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Baby Bundling 101

Newborns love the secure feeling of being tight in a cozy blanket. Here are the steps to the mysterious art of the baby burrito.
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Don’t be fooled by how easy postpartum nurses make it look — it takes intense practice to master the art of wrapping a squirmy newborn. Newborns like being in a tidy bundle because they arrive with strong startle reflexes and without much control of their arms and legs, and that same jumping and flapping is what makes them so tough to tuck in.

First, you need fabric — a 28" by 28" receiving blanket is a good size. Material that’s a little elastic, like cotton jersey, will help you get a tighter tuck. Put your blanket down in a diamond, and fold the top corner down to make a "collar." Put your baby in the middle, with the edge of the fold you just made at about chin height.

Pull the left side of the blanket over the right side of your baby’s chest and tuck it under the left side, making sure his right arm is firmly tucked in.

Next, pull the bottom corner up and over his feet, and tuck that under his right side.

Finally (and quickly, before he kicks off his foot cover), take the right corner and pull that around the baby’s front, securing his left arm, and tuck that fabric into the "collar" behind his right shoulder.

If your baby seems to hate being bundled and frees his arms within minutes every time, try a "spa towel" style wrap with his hands free. And if he doesn’t seem to like that, either, or you can’t get the hang of it, don’t despair — you probably can get the same cozy result using a soft, fabric-front carrier that offers head support.

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  • Rated 0 out of 5 by 5reviewers.
    Rated 0 out of 5 by Informative but I am wondering how to swaddle a baby that startles himself awake in the summer. I am finding it is just too warm to continue swaddling. May 10, 2014
    Rated 0 out of 5 by Pictures or images would be helpful. I know I understand better when I see it being done. April 4, 2014
    Rated 0 out of 5 by spa style wrap is the only way my 3 week old daughter likes to be wrapped... it's the same as described only instead of tucking in the arms you wrap the blanket under their armpits. September 21, 2012
    Rated 0 out of 5 by Good article, but I wish there was a link to instructions for the "spa style wrap" for babies who like their arms free. September 4, 2012
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