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How To Dress A Newborn For Fall Sleeping 

As the earth tilts once more and the leaves start to fall, cooler temperatures can have new parents and caregivers wondering: what are appropriate fall clothes for newborns? Thankfully there are a range of ways you can dress your newborn comfortably during this transitional season, to help you ensure your baby is not too hot or too cold. The key to dressing your baby in fall is layering clothing, and choosing breathable, well-fitting fabrics so you can respond moment to moment, while considering both the ambient room temperature and outside conditions.  

What are appropriate fall clothes for babies to sleep in? 

When it comes to dressing your baby for sleep in fall, lightweight layers are a great option. As the temperature during this season can fluctuate, layering gives you the freedom of adding or removing clothing if your baby is becoming too warm or too cold. Whether you choose a romper underneath a swaddle, or sleeping bag with a bodysuit and leggings, if you have a selection of the below items in your baby’s wardrobe, there will be a combination to suit each temperature change. Consider the following when dressing your baby for unpredictable temperatures: 

Sleep Sacks 

Sleep sacks or sleeping bags are a fantastic option when dressing your baby for bed in autumn. Sleep sacks are designed for a wide range of temperatures and climates, and can help your baby maintain a consistent comfort temperature overnight. Because sleep sacks are fixed in place, there’s no need for you to worry about your baby becoming cold overnight or the sleeping bag coming loose. Choose a well-fitting sleeping bag with an appropriate TOG rating, to ensure your baby maintains a comfortable temperature during the night. 

Sleep sacks are also a far safer option than using loose blankets in the cot and are often designed with safety features such as fitted armholes or sleeves, to help keep the sleeping bag in place, and zipper houses to prevent the potential scratching of delicate skin. 


Swaddles are ideal for autumnal sleepwear. They not only offer a range of benefits including helping your infant feel secure, they are lightweight, breathable and easy to layer. Ensure your swaddle is made from a breathable fabric or muslin, and is an appropriate Thermal Overall Grade (TOG) for the temperature of the room your baby is sleeping in. 

A lightweight bodysuit or romper may be all that is required underneath a swaddle for sleep during the autumn months. For other ideas and suggestions for what your baby can wear under a swaddle, check our TOG rating guide for a variety of helpful layering combinations suitable for a range of temperatures. 

Long Sleeve Tops 

When overnight temperatures start to become cooler, long sleeve tops can be worn as sleepwear simply with a nappy/diaper, or with leggings. The advantage of long sleeve tops is that they provide a lightweight layer of additional upper body warmth, and fit nicely underneath a sleep sack or swaddle, while allowing air to move around the body freely. Long sleeve tops also allow for easy changing. 

Breathable Socks 

If your baby wears socks to bed or their romper comes with a sock option, ensure that the socks are made from lightweight cotton or a breathable fabric to help prevent your baby from overheating.  

Bodysuits and rompers 

Having a selection of bodysuits and/or rompers on-hand can set you up for success in temperature fluctuations, providing you with a range of options for sleep during transitional seasons, such as autumn. Whether it’s a full-length romper, long-sleeve bodysuit or a short-sleeve onesie layered with leggings, these designs have been tried, tested and perfected to make life as comfortable as possible for baby, and as easy as possible for parents and caregivers.  

Due to their fitted nature, bodysuits and rompers are perfect for infants and ideal for safe sleeping practices, as they are made to stay in place on even the wriggliest of residents. Often designed with snap crotches and envelope necklines to help with nappy changes, there are plenty of good reasons why these pieces are on everyone’s baby wish list. 

What are some other things to consider when dressing my baby for fall? 

Fall can encompass a wide range of weather including tropical systems. During the season, the temperature can remain surprisingly warm. Although the calendar may tell us it’s time to start snuggling up, the transition between seasons can be very unpredictable. Responding to the temperature of the day and choosing lightweight, well-fitting and breathable fabrics are the key to safely and comfortably dressing your baby for fall. 

Temperature fluctuations 

From day to day, it’s common for temperatures to fluctuate considerably during autumn. Typically, the mornings and evenings begin to get cooler, while the days can remain warm for some time. It’s a good idea to keep an eye on the weather forecast to make sure you’re well prepared for whatever the days ahead may bring and to ensure you can dress your baby comfortably.  

Material selection 

Soft, lightweight layers are an ideal way to dress your baby during autumn. Layering lightweight layers allows you greater scope to adjust your baby’s clothing in-line with the temperature as the day (or night) progresses, as opposed to going with one or two thicker, heavier garments, that lack the capacity for air flow. 

As infants have limited ability to regulate their own temperature, it’s necessary for your child’s clothing to be breathable (particularly for sleep), to help prevent them from overheating. Thankfully, a lot of baby apparel is made from breathable fabrics. Always check the label of your child’s clothing, to ensure the composition is predominantly if not 100% breathable fabrics, such as cotton. 

Room temperature 

An ideal room temperature for baby is between 18-22°C (66.4-71.6°F).  

Safety concerns 

For safe sleeping, your baby’s clothing should be well-fitting. Avoid clothing that is oversized as it’s important that there is no risk a garment could rise up over your baby’s head or obstruct their face while sleeping. 

Be aware of clothing that is heavily decorated, or embellished with buttons or zippers. Although these items can be adorable, they may potentially pose a hazard during sleep. 

Your little one should never go to bed wearing a hat, bonnet, beanie or head covering, as babies regulate their temperature through their face and head.  

How do I know if my baby is too hot or too cold? 

It’s important for safe sleeping that babies don’t overheat. Check your baby’s temperature overnight during transitional seasons, to ensure your baby remains comfortable. To do this, feel your baby’s back or stomach to gauge how comfortable they are.  

Signs your baby may be too hot are: 

  • Sweating 

  • Flushed cheeks 

  • Skin is clammy to touch 

  • Rapid breathing 

Signs your baby might be too cold are: 

  • Skin feels cool to the touch 

  • Shivering 

  • Baby waking and unsettled mid-sleep 

Dressing your baby for autumn or fall can be much like dressing yourself. Be prepared with plenty of layering options and if heading outside, pack a lightweight sweater or cardigan in case of a cool change.