What’s black and white and monochrome? This year’s biggest baby-gear trend, that’s what. Perhaps to the relief of modern-décor-obsessed parents, baby product designers are replacing the bright and garish look of yesteryear with sleeker, simpler options for the nursery. You can now get a classic black-and-white bouncer chair or Rock ‘n Play that blends in with your living room, instead of one covered in red and brown monkey faces (just for example). Maybe you want to forego the enormous plastic Exersaucer with a million attachments and splurge on a more minimalist baby activity centre that could pass as a side table in a high-end condo.
There's also an added benefit for your little one: newborns only see in black, white and grey for the first few weeks. These bold, geometric patterns with lots of contrast will stimulate their visual development.
If you gravitate toward neutral basics instead of all things loud and multicoloured, this roundup of black and white baby products is for you.
Eventually, you’re going to need to put the baby down somewhere safe and snug. This black and white bouncer is handy for when you need to take a shower, make dinner, or tend to another kid. The vibration setting can be soothing, while the mobile and mirror overhead are stimulating. Fisher Price also makes a Jonathan Adler Rock ‘n Play with a similar look, if you prefer a rocker instead of a bouncy chair. $130, Snugglebugz.caPhoto: Amazon
This black and white baby activity gym is only available for purchase in the US for now, but it will be available through Canadian retailers in April 2019. Baby’s “workout” area includes an overhead mobile, a mirror attachment, cute musical animals (a fox, badger and hedgehog), a soft accordion book, and satin ribbon details (great for an infant’s fine motor skills). $60 USD, Amazon.comPhoto: Tiny Love
When your little one is starting to self-feed and learning to use a spoon, a non-slip bowl or plate can minimize mess. This monochrome bundle includes a pineapple-pattern bib and a plate that suctions to the table or high chair tray. $48, shop.Nordstrom.comPhoto: ezpz
Adding a contoured change pad cover in “Tuxedo” brings a bold look to your diaper change station—somewhere you’ll be spending A LOT of time over your baby’s first few years. The “Modo” dresser is also by Babyletto. Dresser, $449, WestCoastKids.ca. Change pad cover, $36, BuyBuyBaby.comPhoto: Babyletto
This glossy black Babyletto design—the Harlow acrylic three-in-one crib—is a timeless, gender-neutral addition to the nursery. Bonus: it transitions into a toddler bed (with included bed rail) as your baby gets older. $949, westcoastkids.caPhoto: Babyletto
Soft, foamy playmats make tummy-time more tolerable, and they provide peace of mind when your baby is learning to sit up or stand (and inevitably takes a tumble). The BPA-free material is easy to wipe clean, and it’s reversible, with polka dots on one side and a bold geometric pattern on the other. $139, Indigo.caPhoto: Play with Pieces
Stretchy car seat covers can protect infants from windy weather or bright overhead lighting when it’s time for a snooze. The Milk Snob cover, in a signature black and white stripe, also multitasks as a nursing cover or shopping cart seat liner. $50, Well.caPhoto: Milk Snob
The Inter-Mix backpack has leather trim, side pockets for bottles, a washable changing pad, a refillable wipes case, and a water resistant interior. If you’ve got a mobile baby or run-away toddler, you know a diaper bag that keeps your hands free can be a lifesaver when you’re out and about. $150, WestCoastKids.caPhoto: West Coast Kids
A black-and-white themed nursery wouldn’t be complete without some cute art on the walls. These 8×10 prints come as a set of four on linen cardstock, with a fade-resistant, anti-glare matte finish. $40, Amazon.caPhoto: Amazon.ca
Adhesive wall decals are an affordable, low-committment way to create an accent wall or to add a fun pattern to your baby’s room, without messing around with rolls of wallpaper. $29, Ella+Elliot.comPhoto: Ella+Elliot
A rug can really complete a nursery theme, while adding texture and a cozy feel to the space. Consider this runner in a wool-cotton blend, with a black-and-white diamond pattern. It also comes in a 4×6 size, too. $200-$289, Ella+Elliot.comPhoto: Ella+Elliot
You were probably gifted an armload of blankets at your baby shower (some of them lovingly DIY’ed by well-meaning relatives). But it’s not actually safe to let a baby sleep with a blanket unsupervised until they’re older than 12 months. Sleep bags and sleep sacks are a popular alternative, and Halo is one of the biggest brands in the wearable-blanket biz. This one’s a warm, cozy fleece with a plus-sign pattern. $22, BuyBuyBaby.comPhoto: Amazon
This durable board book with vision-stimulating images inside is a baby shower go-to. It also expands accordion-style, which is great for tummy time sessions. $10, Indigo.caPhoto: Indigo
Add a little personality to the back seat with a cowhide-lined infant bucket car “seat by Britax. $170, BuyBuyBaby.comPhoto: Well.ca
If your little one has outgrown the infant bucket seat, it’s time to upgrade to a toddler convertible one. $230, BuyBuyBaby.comPhoto: Amazon.com
Ergobaby’s 360 carrier adjusts into multiple positions (including both inward facing and outward facing), so you can choose what style suits you and your baby best, depending on your plans for the days. We love the minimalist print that goes with any outfit, and the fact that Ergobaby has added some extra lumbar support to this carrier design, too. $208, Ergobaby.caPhoto: Ergobaby
The Baby Björn bouncer chair is a classic. It’s on the pricier side (for a bouncy chair), but the Baby Björn has three different recline settings, can fold flat for storage, and is light enough to drag all over the house. (You can also slide it into a large suitcase for travel.) $250, Snugglebugz.caPhoto: Snugglebugz
The Bobbin Triple Play Centre is a high-end version of the traditional baby Exersaucer. Yes, it’s expensive, but it converts to a toddler table with a chalkboard insert, or into a sleek sidetable that won’t clash with your modern, neutral-toned living room. The leather seat can rotate 360 degrees, it adjusts to five different heights, and there’s a movable “tether bobble” for securing whatever toy your baby is into these days. $650, Ella+Elliot.comPhoto: Ella+Elliot
This is a new ergonomic design from the same industrial designer who created the iconic Stokke Tripp Trapp chair—both high chairs are meant to grow with your kids. (Add-ons include a newborn lounger, a baby seat with leg holes and straps, and a high chair tray.) The Nomi comes in a few different colour combos, but a black or white one will blend in with a monochrome kitchen. $440-$530, WestCoastKids.caPhoto: West Coast Kids
If the price tag on the Nomi (previous slide) made you gasp, we recommend the basic Antilop highchair from IKEA. It’s light, affordable, easy to wipe down and inoffensive to most kitchen décor themes. For younger babies, there’s an inflatable pillow insert (the Klämmig) that you can add for extra support. $25 with tray, IKEA.comPhoto: IKEA