A Great Diaper Bag Doesn’t Look Like One

by stacie on September 7, 2020

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Handbags and I have always had a love affair. Whenever I travel, I always buy a new bag. Typically it tends to be something reflective of where I’m at.

A visit to a coastal town? A kitchy, handmade bag that can also be used at the farmers market. A trip to the city? Something big and bold.

But once I had a baby, I had to find a way to marry my love of beautiful bags with the practicality of a diaper bag. I will say, this was much easier to do this time around than a decade ago when we had our first child. At any rate, I did find that some of the same diaper bag cliches still existed - some had cartoon characters on them, some were totally utilitarian, and some just looked like diaper bags.

Needless to say, none of these fit my personality. And frankly, if I’m going to be carrying a bag for the next several years, I want it to at least fit my personality. So I started looking and I was psyched with what I found. Here’s a few that caught my attention, didn’t bust my budget, and as a bonus, could be used as a handbag well after I was done carrying diapers.

timi & leslie: Pictured up top, the timi & leslie line is stunning. Soft buttery leather, slouchy styling, these bags look like a handbag but come equipped with deep pockets, changing pads, and in many cases detachable shoulder straps. Widely available at Amazon; Bed, Bath and Beyond; and Zappos.

Kalencom: Pictured above, this is a slightly smaller bag, perfect when you’re dealing with a toddler who doesn’t need as much gear. Or, you’re making a quick trip out and about. It’s fair to warn you that this bag does not have a lot of pockets, so I didn’t even try this bag until my own child reached about 15 months. But I have to be honest: I’m quite smitten with the Kalencom diaper bag now — especially the outer shell because it cleans up so easily.

OiOi: Pictured above, the OiOi Jungle Leather Slouch Tote is as stunning as it is functional. And it screams “professional mom” instead of “covered in spit-up mom.” The entire OiOi line is great, don’t get me wrong - this just happens to be my favorite at the moment. Roomy, lots of pockets, and all the standard equipment you’ll need come with each of the OiOi bags — including detachable stroller straps.

JJ Cole: Full disclosure: I own two JJ Cole bags so I’m a little bit partial to this brand. I started with the Mod Tote Bag (pictured above) which I find perfect for overnight trips to see the grandparents) and transitioned to the Technique Bag which is my go-to for any trip that will take longer than a hot second (basically any day trips). I also love this one so much that I’ll keep it after and use it as a handbag — seriously. Both bags have lots of pockets both inside and out, detachable shoulder straps, and the Technique Bag includes a smaller bag tethered to the interior that I use to hold keys, cash, and my cell.

DadGear: You didn’t think I’d leave out dads, did you? There was no way my hubs was going to carry a “flowered purse” when he went out with the baby. And being that he’s so manly and all (ha!) I hooked him right up with a bag from this company (shown above). It was a huge hit and he doesn’t mind lugging the diapers now! He loves the styling, the room, and of course, the fact that it doesn’t look like a diaper bag.

All photos courtesy of the respective manufacturers.


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  • Ruby T.

    Want, want, want and WANT! Love them all! I am so bad for carrying a diaper bag and a purse, I would constantly leave my purse behind in a store or coffee shop, etc. ALL the time! It was crazy. I should have known better and grabbed one of these lovely bags to keep everything together in one.

    LOVE the daddy diaper bag, too!

  • henny ort

    I wonder if I find the perfect bag, will that take away my cravings for each one of the pictured ones? Like, can I go with just one that I adore? I hate thinking of having to transfer items from one bag to the other. Yet, I want one for evenings, one for grandparents, one for a stroll in the stroller, and one for work conferences. .

  • http://www.livingthescream.com Carly

    I LOVE OiOi Bags! I have yet to purchase them but I love to go to the website and dream. I love the other bags you mentioned too. Its fun to have diaper bag that can be glamorous as well!

  • http://glamstylesave.com Lori

    I LOVE the OiOi bag. Although I got a couple more utilitarian diaper bags for my shower, I wouldn’t mind something more fashionable!

  • Pingback: JJ Cole Collections on Sale | Smart Mom Deals

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