How to Pick the Perfect Blanket Size for Your Baby?

Baby Blanket Size – How to Pick the Perfect One for Your Child?

“Hold me a little longer, rock me a little more. Tell me another story, tell me just one more. Let me sleep on your shoulder. Cherish my little smile. For I am only a little baby, for such a little while.”

Blankets are like warm hugs, to wrap the little ones and make them feel safe. Handmade or store-bought, sewn or knitted, crocheted or quilted, baby blankets make perfectly adorable gifts for newborn babies and toddlers. They love to hold on to their security blankets to feel comfortable and safe. Mommies, grandmas and aunts would love to knit one or more quilts for the little bundle of joy who is yet to even arrive.

However, did you know a lot of thought goes into buying or making a blanket appropriate for newborn babies? Medical experts don’t recommend using blankets for children below 18 months of age as it may lead to suffocation and SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome). But, it may comfort the baby when he is away from his crib, and you need something to keep him warm while you keep a watchful eye on him. So, what it is that you must look at while selecting a blanket for your baby? Read on to learn more about the right baby blanket size.

When to Introduce Blankets to Babies?

It’s generally safe to introduce a blanket to a baby when they are around 12 months old and able to roll over and move independently. Before that age, it’s recommended to use sleep sacks or wearable blankets to keep the baby warm while reducing the risk of suffocation. Always follow safe sleep guidelines and consult with your pediatrician for personalized advice.

Why Is It Important to Pick the Right Size Blanket for Your Baby?

Babies grow up pretty fast. They will outgrow their clothes, their toys and mommy’s arms quickly. Bedding and blankets are no exception. It is important to pick the right size blanket to ensure it can be used for a few months before it is re-purposed, passed on or preserved as a family heirloom.

It is extremely important that you select the correct type of bedding and blanket for the baby. Baby blanket dimensions, trims, material, embellishments, everything plays a vital role to ensure the safety of the baby and provide protection from suffocation, strangulation, and SIDS – sudden infant death syndrome. Let’s take a look at what the ideal size of the blanket should be.

Blanket Safety Rules You Must Keep in Mind for a Baby

Ensuring a safe sleep environment for your baby is paramount, and introducing blankets comes with its set of considerations. Blankets can be a cozy addition to your baby’s sleep routine, but adherence to safety guidelines is crucial. Here are key safety rules to keep in mind when introducing blankets to your baby:

  • Choose lightweight blankets and avoid those with excess fabric or loose threads to reduce the risk of entanglement (1).
  • Tuck the blanket securely around the crib mattress, ensuring it reaches only up to your baby’s chest (2).
  • Choose breathable, hypoallergenic fabrics to prevent overheating and promote comfortable sleep (3).
  • Keep the crib free of soft toys and pillows when introducing a blanket to reduce the risk of suffocation.
  • Be mindful of room temperature; dress your baby appropriately to avoid over-reliance on blankets for warmth.
  • Inspect blankets regularly for signs of wear and tear, and replace any damaged or frayed blankets promptly.
  • Introduce blankets only when your baby is around 12 months old and can roll over independently (4).

Ideal Size of Blanket for Babies

One of the major queries while selecting a quilt for babies is what size is ideal? The blanket should be big enough for the baby to be covered well and see at least a few months of usage. However, it shouldn’t be too big that it cannot be rolled up and carried around when travelling or difficult to wash frequently. Even when the baby outgrows the blanket in a few months, it should be of ideal size to re-purpose as something else.

Each baby is unique in terms of size. The shape and dimensions of the blankets also depend on the usage. Some blankets can be perfectly square or rectangular. You will surely need about half a dozen blankets, each for a specific purpose and different use. Additionally, blankets will end up in the laundry more often than you wish and plan.

Here’s a quick guide to selecting an appropriate blanket for the baby. This baby blanket size chart will help you in selecting the appropriate one.

Type of Blanket Average Size
Swaddle Blanket 40″ x 40″ to 48″ x 48″
Receiving Blanket 18″ x 18″ to 36″ x 36″
Crib Blanket 36”x 54” to 45″ x 60″
Multi-Use Blanket 30″ to 40″
Child / Afghan Blanket 30″ to 40″
New Born Baby Blanket 30″ x 30″
Small Preemie Baby Blanket 15” x 15” to 18″ x 18″
Large Preemie Baby Blanket 20” x 20” to 24″ x 24″
Lovey Blanket 10″ x 10″
Hooded Baby Blanket 30” x 30” or 30” x 36”
Musical or Sensory Blanket 18” x 18” to 36” x 36”
Quilted Baby Blanket 30” x 40” to 36” x 50”

We shall discuss each type of blanket a little in detail here along with the baby blanket measurements.

