10 best gifts for babies

Treat the under-ones to a memorable present this Christmas

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The Independent Online

Babies may have yet to succumb to the magic of Santa, but family and friends are likely to want to spoil them for their first Christmas nonetheless. Happily there are no end of gift options to mark the occasion and more importantly to fill the stockings of those nearest, dearest little elves - from educational toys to clothes and keepsakes.

1. Ketchup On Everything Personalised Named Print: £23.96, Etsy 


These colourful prints by London designer Kay Vincent make a special keepsake, matching the child’s initials to a retro illustrated animal, from miming monkeys and hippy hamsters to scooting squirrels and weightlifting walruses whose design was inspired by old children’s books. Choose from a variety of colour combinations and add the child’s date of birth for a memorable addition to their bedroom wall.

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2. Marie Chantal bear knit jumper: £24, Marks & Spencer 


Marie Chantal, Crown Princess of Greece and renowned childrenswear designer has collaborated with Marks & Spencer this winter to produce a covetable range of clothing for under-sixes. As well as pure cashmere booties and blankets, Fair Isle cardigans and tank tops, knitwear includes this cute cashmere and wool-blend jumper that’ll brighten up the dreariest of winter days. Sizes start at 3-6 months. 

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3. Oi Dog!: £10.09, Hive


The sequel to Oi Frog!, shortlisted for this year’s Sainsbury’s Children’s Book Award, sees the pecking order shaken up - dogs now sit on frogs, mules on stools and cats on gnats… Comically illustrated by Jim Field, this picture book is likely to become a lifelong favourite.

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4. Lush Designs Melamine Breakfast Set: £18.75, Lush Designs


Baby rice and pureed vegetables are bound to be more appealing served up on this fairytale-inspired melamine dining set design by a south east London-based duo. The plate, bowl and mug come in turquoise unicorn or orange lion designs, presented in a pretty gift box.

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5. Jellycat Snowy Owl Musical Pull: £22, JoJo Maman Bébé 


Get tiny ones off to sleep with Jellycat’s lullaby owl. The super-soft songstress, perched on a crescent moon and star, can be attached to a cot or a buggy and will serenade infants with Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy when the cord is pulled.

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6. Sophie La Girafe Baby Oil: £14.99, Selfridges


The omnipresent French rubber teething toy Sophie, one of the internet’s best-selling baby products, has put her hoof prints on a range of baby cosmetics, including this softly scented skin oil. A blend of organic ingredients that are kind to delicate skin, it combines white tea and lavender extracts and sunflower, olive, jojoba and apricot kernel oils - great for dry skin or baby massage.

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7. Brora Cashmere Inca Hat: £52, Brora


Woven at a long established tweed mill in the Scottish borders, these cute hats will keep little ones warm throughout the winter, with their tassel details and pretty patterns. Available in pink and blue in 0-6 month and 6-12 month sizes.

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 8. Sew Heart Felt Raj the Tiger Rug: £65.95, Not On The High Street 


Sew Heart Felt’s organic, fairly traded wool animals (slippers, rugs, toys and wall decorations) make great gifts. Designed in England and made by craftswomen in Nepal, Raj the Tiger will add colour and warmth to nurseries and let children’s imaginations run wild.

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 9. Djeco Fawn Night Light Snow Globe: £36, Little Citizens Boutique 


Parisian children’s toy brand Djeco imaginatively reinterprets the traditional snow globe as a night light. Inside, a fawn sits in an enchanted forest with birds, a rabbit and glittering snowflakes that swirl around the animals while a timed night light shifts through different colours that project the snowflakes onto the walls.  

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10. Sensory stacking rings: £12, Early Learning Centre


Babies start to explore their surroundings after several weeks and age-specific toys can help enhance their discovery, particularly those that stimulate hearing, sight and touch. These sensory stacking rings are suitable for babies over six months and are great for learning about sequences, as well as doubling up as teething rings. Each ring comes in a different colour and texture and sits on a rocking base with a giraffe’s head on top.

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The Verdict: Gifts for babies

There are plenty of personalised gifts on offer this Christmas, but Ketchup on Everything's prints are endearingly imaginative and a gift that children (and their parents) are likely to cherish for years, without an extravagant price tag attached.

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