One of the most essential baby furniture purchases you will need to make is that of a baby crib.  There are many things to look for when deciding on a baby crib.  Check out our tips below for what to watch for when crib shopping and also take a look at our descriptions and parent reviews of the various cribs on the market today.

Buying A Baby Crib And Crib Safety

By about 3-4 months most babies will have outgrown their bassinet, cradle or Moses basket and will need a crib for sleeping.  Although style, color, and fashion may be important criteria when shopping for a baby crib, you also need to consider safety before making a crib purchase.  However, you can rest assured that all cribs sold in legitimate stores, even the cheapest, must meet at the least the minimum government safety standards.  However, design flaws do occur and you need to watch out for recalls.

When choosing a baby crib to ensure that you purchase a firm mattress.  Firm crib mattresses help to decrease the occurrence of Infant Death Syndrome.  Also, make sure that the mattress fits snugly in the crib.  (Most mattresses and cribs are a universal size so that all mattresses will fit all cribs.)  There should be no more than a two-finger width of space between the mattress and the crib bars.  This is important so that your baby’s face never gets caught in a wide gap, trapping or suffocating your baby.  Also, check that the crib has no broken or missing crib slats and the slats are no more than 2 3/8 inches apart.  This will prevent your baby’s head from ever getting stuck between the slats.  Older cribs such as used cribs or family heirlooms may not meet this newer safety standard and therefore should not be used.  Ensure that there are no decorative cutouts in the crib headboard or foot-board as again, your baby can become trapped in these decorative elements.  Crib corner posts should be no higher than 1/16 an inch.

Drop-side cribs

Drop-side cribs may soon be banned in the United States.  Since 2007 twenty different cribs affecting more than 40 million cribs on the market from various manufacturers have been recalled.  Almost all of the problems necessitating the recall had to do with faulty drop-sides that created a gap between the rail of the crib and the mattress causing babies to become trapped and suffocate.  In 2009 Toys R Us removed all drop-side cribs from its stores and website and now only sells stationary side cribs.  If you are considering buying a used crib or accepting a used crib from a friend or family member, make sure that the crib in question has not been affected by one of these recalls.

Crib Wish List

Things you may want to look for when shopping for a crib are crib wheels.  Wheels are a much-desired feature on cribs because you will need them to easily move the crib when you change the crib sheets and when you need to clean under the crib or reach anything that rolled under the crib.  Moving a crib that is not on wheels is very difficult.  You will also want to purchase a crib with an adjustable mattress height.  Almost all cribs today come with this feature.  When the baby is young you keep the mattress at a high height so that you do not have to bend low to put your baby down.  When your baby is older and can begin moving around you lower the mattress height so that you provide better safety for your baby in the crib.  Now your baby cannot easily climb out.  Inexpensive crib models will come with at least two adjustable mattress heights.  More expensive models can come with as many as five adjustable mattress heights.

Convertible Cribs

You may also want to consider purchasing a convertible crib.  These are cribs that can convert to toddler beds by taking off the crib rail on one side of the crib when your baby is older and no longer needs the safety of a crib.  These cribs will come with a conversion kit which will include a safety bar for the toddler bed.  However, these cribs tend to be more expensive so decide if this is a feature you really need.  If you plan on having another child soon after the first and want to reuse the crib for the new baby, you may not need a convertible crib since you will have to buy a toddler bed, or twin bed, for your first child anyway.

Most stores only keep a few models of cribs in stock.  Check and see which cribs your local store has available because if you need to order your crib it can take up to 12 weeks to arrive.  Make sure you leave yourself enough time.  You can also order a crib from an online store, they usually have everything in stock, but you will have to pay shipping and handling at most sites.

Check out our parent reviews to find out about the best cribs, crib mattresses, cradles, bassinets, and Moses Baskets on the market today.

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Kalani 4-In-1 Convertible Crib

If you are looking for a 4-in-1 convertible crib made from wood from sustainable forests and a non-toxic finish, then the Da Vinci Kalani baby Crib is for you!Almost every user reports that the Da Vinci Kalani crib is an extremely sturdy baby crib and does not wobble or shift even when you shake it.  Reviewers also say this is a very durable crib that has a beautiful, classy look and it is great quality for the price.  Most users write that the crib is easy enough to put together (seems to take an average of 1.5-3 hours to do so) if you follow the directions provided and they love that this crib can later be converted to a toddler bed (as well as a day bed and a full-size bed).  Users say this is a beautiful baby crib, made with quality craftsmanship and is available at an affordable price.  “Highly recommended.”

Features Of Kalani 4-In-1 Convertible Crib.

