This minimalist baby shopping guide has the best baby gear for the first 6 months. Here are our best baby bibs and unique baby shower gift ideas!
“Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.” -William Morris
Adding a baby to the house comes with an addition of a massive amount of new baby gear. For Alex and me, this made the blood pressure rise on our minimalist-craving insides. These days there is more baby gear than ever, making the baby registry process overwhelming. However the first six months of Larson’s life have sped by, and in that time we’ve found items that are both useful and not terrible to look at (and maybe even a few that are beautiful). Becoming parents comes with a huge ramp up of knowledge. Now, we know the best baby bibs and all the unique baby shower gift ideas that we give to friends who are becoming parents!
Minimalist baby shopping guide
Both Alex and I love design and aesthetics; we try to keep our house serene and minimal-looking, lots of grays and whites. Hence, we were both a bit fearful of bright plastic baby gear invading our home. However, we’ve found that there are lots of options for neutral, understated baby gear. Much of the time, finding these items is less about cost and more about choosing the right aesthetic.
Also, since we crave minimalism and simplicity, we’ve taken a hard look at what we needed to add to our household. If we receive gifts that were not from our baby registry that did not fit into the “beautiful” or “useful” categories, we’ve gotten more bold about simply parting with those items in an effort to simplify.
Best baby bibs
Since this website is food-focused, we thought we’d highlight the very best food-related baby gear for a 6 month old: our best baby bibs! Honestly, we don’t know how our parents lived without these in the 1980’s. Now that we’re feeding Larson solid foods, this OXO silicon roll up bib is a lifesaver! We only need one bib, it’s easily cleanable, and the rolled up portion catches the crumbs. I’m not sure we’ll ever use another bib again!
Unique baby shower gift ideas
Many of you have asked for a “favorites” list of baby gear that we can’t live without. We’ve compiled this unique baby shower gift ideas list. Our list highlights the major items we’ve found to be useful, beautiful, or both. (As a note, this post not sponsored by any of the brands below, though we receive a small percentage from any Amazon sales.) We hope you find these unique baby shower gift ideas perfect for your next baby shower or when building a baby registry!
Ergonomic car seat
Car seats are terribly confusing. After much debate, we opted to go “higher end” for our car seat and stroller, and we’re glad we did. We use this Nuna car seat, which is easy to use and understated in color and design.
The best stroller
Confession: I’m terrible at maneuvering products. This is the Nuna stroller we use, and I can actually unfold with one hand while holding Larson! It’s a testament to its usability. Pro tip: We store our stroller in the trunk of our car so it doesn’t take up valuable indoor space.
Best most stylish high chair
This Stokke Tripp Trapp high chair is wonderful; it’s stylish and blends in to our decor instead of screaming A KID LIVES HERE. It also can hold a 300-pound adult, so he’ll be using this for years! We started using this when Larson started eating solids at 5 months, using this insert for small children. This is a great big ticket item to add to a baby registry for that will last for years.
Italian clear pacifiers
Interestingly, many people ask us about pacifiers: sounds like babies have particular preferences! And Larson absolutely did. These Chicco pacifiers are the only ones Larson would take as a baby. Maybe because they’re made in Italy? They’re also clear, so they’re less obtrusive looking.
Best glass baby bottles
These AVENT bottles are fantastic; they’re made of glass and are sturdy. Several friends have found their babies liked these as well.
Stylish diaper bag (backpack)
Who needs a diaper bag? Since both Alex and I carry it and love neutrals, we wanted something very understated that doesn’t scream baby. Here’s the backpack we use as a diaper bag.
Easy to store baby bath tub
Ergonomic booster seat
Many people use Bumbo seats, but another confession: the word Bumbo weirds me out! So I was happy when we got a hand-me-down of this seat (similar) and it’s worked great. It also has a tray that helps to keep the baby inside and can be used to placing toys and books.
Easy to use baby carrier
Count me as one of the people who were overwhelmed by baby wraps! We got a wrap and it was so difficult to use, I stopped trying to make it work. We had also received this Infantino soft baby carrier as a hand-me-down, and ended up loving it. Even at 6 months, I still use it to carry Larson on walks (and we used it every time we fly).
And if you’re looking for a toddler carrier for a year down the road, here’s the one we recommend: LILLEbaby 3 in 1 CarryOn Toddler Carrier.
Best baby bibs
As you saw highlighted above, this OXO silicon roll up bib is a lifesaver! We only need one bib, it’s easily cleanable, and the rolled up portion catches the crumbs. We’re obsessed with these and they work perfect for toddlers too.
Many of you have seen Larson bouncing away on Instagram Stories and have asked about his bouncer! Here is the doorway jumper seat that we use. We didn’t have this on our baby registry, but we would recommend it. At 7 months, Larson can spend about 20 minutes at a time in it before getting bored; which is well worth it for us!
Functional mesh crib liner
Once we transitioned Larson to his crib at around 5 months, he kept rolling over, getting his arm stuck between the bars, and waking up! We wondered if other people had this problem, and a quick Google search found Yes. Luckily, there’s a product that was invented to solve this: the Mesh crib liner. It’s been a game changer! No more stuck arms.
Books, books, and more books
Books are our favorite thing to purchase and give. Here are our favorite baby books in Spanish; we’re working on a list of top baby books in English.
Best stylish baby mobile
We’ve gotten lots of requests on our baby mobile! It was a gift and similar ones can be ordered on Etsy here.
We’d love to know your thoughts on our best baby bibs and unique baby shower gifts! Let us know in the comments below.
About the Authors
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.