A Complete guide to baby clothes size

Buying clothes for your new baby can be fun. It can also be overwhelming if you are unsure of what to buy. Understanding baby clothes sizes can be confusing. What is the difference between 24 months and 2T? Is 0 3 months the same as newborn? What size does a 1 year old wear in clothes? In this piece, we guide you through the world of baby clothes sizes and help you to make the right decisions for your new bundle of joy.

Building the Layette

The first thing you will need is a set of basic clothing and supplies for your baby in a range of baby clothes sizes. This is called a layette, and friends and family will usually supply you with this before baby is born. You can also get a layette guide at any baby store when you are planning a registry. A layette usually includes:

  • 4-8 onesies with wide head openings.
    (The biggest question most new moms ask is "how many onesies do I need?) Your baby will wear these most of the time. In the colder months, they will wear them under their clothes. In the summer, they wear them as clothes.]
  • 4-8 sets of footie pajamas
  • 2 blanket sleepers for winter warmth (Many moms wonder how many sleepers for newborn)
  • 1-3 sweaters or jackets that button up in the front
  • 6-8 pairs of socks or booties
  • 3-6 hats (wide brimmed hats for summer, warm beanies for winter)
  • 2-4 pairs of scratch mittens
  • 2-3 baby blankets
  • Fleece suit or bunting bag for babies born in the winter
  • Baby's gentle laundry detergent
  • Bath gear including soft towels, wash clothes and hooded towels

Buying Clothing for Baby: A Guide

There is a lot of conflicting advice about what clothing to buy for a new baby. Some people say that you should have a full wardrobe of clothing, while others say that it's best to only buy the basics in small baby clothes sizes until baby arrives. How much you stock up on depends on your preferences, although most moms find that shopping for baby's clothes is too much fun to leave until after the baby arrives.

Your baby's first outfit will likely be his "going home" outfit that he wears as he leaves the hospital. This outfit will be tailored to the weather, of course, but will usually consist of a onesie and a top and bottom set. Some babies wear a dress home from the hospital. Most babies will simply hang around the house for the first days after they leave the hospital. After a few weeks when baby is ready to receive visitors, you may want to start dressing him in different outfits each day.

How Do Baby Clothes Sizes Work?

Baby clothes sizes typically correspond with their age. Newborn size is the smallest size, and usually fits babies who are a little larger than preemies. Preemie clothes are for the tiniest babies who weigh less than five pounds. Newborn baby clothes sizes fit babies between five and eight pounds. For babies between eight and 12 pounds, the 0-3 month baby clothes sizes fits best. If you are wondering what size baby clothes to buy for your new baby, the 0-3 month size works for most babies. If your baby is slightly smaller than the 0-3 months, don't worry. They will likely grow into it in a few weeks.

Baby Clothes Dimensions

Baby clothes sizes vary by retailer and manufacturer, so it is difficult to pinpoint exact dimensions for every article available. The basic rule of thumb is that the baby's clothing size will correspond with his age, but there can be wide variations between one three month old and another. Another challenge is that baby's sizes will often overlap, making it hard to decide whether to buy the 3-6 month or the 6-9 month sizes for your little ones.

Baby Clothing Sizes Explained

After the 0-3 months size, the clothing sizes move up in three month increments-- 3-6 months, 6-9 months, 9-12 months, 12-18 months and 24 months or 2T. The 24 month baby sizes are usually made for babies who are between 18 and 24 months, and 2T clothes are made for toddlers who are 2-3 years of age. The 2T clothes are typically located in the toddler section of most stores, while the 24 months size clothes are offered in the infant's section. The 2T sizes are mainly for toddlers who are walking, running or preparing for potty training, while the 24 months baby clothes sizes are generally meant for babies who are pre-walkers or crawlers.

Where to Buy Baby Clothes

There are many specialty stores that sell baby clothes of all types. You can find styles in a wide range of baby clothes sizes. If you want trendy clothes meant for urban babies with style, there are online boutiques that sell those. If you are looking for classics like the newborn layette, soft onesies and simple styles, you can find those in most department stores. Finally, there are many great online retailers that sell bamboo baby clothes in all baby clothes sizes, cute baby accessories and adorable baby gear.

Baby Clothes for all Occasions

Summer Babies

For the summer baby, there is no limit to the number of adorable outfits you can piece together for their perfect look. The summer baby looks cool without even trying, complete with baby sunglasses, wide brimmed hats and cute onesies. The summer baby is beach ready, and you can find swimsuits in baby clothes sizes from newborn to 2T. Check your new born baby dress size to make sure you find the best fit for your summer baby when she goes out on the town. The summer baby is always photo-ready and loves to make a fashion statement with his scorching hot style.

Spring Babies

Spring babies are all about soft pastel colors, flowers and fun. For the spring baby, light blue footie pajamas with playful dinosaurs, turquoise onesies adorned with tulips or simple yellow tees are always a stylish choice. Spring babies love to dress in layers, so find soft sweaters, hats and socks to round out their look. The spring baby is ready for sunny days, so make sure he is wearing adequate sunscreen and a hat to protect his scalp and eyes.

Fall Babies

It's so much fun to dress fall babies. From suede jackets to leather boots, wooly sweaters to fur hats, fall babies have all the fun. This is the season of dressing in cute layers, so be sure you have plenty of onesies, undershirts and extra tees on hand to create a foundation for your baby's outfit. Dress your baby in one more layer than you're wearing, but don't go overboard with the jackets and bulky sweaters. Babies can get overheated easily.

Winter Babies

Depending on where you live, you may need to bundle the baby to protect against the winter cold. Winter babies get a few layers---a warm onesie, a t-shirt and an outer sweatshirt or fleece to keep warm. Long sleeves, warm, lined pants and thick socks are a good place to start. Don't forget to include the hat to ensure that he doesn't lose precious body heat when he goes outside. If the baby will be in the elements for more than a few minutes, make sure his feet and hands are covered as well. Experts recommend taking the baby's coat off when he is in his car seat, as bulky jackets often cause the seat belt not to fit snugly. If he gets chilled in the car, simply wrap him in a warm blanket.

Buying Baby Clothes as Gifts

If you are buying baby clothing as gifts for new parents, there are a few things that you should know to make the buying experience better. First, think about the month the baby will be born and what the baby will need by month. If the baby is born in a location that has all four seasons, take this into consideration when you are figuring baby clothes sizes. If the baby is born in July, don't buy a lot of 6-9 month summer clothing, as it will be winter by the time the baby is that size.

The safest bet when it comes to buying baby clothing is to start with a simple layette with onesies, blankets and hats and a few seasonal outfits. It can be hard to predict what size the baby will be before he is born, so it's best not to go overboard as baby clothes sizes can vary based on the baby's birth weight and rate of growth.

Buying a new wardrobe for your baby can be fun. Picking out the right outfit in the right baby clothes sizes can be challenging. Does your newborn need newborn sizes or 0-3 months? What is the difference between 24 months and 2T? By following our easy guide to baby clothes sizes, you will be fully prepared to buy the right clothes for your stylish new baby.