Dressing Baby - Why Onesies? - Mothering Forums

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Old 09-13-2013, 04:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello. I have kind of a silly question.

 

I am 7 1/2 months pregnant with my first child. Today I was sorting individual baby outfits into baggies (strange nesting urge), and I realized I am not sure I know how to dress a baby. I mean I would think it's pretty much the same as dressing myself. Right?

 

One thing I have noticed is that most moms around here seem to ALWAYS put a onesie on underneath their baby's outfits. Is that normal in other areas? Do you do this? Why? I guess maybe if extra warmth is needed. Or if you have jammies with an itchy applique or zipper.

But I don't see why little pants and a shirt aren't fine on their own. I am just curious about the thought process here.

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Old 09-13-2013, 04:33 PM
 
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If it was cold out, yes I did use a onsie as an extra layer.  Hoodies and sweaters seemed to get in baby's face too much.  I'm not a fan of shirts or dresses for babies who can't sit up, because when they're constantly being picked up under their armpits, worn in packs and kicking around on their backs, the shirt/dress seems to ride up and expose their belly and get in their face.  Shirts work better for me once kids can sit up, but I never liked dresses until my kids could walk.  They get in the way of crawling.

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Old 09-13-2013, 05:03 PM
 
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Yeah, they really help keep the baby's clothes in place. Regular shirts and pants just get all rumpled up all the time on a floppy little baby. And they do also make a nice snug base layer that you can then add onto as needed. Then when baby gets older, they're nice for stopping the baby who has figured out how to undo their diaper...
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Old 09-13-2013, 05:29 PM
 
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I live in a warm climate where a onesie can be a complete outfit for most of the year. Maybe add socks and a hat. If I want baby to wear pants and shirt, I use a onesie as the shirt -- it won't come untucked or ride up. When it's cold enough that I want the baby to wear long sleeves, I don't put a onesie underneath. It just never gets *that* cold here. Footie PJs, hat, and blanket are plenty. But, if it did get that cold, I think a onesie would be a great idea. It would protect against scratchy zippers like you said, and it would stay in place, unlike a coat or sweater.

I agree that it's pretty useless to put a dress on a baby who isn't walking yet, but I will if it's a special occasion.

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Old 09-13-2013, 05:38 PM
 
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FWIW, it's true that shirts can ride up, but my 6-month-old baby has worn onesies maybe... 3 times in her entire life.  We do EC.  :thumb 


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Old 09-13-2013, 05:55 PM
 
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My LO wears onesies as the full outfit (at least while it's warm!). It wasn't until recently that I found out they were meant to be underwear. ;)

 

Shirts are fine, too, but we've found/been given more onesies for this age. I find pants too cumbersome in this weather.


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Old 09-16-2013, 10:27 PM
 
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I am one for keeping babies fairly warm. Not overheated, but they don't seem to be able to keep their body heat in as well as adults or older kids do.

 

I always put my children in onesies or undershirts. I think the clothes look better and I think babies need an extra layer in all but the hottest weather, or even inside air conditioned homes in the summer. Before we had air conditioning our babies always wore onsies to bed in the summer. Once we got AC, they wore onesies plus pajamas or stretchy sleepers, plus socks.

 

When I'm working with a baby who isn't gaining I'm pretty fanatical about making sure the baby isn't wasting calories trying to stay warm. I've seen too many babies who aren't gaining properly with freezing hands and feet, nothing on their head,  wearing nothing but a footless outfit. For young babies, and babies who aren't gaining well I always recommend: undershirt or onesie, sleeper or outfit to cover entire body, SOCKS (babies don't have great circulation and need to keep their feet warm) and a light blanket, plus a hat in newborns or a pilots cap in the winter for babies under 2. My kids always wore pilot caps in the house in the winter. I would tie it on the side, under their ear, so the bow wouldn't bother them.

 


Baby in pilot cap. Only I tie mine on the side so the baby isn't always trying to root near the bow.


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Old 09-17-2013, 03:14 AM
 
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Where I live it's pretty common for babies to only wear one piece suits. I don't know of anyone who thinks of them as underwear.

I personally *hate* shirts and pants or dresses on non-walking babies. They are constantly riding up or getting twisted and needing adjustment. My babies wear one piece suits 99% of the time. Short-sleeves in summer, long-sleeves with a pair of leggings and socks in winter. A jumper on top if needed. At night they wear footsie pyjammas and I do put another suit and socks underneath if it's cold as neither of my girls would tolerate bed clothes.

Simple, comfortable, easy (I've read some people complaining about the press studs making nappy changing difficult but I've never had a problem with them.)

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Old 09-17-2013, 05:46 AM
 
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Pretty much for the reasons mentioned above - warm and they stay in place. One extra tip, for very small babies (first few months), I found out that onsies that open in the front are much easier to put on than those that you have to put the baby's head through (they have the buttons on the crotch). Once they can lift their head properly and half way sit, I switched back to "normal" onsies.