  • Made of solid New Zealand Pine wood from sustainable forests.
  • Maximum Weight Capacity: 50.0 Lb.
  • Care and Cleaning: Wipe Clean With Soap and Water
  • Stationary side crib with no moving parts.
  • Lead and phthalate safe.
  • Non-toxic finish.
  • Metal mattress support that can be adjusted to 4 levels to adjust to your growing baby.
  • Converts to day bed and toddler bed (toddler rail included)
  • Converts to full size bed with Item# 147865 – DaVinci Conversion Bed Rails (sold separately)
  • Available in 5 Finishes: Cherry, Ebony, Honey Oak, Espresso and White
  • Dimensions: Height: 41.5 “; Width: 35.0 “; Depth: 55.5 “
  • Product Weight: 68.0 Lb.
  • 1 year limited manufacturer’s warranty
  • Assembly required

Cost: The Da Vinci Kalani recommended price is $399.99 but amazon stores sell it for $139.00.

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Graco Lauren Convertible Baby Crib

If you are looking for an inexpensive, yet safe and sturdy baby crib, then give the Graco Lauren Convertible Crib a try. The Graco Lauren Convertible Baby Crib has a received a rating of 4 out of 5 stars from users at toysrus.com and target.com. Users say the Graco Lauren Convertible crib is a beautiful and inexpensive baby crib.  Reviewers write that this baby crib only costs a fraction of the price of other cribs and one user even says it looks just like the expensive $300 baby cribs.  Parents write that this is a fantastic crib with a look that is both classic and modern.  Users also love that the Graco Lauren crib has stationary sides that make the crib safe and sturdy and that the Lauren crib can be converted to a toddler bed and a full-size bed later on.  Almost every user is especially pleased that this baby crib is extremely easy to assemble and it only took most users less than an hour to put this crib together.

Some users are displeased with this baby crib saying they are unhappy that this crib, although it has the Graco name, is not made by Graco but rather by a company called Lajobi.  They also say the wood used in the crib easily cracks and that the crib is made from low-quality material.  Some also claim the finish flakes off and the crib itself is not sturdy enough.  A few users write that a standard size mattress is not long enough for the Graco Lauren Convertible crib and users should buy a mattress that is 52’’ in length rather than the standard 51.5/8”.  Graco should consider putting this crib on wheels for easy maneuverability.

Although there are some very dissatisfied reviewers, most users who have written reviews are happy with this baby crib and believe it is a great crib for the price paid.

Features Of Graco Laruen Crib

  • Crib converts to a toddler bed (no guard rail needed for conversion), daybed and full-size    headboard (bed frame and mattress not included)
  • Three-position mattress height adjustment
  • Durable and functional
  • Five-year limited warranty against manufacturer’s defects
  • JPMA, ASTM and CPSC safety certified
  • Assembly required
  • Mattress sold separately
  • Coordinates with matching Lauren Dressing Table
  • Finish available in espresso, white, natural and walnut
  • Lauren Convertible Crib: Dimensions: 57.00L x 30.625W x 43.50H. Weight: 50.00 lbs.

Cleaning Instructions: When cleaning our cribs and furniture, use a non-abrasive cleaner. Mix a solution of water with a small amount of mild dish washing liquid. Apply to crib surface with a soft cloth lightly dampened in solution. After cleaning, dry completely with a soft, dry cloth.

Cost: The Graco Lauren Convertible Baby Crib costs $219.99 so shop around for the best price.

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Ikea Gulliver Baby Crib

If you are looking for an inexpensive, safe and reliable crib with a stationary side and top ratings from Consumer Reports, then give the IKEA Gulliver baby crib a try! You won’t find a more simply designed, easy on the eye, safe for baby and light on the wallet crib anywhere else. Check out the IKEA Gulliver crib for a great option for your baby’s sleeping needs.

There is no real rating for the IKEA Gulliver crib since there are no reviews about this crib on user review boards from stores that sell it because it is only available at IKEA. However, users have posted what they think about the IKEA Gulliver crib on baby and parent forums throughout the internet. Based on the many comments made by these users, the IKEA Gulliver crib has received a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Users seem to love the IKEA Gulliver baby crib saying it is solid and sturdy, very easy to put together, and very affordable. Parents say they feel secure with the IKEA Gulliver crib because IKEA has a good reputation for quality and safety. In the past several years, millions of baby cribs from numerous well-known brands have been recalled due to faulty drop-sides or unstable crib slats. IKEA baby cribs have weathered this recall storm and for this reason, and others, the Gulliver crib has been rated as one of the best baby cribs by Consumer Reports. The IKEA Gulliver baby crib comes with a safe stationary side, is inexpensive, can be converted from a crib to a toddler bed, and is made of solid beechwood (the white finish) or solid birch wood (the birch finish).

