slats of a baby's crib. They are made of mesh that allows air to flow through, thus eliminating the threat of suffocation. The company claims that this product has been tested extensively to make sure of the air's permeability and also claim that the unit will collapse should a baby try to step on them, thus preventing falls from the crib. Amazon also sells Wonder Bumpers. These bumpers are padded tubes that slip around each crib slat using Velcro, leaving space between the slats to allow for proper air flow.

Go Mama Go Designs offers Velcro slat crib bumpers that are also individually attached to crib slats allowing for freely flowing air by using only single layered fabric.

The Trend Lab Crib Slat Covers are a stylish alternative to baby bumpers. They work the same ways as those mentioned above. As an alternative, they do add an aesthetically pleasing, colorful look to a baby's crib.

Baby sleepers are like tiny sleeping bags for babies. They are sleeveless and come in a variety of colors and styles. Babies wearing sleepers need nothing but a fitted sheet in their cribs, because the sleeper keeps the baby warm and unable to trap an arm or leg in a crib slat.

Baby sleeping bags can be worm with pajamas underneath or none at all depending on the climate. They prevent babies from kicking off blankets or wrapping themselves up in them, which is a cause for smothering concerns.

Conclusion And Recommendations

With the exception of the baby sleeping bag, it does appear that alternatives to crib baby bumpers are a safer option for our babies. However, most of the mentioned products have only been tested independently and there is little if any supporting published reports suggesting that they are any safer than traditional crib baby bumpers. Because of this, using alternatives because of lack of evidence to support the claims that they are safe, the decision not to use them might be the best choice. More research needs to be done.

It is recommended that no bumpers, pillows, blankets or toys are in a crib because of the potential hazards of suffocation, entrapment, It is also recommended that babies sleep on their backs to reduce the risk of sudden death syndrome (SIDS).

This was a recommendation put forth by the American Academy of Pediatrics twenty years ago. Since then, SIDS deaths have been dramatically reduced. The Academy also encourages parents keep a newborn in their bedrooms in order to hear or witness any signs of distress. Never put the child in bed with parents as that furthers the risk of injury or suffocation.

Remember, we as parents are responsible for the safety of your baby. Using common sense and knowing the “dos” and “what not to do” is a good way to keep our babies secure and safe. Babies are a wonderful addition to any family and preparing for them by shopping for the best Baby Cribs and furniture is exciting and just the beginning of one of the many wonderful adventures we will share as we watch our children grow. Enjoy!

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are 'affiliate links.' This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.
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