When I was pregnant, shopping for a changing bag was one of the hardest tasks. Like many fellow handbag lovers out there, finding a changing bag that doesn’t scream “THIS BAG CONTAINS NAPPIES AND OTHER BABY STUFF” is hard to find – they’re not always stylish.
Granted – a lot of changing bags are very handy – including changing mats, insulated pockets for bottles etc etc – and a lot of them probably do stay in the car, on the pram, indoors etc until needed.
I wanted a changing bag that fitted in with my own lifestyle and style for handbags, especially if I was going to be carrying it out and about everyday.
Then, one day, during one of my frequent window-shopping-browses on Instagram (searching with hashtags of course), I discovered the perfect solution for carrying around my baby essentials…
I came across the ToteSavvy from Life in a Play (lifeinplaycompany.com). The ToteSavvy is simply an organised fully functional insert with useful pockets – as well as including a washable changing mat, insulated pocket and a key clasp.
If you like the look of the ToteSavvy for you or a friend, scroll to the bottom for your special 20% discount code!
Once you have filled the pockets with all of your baby changing bag essentials, it folds like a book and then slots in to an existing handbag that you already own!
Yes, this does mean you can slot the insert in to any bag of choice. You also don’t have to stick to just one bag, you can swap around whenever you need to – for day-to-day, for play, for the beach etc.
Like I have done with my beloved Longchamp Pliage Neo bag in black, see below, this bag has been my carry-on for plane journeys and my overnight bag for a long time – and now I can put it to good use as a (stylish) changing bag.
The ToteSavvy original slots in to the bag with no fuss and as you can see, all items are easily accessible.
It’s a great way to keep your changing bag neat and organised too. There are 11 pockets to make use of.
If you are looking to buy a bag, then I do recommend the Longchamp Le Pliage Tote in size large (there are so many colours to choose from too!). The ToteSavvy original is 14″ x 10″ in size and fits perfectly.
I love the key clasp – I’m historically hopeless at finding my keys in my handbag, so this makes life easy!
I want to show you how much I manage to pack in to my ToteSavvy original. Everyone is different with how they pack their changing bag, or what they take out with them. Below are my current contents…
- Change of clothes – I always make sure I have a vest/babygrow (leaks DO happen!) and also Henry’s sunhat now that the warmer weather has arrived.
- Medical essentials – Sun cream is a must at the moment, I use Childs Farm’s sun care range on Henry which is ideal for his dry/prone-to-eczema skin type. I also have a tube of Ambesol teething gel (oh yes we have started the dreaded teething!) and also a small pot of nappy cream.
- A spare bib for when feeding out and about. I have started using dribble bibs, and love these cute ones from M&S.
- A book. Henry loves books already and one of the pockets in the Tote Savvy fits a slim A4 size book for when he needs a bit of entertaining round a friend’s house! And who doesn’t love The Tiger Who Came for Tea by Judith Kerr!
- A carton of ready made formula milk. I’m not one for championing “breast is best” or making anyone feel bad for how they choose to feed their child. (I’ve combination fed both breast and formula milk from the beginning following my baby’s stint in special care and with me not producing enough milk to exclusively feed – but that’s a story for another day.) HOWEVER, if you are using formula (exclusively or a combination!) then a carton of ready made formula is sooooooo handy. Not only does it save the hassle of carrying powder and hot water, but these cartons can be served at room temperature – perfect for on the go. I have been using Aptamil First Milk.
- Teether – A necessity for my teething boy. And you can’t go wrong with a Sophie la Girafe.
- A sterilised bottle. If I know I’m only going to be out for a couple of hours, I’ll make up a bottle (formula or expressed milk!) before I leave the house and keep it in the insulated pocket until Henry is hungry – and it’s ready to serve immediately. Or I’ll use the ready made formula carton in to a clean bottle. I have been using MAM bottles since the beginning – not only are they anti-colic but they are self sterilising in a microwave – meaning I can clean it, sterilise it and reuse it if I am able to access a microwave when I’m out (i.e. when visiting a friend or relative).
- Extra large muslin – JoJo Maman Bebe sell AMAZING large muslins that come in a drawstring cotton bag. This multi-tasking item can be used to wipe up spills and mop up burps as well as a breastfeeding cover and a (swaddling) blanket.
- A soother/dummy – kept in a portable holder, such as the Milton Mini Portable Soother Steriliser which keeps soothers sterile for up to 24 hours.
- WIPES! I say this in capitals as I get through soooooo many nowadays. A pack of wipes for all things baby, and a handy pack of wet wipes for me.
- Nappies – stating the obvious, but never leave the house without a nappy or two!
- Mummy’s essentials. It’s not ALL about the baby, right?? I carry round with me a small bottle of perfume, a mini deodorant and a tube of nipple cream (how glamorous!!!).
- Finally – our every day absolutes – my purse, my diary (without it I’d lose my head) and my phone.
But my love for ToteSavvy doesn’t end here. There is also a mini version, which is perfect for popping in to your every day handbag, especially if you are not out for long and don’t need to take everything with you.
The ToteSavvy Mini still fits the mandatories – i.e. purse, phone, nappies, wipes, a small teether or toy and a muslin. It still comes with a changing mat, a key clasp and an insulated pocket for that ready made bottle.
It fits perfectly in to my beloved Mulberry Cara bag…
There’s even space left for my water bottle…
Now I can be a hands free mama – leaving my hands available to push the pram or carry my boy… (and no, my husband didn’t spot the twisted strap when taking the photo!).
It’s a personal choice – I’d much rather utilise the beautiful bags I’m so lucky to have in my wardrobe. I love my Mulberry Cara bag and I’m so happy I can utilise it every day for my and my baby’s essentials when we go out. It’d be a shame not to use it! And I don’t want to take two bags out with me.
The brand’s motto is “make any bag a diaper bag” – which is so true! The ToteSavvy comes in a few colours to choose from too, I opted for black.
SPECIAL 20% DISCOUNT CODE: To enjoy 20% off ToteSavvy orders click here to order and use the promotional code FLAMINGOMONROE at the checkout.
Here is the link to see the specifications and more about both the original and mini ToteSavvy inserts:- https://www.lifeinplaycompany.com/pages/totesavvy-size
In summary, for me, it’s saved the expense of buying a dedicated changing bag and it’s also meant I can continue to enjoy my existing handbags – whether that’s dependant on what I’m wearing or where I’m going. I can maintain some level of style.
If you’re stuck for a gift idea I think it also makes a great present for a new mummy or a stylish mum-to-be.
Thanks for reading!
PS. I was not paid to do this post, nor given a “freebie”. I genuinely love the ToteSavvy!