Users like the simple clean lines of the Gulliver crib design and are happy that this baby crib is not too frilly or traditional like so many baby cribs today. Short users are also very pleased with this baby crib because they say although this crib does not have drop downsides, it is very easy to put a baby in the crib, even when the crib mattress is on its lowest level. One women who is 5’1’’ in height says she has no problem reaching the mattress on the lowest setting.

A few people in the various baby forums don’t care for the IKEA Gulliver baby crib but so far there is no major negative that should deter new parents from buying this baby crib. Many users say one of the problems with IKEA cribs is that they only fit IKEA crib mattresses and crib sheets (although some users say BabysRUS sells several crib mattresses that will fit the IKEA Gulliver crib—and this means standard crib sheets would fit too). Others point out that there are no screw covers on the gold screws that hold the crib together and this is very ugly, especially on the white crib (but this is a cosmetic issue—and screw covers are probably not included because they can be a choking hazard for baby). One parent thinks the Gulliver crib looks like a baby jail and a few others feel this baby crib is just too small and short and doesn’t work well for tall parents.

Overall, users throughout the various online forums seem very pleased with the IKEA Gulliver baby crib and it is a great option for parents looking for a safe and inexpensive baby crib from a reliable manufacturer.

IKEA Gulliver Baby Crib Description

Key features

  • The bed base can be placed at two different heights.
  • One-bed side can be removed when the child is big enough to climb into/out of the bed.
  • Perforated bed base for good air circulation

Product dimensions

  • Length: 53 1/2 “
  • Width: 29 1/2 “
  • Height: 32 5/8 “
  • Bed width: 27 1/2 “
  • Bed length: 52 “

Good to know

  • Fits our crib mattresses.
  • Mattress and bed linens are sold separately.
  • For your child’s safety, use a 27 1/2×52″ crib mattress with our cribs.
  • Complies with US standards 16 CFR 1508 and ASTM F1169-03 and Canadian standard SOR/86-962.
  • Conversion kit included.
  • It may be completed with VIKARE guardrail.
  • This product requires assembly

Product Description

  • Main parts: Solid birch, Clear acrylic lacquer
  • Bed base frame: Solid beech, Clear acrylic lacquer
  • Bed base top: Fiberboard

Environment

  • Renewable material (wood).
  • The material in this product MAY BE recyclable. Please check the recycling rules in your community and if recycling facilities exist in your area.

Cost: The Ikea Gulliver Crib costs $194.99 for the birch finish and $194.99 for a white finish.

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IKEA Somnat Baby Crib

Why spend tons of money on designer cribs when you can get a stylish, sturdy and safe crib from IKEA for just $99.99?  This leaves you tons of money for the purchase of other baby items and you still have peace of mind knowing your baby is resting soundly in a safe and secure baby crib.  And, you’ll also feel good looking at the Somnat’s sleek and modern style.

The Somnat is IKEA’s newest baby crib variety and because it is only sold at IKEA, it does not exist in most user product review boards.  However, many forum posts are springing up throughout the Internet discussing this new IKEA crib.  After reading through these many forum messages I would estimate that, so far, the IKEA Somnat crib has received a full 5 out of 5 stars.

First and foremost, users love that the IKEA Somnat crib costs only $99.99.  Users say they can now spend this large savings on other baby products like a non-toxic crib mattress or decorative nursery accessories that they may not have otherwise been able to afford.  Most reviewers agree that the higher priced cribs found in most baby stores are  simply a waste of money.

The IKEA Somnat crib forum posters say the Somnat is extremely easy to put together and feels very sturdy.  Several reviewers think this crib is just as sturdy, if not more so, than expensive designer cribs—many of which are under constant product recall.  IKEA cribs have over the years weathered the millions of crib recalls and IKEA has now come out on top as the manufacturer of some of the safest baby cribs available.  Many of the reviewers note that the Somnat has a very similar design to the IKEA Gulliver Crib, a crib that has received top ratings from Consumer Reports and which has been recommended as one of the safest baby cribs you can buy.  The Somnat crib, like the IKEA Gulliver crib and the IKEA Leksvik crib, has stationary sides, is made from solid beech wood and is painted with acrylic paint. No toxic materials are used in the production of this crib.

Some users concede that the crib does at first glance look cheap and flimsy, but is in fact a really strong and sturdy crib.  They love the clean modern crib style of the Somnat and like that its non-bulky size makes it great for small spaces.  It can even fit well in the master bedroom next to the bed in place of a bassinet or Moses basket.  A great option for those parents who want to spend the first few months co-sleeping with their baby and then later move baby to his own room.  No need to waste money buying a crib for the nursery and mini-crib for the parent’s room.

