What maternity/baby stuff to buy while back in the UK this spring?

(11 Posts)

I live in the US and am having DC1 in August. I will be back in the UK visiting family in April and I thought it would be a good opportunity to stock up on maternity clothes/other pregnancy bits plus baby stuff you can't get in the US. Since this is my first child, I have no clue what that stuff might be. Anyone have any suggestions?

NatashaBee Fri 21-Feb-14 18:45:45

George at Asda clothes are far better than any of the carters stuff in the UK. I still get my family to bring me over their kids jeans whenever they come to visit. Can't really think of anything else though. Maybe some British character toys like Paddington Bear, and classic English kids books?

I liked the terry toweling baby gros from Mothercare and the one piece vests with no sleeves, the short sleeves on the US ones always bunched up in my babies armpits under their clothes.
Big cotton bibs (no plastic backs) that my mother sent me were a big hit too, no idea where she found them.

NatashaBee Fri 21-Feb-14 22:34:53

*my post should read 'Carters stuff in the US'!

mumbaisapphirebluespruce Thu 27-Feb-14 13:16:27

I'm in Canada, so not sure if it is comparable or not, but I found that muslins were difficult to find. When I say muslins, I don't mean the gigantic, gorgeous designed printed ones like Aden + Anais do - you can find those everywhere and they are $$$. I mean the multi packs (7-10) of plain white, large napkin size muslin squares. M&S do nice quality ones, and so do most places that sell baby stuff in the UK, but in Canada they don't exist. They were really useful for burping, milk spit up, impromptu sun shade etc.

Multipacks in general I find don't really exist like they do in the UK. You might get a pack of 3 vests, but nothing like the vest and sleepsuits packs that they have in M&S. Good quality and comfortable soft cotton. They also do stuff in plain white too.

Wibblypiglikesbananas Mon 03-Mar-14 04:23:22

Hi - congrats. I had DC1 in London and DC2 in Washington, DC. I think I found it harder than friends who've had both babies in the US as I ended up missing my comfort zone of M&S and John Lewis staples the second time round...

My top tips:

Maternity pads - can't be found anywhere! They give them to you in hospital but I couldn't find them to buy like you can buy them in Boots or Sainsburys back home.

Nappy bags - 100 for 30p or something in Tesco. Here they all seem to be 'premium' Munchkin or Arm and Hammer ones - 30 for $6 or something. Definitely stock up back home!

Sainsburys baby grows - in fact, we always stock up on Tu children's clothes. Every time DC1 wears them here, we get loads of compliments. Ditto John Lewis.

I can't really think of anything else. The good news is that most stuff is lots cheaper here - prams definitely, huge savings to be had. Join Zulily and 'like' brands like Uppababy and Bugaboo and chances are, you'll be able to get a half price travel system before baby arrives. Also, diapers.com is great for next day delivery on all things baby.

With DC2, I've 'gone native' on most other things as it gets too difficult to stock up on Sudacrem or Bonjela or whatever from the UK. With DC1, who was 9 months when we moved here, I tried to continue with eg the same nappy cream. Remember that a nappy bin is now a diaper pail if you're searching on Amazon. Ditto nappy rash cream is often referred to as butt paste(!). Calpol = Tylenol, Calprofen = children's Advil.

Tens machines are pretty unheard of here...

M&S do online delivery for free if you spend over £30 - always a good backup!

I can't think of much else right now but feel free to PM me. Also, if you're nearby, get in touch. There are a few of us in DC!

NancyinCali Mon 03-Mar-14 04:29:32

Seconding muslins and tens machine if you want one.

Sunnysummer Mon 03-Mar-14 05:14:17

Baby bundlers are a godsend in the first few months, and aren't always easy to find elsewhere - John Lewis has nice ones!

TheBookofRuth Mon 03-Mar-14 06:24:38

I was in Boots yesterday and got some gorgeous onesies and sleepsuits in lovely bright colours, so nice for a summer baby, and such a change from the pink/blue/white that tends to dominate newborn ranges.

HopelessDei Thu 20-Mar-14 03:56:21

I always bring back Sudocreme, Milton wipes (for surfaces, not bottoms!), yes full agreement regarding packs of vests and baby grows - just order from M&S as suggested. You'll easily get to 30 quid! I haven't found good quality mid-range stuff here. It seems to be either cheap or very fancy!

How far along are you? I found maternity clothes were like hen's teeth. None of the big stores sell maternity, very hard to find offline. The worst thing was getting bras - I got fitted while in the UK for both maternity and nursing. Not easy as with nursing bras you are supposed to wait till close to your due date so I had to take a chance but I'm glad I did that.

On the maternity pads thing, it's true they don't really sell them but you will pick some up in the hospital after the birth. Make sure you take home as many as they will give you and the disposable pants - they're great.

Good luck!

Stripeyshoes Sat 22-Mar-14 18:35:59

E45 (for me) and Asda onsies (3 in a pack for £3.50) or something crazy like that.

I had the opposite experience with muslin blankets. I had dd1 in Canada and dd2 in the UK and I couldn't find Muslims large enough to swaddle dd2, just small squares that weren't very useful. In Canada / US they are everywhere....

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