There are certain items that you will need to have on hand before bringing your new baby home from the hospital. If you are participating in the planning of your baby shower, you may want to consider having a layette shower. The party planner (usually a member of your family or a friend) will have a list and tell guests what it is that you will need. This is a great idea to supply the layette especially if your budget is limited
This list will provide the start of things you will need for the first few months, but by all means add anything to the list that you think would be an asset.
In the clothing department, you will need about five undershirts. The 3 to 6 month size work well to start. Sleeping gowns are also important, at least three in size 3 to 6 months and a couple in size 6 to 9 months. Don't forget caps, sweater, snowsuit, etc. for babies born during the winter months if you live where it gets cold.
A few "onesies" (one piece sleepers that have snaps at the bottom) will be needed and heavily used, as well as a couple of footed sleepers. If this sounds like a lot of clothing, remember that babies spit up often and as a new mother, you will have plenty of things to keep you busy without doing laundry every day. You will also need about 5 pairs of socks and / or booties to start.
For keeping warm, be sure to have some receiving blankets on hand. Four or five of them should be enough.
For bath time your needs will include soft towels, hooded towels, and soft baby wash cloths. Baby shampoo, powder, baby oil, diaper rash prevention medication, and lotion are in this category. No powder with talc, please, it is not good for the baby.
Other things you will want to have on hand for the first few weeks include cloth diapers to use as burping pads (certainly not necessary if you wish to use something else. Cloth diapers *do* work very well, however). You will need an outfit to bring the baby home from the hospital unless someone will be bringing that to you when it is time for the discharge. You will definitely need a car seat to take baby home. Make sure to have some of the diapers on hand that you plan to use. Don't buy a lot of the very small ones, however, until you see what the baby's birth weight will be.
Have some baby bottles on hand even if you are breastfeeding. If you will be using them, have at least two pacifiers. And bibs, don't forget the bibs! You will need a diaper pail and you may want to allow yourself the perk of a baby bathtub. Many parents don't use them but they are more convenient than other ways to bathe the baby.
When you are preparing the crib or bassinette for baby's arrival, be sure to have more than one mattress pads that are waterproof. You will need at least three fitted sheets for the crib and a bumper pad for safety.