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nursery buyers guide


Making sure your baby can sleep safely at night is a major concern for parents. However, there are several things you can do to ensure both your baby sleeps safely and that you'll have peace of mind while he sleeps. One is to make sure your baby cannot get tangled in their bedding. Another is to check that your baby is not in danger of overheating.

Small babies are not good at controlling their own body temperature, so it is important that you monitor their temperature and adjust their bedding accordingly. It is just as important that your baby does not get too hot as it is to ensure they are not too cold. It is also important to note that ill or feverish babies generally don't need extra bedding. In fact, in most cases, they need less. You can check if your baby is too hot or cold by feeling his or her tummy.

How babies should sleep

Moses baskets and cribs are only appropriate for newborns and should only be used until your baby is around three to four months old.

Babies should always be laid to sleep on their backs unless there is clear medical advice to do otherwise.

Keep your baby's head uncovered and place them in the 'feet to foot' position. The 'feet to foot' position is when you place your baby with their feet towards the end of the cot, with their head towards the centre. This will prevent them wriggling under the covers. You should make up the cot so that the covers reach no higher than your baby's shoulders.

Things to avoid

  • Don't use duvets (quilts) until your baby is at least a year old. Duvets can get too hot for a small baby, and they are also easy for babies to pull over their heads.
  • There is no need to use waterproof sheets on a cot mattress.

How much bedding to use

The amount of bedding you use depends on room temperature. However, the rule of thumb is a vest, a bodysuit, plus one sheet and up to three thin blankets.

  • 24簞C/75簞F - 1 sheet only
  • 21簞C/70簞F - 1 sheet plus 1 layer of blanket
  • 18簞C/65簞F - 1 sheet plus 2 layers of blanket
  • 15簞C/60簞F - 1 sheet plus 3 layers of blanket

(Note: A blanket doubled over counts as two layers)

Size guide

To help ensure that your baby sleeps safely, it is important to buy the right size bedding, whether you're using a Moses basket, carrycot, cot or cotbed. Don't fold up bigger sheets and blankets to adapt to a pram or Moses basket. This can be dangerous as it increases the risk of your baby overheating or getting caught up in their bedding. Instead, invest in the appropriate sized sheets and blankets.


  • Fitted pram/ crib sheet - 35 x 73 cm
  • Fitted cot sheet - 59 x 119 cm
  • Fitted cot bed sheet - 70 x 140 cm


  • Pram/ crib blanket - 70 x 90 cm
  • Cot blanket - 100 x 150 cm
  • Cot bed blanket - 140 x 180 cm

Choose fabrics that breathe and are absorbent without retaining heat unnecessarily.

Safety First

  • Cot bumpers are not recommended for children who can sit unaided. Check bumper ties regularly and make sure they are secure.
  • Ask your midwife or health visitor for advice on reducing the risk of cot death.
  • Also ask if they have any leaflets you can read.
  • Always position cot mobiles well out of baby's reach and remove them from the cot as soon as your baby can sit up unaided.

Choose fabrics that breathe and are absorbent without retaining heat unnecessarily.