In my opinion, handbags are a staple wardrobe item and I’ve always saved up for a good quality handbag. I have just the one at the moment, a Mulberry icon that I’ve taken pretty much everywhere with me. Until Emilia came along that is… Just prior to the Mulberry being put away in it’s dust bag, I went on the hunt to find a stylish changing bag. One that fitted in with the pushchair colour, one that fitted in with my fairly minimal style. I felt almost embarrassed that I wanted to have a really stylish changing bag, something in the back of my mind was telling me I should be putting functionality first and foremost and judging by most of the bags I’d come across, style should be at the back of my mind.
So I went with the changing bag to match our pram. As soon as Emilia came along I pretty much hated it. The style was ok but the functionality was baaaad. But I didn’t want to admit it so I persevered. Until around a year later when I bought another one. I thought I’d hit the style and functionality jackpot. Until I came across Storksak, that is…
Although Emilia is two, I still love having a changing bag. I still use most of the bits that come with one as we’re not quite at the potty training stage as yet, also you never know (if Rich get’s his way) there may be another “Little Crisp” to use a bottle bag at some point.
When the lovely people at Storksak got in touch to offer to send one of their luxury leather changing bags, I jumped at the chance, just knowing all my changing bag prayers may well be answered. I wasn’t wrong…
I chose the Storksak Charlotte Leather in Clay and I adore it! The clay tone is exactly what I would choose in a handbag, a beautiful dark grey/putty kind of tone literally goes with everything; the pushchair and my very beige and grey wardrobe. The main thing for me? It actually looks like a handbag, not just a changing bag!
The first thing I noticed upon using it is just how lightweight the bag is, it’s amazing!
The outer is made from premium pebble leather. It’s absolutely lush, so soft, supple and really really smooth. It has two front flap pockets with popper fastenings which are fantastic to hold my things, keys, phone, lip balm etc. (yes, what I actually take out for myself these days can fit in those front pockets!).
The two outer side pockets are fantastic for holding a sippy cup, which is great as they stay upright and for the first time in forever (can you tell Emilia’s a Frozen fan?!) I am taking a bottle of water out with me wherever we go! Win win. I feel so much better for it too.
The stroller straps that are integrated into the detachable larger handle are fantastic for holding the bag in place on the pushchair handles. They stay in place perfectly and the bag doesn’t hang too low, which is a problem I’ve had with others. Has anyone else walked along kicking the changing bag with your knees or even worse, feet? Not with this bag.
It has a really wide double zip opening making locating items a doddle and inside it has six (yes six) internal pockets styled in the most stunning beige/gold wipe clean fabric. It really does give the inner of the bag that luxurious feel too. The far pocket is zipped so that’s the best place for my purse to be stored, yet easy to get to.
There’s a detachable zipped accessories pouch inside. I’ve found this a fantastic little pouch to keep a small pad and crayons in and one of two mini toy cars for Emilia’s entertainment when we’re out.
The Charlotte also comes with a luxury padded changing mat and bottle holder.
The oval padded changing mat is something else, with the thickest padding I’ve seen on a changing mat and it’s so comfortable to the touch that I’d happily take a snooze on it. Being totally honest I didn’t actually want to put her on it when I first got it as I wanted to keep it nice, then I remembered what it’s for and that it’s machine washable (unlike my previous one!). It comes with a handy top grab handle and the two hidden pockets are also genius for storing a nappy and wipes at nappy change time, it makes for a quick and easy nappy change when we’re out as I’m not all fingers and thumbs trying to reach for a nappy and wipes while Emilia tries to climb off the changing table!
The zipped insulted bottle warmer is lovely. Made from the same wipe clean fabric as the changing mat an inner lining of the bag, I never knew a bottle bag could have such a luxury feel to it. I love it. It keeps fluids hot or cool for up to four hours. Now we don’t really take milk out with us anymore, I’ll definitely be using it on hotter days to keep drinks cool. I would have heavily relied upon this in the early days and found it an utter godsend. Again my original bottle bag wasn’t wipe clean, so this is so far more practical as well as stylish. It also has a grab handle which attaches to the pushchair, so you can get to it easily or you could just keep it in the changing bag.
If there’s one thing I’ve realised about motherhood is that it’s so easy to neglect ourselves along that busy road of feeding, sleep deprivation and toddler tantrums. Obviously there are the wonderful highs our babies and toddlers bring us too, but I can’t help feeling that us Mamas or Mamas-to-be really deserve a little luxury. I guess what I’m saying is, if bags are your bag like they are mine, the Charlotte really is the ultimate. It oozes classic timeless style and I would have loved to have had this in the early days also. This bag really will see you through years and years (I can see me continuing to use this as a bag in later years) and if I knew back then what I know now (two changing bags later) I’d definitely have gone for the Storksak.
Storksak Organics Baby Spa
Along with the beautiful Charlotte changing bag, I was very generously gifted the Storksak Organics Baby Spa to try. All the baby essentials you could ever need are housed in this wonderfully designed gift box, the Baby Spa would make the perfect gift for a indulging and pampering a newborn.
Each product is completely natural and certified organic (by ECOCERT), which is all I have ever used on Emilia. They’re also dermatologically approved and the range contains no parabens, SLS, mineral oils, synthetic fragrances or colours. Made in England, the range has a light and naturally derived scent of pear, chamomile and honey is soft and delicate and calming, I really love how subtle they smell. Emilia has tried out each of the products and they get the thumbs up from me too. I’ve used some of the range to help clear up dry patches and my weather beaten hands and I must admit, a couple of the products now find themselves in my bathroom!
With packaging that’s minimal in style, responsibly sourced and recyclable, inside the box you’ll find:
Baby Oil – this feels wonderfully light to use and we’ve found it to be completely effective for Emilia’s dry patches and can be also used under running water for a luxurious bath, which I have done myself. This would make a fantastic baby massage oil as the fragrance is so calming.
Baby Lotion – lightweight in texture, this lotion will offer comfort for even the most sensitive of skins. I particularly like how easily absorbed into the skin this lotion is; I was able to dress Emilia almost immediately after application with no stickiness left over.
Baby Wash and Shampoo – two in one products make life so much easier with a little one, especially a newborn. No one wants to be fumbling around switching bottles and trying to unscrew lids when holding a baby in the bath. We found the wash and shampoo to be easy to use with a flip cap and Emilia’s curls were left soft with a delicate shine.
Hand and Face Wipes – these are my new staple item for Emilia! Wetter than baby wipes, I’ve found these an absolute dream to use on grubby fingers and runny noses. Emilia must like them too, as she no longer runs the other way when I try and blow her nose!
Baby Balm – Emilia had a random nappy rash occurrence recently and this balm has definitely helped calm that delicate area. Thick but not too heavy, it has helped to clear it up in very little time. A little really goes a long way too and can be used on babies for both protection and prevention of nappy rash.
All in all I’m really impressed with the Storksak Organics Baby Spa box. It’s reasonably priced and I would definitely purchase it as a lovely gift for the Mamas-to-be I know. The products are also available to purchase individually when needed for replenishment.
Pushchair by Bugaboo
Emilia’s outfit by JoJo Maman Bebe
Snood by The White Company
Coat by Boden
Leggings by Mint Velvet
Shoes by Jigsaw
This post is written in collaboration with Storksak. All thoughts and opinions are entirely my own.