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Old 09-17-2013, 07:05 AM
 
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My babies all had explosive poop so I loved onsies for saving the other clothes if possible. If they have a onsie on and they explode you can normally get the other clothes off or at least the shirt pulled up before the poop leaks through the onsie. smile.gif I also don't like the shirts always riding up, It's easier to hold onto a onsie the a bare belly.

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Old 09-17-2013, 07:11 AM
 
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I only put a onesie on underneath if it is especially cold or if I want to put them in an impractical outfit that could ride up (dress or regular shirt) and even then I usually use a side snap shirt instead as I like those better since the diaper is still exposed. Normally, I only use onesie's as a full outfit (when it's hot) or with pants. I much prefer one-piece sleep-n-play type outfits for babies that can't crawl/walk. And I agree with the PP, the onesies that snap up the front are the way to go with really little babies, until babies have head control (3-4 months), I don't like putting clothes over their head.

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Old 09-17-2013, 01:13 PM
 
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I had always read you should always dress a baby as you would be comfortable plus one additional layer.  I think the onesie serves that purpose for most people.

 

I also used a onesie as an "outfit" for the first few months of my baby's life.  She was born in late May and it's pretty warm where I live until around October.  Super easy.  I'm not big on real "outfits" for little babies.  Comfort is key, in my opinion :)

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Old 09-17-2013, 05:44 PM
 
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I love the onesies with the little skirts for girls. They are short enough so crawling babies won't have to do the "dress crawl" (y'know, with one knee up in the air with a foot on the ground to keep the legs from being caught on the dress) but they look so cute on crawling babies, walking babies and babies in arms. Add a pair of socks and a tiny hat and you have an outfit to go out, or just the onesie at home.


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Old 09-17-2013, 05:58 PM
 
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Because babies aren't standing or sitting but instead lying down their shirts tend to ride up. Having your shirt bunched up under your armpits seems like it would be uncomfortable, and when it's cold outside it would be rather chilly. So where I live you generally see babies either in only a diaper or in a onsie when it's warm, when it's cold a onsie is one of the layering pieces to keep their bellies covered.


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Old 09-18-2013, 04:40 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaggieLC View Post

whMy kids always wore pilot caps in the house in the winter. I would tie it on the side, under their ear, so the bow wouldn't bother them.


-


Baby in pilot cap. Only I tie mine on the side so the baby isn't always trying to root near the bow.
how cute!! I've been wondering how I'll keep LO's head warm in the winter here. She wiggles right out of a hat in seconds!

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Old 09-18-2013, 07:39 AM
 
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Thank you, cynthiamoon. (That's not my baby, I grabbed it off Google. She's awfully cute, though) A lot of online places sell those pilot caps. I know, I started putting my babies in them because hats fell off. My youngest child was a pre term baby and (sadly) I had a planned C Section. She had a little round head like the size of an orange, and caps would just slide right off that little ball. We live in an old house, and it's very drafty, and I adhered to the adage "always keep the head warm" so I found these little pilot caps and my babies could stay warm and cute, too. I would even put their winter hats right over the pilot caps when we had to go out. With our youngest being so small, she really needed to be kept warm so she could use her calories for brain and body growth. bfinfant.gif

 

If you look around on the net, cynthiamoon, you will be able to find nice pilot caps for your little ones (my preterm baby wore them in the house until she was probably about 4 years old or so) they aren't expensive, and most places that have them sell them in a lot of colors.

 

I couldn't find a pic of a baby with the tie on the side, under the ear, though. This is what worked best for us. I had really "rooty" babies and they would try to root at the bow if it was under their chin.


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Old 09-18-2013, 11:41 AM
 
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I do onesies for the riding up reason, too. It's not such a big deal in warmer months but I really like onesies when it's colder. 


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Old 09-19-2013, 12:31 PM
 
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Onesies are also good even in cooler weather if you swaddle. We swaddle our kids day and night as newborns so a long sleeve sleeper isn't always appropriate.

I like both long and short sleeve onsies for the reasons others mentioned. Mainly that they don't ride up and expose their belly. My go to outfit is a onesie and pants. My kids have short legs so sleepers with feet never fit correctly. If it fit in the torso then their feet didn't reach the bottom of the legs. I do like rompers (essentially a sleeper without feet), but many people dislike them because baby socks are notorious for coming off. The Carter brand stays on my kids just fine.

Love the pilot cap! I'm going to get one for my 5 week old.

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Old 09-21-2013, 08:18 AM
 
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My babies all had explosive poop so I loved onsies for saving the other clothes if possible. If they have a onsie on and they explode you can normally get the other clothes off or at least the shirt pulled up before the poop leaks through the onsie. smile.gif I also don't like the shirts always riding up, It's easier to hold onto a onsie the a bare belly.

This is the main reason mine stay in a onesie; :yeah. I have also found that the onesie snaps will help to hold the wraps w/ worn velcro in place for just one more baby...