1. Swaddle Blankets

Swaddling gives the same experience as being tightly held in arms or being in the womb. The baby will feel safe and secure wrapped in them. Swaddling can immediately calm the baby and comfort them. The square blankets ranging from 40” x 40” to 48” x 48” are perfect for tucking babies and allow parents to go hands-free while the baby takes a nap or is being held by someone. Cotton muslin is the recommended material to keep the baby comfortably warm.

2. Receiving Blankets

Receiving blankets can come in handy for many things. Made from thinner material, these blankets are perfect for use in early infancy. Slightly smaller than swaddling blankets, they can be used to bring the baby home from the hospital or cover the car seat, used while nursing or simply spread as a changing mat. The receiving blanket size ranges from 18” x 18” to 36” x 36” and is perfect as a gift to new moms.

3. Crib Blankets

A standard crib accommodates a mattress of around 27” x 52”. This makes ideal crib size blanket dimensions around 36” x 54”. You can go as large as 45” x 60” for larger cribs. It is recommended that you check the measurements of the crib correctly to ensure that you get the dimensions right. Add a few inches to these measurements if you are looking to hang the borders from the mattress edge. Crib blankets can be crocheted in bright colours to add to the décor of the baby room.

4. Multi-Use Blankets

The multi-use blankets are versatile in nature. Use them as travel blankets or spread on the floor and let the baby crawl. Line them in the stroller or roll them to form a cushion. Available in varied sizes, these multi-use blankets are perfect for gifting at the baby shower or when the baby has grown to a toddler. They can be used for many years to come, keep re-purposing them to suit the needs. An average baby blanket size of 30” x 40” is an ideal dimension for a multi-use blanket.

5. Afghan Blankets

Afghan blankets are adorable and colourful. They have beautiful crochet work in bright colours and can be customised according to the size preference. Some even weave a special message, a wonderful prayer, the baby’s name or initials to add a personal touch. Keep them cute and simple or as intricate as you want. Just follow the instructions and you will master the art in a few trials. 30” x 40” is the ideal size for a child Afghan. Although Afghan blankets are too tempting to resist, you must know that they pose a high risk of SIDS. The knitted/crocheted weave can cause accidents, and therefore, the AAP (American Association of Paediatrics) advises against them.

6. Newborn Baby Blankets

A standard baby blanket size for a newborn baby is around 30” x 30”. Pink or blue, yellow or green, or something to match the nursery, you can never have too many baby blankets. And with a growing baby, you will be rotating them more often than you have planned.

7. Small Preemie Baby

Preemie blankets are ideal for premature babies. The tiny baby quilt size ranging from 15” x 15” to 18” x 18” will cover your little baby perfectly. If you wish to cover the bassinet with it, you can opt for a little larger size.

8. Large Preemie baby

These blankets are just like swaddle blankets, but for a premature baby. A large preemie baby blanket measurement can be anywhere between 20” x 20” to 24” x 24’.

9. Lovey Blanket

A cute lovey blanket is usually a circle or a square of about 10” x 10” and has a soft toy, a cute stuffed animal or something interesting for the baby to hold on. Besides providing comfort to the baby, a lovey blanket also helps in developing fine motor skills and improve the grip of the baby.

10. Hooded Baby Blankets

 The size varies, but a common size is around 30” x 30” or 30” x 36”.  Hooded blankets come with an attached hood, providing extra warmth and coverage for a baby’s head. These are practical after bath time or as an extra layer during colder weather. The hood adds a cute and functional element to the blanket.

11. Musical or Sensory Blankets

These are similar to receiving blankets, averaging around 18” x 18” to 36” x 36”. Musical or sensory blankets are designed to stimulate a baby’s senses. They often include different textures, tags, or even built-in musical elements. These blankets can engage a baby’s curiosity and contribute to sensory development while offering a soft and cozy feel.

12. Quilted Baby Blankets

Quilted blankets feature a layered construction, with a top fabric, batting (insulation), and a backing material stitched together. These blankets are not only cozy but also visually appealing with various quilt patterns. The average size for quilted baby blankets ranges from 30” x 40” to 36” x 50”, providing a comfortable and decorative addition to the baby’s nursery.

Once you know which blanket you want to go for, you must also know what material is appropriate for your baby. We shall discuss that below.

