20 Unique Crib Mobiles That'll Catch Your (and Baby's) Eye
The best nursery gear combines function with style—take baby mobiles, for example. Sure, they serve a purpose (more on that later), but these decorative items are also aesthetically pleasing and just plain fun. Whether your nursery theme is modern, whimsical or classic, there are tons of options to choose from. And if you need a little shopping inspiration, you’ve come to the right place. Here, find adorable baby mobiles that’ll grab your (and your little one’s) attention.
In this article:
Benefits of a baby mobile
Are baby mobiles safe?
What to look for in a baby mobile
Overall best baby mobiles
Best baby mobiles by nursery theme
Nursery mobiles actually have multiple uses, says Juanita Mines, a certified pediatric sleep consultant and owner of Baby Sleep Goals. “Baby mobiles can be beneficial because they provide low stimulation, help improve baby’s motor skills and help with brain and visual development.” As mobiles are designed to be eye-catching, babies watch and eventually grab at them, which is thought to develop vision and motor skills. Aside from the developmental benefits, the gentle movement of a crib mobile may help baby self-soothe. And a musical mobile that plays soft sounds can even lull baby to sleep.
If used correctly, a baby mobile is perfectly safe. Remember that newborns can only focus on things within a foot of their faces, so a mobile that’s hung too high up might not catch their interest. However, Mines stresses that baby mobiles should never hang within arms reach of an infant. “When a child is able to potentially reach the baby mobile it is no longer safe, as they can pose a strangulation or suffocation risk,” says Mines.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), a baby mobile should be securely attached to the crib side rails, wall or ceiling and placed at a safe distance so baby can’t reach it to pull it down. (Once installed, give it a tug to make sure it’s attached securely.) Once your little one is able to sit up or push onto their hands and knees (around the 4 month mark), remove the mobile from baby’s sleep space.
Between the colors, twirling movements and sound effects, baby mobiles offer a lot of visual and mental stimulation. If you’re concerned that your little one will find this overwhelming at bedtime, a crib mobile can also be hung above a changing table to serve as a welcome distraction during diaper changes.
Now that we’ve covered any potential safety concerns, here are some key factors to keep in mind when shopping for a baby mobile:
- Choose the right type for your family. Baby mobiles can be divided into three main categories: ceiling-mounted, crib-mounted and portable stroller mobiles. If you decide to opt for a crib-mounted mobile, measure the guard rails to make sure it will clip on securely.
- Avoid baby mobiles with loose parts. Some options have detachable toys or small parts that may become loose over time and pose a choking hazard.
- Opt for graphic prints. Newborn vision is too weak to distinguish color, so mobiles with black and white patterns are best if you’re trying to capture their attention. If you’re not into a monochromatic color palette, slightly older infants also respond well to bright red, green, blue and yellow.
- Musical mobiles may help stimulate baby’s hearing. Items that play soothing tunes—think lullabies, nature sounds and white noise—soothe baby at bedtime and help develop their sense of hearing.
Ready to find the best baby mobile for your nursery? We’ve gathered up a few our favorite designs below. From tricked out crib mobiles to ceiling-mounted styles, we’ve got something to cover all bases. Whatever crib mobile you choose, follow installation instructions carefully to avoid choking and other hazards, and check the mobile for loose pieces and defects—safety is essential.
Best baby mobile for crib
This pick by Lambs & Ivy gets our vote for the best baby mobile for a crib. A secure clamp allows the mobile to easily attach to full-size or portable cribs, while the long arm is covered with fabric that coordinates with the soft and fuzzy theme. It plays three soothing lullabies as the plush characters slowly spin, mesmerizing baby as they drift off to sleep. Better yet, it’s available in a wide variety of styles to match just about any nursery decor.
Best mobile for baby brain development
Newborns respond best to high-contrast graphics, which is where this smart design comes in. This set (featuring interchangeable graphic cards) lets you start with a black and white baby mobile. Then as baby grows, you can progress to more complex patterns in red, blue and yellow—the colors babies can see best from age 3 months and up.
Best crib mobile with projector
This sweet crib mobile with a projector is the perfect finishing touch for baby’s room. Soothing stars are projected onto the ceiling as the mobile spins slowly and relaxing music plays, creating a peaceful environment for baby to drift off to dreamland. Plus, this baby mobile grows with your child. The detachable mobile can be clipped onto a stroller when you’re on the move and the projection unit can be used on its own well into toddlerhood.
Best portable baby mobile
What do you do when your little one is used to a crib mobile, but you’re away from home? You pack a portable crib mobile, of course! This sweet option is perfect for on-the-go sleeping, with a rotating arm that displays six different images. It comes with five pre-programmed sounds (including an in-utero heartbeat, white noise, lullaby, ocean waves and classical music) and can even record and play a caregiver’s voice. It easily clips onto bassinets, portable cribs, pack n’ plays or even baby’s favorite bouncy seat. And at only 20 inches long, it can be stowed in a bag when you’re not using it.
