Moses Baskets, Cribs & Cradles

There are myriad choices when it comes to choosing a safe and comfy sleeping option for your newborn baby. With NHS advice stating that baby should be in mum and dad's room for the first 6 months, many parents opt for a portable Moses basket, crib or cradle as their baby's first bed.

What are the different types of Moses baskets, cribs and cradles?

Moses Baskets

A Moses basket (sometimes called a bassinet) is a small portable basket, often weaved from wicker, which can be used from newborn to around three months, or until your baby can roll or sit up or has simply grown to big for it. Some brands are now making baskets out of recyclable plastic instead of the traditional wicker. 

Moses baskets are often used in conjunction with a folding stand (although they can also be used on the floor), and are easy to move from room to room, so your baby can nap anywhere. Some come with hoods, and elaborate dressings, and padded inners, while simpler models are just literally a basket with a mattress! 

Some mums and dads are put off by the relatively short time frame that a Moses basket is used for, but others swear by their portability, the fact that newborns don't look 'lost' in them like they can do in a cot, and of course, their undeniable prettiness and cute factor! Moses baskets are popular baby shower gifts, particularly as they can be filled with other presents for the lucky mum-to-be!


Cribs are smaller than cots, and more solid than a Moses basket, and are always on some sort of frame, sometimes a rocking, gliding or swinging one, or just static, with legs like a small cot. Cribs can be used from when your baby is born until he or she can sit up, roll or pull themselves up. They are usually used for a bit longer than a Moses basket because they are slightly larger. Their size makes them perfect for use in mum and dad's bedroom, and some cribs are specifically designed with a dropside to be positioned right next to the parents' bed for safe co-sleeping.


A cradle is really just another name for a small cot or crib, but is often used to describe the more elaborately dressed rocking cribs with drapes.  

How much do Moses baskets, cribs and cradles cost?

Moses baskets can be bought very inexpensively, from as little as £25 for a basic basket without a stand. Cribs and cradles usually start at around £40.00.

Top tips for buying Moses baskets, cribs and cradles cost?

Moses baskets are used for such a short period of time that 'as new' ones are often very easy to source second-hand or from friends with older babies, however, for safety reasons, always buy a new mattress, and also check the handles of the basket are still well attached and secure. 

Some parents swear by preparing their baby to sleep in their 'big cot' by putting the Moses basket inside it for day time naps! 

Cribs are a little more pricey than Moses baskets, but are more solid and will often last longer. Not all babies will like the gliding or rocking motion, although conversely, some may end up not being able to sleep without being rocked! Cribs are not as portable as Moses baskets, so bear this in mind if you are looking for a newborn sleeping option to move around the house during the day.

Safety first

Always check any  crib, cradle or Moses basket you buy meets British Safety Standards – it should be labelled BS EN 1466 .  If you are buying second-hand, or using a pre-loved Moses basket, crib or cradle, always satisfy yourself that they are in good, safe condition with no wear, tear, loose fixings or missing parts. Bear in mind that The Child Accident Prevention Trust warns that you can't guarantee second hand equipment meets current safety legislation, no matter how new or in good condition it appears.

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