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    Nursery Furniture Buying Guide

    Creating a safe place for your baby to sleep is all part of the excitement when preparing for your little one's arrival. Whether you are deciding between a cot or a bassinet, there are many different options to choose from. Our range of nursery furniture and bedding all meet the required New Zealand's National Safety Standards, so you can enjoy peace of mind while your baby enjoys a good night's sleep.

    You can use a cot from the day your baby is born. However, in the first months of infancy, you may find a bassinet a more convenient and comfortable sleeping place for your baby. A bassinet is likely to be suitable for your baby until they are around 4-5 months old.

    You can carry these small, portable baby beds from room to room, letting you keep a close watch on your sleeping baby. When you're ready to go to sleep, you can rest the bassinet alongside your bed and be an arm's length away when you need to get up for that late night feeding.

    What you should consider when choosing a bassinet

    Bottom/Base

    • Make sure the bassinet has a sturdy bottom to hold your baby's weight and a wide base to prevent it from toppling over
    • Choose high-quality construction and stability

    Legs

    • If the stand folds, make sure its legs lock so the bassinet doesn't collapse unexpectedly
    • If it has wheels they should lock to prevent accidental roll-aways

    Fit for Purpose

    • Make sure the product is specifically designed for use as a bassinet
    • Although it may look pretty, a makeshift bassinet is not safe

    Periodic Check

    • Check the stand's screws and bolts periodically to make sure they are tight

    The cot you choose will more than likely be your baby's bed until he or she is two or three years old. Infants spend the majority of the night (and much of the day) asleep and can be expected to be unattended for long periods of time. Therefore, when selecting a cot it is important that it is safe, comfortable and provides a restful sleep for baby.

    What you should consider when choosing a cot

    Drop Side

    • A drop side on a cot means that one side has a mechanism that allows the side to slide down to make reaching into the cot easier for parents
    • Picking up a newborn is usually not a problem, but as your baby grows a drop side can be very handy

    Teething Rail

    • A protective plastic coating around the edges prevents your baby chewing on the wooden slats of the cot when they are older

    Convertible Options

    • Some cots have the ability to be converted to give you options of a bassinet level, a day bed or a toddler bed
    • These options come in handy as your child grows and while it may cost more for these cots it can pay off by giving you years of use beyond the baby years

    Adjustable Base

    • Makes it easier to lift your baby in and out as they grow
    • It is a good idea to lower the base when your baby is old enough to pull themselves up, so that they stay secure in the cot

    Wheels

    • Sturdy castor wheels allow ease of movement with the cot
    • This can allow easy cleaning under the cot or the ability to move the cot from room to room if needed

    In the first year your baby can spend up to 18 hours a day snoozing, so the mattress they sleep on should be comfy, cosy and safe.

    A cot mattress will be an important purchase for your baby and can help ensure baby gets the best sleep possible, which is great for baby and mum!

    There are many different types of cot mattresses available. You can choose between foam, innerspring, natural fibre, anti-allergy, or a combination of any of these.

    What you should consider when choosing a mattress

    Size

    • Check that there is no more than two finger spaces between the side of the cot and the mattress
    • This ensures there is no risk that your baby could get himself trapped along the side of the cot during the night

    Waterproof

    • Waterproof surface - a wet-proof crib mattress cover that can be easily cleaned is a top priority. Vinyl is waterproof and some are enhanced with antibacterial treatments that help protect against bacterial growth on a mattress
    • Waterproof binding - makes the entire surface of a mattress easy-clean; liquids that roll to the edges will not be absorbed and can be wiped away

    Weight

    • Whether coil or foam, a lightweight mattress that you can lift up to flip or wipe down is a great help

    Comparisons

    Foam

    • Foam cot mattresses are highly durable and long-lasting
    • They are also usually less expensive than innerspring mattresses, and are just as safe, as long as they are not too soft
    • Foam mattresses are lighter than innerspring mattresses, making it easier for cleaning and changing sheets

    Innerspring

    • Innerspring mattresses are generally firmer than foam mattresses and can offer greater support for your baby as the coils are often made of steel
    • This means the coils bounce-back as baby moves
    • Some innerspring mattresses will contain coconut fibre which makes it anti-bacterial and anti-microbial

    Other Features

    Include:

    • A foam layer for comfort
    • Air vent holes for breathability
    • Water resistant fabric layer
    • Zip off cover for easy washing

    Helpful Tips

    Cots must comply with the safety requirements of the National Standard AS/NZS 2172.

    All new and second-hand cots must meet the following safety requirements:

    The cot must be more than 600mm deep. Measure from the top of the mattress base to the lowest point on any end or side

    The mattress must fit the cot firmly. Any gaps at the ends and sides should be less than 20mm with the mattress centred in the cot

    Spaces between the bars of the cot must be between 50mm and 85mm. The dropside catches must lock securely

    The base of the cot must be firm, with no parts to collapse or bend when pushed down

    Read and follow the manufacturer's assembly and use instructions. If in doubt, go back to the retailer for help

    Remove plastic wrapping from new mattresses, as it might suffocate the baby

    There must not be any bars, ledges or other footholds that an infant can use to climb out of the cot

    Screws and nails must not stick out

    The four corner posts must not stick up more than 5mm

    Cot ends must not have fancy cut outs

    Do not use pillows in a cot - they might suffocate the baby

    Do not leave toys in the cot - large toys are climbing aids and small toys with ribbons can be a choking risk

    Do not place the cot within reach of curtains and window blind cords

    • Check with the Ministry of Consumer Affairs or your local Plunket service if you have any safety concerns about your cot or require further advice.
    • The Commerce Commission enforces the Household Cots Product Safety Standard