You only have to look on popular online forms like Mumsnet, Netmums and BabyCenter to see how tricky it can be to buy premature baby clothes. There are lots of questions like:
- Where can I buy premature baby clothes?
- What size premature baby clothes should I buy?
- What clothes can a premature baby wear?
- My friend's had a premature baby, what should I buy?
So let's look at each question separately!
Where can I buy premature baby clothes?
You can probably predict our answer to this one! The reason we founded Little Mouse Baby Clothing and Gifts was to provide a solution to this question. Shop online here.
What size premature baby clothes should I buy?
Often friends and family of a loved one who has recently given birth to a premature baby don't want to make contact with the new parents, as they don't want to intrude. But in reality these parents will want well wishers, as much as any new parent, maybe even more so. A quick text message to let them know you're thinking of them will go down well, and you get to ask the baby's weight.
Once you know the baby's weight you can choose the right clothes. But you are likely to need to shop with a specialist premature baby clothing supplier like Little Mouse. Most high street retailers have a 'premature baby' range that is only really suitable for babies born just a little early or small. Whereas we have clothes for babies 1.5lb upwards.
What clothes can a premature baby wear?
This depends on the size and needs of the baby. If it is in an incubator or connected to tubes and lines then you will need to buy clothing that can be worn around these. We have a wide range of tops, dresses, trousers, etc that are especially designed to cater for the needs of a baby on a NICU (neonatal intensive care unit).
However for babies that are in a cot or just born a little early, we have another range of clothes, called our Tiny Baby range. This clothing is as lovely as clothing can be for a 'typical' newborn baby, it's just a bit smaller. But buying the right size is so important, as these babies need to be kept warm and clothing that is too big just won't be as effective.
My friend has had a premature baby, what should I buy?
Firstly, do buy them something! These parents just want things to be as 'normal' as possible. If your relationship is close enough that you can send them a message or give them a call then do so; they'll appreciate the support and it's your chance to find out the baby's weight and situation, and even to ask them what they need. Don't feel like you're intruding, if they can't take your call or respond to messages then so be it; at least they'll know you are thinking of them.
If you're unsure what clothing to buy them, then go for something from our Tiny Baby range. It will be something for them to grow into, but won't be too big for too long. Or you could buy a soft toy or blanket, something that will last the test of time and isn't tied to the babies size.