When fashion meets function…
Love it or hate it, figuring out how to carry around your children’s “stuff” is an inevitable part of becoming a parent. From diapers, to crayons, to snacks, to sippy cups, you’ll face a growing number of necessities that you won’t be able to leave the house without. Though there are a million diaper bag options on the market, the selection can leave us underwhelmed and unenthused. Sure, the sturdy staples get the job done, but sometimes you just don’t want to feel so “mumsy”. We’ve lined up a few fresh alternatives to the traditional diaper bag that will help stash away all the crap whilst leaving you looking stylish. Just to be safe, we’ve also thrown in some good ol’ fashion nappy bags that you wouldn’t believe are for toting diapers. Whether you’re after easy little backpacks or lightweight totes, these trusted bags are here to carry you through the day…
First things first, you’ll need to be organised to pull off skipping the usual diaper bag without loosing your mind. Pouches are a great option for storing diapers and other necessities or you can purchase an insert that makes any bag a diaper bag. Etsy has quite a few options that ship to Hong Kong and you can even have something custom made.
Alternatively, the US based brand ToteSavvy has great ready-made option but it is on the expensive side once you factor in shipping. Then again, can a parent put a price on the convenience of being able to pop pouches into virtually any medium-to-large bag?
ToteSavvy, prices range from $328.72 to 563.52 (USD $$42-$72) plus $273.93 (USD $35) shipping to Hong Kong
Etsy, various vendors and options. Shipping costs to Hong Kong vary
Now that you are confident that your non-traditional route won’t leave you disorganised, the fun of choosing a bag can start! Sassy Mama fave, State of Escape has a few versatile tote options that work as diaper bags. Our go-to is the “Escape Bag,” a horizontal carryall that is made out of perforated neoprene (which means it dries quickly after the inevitable sippy cup leak) with sailing rope handles that equally chic and sturdy. This bag is also great as a travel bag, for the gym, and even to hold your shopping.
Top Tip: If you are hesitant to purchase a separate organiser, don’t worry. The bag’s surprisingly sturdy dust bag is a great spot for diapers, wipes, a change of clothes or other necessities.
The Longchamp Le Pliage tote bag has been in our closet since college and we still haven’t run out of reasons to buy a new one every few years. The versatility and simplicity of this bag makes it a welcome relief next to the aggressive use of flowers, patterns and compartments on most diaper bags.
Top Tip: This lightweight diaper bag is also super compact. Keep one folded up in any of your on-the-go bags as an extra carrier to help cut down on plastic bag use.
Longchamp Le Pliage Tote, available from Longchamp boutiques (various locations around Hong Kong)
Planning on baby-wearing? With Hong Kong’s narrow sidewalks and unwavering stairs you’ll want to seriously consider avoiding a pram for most outings, so a backpack as a diaper bag will undoubtably make your life easier. We’ve spent countless outings trying to keep a bag on our shoulder over the carrier straps and we can’t quite remember why we were so reluctant to switch to a backpack! We love Tumi’s many options but the Voyageur series is our current favourite.
Tumi backpacks, prices vary, available from Tumi stores in Hong Kong, various locations
The brand STATE gets a lot of press in the United States because for every bag purchased, they donate a backpack filled with school supplies to an American child in need. We love their generosity almost as much as we love their thought-out design that keeps even the messiest mama (guilty) organised with 3 zip pouches, interior wrapped pockets and a washable changing pad. You can also use it as a gym bag or carry on when the kids aren’t in tow – you’d never know it was a diaper bag from afar! This bag also comes in papa friendly colours – the olive colour just sold out but keep an eye out for a restock.
Since living in Hong Kong usually means lots of travel – even with the little ones on board – we like having a few bag size options so that we are covered around town and on longer haul trips. The Marc Jacobs Biker Baby Bag is pretty straightforward with outside compartments, a small inner slot pocket and a changing pad. It comes in a several colours and the black one is a great option if Dad is a bit reluctant to carry a bright diaper bag.
Top Tip: This bag can fit a lot and get heavy fast – try not to fall into the “just in case” packing method (we made that mistake – two long haul flights in a row!). Just like you won’t wear that shirt you haven’t touched in a year but feel compelled to pack for holiday, if your kiddo hasn’t touched that stuffed animal or book in a month she probably won’t suddenly be into it during your trip!
Marc Jacobs Biker Baby Bag, $2,310.23 (USD $295), available from ShopBop with free shipping to Hong Kong