“ Brand: Grobag / Linen Type: Baby Sleep Sacs „
ADVANTAGES OF USING A GROBAG: My daughter was swaddled for ages, then went straight into a grobag - she's 2 now and still sleeps in one. It's a fantastic invention that has given me, as a parent, total peace of mind. Even when a child is a little older and out of the baby phase, you still worry about them getting caught up in bedding and either becoming distressed or, unthinkably, suffocating. Such concerns are eliminated thanks to the grobag.
Aside from safety issues, you want to know that your child is going to be warm and cosy throughout the night, without having to keep the central heating cranked up! The grobag is the perfect solution - the winter weight ones (like this) are 2.5 tog and feel warm, without being fleecy; so there's no worry your child will get too hot and overheat. And, for summer months, you can get lighter weight versions. The major advantage of the grobag though is that it can't be kicked off. There are so many factors that can disrupt a baby's sleep and this just eliminates one of them. So at least you know you're not going to be woken up because your bubba's kicked all the blankets off and is cold.
HOW THEY WORK: I've got two grobag branded sleep bags - one has a zip down the middle, the other has a zip at the side and both press-stud up over the arms. In all honesty, it doesn't make much difference. They're incredibly well made and have little covers over the zips (to stop curious fingers finding them and getting them open). They also do Travel Grobags which come with a two-way front zip and small Velcro slit in the back, so that a five-point harness can be fitted safely through the Grobag and then secured closed when not in use. Ideal if you're wanting to transport a sleeping baby with minimal disruption!
PRICE: There are other brands available but (apart from IKEA's own brand), the Grobag is the best on offer (although they can be a bit pricey. I'd say avoid buying them in Mothercare, where they're always being sold at top-whack (around £35) and browse dooyoo or Amazon instead (some go for £18/£20 on Amazon).
Prior to my pregnancy and my son being born I had never heard of grobags but now I am a mum these are something we could live without over the past few years.
What are they
For those of you who don't know what a Grobag is, it is a wearable blanket that will keep your baby at a comfortable temperature all night long. They are really sleeping bags for babies. The reason that they are so popular is that it is impossible for baby to kick this off unlike covers so they won't wake up in the night cold. The Grobag's come in three main sizes 0-6 months 6-18 months and 18-36 months. They also come in three weights 0.5 tog, 1 tog and a 2.5 tog. The tog you use depends on how hot the baby's room is. All new Grobag's come with a free room thermometer so you know which one to use. But as a rough guide the 2.5 tog is suitable for most of the year bar high summer.
They are also recommended by the Foundation for Sudden Infant Deaths as a safe way for baby being wrapped up at night to reduce the risk of over heating as this is thought to contribute to SIDS.
The fleecy bee Grobag
The one we had was for 6-18 months old or up to 18 lbs in weight and 86 cm long. It was a 2.5 tog so for use in temperature 16-20c. This one has a side zip and two poppers at the top to make the shoulder strap. To put baby in it you unzip it lie your little one on the Grobag fold over the material and click the top poppers into place and then zip up. The material for the fleecy bee is a cream fleece material that is bobble resistant. There are three embroidered bees buzzing across it. The Grobag is machine washable and can be tumble dried on a low setting.
We found when we using Grobag's initially with our son during the 0-6 month stage that we had several makes including Grobag, Mama's and Papa's and a Mothercare one. Both my husband and I noticed several differences in the makes at this stage most noticeably that the Grobag ones were a good few centimetres bigger than all the other makes and this meant our son had more wriggle room and was less restricted. Now whilst this isn't a massive concern at the 0-6 month stage it was as our son got bigger and we felt that the extra wriggle room was worth paying extra for and this also meant that the area around him in the Grobag had more space to circulate and he was less likely to overheat. The zips and fastening also seemed to be smoother and easy to do on the grobag versions rather than the others this was especially true of the Mamas and Papas one which had lots of poppers and when your sleepy in the middle of the night an easy zip for a nappy change was much easier to do let me tell you.
