Changing bags; if you are not a parent of a small baby then you probably can't comprehend what a minefield a bag could be.
When you are expecting or have a small baby for some reason the right bag with the right compartments can seem really important and look like it can solve your general getting out of the door with everything issue. I was hoping this bag would in fact be the bag that would change me from an "everything crammed into a handbag with soggy tissues in the bottom" mum to "co-ordinated, organised yummy mummy wannabee", sadly it wasn't quite to be.
Skip Hop are quite a popular changing bag range and produce this bag (the one I own only in red) and also some larger and messenger type bags. This bag retails at around the £50 mark, though if you shop around you can find it at £30 or so. The bags are available in many different colours and fabrics, so if you are wanting to co-ordinate you are bound to find something to please.
The general premise is that there are plenty of pockets for your your phone, your money and also the inevitable baby paraphernalia. The bag has 10 compartments in all including some inner pockets, I just counted. The bag also has a long strap but also has special clips to enable you to clip onto a buggy; these work well and can be viewed in action at www.skiphop.com, where you will also find other items that skip hop produce.
The pockets seal with velcro, which is a good thing, and a side netting pocket is presumably for bottles, whilst the bag comes with a small change mat and space for nappy bags.
In use though I have to say I did find this bag a rather expensive non-solution to having lots of things to carry with a small baby. The pockets are not very big and I couldn't quite work out what to put in them, and if I did work out which the perfect pocket for a baby toy or that change of clothes was I couldn't actually find the things I needed or remember where they were. In part this can be put down to sleep deprivation and the challenge of having 2 children, but on one memorable occassion I literally spent half an hour failing to find my car keys and eventually calling my husband to come and find me, only to find they were in the bag! The pocket most practical to put a purse in was at the top of the bag and zipped close - which I also didn't feel was very good security wise.
The bag though fairly non-girlie and quite good to look at - for the price the quality of the fabric is actually good and wore well, drove my husband mad, with its black hole properties, he hated it, which is surprising as men don't generally have an opinion about baby bags.
I did use if for a fair while as I felt I needed to justify the price and also I clung on to the hope that I would be more organised. Overall though I think that bar the clip to buggy function I would have been just as well off with a generic ruck sack, oh well you live and you learn!
If you are a first time mum you are probably going to be quite attracted by this bag, and you would be able to co-ordinate it with your buggy, however as a hardened mum of two I probably would say that I could have lived without it and wish that I had spent my money on something much cheaper.
There's never been anything like it before - the Skip Hop Duo is a nappy bag designed to carry everything you and your baby need, the way you want to carry it. Available in a tremendous assortment of colors and fabrics, the messenger-bag style Skip Hop DUO looks lean, clean, and great on both mums and dads. And its numerous compartments let you find all of your baby's essentials effortlessly, while keeping your stuff safe from wet and messy things. Best of all, the duo sports our innovative and celebrated strapping system that lets you securely fasten it onto any type of stroller, so you can snap it on and take off in style! Hangs neatly on stroller and can be worn over the shoulder Waterproof changing pad included Adjustable stroller bar straps Adjustable and removable shoulder strap Large rear pocket holds changing pad and diapers Large roomy main compartment Two interior bottle/organizer pockets Two roomy front pouches for bottles and sippy cups Two easy access zippered pockets keep personal items safe and dry Convenient side phone holder Adjustable side mesh pocket for baby bottle or water bottle Easy access pen holders