If there was ever a product that made you say that this is genius, why the earth did no one think of this before, then this is it. The Becky Mantin Nappy Grab bags are just amazing. A ‘small bundle of joy’, we would never thought we would say that about a nappy. This nappy grab bag is a nappy in a bag but thats not it, its packed full of all the things you need for a nappy change. The bag itself can be used as a disposable changing mat, you have a nappy, wipes and even nappy rash cream. Everything you need for a nappy change. And its so compact you can even fit it in your coat pocket. Perfect for those mums and dads on the go. In a rush, have a minute to get out of the house, which us in the weekday most of the time, then the Becky Mantin Nappy Grab bag is a life saver.
Super excited to introduce to you the founder of the Nappy Grab bag, Becky Mantin.
RM: Tell us how the idea nappy grab bag came about?
BM: Like most parents, I used to take too much stuff with me when I left the house with a baby. All the ‘what if’ stuff that you then have to hike around with you in a bag – normally with a baby strapped to you too!
I still used to get caught out though of course and that’s exactly what happened when my second son was a few days old and my husband took our 19month old to a soft play centre nearby and found that the nappy bag I’d insisted on him taking, had no wipes inside. Let’s just say it was a moment where wipes were very much needed!
When they returned home and my husband recounted the tale, it suddenly struck me how crazy it was that it wasn’t possible to buy an all-in-one, single use change pack! In that moment, the Nappy Grab Bag was invented!
RM: Can you tell us about the products you can find in the nappy grab bag?
BM: When I was first researching how to create the Nappy Grab Bag, I was determined to stick to certain principles; it had to be genuinely useful and not just another baby gimmick, environmentally responsible and contain items of exceptional quality.
With a son who has suffered terribly with severe eczema – and with one in five children in the UK also affected by the condition – it was very important to me that my Nappy Grab Bag could be used on newborns and delicate skin.
I approached the companies that made the products I use on my own children; Weleda, Naty and Jackson Reece and happily they loved the idea.
Having spent fifteen years in weather presenting, the environmental impact of any invention was at the forefront of my mind and so each element of the product has passed the ‘conscience test’ – the paper and card on the packaging is sustainably sourced, the plastic mat/dirties bag is biodegradable, the printing ink is vegetable based, all the elements are made in the EU (in fact, all but the nappies are made in the UK) and they are all hand packed in our factory in Hertfordshire to keep the carbon footprint down.
RM: How do you manage business life and family?
BM: It’s a juggling act and I think you learn to be incredibly efficient with your time – even more so since baby Elizabeth arrived in October (I’m writing this as fast as I can with her asleep on my lap and the boys at a birthday party- it’s a small window of opportunity!).
Before I started my maternity leave, I used to cram as much work as possible into the days that I was at ITV. I have a longish commute on the train now that we have moved out to rural Essex and I start work the moment I get on the train. I try really hard to ringfence my time with the children as I learnt early on that trying to work and be with them left everyone feeling frustrated and very little actually achieved. It’s a little harder since being on maternity leave as I don’t get a clear block of time to zoom through things but I work with an amazing team who are incredibly supportive and if they are frustrated with me being late with work or sending emails after midnight, they very kindly don’t show it!
Crucially, Jack and I work very well as a team and both get stuck in with housework, cooking etc in equal measures – we’re real 50/50 parents and his utter competence as a father and husband is one of the things I love and respect most about him.
RM: How are you finding life as a mother of 3 and the owner of a business. Tell us a bit about a day in the Mantin household?
BM: My husband Jack owns a rugby coaching company and is also defence coach at Cambridge RFC so he works funny hours; late morning starts, late finishes and seven days a week during the rugby season.
Often he’s able to get the boys (Rory, 5 and Tom, 3) up, dressed, breakfasted and off to school or nursery whilst I deal with Libby. As he’s gone until late at night and works every weekend, I do the evening bath and bed – I’m not sure who got the better deal there?! Hmmm!
We bought a ‘project house’ (600 year old thatched cottage) a year ago so there’s always something to do that Tom can help with like gardening or painting some fencing – he’s only at nursery twice a week so we do try and make the most of those mornings he’s at home and having some time focusing on him.
I try and work most evenings when the children are in bed – but Jack and I do try and have Tuesday mornings together as a couple just with Libby and most Friday nights too where we light the fire and watch ‘Trollied’ on Sky. It’s a busy life but a very lucky one as we are both doing something that, by and large, we love.
RM: Any advice you can give to mums who might want to start up a business?
BM: Do it! But do think very, very carefully about the idea, how you would do it, how much it might cost etc etc before you commit to anything. I spent six months obsessing over the idea for the NGB and talking to trusted friends and family before I even picked up the phone to start investigating how I might go about it. There are moments where you feel overwhelmed of course but one of the best things about starting your own business is that you start to see exciting opportunities wherever you look – and you gain the confidence to feel undaunted by challenge. Always make sure you prioritise your family though – remember, however much you love your business, you can’t get the time with your children back again.
RM: Where can we buy the nappy grab bag?
BM: Ocado, Amazon, Wholefoods, Kiddicare, Booths, Ethical Superstore, Natural Collection, Tree of Life, selected Little Waitrose and soon via our website!
RM: Will you be Introducing any more exciting products to your line?
BM: Oh yes! I have five more (currently top secret) products lined up ready to go through the development process and hope to bring the next one out in Spring 2016. I can’t wait! x
Oh yes us Royal Mums can’t wait to find out what those products are. For more information about the inspiring Becky Mantin and the Nappy Grab bag. Please click here…