Types of Baby Blankets and How to Choose

Baby in a pink blanket

What is more precious than a sleeping baby wrapped snugly in a soft, warm baby blanket? Baby blankets are a necessity for the new one in your life, providing warmth, comfort and familiarity. Don't be surprised if at least one of these necessary essentials becomes your child's favorite security item. You'll probably have your favorites, too. There are several types of blankets available for babies.

Thermal Blankets

Thermal blankets are typically made of light, thermal material. They usually wash well, and they can be used year round. Thermal blankets are perfect for those summer afternoon naps when your baby needs something lightweight thrown over him. They come in a variety of colors.

Gerber thermal baby blankets
Gerber thermal baby blankets
  • Overstock: This site offers a small selection of thermal baby blankets, from pastel-colored ones with animals like frogs and teddy bears, to an organic cotton blanket.
  • Monica + Andy: The selection isn't huge here, but you can get organic cotton thermal baby blankets at a reasonable price.
  • Dillard's: This waffle-weave, satin-trimmed blanket comes in seven colors. The style is classic and also quite inexpensive.

Receiving Blankets

After the nurses examine, clean, and diaper your baby, they'll probably swaddle him in a receiving blanket. Most newborns love to be swaddled, because it makes them feel more secure. Although receiving blankets are thin and don't provide a lot of extra warmth, they are perfect for swaddling because they are made of very thin, cotton material. If you don't have any receiving blankets at home for your newborn, make sure you purchase a couple of packs.

You can pick up receiving blankets almost anywhere baby gear is sold, from Target to specialty stores. Choose from patterns like raspberry garden, Noah's Ark, butterflies, and more.

Carters receiving blankets
Carter's receiving blankets
  • Target: You can get four blankets for less than $15, and they feature different themes, so there's something for every nursery.
  • Bed Bath and Beyond: The selection at Bed Bath and Beyond is only slightly more expensive, and there are even more themes and color selections than at other stores. Choose from patterns like sheep, pink dots, green dots, owls, monkeys, and more. They also have thermal receiving blankets for babies born in those winter months. If you sign up for their newsletter, you may receive a 20 percent off coupon, making this a bargain buy.
  • Amazon: You can find a variety of unique patterns and colors here. The prices will differ from one set to the next. Expect to find unique and hard-to-find patterns like pink elephants, cabbage roses, brown mod circles, camo, Dr. Seuss, and more.

Fleece Blankets

Fleece blankets are becoming more popular to use as baby blankets. Their soft and warm texture makes them the perfect blanket to use on your baby to ward off chilly nights. Some fleece blankets are trimmed with silky edging, perfect for baby to rub against his chubby cheeks. Other fleece blankets have stitched edges. You may sometimes see "stroller blankets" pop up if you're searching for fleece blankets.

Snugly Baby fleece blanket
Snugly Baby fleece blanket
  • Pottery Barn Kids: If you love monogrammed items, this is the place to check. There are several fleece blankets (some with that lovely silky edging), listed as stroller blankets that will keep the chill off the baby's skin at night in the crib or in the stroller when you're on the go. Most of these blankets are plain or feature simple patterns like polka dots or chevron.
  • Walmart: The selection is varied, but the American Baby Company fleece blanket with satin trim is a beautiful option that will blend well with most nursery decor.
  • Lands' End: This site features Microfleece baby blankets in ice pink, white or light sky blue. They're lightweight but still incredibly soft, and their designed to stand up to frequent washings.
  • A Baby: Here, you'll find fleece blankets you can have personalized as well as blankets with satin trim. The color selection goes well beyond the traditional blue and pink.

Crocheted Blankets

Don't be surprised if a kind relative or friend bestows a handmade, crocheted baby blanket on you. There are many soft yarns that make wonderful baby blankets. However, if the yarn that was used is a bit rougher than you like, you may want to use this blanket primarily as a nursery decoration. Keep in mind that crocheted blankets may be best used as decoration for the first several months of a baby's life, as tiny fingers and toes can get caught in the openings of the stitches.

  • Etsy: This is the go-to spot for all types of handmade, crocheted baby blankets. Stores like BubbiesBlankies and breadsmore, just to name a few, offer a beautiful selection of crocheted blankets.
  • Crocheted by Frida: You can purchase all types of crocheted baby blankets from this site, in several different sizes. You can choose from crocheted squares with a quilted appearance, diagonal stripes, and more. She even does custom crocheted blankets, so if you're having a hard time finding the perfect thing for the nursery, this is the place to look.


You don't have to stick to blankets to keep your child warm. There are many lovely baby quilts available for your child to use, and many of these are designed to match your baby's nursery theme.

Summer Poppy baby quilt
Summer Poppy baby quilt
  • Quilts for Sale: This is an eclectic group of quilts for babies. Patterns include giraffes, bunnies, and baby elephants, or you can opt for a plain color.
  • Wayfair: This site has a beautiful selection of moderately priced baby quilts in colors and patterns to complement any nursery decor.
  • Sandrea Baby Quilts: Here, you can find handmade quilts. The site states that if you don't see exactly what you want, you can email them to see if there's a' variation not shown on the site that will meet your needs.

Sleep Sacks

If your baby is too young for you to safely place a blanket in her crib, you can still keep her warm by putting her in a sleep sack. Sleep sacks are basically blankets that are sewn closed at the bottom and sides, with holes for your baby's arms and neck. A sleep sack will keep your child warm without the risk of suffocation. You can find them at:

HALO sleep sack
HALO SleepSack
  • Baby Sleep Sacks: Baby Sleep Sacks carries styles for kids up to age two, with patterns like sheep and stripes. They also sell sets that include a pajama top and beanie cap.
  • Albee Baby: There are pages of sleep sacks here, and the variety is truly impressive. Some of the sacks have patterns like dogs or polar bears while others are solid colors. There also carry cotton muslin sleep sacks for summertime and polyester fleece for winter.
  • HALO Sleep Sack: This site has regular sleep sacks and swaddling sleep sacks. The selection also includes organic cotton sacks. If you find that you love them and don't want to give up the convenience of using them after your child is out of the infant stage, you can find sleep sacks for bigger children here as well.

Purchasing Baby Blankets

You may want to consider picking up a few different types of baby blankets. Those receiving blankets will only last so long before they need to be replaced with something heavier that isn't meant to swaddle the child. Fleece blankets may be perfect for the winter, but a lighter crocheted blanket or thin quilt may be ideal for summer, and what you purchase will depend on the age of your child during any given season.

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Types of Baby Blankets and How to Choose