The only negative for the IKEA Somnat crib is the fact that the crib sits very low to the ground.  Some users wonder if this could become annoying, or even painful, always having to bend down so low to lay baby in the crib and take baby out of the crib.  The same issue exists with the IKEA  Gulliver crib and most users of that baby crib have conceded that the low height is really not that big a deal.

Key features of the Somnat Crib

The bed base can be placed at two different heights.

Product dimensions

  • Length: 53 7/8 “
  • Width: 29 1/8 “
  • Height: 33 1/8 “
  • Bed width: 27 1/2 “
  • Bed length: 52 “
  • Length: 137 cm
  • Width: 74 cm
  • Height: 84 cm
  • Bed width: 70 cm
  • Bed length: 132 cm

Good to know Fits IKEA crib mattresses.
Mattress and bed linens are sold separately.
For your child’s safety, use a 27 1/2×52″ crib mattress with IKEA cribs.

Product description

Main parts/ Bed base frame: Solid beech, Acrylic paint
Bed base top: Fiberboard

Cost: The IKEA Somnat Baby Crib retails for $144 and comes in the colors pink, blue or green. Sold at IKEA stores only.

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IKEA Leksvik Baby Crib

For an inexpensive, solid wood, no fancy frills, safe baby crib and toddler bed in one, check out IKEA’s Leksvik baby crib. Because IKEA products are only sold at IKEA stores there are no user reviews for their products on the usual baby product review boards found at online baby supply stores.  However, there are several forums where users talk about the IKEA Leksvik baby crib and an estimated user rating for this baby crib, based on these online reviews and comments, is 4 out of 5 stars.

Users love how inexpensive the IKEA Leksvik baby crib is and also feel good knowing it has high ratings in safety from Consumer Reports thanks to the crib’s stationary side.  In fact, Consumer Reports chose the Leksvik baby crib as its number two pick for recommended baby cribs. Reviewers find this bed very economical since for only $129.00 they get a crib with two mattress height settings and a conversion kit to create a toddler bed all in one. They also like that the Leksvik is not too bulky and fits well in smaller rooms.

Many users say the crib has held up to everyday use very well and, despite its inexpensive price tag, has proven to be quite durable.  The crib is made of solid wood and its dark natural wood color works well for either a boy or girl’s room.  Many users say IKEA has the best cribs for this low price point and it’s really not worth wasting money on the expensive designer cribs found in most baby stores and boutiques.  The Leksvik crib is just as sturdy as any of the pricier cribs.

Although the Leksvik crib is very plain looking, it can be jazzed up with fun bedding.  A few users posted pictures of the crib all dressed up with crib bedding and a crib mobile and the crib was completely transformed.  It really looked great.

Product description

  • Main parts: Solid beech, Stain, Clear acrylic lacquer
  • Bed end filling: Solid spruce
  • Layer glued slats: Molded beech plywood
  • Bedside: Solid beech

Key features

  • – The bed base can be placed at two different heights.
  • – Converts into a toddler bed.
  • – One bed side can be removed when the child is big enough to climb into/out of the bed.

Good to know

For your child’s safety, use a 27 1/2×52″ crib mattress with our cribs. The Leksvik Crib complies with US standards 16 CFR 1508 and ASTM F1169-03 and Canadian standard SOR/86-962. Conversion kit for toddler bed included with purchase.  If the bed side is removed, the crib may be completed with VIKARE guardrail. Mattress and bed linens are sold separately.

Environment

Made from renewable material (wood). The material in this product MAY BE recyclable. Please check the recycling rules in your community and if recycling facilities exist in your area.

Product dimensions

  • Length: 53 7/8 “
  • Width: 31 1/8 “
  • Height: 35 7/8 “
  • Bed width: 27 1/2 “
  • Bed length: 52 “
  • Length: 137 cm
  • Width: 79 cm
  • Height: 91 cm
  • Bed width: 70 cm
  • Bed length: 132 cm

Cost: The IKEA Leksvik baby crib retails for $182.99 and is sold at IKEA stores only.

A Few Issues

Some users complain about the amount of time it takes to assemble the IKEA Leksvik crib and a few others think the crib feels like it is made out of cheap particle board rather than solid wood.  These users say the crib looks better online than in person.

However, the main issue with the IKEA Leksvik crib is crib mattress size issues.  While the crib is suppose to be able to fit a standard size crib mattress, many users say it does not.  Standard size mattresses are not long enough for the crib and a gap of about 1.5 inches is left between the mattress and the headboard.  Some users feel this could present a suffocation problem.  These users write that they were told by IKEA that this space is for the insertion of a crib bumper but some users would rather not use a bumper pad due to the recommendations by the SIDS Foundation against using such crib accessories.  However, other users say that if you buy an IKEA crib mattress rather than another brand of standard size mattress, you will not have the gap issue.  Problem solved.