£20 for a bib, £15 for a plate, £100 for a highchair… Really!
The cost of introducing solids to your baby might seem overwhelming. There are so many products on the market.
Here are my essentials and the best way to get the on a budget
1) Somewhere safe to put baby – ideally with a 5 point harness. Charity shops and facebook groups are great places to pick up second hand high chairs. Lots of people are even willing to give them away so ask on your local group. You can buy 5 point harnesses separately online and put them on another chair but make sure they are secure.
2) Soft spoons – I think silicone ones are long lasting and they are also easiest on baby’s gums. These are a few pounds online. You can use them as spatulas long after baby has finished with them
3) Pots/bowls. You don’t have to buy a bowl or plate (although you can get low cost ones from pound shops. You can use a cleaned out takeaway container or margarine container too – or even the lid (just check there are no sharp edges in case baby tries to eat the ‘plate’!)
4) Something to cover their clothes. This saves on the washing. If it is hot, strip them down to their nappy and then you can wipe them down afterwards. If not, you can get coverall bibs or plastic bibs which can be wiped down – unbranded ones are often cheaper. If a bib is not possible, have a few old (preferably dark coloured) tshirts you can put over baby’s clothes to protect their clothes each time.
5) A cup. This needs to be non breakable but there is no need to have a posh one. The basic ones are about £2 each and you can also, with support, use an open plastic cup.
I agree, there are other things you can buy but they are not essential. Food doesn’t have to be blended, it can be mashed with a fork. It doesn’t have to be presented perfectly, it won’t stay perfect for long.
The best thing you can give your baby alongside healthy food, is your love and attention. Eat with them, talk to them – neither will cost you but they will be far more valuable than any weaning equipment.