I found the fact that I could pick my son up for night time feeds and move him easily from the cot to a feed and back again meant that he was less disturbed when sleepy.
The softness of the fleecy material is just gorgeous to the touch and though this is the outer part when my sons arms were on it they certainly wasn't any roughness for his skin. Equally it was nice and soft for my skin to touch when I was holding him for a breast feed which just added to those night time cuddly moments really for me. The inside is a nice cotton material that is also soft to touch so there was no rough bits for his baby soft skin to rub against.
The claims of anti bobble and fuzz definitely hold up and we never got any bobbles or fuzzy piles on the grobag in all the months of washing and drying of this. On the drying front this took slightly longer to dry than the other 2.5 tog cotton one that we had and I think this was just due to the density of the fabric. The paleness of the material though susceptible to being stain never actually held a stain for us even after having bright pink antibiotics spilt across it.
As we got towards the end of the age range for the Grobag the side zip became awkward as he wouldn't lie still for us to put it on and would crawl or run off! The other grobag's that we had in this age range had arm holes and a front zip and I would definitely say these are the style to get once you child is crawling as it is a bit fiddly to try to hold them still and do the arm poppers and side zip.
The design of this one is fairly unisex in my opinion and it has been put away for us with any future children we are blessed with as it could be used for a girl or a boy where as some designs are more gender specific.
I would definitely recommend the fleecy bee Grobag it is warm snuggle for both baby and you. It washes very well and has plenty of wriggle room. I prefer the Grobag ones to slightly cheaper make myself as I find that they wash better and have more room and the fleecy bee was no exception. We liked the fleecy material so much on this one that when we bought the next size up in a 2.5 tog we choose a fleecy one again
This is available from stockists lie www.pebbleonline.co.uk for £30 or you can bid on one from ebay as they are often found being sold there.
As I've mentioned in another review, my 15 month son sleeps for 12-14 hours uninterrupted at night. I often put this down to two things, quality nappies and his trusty Grobags.
Quite simply, a brilliant invention. For first time mothers it gets rid of the anxiety involved when worrying about covers staying on, being too tight etc and is a load of your mind. The designs we have are bright and colourful, but they come in a wide range, so something to suit everyone.
This winter, being a particularly cold one for us, I was so pleased that the 2.5 tog lived up to the promise and kept my wee man snug and warm. The handy room temperature guide included, also came with advice on what he should be wearing underneath and has been pretty accurate. When he does wake at nigth, it certainly isn't from the cold.
It's suitable for most weathers though, even in very hot nights we've been able to use it with nothing but a nappy underneath. He takes to it well and we don't have to worry about a dip in temperature during the night. In terms of size we're currently on the second size up, 6-18 months, and it is very roomy, a plus as my son is quite tall for his age.
There are of course other, cheaper brands who have adopted the idea, and we have tried them. However what the Grobag has working in it's favour is the fact that it cleans well, and after god knows how many washes it has remained incredibly soft and snug. It puts the others to shame in this respect.
A minor complaint would be that it has faded a little in colour and now that he's a bit older my son has figured out how to undo it. He only does this in a morning though, I assume so he can dander about his cot; the leg restrictions are something that you'll need to bare in mind once your child is starting to toddle, it might frustrate some.
The baby grobag fastens over the shoulders (like dungerees do) usually with poppers, the one we have also has poppers under the arm pits for a snug fit and then has a zip down one side and along the bottom (like a normal adult sleeping bag) We had terrible trouble with out son kicking off his covers in the night and constantly waking because he was cold, the only down side we found was the fact that his arms weren't covered so on cold nights especially an extra cardigan over the top is essential. The great thing about the baby grobags is the range of materials and colours they come in, fleecy and thick for the winter and a lower tog for the summer. The grobags are sized Newborn, o-6months, 6-12months and upwards but can be a little pricy going as high as £30-£40 but on average your looving about £25 for one. They are so easy to wash as well as you just put them in with your normal clothes wash. I'd never used one with my first 3 children but I'd now class it as a must have baby item!