Ideal Material for Baby Blankets

The material used for blanket should be soft, breathable, lightweight and easy to wash. Organic cotton, lightweight flannel, hypoallergic wool and similar type of material is recommended. A thin blanket is ideal for summer while a multi-layer and slightly thicker blanket is good to keep warm in winter. Children’s blankets are likely to be washed more often; therefore, choose the finest quality of fabric that can withstand multiple washes and remain soft and smooth. Good quality cotton fabric with high thread count and close weave can be passed on to the next baby. There’s also an option for eco-friendly organic bamboo and cotton blends. In colder climates, soft wool-like cashmere or angora can be used. Avoid synthetic or rough-to-touch material for baby blankets.

How to Make a Blanket for Your Baby?

Creating a homemade blanket for your baby is a rewarding and heartfelt endeavor. It allows you to customize the design and choose materials that suit your preferences. Here’s a simple guide to help you make a cozy and personalized blanket for your little one.

Materials Needed

  • Soft Fabric (3)
  • Batting
  • Sewing Machine 
  • Matching Thread
  • Rotary Cutter or Scissors
  • Quilting Ruler
  • Pins
  • Iron and Ironing Board

Steps to Make

  1. Wash and iron the fabric to pre-shrink and remove any wrinkles.
  2. Measure and cut the fabric and batting to the desired blanket size.
  3. Place the batting between two layers of fabric, ensuring all edges align.
  4. Secure the layers with straight pins, placing them at regular intervals to prevent shifting during sewing.
  5. Using a sewing machine, stitch around the edges of the fabric, leaving a small opening for turning.
  6. Turn the blanket right side out through the opening and press the edges for a crisp look.
  7. Hand-sew or machine-sew the opening closed.
  8. Quilt the layers by stitching through all layers in a desired pattern, ensuring even distribution.
  9. Trim any excess fabric and threads, and give the blanket a final press.

FAQs

1. When Should You Stop Using a Baby Blanket?

It’s recommended to stop using a baby blanket when your baby begins to roll over, usually around 4 to 6 months of age. At this stage, there’s a risk of the blanket covering the baby’s face and interfering with breathing during sleep.

2. Why Does My Baby Smell His Blanket?

Babies have a keen sense of smell, and their blankets often carry familiar scents from their surroundings, including the scent of their caregivers. Smelling the blanket can provide comfort and a sense of security, helping them feel close to their caregivers.

3. Can I Put More Than One Blanket on My Baby?

It’s generally advised to avoid using multiple blankets on a baby, especially in the crib. Overheating is a concern, and using too many layers can increase the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Instead, dress your baby appropriately for the ambient temperature, and use a single, lightweight blanket if necessary.

You can buy beautiful baby blankets online or in a baby store near you. A little research online, and you can stitch one with the help of a tutorial video. Knit them or crochet them if you have patience and skills or simply add baby’s initials with cute embroidery at the corner to give it a personalised touch. Once the baby outgrows a beautifully crocheted quilt, it might end up beautifying your sofa as a warm throw to snuggle up in winter. Choose the finest and the softest yarn if you are planning to knit a blanket for the baby.

A good baby blanket will ensure that your baby stays warm and comfortable. However, always keep a watch on your baby when he has a blanket around him as it could lead to suffocation, strangulation and SIDS. The best way to keep these hazards away is to adjust the baby’s room temperature and dress him in a onesie instead of tucking him in a blanket.

References/Resources:

1. Safe sleep for babies; PregnancyBirth&Baby; https://www.pregnancybirthbaby.org.au/safe-sleep-for-babies

2. Feet to foot and tuck me in with blankets under my arms; Safe Sleep Scotland; https://safesleepscotland.org/reduce-the-risks-tuck-me-in-with-blankets-under-my-arms-and-place-me-feet-to-foot/

3. Weighted Blankets – Avoid a Tragic Mistake; Children’s MD; https://childrensmd.org/browse-by-age-group/newborn-infants/weighted-blankets-tragic-mistake/

4. Helping Babies Sleep Safely; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; https://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/features/baby-safe-sleep/index.html

5. Sleep in Infants (2-12 Months); Nationwide Children’s https://www.nationwidechildrens.org/specialties/sleep-disorder-center/sleep-in-infants

6. How to Keep Your Sleeping Baby Safe: AAP Policy Explained; American Academy of Pediatrics; https://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/baby/sleep/Pages/a-parents-guide-to-safe-sleep.aspx

Also Read:

How Much Sleep Should a Baby Need?
Bad Sleeping Habits That Can Harm Your Little One
Baby Sleeping Problems and Ways to Deal With Them

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Ruchelle has a vast experience working with clients in hospitality, health and wellness, entertainment, real estate, and retail. She aims to utilise her learnings to deliver quality content which will in turn help drive sales and customer engagement.