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Old 09-21-2013, 05:43 PM
 
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I'm not a big fan of onesies.  When it's warm enough to just wear a onesie or just a onesie and baby legs I like them, but if it's colder I prefer one piece outfits with footies, and if an extra layer is needed under that I prefer a t-shirt because I hate the extra snaps in the crotch.  I'll second the recommendation to get snap front shirts for newborns!  Absolutely hate pulling shirts over floppy newborn heads!  We use wool diaper covers, and for infants I prefer wraps which you can put a onesie over, but the onesie has to be a little bigger to fit over the bulky cover.  But for 9 months plus I prefer wool pants or shorts, and they look funny with onesies on the outside, so at that point I switch to exclusively using t-shirts.


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Old 10-07-2013, 01:40 AM
 
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Originally Posted by MaggieLC View Post
 

I am one for keeping babies fairly warm. Not overheated, but they don't seem to be able to keep their body heat in as well as adults or older kids do.

 

I always put my children in onesies or undershirts. I think the clothes look better and I think babies need an extra layer in all but the hottest weather, or even inside air conditioned homes in the summer. Before we had air conditioning our babies always wore onsies to bed in the summer. Once we got AC, they wore onesies plus pajamas or stretchy sleepers, plus socks.

Well, I am also for keeping babies warm, but my DD seems to have some strange thermo-regulation system. She gets sweaty and upset whenever I put a few layers on her or a hat (in the room temperature). She sleeps with pajamas only and seems warm enough (I check her often). thus, it depends on a child too...

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Old 10-07-2013, 10:15 AM
 
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My daughter seems to have inherited her dad's metabolism and never seemed particularly cold after the age of about 1 month or so (unlike me, I'm always cold!) I just liked onesies because they didn't ride up. I also think short dresses are cute on babies, but there were some longer ones we had to shelve until she was walking well, because she'd try to crawl and get her knees or feet caught on the hem. 

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Old 10-07-2013, 01:33 PM
 
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Yeah, it's just because regular t-shirts ride up a lot so it's nice to have something that pins at the bottom.

 

I dressed my baby in old fashioned nightshirts when he was a newborn. They're like really long nightgowns that fasten at the back, sort of a half-swaddler. I had them in the hospital and all the old nurses said, "They never put babies in these anymore but the hospital used to have them like this until the 80's!" (The nightshirts were my grandmother's). Very good for little newborns since it's hard to get their feet into anything!

 

After that, it was cold, so we skipped onesies and just dressed him in those pajamas with feet. Get ones that snap, not ones that go over the head. Stuff that goes over the head = annoying.

 

Eventually, my kid grew up, and yes, wore shirts and pants like everyone.

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Old 10-22-2013, 10:49 AM
 
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I did onesies because my kids are obsessed with getting naked, and around seven months they start figuring out the Velcro and snaps on their diapers and removing them. Onsie snaps are out of their visual range so much harder to undo. Once they get to that point, I figure it is time for toilet training!

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Old 10-22-2013, 01:09 PM
 
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Personally, I always disliked onesies.  It was extra work getting them dressed and extra work when changing diapers.  I like them when it is warm and that is all they need under a blanket, but rarely ever used them as an extra layer.  I really like the full body sleepers instead.


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Old 10-22-2013, 08:49 PM
 
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What PP said! Love them with leggings and even an additional t-shirt/cardigan or something on top that adds warmth but not diaper difficulty. With my first I cut and sewed all the onesies into t-shirts because we EC'd him and used cloth diapers mostly without a cover, so he would have t-shirt and diaper with snappi and wool pants when cold. Also socks and leather booties for older baby in cooler temps. 

 

With DS2 I use onsies all the time. I'm using paper diapers this time, for various reasons, and love the simple, smooth, ease of a few snaps and off the dirty diaper. He is so cute with leggings! Now that fall is here I put pants over the onsies but I can see that this wont last and I'm already digging out my old wool pants. He will probably transition to pants and shirt, with onsies for warmth if I feel it is necessary. 

 

With little babies and babies in sposies onsies are great. With bulkier cloth diapers they look a little weird and add an additional step to diapering.

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Old 10-22-2013, 08:52 PM
 
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Oh-by PP I actually meant post #20, Brambleberry from page one :yeah

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Old 10-23-2013, 01:00 PM
 
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Onesies always seemed to wick wetness from the cloth diapers, and the snaps were annoying. My newborns hardly ever wore outfits, rather they were in a gown with baby legs, a cotton sleeper or a tshirt with a fleece sleeper. I don't like fleece directly on my skin, so I put a cotton layer between for the baby too. I suggest the side snaps too

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Old 10-23-2013, 03:12 PM
 
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What I like about them is that the babys belly is free, so you don't have to worry about the healing belly button or pants being too tight.
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Old 10-24-2013, 07:44 AM
 
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There is some very strange advice out there about how freezing your baby should be, isn't there? Some people say that a room should be 16°, baby should be in a thin long-sleeved PJ, no hat and that is plenty. 

 

My boy was FREEZING when I did that. Blue-lipped and cold-handed. That surely can't be the optimum? 

 

He was born in September, so it was cold pretty quickly. We dressed him in a short-sleeved onesie, over that a long-sleeved onesie, plus socks and a warm sleeping bag. That way he was snug, happy, perfect temp and slept like a trooper.

 

I love onesies, because there is no cold bit on their belly and it stays in place. And it is CUTE!

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