A Ridiculous Diaper Bag Collection

I love bags like I love shoes.  And over the years I’ve tried and used quite a few different diaper bags during my travels and everyday life.  As I searched for yet another one to meet the needs of my upcoming trip, I decided to do a review of some of my favorites over the years.

IMG_20131017_221747 Spark Tote by Skip Hop– This bag was the smaller, cheaper version of the Skip Hop Duo sold in Target in 2009.  It had the stroller clips (though you had to remove the cross body strap to use it), a few less pockets, and Velcro closure.  It was just enough room for all I needed for a newborn, and as a tote in a chocolate brown, it was stylish as well.  However as the needs expanded to bottles and baby food, the lack of an insulated pocket was a problem.
DSC_0121 Ju Ju Be Be All – I admired the bag for a while but it was out of my price range.  One day I lucked out at a going out of business sale and bought one at more than 1/2 off.  This bag was designed for organization and I loved all the pockets.  The memory foam changing pad was so much nicer than the ones most bags came with.  The diaper station was a great place to keep all the diapers, wipes, and pacifiers.  It had two insulated pockets on the side for bottles and food, and a pocket on the flap with a zipper for things we don’t want kids to get at.  After a few months of use, two things really stuck out at me.  One was that the flexible fabric of the bag made for a lack of structure, a real problem when you were looking for something in the big pocket.  Second was the fabric on the strap was the same as the bag with a metal adjust clip.  The bag would lengthen throughout the day and I’d have to constantly re-adjust.  In the end, I abandoned the bag and was glad I didn’t pay full price.
DSC_2651 Overland Donner Bag – As my son aged and needed less stuff, I often found I could make do with this bag I had loved pre kids for travel.  With two side pockets I could fit a water bottle for him and me, and a diaper and wipes in the inside pocket.  Plenty of room for my wallet, keys, phone, and a snack for my son.  I still used this bag up until the birth of my daughter…
DSC_3920 Skip Hop Duo – I wanted a bigger bag that would carry all the newborn, baby stuff as well as my sons items.  I had obviously been admiring this bag for a while and it did not disappoint.  The pockets allow for organization, the big pocket is big enough for change of clothing, nursing cover, bibs, swaddle blankets, even a insulated bag for bottles and food once that was needed.  The mesh pocket on the side always ensured I had a water bottle or sippy cup, and my sunglasses fit perfectly in the other side pocket.  Its so organized my youngest now knows where I keep the snacks in my bag and raids it regularly.  I still love the organization in this bag and use it every weekend even though I don’t need as much space anymore.
2010-06-27 17.24.11 Columbia Diaper Backpack – This was a gift for my husband when I was pregnant with my son, and we still use it all the time.  When we are going out all day long, and need to be sure to have absolutely everything with and on us, this is our go to bag.  It has special straps to hang off the stroller, an insulated pocket for food and drinks on one side, and a pocket with a clips for keys, a pacifier pocket, and mesh pockets for other small items you want in reach on the other side.  The interior has three more pockets and there is enough room for a change of clothing, PJs, a few small toys, a book, snacks, whatever.  And as a nice, blue backpack, my husband doesn’t mind carrying it.
IMG_20131017_221552 Skip Hop Dash – I’ve been looking for a bag to downside to, that will still hold what I need for the kids, but has a better closing as to not entice pick pockets on public transit in Buenos Aires.  I saw a friend with this bag and loved all the pockets.  It was a little bigger than I feel like I need, but I also think that will make it stay closed better, and not cause the flap to be forced open.  I lucked out and found a nearly new one on Craigslist for a fraction of the price, so I bought it to give it a try.  Only time and my trip will tell how it goes, but I can tell you my friend has found the bag great so far.

Another bag I considered is the Baggallini Neighborhood Messenger.  I loved the fabric, size, pockets, and two inside water bottle pockets.  However, its out of the range of what I wanted to spend.

What bags have worked for you?  And what turned out to be a complete disaster?  

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This post is part of Travel Tips Tuesdays, hosted by Suitcases and Sippy Cups and Walking On Travels

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9 thoughts on “A Ridiculous Diaper Bag Collection

  1. My biggest mistake was the Isoki. Beautiful-looking bag, but just too, too big. I think it would work for someone with a car and one of those monster-truck strollers. On the plus side, it’s definitely roomy enough for two kids! I bought it online and didn’t quite realise its size.

    But I did get use out of the matching inserts (insulated bottle bag/satchel) and the change mat. These days it’s my work bag (can’t bear it to go unused) but it’s a bit of a pain, to be honest.

    Their nappy wallet, on the other hand, was a great buy and has had 5+ years’ use with barely a break (and only one recent stitch-up needed on the handle). Compact, just good for what you actually need in the change room (or for an early trained child – it now carries spare underpants and a change of clothes).

    By the way, I presume you can still see me in whatever reader you’re using because you commented on my Bangalore/Malpe Beach post, but I’m not showing up in the wordpress reader at the moment (I made a mistake there by changing my URL and found a bug in the system). Apparently if you unfollow then re-follow me this fixes up.

    • I liked the Eddie Bauer ones as well. I did have one bag that my husband would absolutly refuse to even hold, so that one didn’t last long. However, if he goes out by himself with the kids, even if it’s just two hours, it’s the backpack because that’s more “manly” 🙂

  2. I also had big collections of bag but until my high school time haha. I had usually used one bag for all my travel. Reading your content makes me to re think that choose bag according to your travel plan. Nice content, Thanks for sharing.

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