How To Dress A Baby Appropriately – German Style

midwife in Berlin on how to dress a baby

Sometimes baby clothes/ layering is discussed in my birth preparation classes and while I prepare for my baby’s arrival and sort through the clothes we still have in storage I thought it is a good idea to write this very basic post. I hope it can be of use.

How we dress a baby has to do with how we grew up

In my opinion, how we were raised, in which climate we grew up, plays indeed a bigger role than you might think. If we only start to feel warm when the thermostat shows plus 25 degrees and above or we are used to colder climates and minus 10 degrees only make us smile we will take that into consideration, unconsciously, when we are dressing our baby.

To have a common ground on this matter I show the parents to be the German way of dressing a baby, and then try to explain that of course it can be more individual.

You have many different materials you can dress a baby in

Not only you have many options in clothing as such but in material on top. For an example cotton, fleece, wool, cashmere, mohair, linen, silk, viscose, elasthan, polyacryl, polyamide,material combinations and so on.

I personally like the wool and silk clothes very much, particularly during, in my opinion, the cold harsh Berlin winters. A downside might be the price of these fabric clothes and that you are advised to wash them by hand.

What is the German style?

A German baby will always, always wear a baby body, as we call it, a vest as an undershirt. During winter a long sleeved one, in the warmer months, short sleeved or a sleeveless kind.


German parents only skip the body when it is very very warm.

Over the vest you have many options:

  • a one-piece kind /pyjama


  • a pants


  • and some sort of top or cardigan


  • Or the very german version, we call Strampler.


  • During the winter months tights might be added as an alternative layer. And of course some sort of snow suite depending on how you transport your baby such as a carrier system where babies need less clothes.


  • and maybe socks.


  • A German granny will ask where the baby hat is. Babies lose most of their energy/ heat over the head so it makes sense to have 1 or 2 hats for even in the house.Depending how nicely isolated your place is. And thicker versions during the winter, if needed.



What do babies wear during nighttime?

After we have cleared  the general way of dressing a baby I’d like to show you how you could dress a baby for the nighttime.

During the nights babies can wear:

  • a body
  • and a one-piece
  • maybe socks
  • and a sleeping bag, either a summer or winter version. the winter versions sometimes come with an inlay. This inlay can be used during the summer months as a sleeping bag.
  • no hat is used for the nighttime ( the straps might be harmful for the baby )



I hope I have answered this small but, as I know ,always important question for new parents.

Lots of love & Go leor de ghrá,




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