Scout Journey Pack by Petunia Pickle Bottom

Men have babies, too. I know; I’ve seen it happen firsthand. This seemingly obvious fact has apparently eluded baby product manufacturers for decades as they mass-produced thousands of tons of pastel and pink accessories for us parents to carry. And then Petunia Pickle Bottom, the most unlikely name in men’s baby gear, took pity on our husbands and created them a delectable line of diaper bags that even us ladies will surely covet, which I have seen firsthand as well – every single time we use it. 

Scout 2 The mark of a fine men’s diaper bag is that it should look like a bag. Just a bag, hold the diaper.  Better yet, it should look like the last thing that bag is carrying is diapers. Your man should be able to go out with baby-less buddies and have them ogle the diaper bag unbeknownst to what’s inside. And, Petunia Pickle Bottom absolutely hit that mark with their new Scout line of diaper bags. 

The first thing I noticed about the Scout was that the design is more rigid and squared off than I am used to with other traditional shapeless diaper bags.  The gorgeously heathered industrial strength felt keeps its sleek (14 x 16 x 5.5) shape even when completely empty, which means that when open, the entire contents of the bag are visible. Seeing the entire contents of a diaper bag at a glance is an absolute necessity for me. As busy parents, I have found that it is far too easy to use the last diaper or forget to replace the baby’s medicine when there are two people involved in the daily care of small children. Being able to take inventory at a glance has literally saved what precious sanity I have left, and made organized parenting not only possible, but the absolute rule in our family.

So why on earth do I sound so suspiciously sentimental about a bag? And not even a bag I’m allowed to carry? Because it is indeed a harmonious world when hubby knows the joys of Petunia Pickle Bottom firsthand and understands the love that can exist between parent and diaper bag. It’s a kind of love that causes you to shout “I’ll get the bag and meet you in the car” and oddball things like “I’ll change her diaper” just so you can experience the luxury of the bag again. Just like your baby’s smile will never become bland, you will never get tired of a good quality bag. And, the Scout line is one of the highest quality bags I have seen in a long, long time. Masculine and rugged, the Journey Pack is a cross between army surplus and sleek sophistication without going too far in either direction. 

And, to think I haven’t even told you about the inside yet. As good looking as it is on the outside, it is just as functional, if not more so, on the inside with dividers and pockets for all baby and kiddo gear, big or small. Picture pockets literally touching other pockets which have even smaller pockets inside of them. It’s like an organizer’s dream and a parent’s best friend all rolled into one. 

Silly hubby was at first unconvinced about the sheer amount of pockets and even more skeptical about the amount of room they required in the main interior compartment. In his defense, the bag is literally all pockets, but is that really a defense? I honestly didn’t think anyone would ever utter the words “I was concerned about the large number of pockets” but I was wrong. After even the first use, my naysayer hubby was a firm believer in the magic of a completely divided diaper bag. Realizing quickly that kids’ stuff is small and that in the wrong diaper bag everything sort of intertwines itself with the entire contents, divided compartments make it possible to not unpack the entire bag every time you need baby’s itty bitty items.

Imagine with me for a minute; you take the Scout Journey Pack out of its soft cotton storage bag and you open the embossed brass clip and squared ring closure and flip the top open. Front and center on the underside of the flap is a fully washable and water resistant nylon changing pad rolled up and secured with a contrasting heathered felt flap with a rugged-looking scout logo to match the exterior.

Now for the main body of the bag – a section for diapers, a designated pocket for the beautiful antiqued brass embossed wipes case (seriously, it comes standard), a large compartment for food, toys, and other necessities that snaps closed with a magnetic closure, a bottle or pacifier pocket, and still ample room to stuff a blanket, spare clothing and even a small sling in between the pockets. 

And that’s just the main part of the bag. The front of the bag but still under the main opening flap also has yet another pocket, but this one is unique in the fact that the pocket also has a nylon lined interior pocket {say it with me: pockets in pockets in pockets}, which is perfect for tiny necessities for grabbing on the go and both pocket and the pocket’s pocket are secured with another magnetic closure. Even with the bag latched closed, you can still reach your hand into the front pocket, so it is absolutely perfect for storing a cell phone or other necessities you might need at a moment’s notice.  I can hear you now “enough about the pockets” – let me know where I can get this bag. I will, as soon as I tell you about the side bottle pockets, which are on both exterior sides of the bag – one for you, one for baby – and can be fully removed so that, in the spirit of refunctioning, you can sport the Journey Pack long after your little ones give up their bottles or sippy cups. 

Also cool, and something I hadn’t thought of until I read the instructions, is that the bottle pockets can be snapped into the inside of the bag as well, if you really want the diaper bag to be incognito that day. And, real quick before I completely lose you – there’s one more pocket on the back of the bag, but personally I think this pocket is more for you.  I’m picturing a magazine, maybe a novel, or even some work if you’re a glutton for punishment.       

Petunia Pickle 1 I promise I’m done with the pockets now and can move onto the other unique features that will have you ready to buy in no time. The first is the custom Scout valet clips that secure through the upper exterior sides of the bag and allow easy attaching to strollers, shopping carts and more by combining industrial-looking Velcro loops with durable brass hardware. Having never used valet clips before, I really didn’t know what I was missing, but now I am a firm believer that all bags should be valeted for easy attaching and reattaching and even easier access while on the go. As a side note, the Scout valet clips come with their own soft cotton bag for storing when not in use, but we use ours so much that we keep them permanently secured to the bag even when hubby is wearing it and that leaves the cotton pouch for holding extra small goodies we then stuff it in the plethora of pockets on the inside.

A fully compartmentalized bag might be unusual to some, but to me that sounds like a design flaw as far as other diaper bags are concerned and something PPB is on the cutting edge of yet again.  But, if anyone out there is still distressed about the pockets, the interior pockets are all made of a much more flexible and easy to wipe down nylon material that can be pushed aside if you find your pocket fears are justified.  And then you should get yourself a good therapist.  

As a whole, men don’t collect bags the way women do. Most ladies have at least a few purses and bags they rotate through, but men usually just have one, so they have to choose it carefully. Consider it chosen.

Petunia's website only lists the Rubicon Rucksack (the slightly different and more expensive leather version) is listed online. For now, you should start your search at your nearest upscale baby boutique that sells Petunia Pickle Bottom. If they don't have it in, you should insist they special order it. You should also consider signing up for the Petunia Pickle Bottom newsletter so you can hear about sales and events first.

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