Eco-Friendly & Ethical Nesting Essentials

Decorating a nursery is one of the most anticipated and emotional moments of preparing to bring a child into your family. But creating a sweet space that is both safe and ethical as well as affordable and fun can be an overwhelming challenge. Consider this your cheat sheet!

Here are six priority items for any nursery big or small, as well as some of our favorite responsible brands to outfit your little one’s space.

1. Soft Sleep Sack

A soft sleep sack (or sleep bag) is essential for any baby once they are discontent with their arms being swaddled all night long. Bamboo is a fast-growing, renewable resource, exceptionally soft, and very breathable. Kyte’s bamboo sleep bags are some of the softest we’ve found, with three different weights and lots of stretch to work for your infant and toddler no matter the season or size.

Shop Kyte Baby Sleep Bags

2. Safe Crib

Selecting a crib may very well be the largest purchase you make while preparing for your little one. There are so many options available and so many elements to consider including size, material, and finish. Babyletto has built a collection of eco-friendly wooden cribs that are made from sustainable woods while also being lead and phthalate-free with nontoxic finishes. Because we all know babies chew everything.

Shop Babyletto Cribs

3. Safe Mattress 

It’s no surprise that any baby spends the majority of his/her hours sleeping. The mattress on which they rest is a significant source of environmental exposures and should be chosen carefully. Consider the materials with which it is made as well as the water and flame resistance that it has. The Naturepedic No Compromise Organic Cotton mattress is produced from 100% organic cotton and has a waterproofing element made from food-grade polyethylene.

Shop this Naturepedic Mattress

4. Organic Bedding

If you’re investing in a safe mattress, it follows that you might prioritize organic sheets without any flame retardants or chemicals. Cotton is one of the most resource-intensive crops on the planet, so prioritizing organic cotton is a means by which to protect not only your child but also the environment. Burt’s Bees Baby offers a line of soft organic bedding including sheets, quilts, and swaddles. The collection is available in a variety of neutral colors and patterns to work within your space.

Shop Burt’s Bees Baby bedding

5. Changing Pad

Any parent will tell you not to underestimate the number of diapers you will change on a daily basis. The utility of an easy-to-clean changing pad makes messes more manageable while minimizing the amount of laundry done and resources wasted. Keekaroo’s unique Peanut Changer is non-toxic, impermeable to any liquids, and does not require any cover making it a practical addition to any nursery.

Shop Keekaroo’s changing pads

6. Plush Toys

No nursery is complete without a collection of soft plush toys for your little one to cozy up to as they play and explore the space. cuddle + kind has a collection of whimsical hand-knit dolls that not only inspire imaginations but every purchase also helps to deliver meals to kids in need. We love their fantastic mermaids and sweet plush animals that your little one will love for years to come.

Shop cuddle + kind toys


Kassia Binkowski is a Contributing Editor at The Good Trade and the Founder of One K Creative. She grew up in Madison, WI and traveled her way around the world to Boulder, CO which she now calls home. Nestled against the Rocky Mountains, Kassia supports innovative organizations from Colorado to Kathmandu tell their stories of social change through writing, photography, and design. Kassia is an eternal optimist and forever a backroad wanderer.