There are so many items people will tell you that you need when you’re getting ready to have a child. Some items are essential, some are useful, some are pretty but unnecessary additions to your home and some are straight-up space-wasters (does anyone use bottle warmers?!).
When you live in Scandinavia, it can be difficult to separate what’s just well-designed from what’s actually a necessary item. There are a few baby products that having in your home when you welcome a newborn will make your life significantly easier and, if they happen to look beautiful, well, that’s just icing on the cake!
Take a look at our recommendations:
Designed by Peter Opvisk in 1972, the Tripp Trapp highchair is a Scandinavian design classic that you’ll find in most homes with children around the region. What’s great about the chair, aside from its simple and beautiful design, is that it grows with your child. There’s a newborn set, which holds your child in a reclining position from newborn to six months. There’s a baby set, in which your child can sit upright between six months and two years of age, depending on size. Finally, the highchair itself functions as a seat for a toddler. The whole idea behind the Tripp Trapp, and all of Stokke’s products, is that the caretaker should be able to interact easily – and make eye contact with – the child.
A bag for changing products is necessary when you’re out with your child. While almost any large-size bag can work, the Ida Ising Copenhagen Pusletaske is particularly useful for its built-in removable changing pad and many side-pockets for everything from diapers to toys. The Swedish brand makes their bags from 100% cotton and produces in Italy. The Copenhagen bag, with it’s monochrome colouring and leather piping, looks great on your shoulder or slung over your stroller handles.
Changing mats come in many shapes and sizes, but the Leander Matty is appealing for many reasons. It’s extremely durable, with a wooden base and thick silicon cushion body. The wooden base means it sits comfortably on a changing table or the floor. The waterproof silicon means you don’t need to cover the mat; you can simply clean it with soap and water. Matty is built as a slight wedge so that the baby lies comfortably during changing, with raised edges for safety.
For those with a baby in a small space, this is a fantastic product! It’s a bath that works from newborn age (with a newborn support insert) to up to four years old. The bath folds flat and is very light, so it can be stored almost anywhere and even taken with you on trips. There are a few color choices, but we like the white/grey piping design best.
A pram (or stroller, or baby wagon, or whatever you want to call it) is an essential for many people. When a child is newborn, it needs to be able to lie flat. A few months in, he/she will be able to sit upright more comfortably. Therefore, a pram that can accommodate both a carry cot and an angled seat is more useful than having to buy both separately. Stokke makes a number of popular prams but their most durable is the Trailz, which has air-filed wheels so that you can walk both in the city and country. There’s ample storage space under the carrier, you can adjust the handlebar to three heights and the body folds down easily for transport.
Though this isn’t an inexpensive item (it may be the priciest item you buy for your newborn), it can be used until the child is 15kg (33lbs, the approximate size of a three year old), so it’s a long-term investment. Less necessary but definitely nice are the extras you can add, like the winter kit or attachable car seat. Stokke’s Norwegian roots show through in every aspect of design, which is modern and sleek; though Trailz is a large pram, it steers easily and doesn’t look big.
This one definitely isn’t a necessity, but many new parents swear by it. A rocking chair can be a wonderful place to comfort your newborn child (and not have to actually be standing up!), as well as a great place to feed, whether you’re breastfeeding or bottle-feeding. There are so many beautiful iterations of rocking chairs on the market, but our favorite Scandi ones are the J16 by Hans Wegner (now produced by Fredericia Furniture) and the J52G by Børge Mogensen. The J16 is Danish design distilled: simple, eternally-modern, highly-functional, beautiful from all sides, and long-lasting. Bought new, it is very expensive, but luckily you can find plenty of good quality secondhand ones on sale (check out auction sites like lauritz or listings on dba.dk).
Have a Scandinavian item you recommend for new parents? Tell us about it in the comments!