Best baby mobile for bassinet
If you plan to room-share with baby for the first six months, it's best to buy a baby mobile specifically designed for a bassinet. This one from Fisher Price clips to a bassinet for a soothing experience for newborns, then transitions to a tabletop white noise machine once baby’s moved out of the bassinet. A playlist of music and sounds plus gentle lights helps your little one fall asleep. And thanks to a sound detection sensor, the mobile will automatically activate when baby makes noise or starts to fuss. Genius!
Best ceiling baby mobile
For added safety, a crib mobile that hangs from the ceiling is always an option. We love this one by Crane Baby, featuring plenty of pom poms and plush jungle animals. This baby mobile is suspended from a ceiling hook (you’ll have to purchase this separately) for added security against falling. And the neutral colors make it suitable for either gender and a variety of styles.
Best musical crib mobile
This captivating baby mobile has endearing fabric animals, spinning (and high-contrast!) spirals plus a calming night light. The best part? It plays 20 minutes of continuous classical music and converts to a standalone music box, once your little one outgrows a crib mobile.
Best butterfly baby mobile
How beautiful is this butterfly crib mobile by Baby Jives? It comes in a range of colors, and each mobile is handcrafted and painted to make it truly unique. The ceiling-mounted mobile comes in an organza bag with instructions on how to hang it securely (hardware is not included). Granted, it’s expensive, but the earthy design is timeless so you can keep it in your child’s room for years to come.
Searching for a baby mobile to match your nursery theme? Whether you’re a minimalist or a maximalist, here find stylish options to suit popular nursery decor trends.
Best boho baby mobile
If you’re a fan of the boho aesthetic, you’ll love this neutral-colored, textured baby mobile. The rainbow design uses macrame, cotton balls and tassels to create a homespun, earthy vibe.
Best floral baby mobile
Stop and smell the roses—or in this case, watch them twirl. This enchanting felted floral crib mobile from Pottery Barn Kids is perfect for your blossoming baby.
Best elephant baby mobile
How about a troop of elephants to march baby off to sleep? This hand-felted baby mobile by Pehr boasts adorable elephants in neutral tones of cream, yellow and gray. The pom poms add a touch of whimsy, and you can rest easy knowing this piece was ethically made.
Best llama crib mobile
The adorable, quirky llama is a favorite among new parents. That’s why we adore this llama-themed crib mobile by Sammy & Lou. The plush animals and clouds gently twirl in time to a soothing lullaby.
Best Harry Potter-inspired baby mobile
Snuggle your muggle into a Harry Potter-themed nursery with this gorgeous, handcrafted crib mobile. It features several key elements from the book series, and displays baby’s name at the top for a sweet personalized touch. Simply magical.
Best airplane baby mobile
Consider this cool airplane baby mobile for a travel-themed nursery. The navy, gray and white color scheme is suitable for a variety of bedding colors and patterns. Plus, the eco-friendly pieces are adjustable.
Best Winnie the Pooh baby mobile
This crib mobile won’t just comfort baby—it’ll also please Disney-loving parents. The musical mobile features a plush Winnie the Pooh alongside dreamy clouds, and spins to “Brahms’ Lullaby."
Best sea-life baby mobile
Put the finishing touch on a nautical nursery with this baby mobile from Crate and Barrel. It features paper mache sea creatures, including a whale, seahorse, narwhal, shark and octopus. Each piece is beautifully hand-painted in calming shades of blue and gray.
Best dinosaur baby mobile
Control the volume on this musical mobile, which plays snippets from 12 popular lullabies. As the dinosaurs sway, your little one will be transported to a land before time.
Best woodland baby mobile
Looking for the best crib mobile for your little explorer? This outdoorsy option by Crate & kids sure is cute. Embroidered woodland critters rotate alongside an evergreen tree, pine cone, acorn and mushroom. It’s the perfect choice for nature-loving folks.
Best safari baby mobile
Get inspired by the Serengeti with the help of this sweet mobile by Meri Meri. Four adorable knitted animals made from organic cotton are suspended from a bamboo ring.
Best pink baby mobile
When you’re putting together a nursery fit for a princess, you’ll want to add a perfectly pretty mobile to complete the look. This pick features woodland creatures like deer, foxes and birds in soft shades of pink, white and green. Each character is suspended from a short string for added safety and the mobile plays 12 soothing songs, including “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”.
About the expert:
Juanita Mines is a certified pediatric sleep consultant and owner of Baby Sleep Goals. Mines is also a member of the International Association of Child Sleep Consultants (IACSC).
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