I was hesitant as to whether I’d ever write this post on luxury changing bags because mostly, for the first few months, I got by without a changing bag at all and just bunged everything I needed into my usual day bag. However, after a number of milk-spillages in my Michael Kors, a Spaghetti Bolognese incident in my Bayswater and a near-miss with a dirty nappy inside my new Tom Ford (Christmas present from husband, still inwardly gloating, pic above) a dedicated baby bag is starting to seem like a very good idea. Not only do they come with all of the bits and bobs you need for containing poo and food explosions (mats, nappy bags, pockets for food-pouches and spoons, elasticated holders that are great for keeping bottles upright) they are miles cheaper than the well-known designer equivalents. Same beautiful materials, same gorgeous designs, but a fraction of the price so that you don’t feel quite so mortally wounded when bad things happen.
Here’s a roundup of some of the luxury baby changing bags I’ve been road-testing – I wish I’d found these earlier! Incidentally, I did look online for a luxury changing bag in the weeks before my due date, but couldn’t find a great selection. My mind must have been addled, because I’m Googling now and loads come up…
1.The Bayswater Alternative
The Croc bag from Bellamy Baby is just beautiful; I call it the Bayswater Alternative here because it is very similar in shape to my moc-croc Mulberry, though I have to say that the Bellamy is far more robust and (whispers) better quality overall. I’ve photographed it above in “adult mode” – it passes perfectly well as a grown-up luxury shoulder bag, no unicorn embellishments or floral prints here – and below in its expanded state.
It’s perfectly roomy enough for anything you might need for a day out – food, bottles, change of clothes, a few toys – and it comes with a very posh-looking changing mat with a leather logo-embossed fastener. Small touch, but it’s these details that elevate a bag into the higher echelons of luxury-dom. Here’s what I fit into the Bellamy:
My purse and Oyster Card are hidden somewhere in there, too. Good news – the Bellamy should be £270, but it’s currently in the spring sale for £199. You can find it online here.
If you can’t fit everything you need into the Bea from byStroom then you have to wonder whether it might be time to reassess your packing skills. Because you could probably fit the actual baby itself into this bag and still have room for clothes, nappies, food and a spare blanket. It’s huge. I took it away for a four day trip to Cornwall and managed to cram in all of the baby clothes, two sleeping bags, all of the nappies and wipes, a selection of toys and a bit of food, though most food went into a separate bag in the boot. In its collapsed state it’s a slouchy, cool-looking leather bag…
…filled to the brim with stuff it’s a sort of cuboid, easy-to-squash-in-the-car-boot tardis of baby-packing joy. I love the woven-effect handles, the double-zipped top, the many compartments, and the price – €120. Here’s what I packed (with plenty of room to spare) for a day out in London:
I actually had a pair of heels in there as well and my keys, purse and a bag of beauty samples, but they escaped my photography session. You can find byStroom online here.
3.The One He Won’t Mind Carrying
Here’s a tough-looking, unisex bag in the most glorious python-embossed leather – the Joy, coming soon from Kerikit. Padded shoulder straps, all of the changing-bag accoutrements you’d ever need, including food pouch/makeup bag/shoe bag, baby mat and pram clips, this rucksack is far bigger than you’d expect. It’s larger than a classic rucksack but not quite as big as a hiking backpack – somewhere in-between, and great for a bigger person but something to bear in mind if you’re on the petite side! I have been doing quite a lot of perusing lately, when it comes to backpacks, because my shoulder is playing up and I thought I might try to “spread the load” more evenly; the Joy is at the top of my list. When it goes on sale next month it will be £275, a cool £700 cheaper than the Mulberry one I had previously been eyeing-up during one of my fantasy shopping sessions… You can find Kerikit here.
*all bags above are press samples apart from the Tom Ford.