Babble Best Picks:
Deciding on a baby crib can feel like one of the biggest purchases a new parent will make. Not only does a crib set the tone and style for the entire nursery, but it's where your child will spend a large portion of his or her day. And with the vast majority of cribs now designed to convert into big-kid beds, your crib purchase could ideally last four to 10 years. Read More ↓
The most important thing to focus on is safety, which is why you should consider buying new rather than a cheaper second-hand crib. With all of the recent recalls and safety changes (drop-side cribs were banned in the U.S. in December 2010), it's best to get a crib straight from the manufacturer. If you do use a second-hand crib, make sure that the railings are fixed, the crib slats are less than 2 3/8 inches apart, and there's less than two-fingers width between the mattress and the crib.
As for the price, expensive doesn't necessarily equal "better." Yes, you'll pay more for stronger wood, unique designs, and environmentally friendly materials, but we found plenty of stylish, safe cribs for a fraction of what a designer crib costs. Read through our extensive list of baby cribs to find the style and price point that works for you. (Did we forget one? Nominate your favorite.) - Michelle Horton
READER’S CHOICE | Kalon Studios Caravan Crib
If you’re looking for the ultimate in environmentally conscious, locally made, unique-looking crib design, Kalon Studios is a small operation with tremendous style and standards. All of their cribs are domestically made by hand using raw materials that are renewable, biodegradable, and non-toxic. In fact, the finishing on their woods (like their FSC-certified domestic maple) is so safe that they’re practically food-grade. And although we haven’t seen these cribs in person, the company stays true to their sustainability efforts by striving to create heirloom-quality cribs that can be passed down through generations.
For those who like a little color in their nursery, we’re in awe of the Kalon Studios Caravan Crib, which comes in five different colors (plus a natural wood option). Inspired by storybook circus wagons, the cribs have an element of whimsy and imagination while still retaining a simple, classic style. The Caravan even converts to a platform toddler bed without any additional purchases.