As a new mom, I have received an abundance of baby gifts from blankets to binkies. I have also conjured up a list of tips for the next time you need to buy a baby gift. Here they are…

1. Ask the couple what they need

It sounds so easy, but people rarely asked me or my husband what our baby needed. Instead, we ended up with over fifty baby blankets (I’m not exaggerating). Although every baby blanket was cute and soft, we only use about five. If you can’t get ahold of the expecting couple, try to ask one of their family members or close friends that might know what baby items they still haven’t received.

2. Practical items are always appreciated

Diapers might not be the most “adorable” gift to give, but trust me, they are greatly appreciated. I suggest buying the size 1’s or 2’s, because my baby weighed 8 lbs. 4 oz. at birth and couldn’t even wear the newborn size due to their lack of absorbancy. Another great practical gift would be a big pack of baby wipes (or a couple smaller packs for the new mommy to take on-the-go in her diaper bag).

3. Give a give receipt

This tip really applies to clothes but also is great if you buy onesies or burp cloths and the couple already have bunches of both. Just make sure you ask for the gift receipt, not the regular one, or the price you paid will be visible.

4. Gift cards are useful

When all else fails, buy a gift card to either a superstore like Wal-Mart or a baby specialty store like Babies R’ Us. Gift cards are my favorite baby gifts to receive, and although they aren’t that imaginative of a gift, there are endless possibilities of uses for gift cards.

5. Don’t buy strictly newborn clothes

Babies, unless they are born premature, are never in newborn clothes long. So, if you can’t resist buying those teeny tiny outfits, buy a couple that range in sizes (like one newborn, one 0-3 months, and one 3-6 months outfit). Take into consideration the climate where the baby will be living as well. If it’s winter when the child is born, pick something short-sleeved and lightweight for their 3-6 months outfit and maybe add a little zip-up jacket in case of a chilly day.

6. Buy from the baby gift registry

If the couple has a baby registry, be sure to find out where. This list will tell you everything the couple has yet to receive and what they still want. That way you know for sure they will be satisfied with your purchase.