Good morning fellow mamas (and dadas!)
This year, we’ve really been focussing on Lily eating by herself with her own fork and spoon. I think she was approaching her first birthday when we moved on to metal toddler cutlery and we’ve always followed a mixture of baby-led weaning together with traditional purees and mashes when she was younger. She basically eats whatever we eat (most of the time) and either has a good old go with her utensils or uses her hands for finger food like sandwiches, fruit etc.
We all know that weaning is messy but in all of this time I’ve never had a splash mat to spare the carpets. It’s always been on my list of things to buy but I wanted something of good quality that I could try and keep for baby #2 to use, whenever that may be (fingers crossed!), and I wasn’t entirely convinced by the ones I saw in the shops. Too flimsy in my opinion and definitely not made to last!
I was recently asked to review an oil cloth splash mat from Messy Me and from browsing their website, I could see that this was more along the lines of what I’d been looking for.
Oil cloth is typically the sort of wipe-clean material you see table cloths made from and the 90 x 120cm hemmed mat I received doubles as both an on-the-floor splash mat and a table cover for messy mealtimes or crafts.
I’ve also used it for sensory play, as a picnic blanket and as a playmat for the garden.
The mat is priced at £24 with free UK delivery which I think is very reasonable for such a well-made, versatile product considering the plastic, see-through splash mats some of my friends have bought from the supermarkets or high-street baby shops have cost somewhere between £7 and £10 and gone to their graves in just a week or two!
There’s no question that the Messy Me splash mat is designed as a keeper instead of a replaceable, throwaway product and that’s exactly what I was looking for. I’m all about value for money and I’d definitely rather get it right the first time than be wasteful.
I chose the ‘vintage floral’ design which is very pretty and suits the decor of our living space. There are three other prints available which are all coloured (classic navy, dusty rose or teal blue) with small white stars.
The mat folds up to make it more compact and I usually pop it under the pram if I know we’ll be eating lunch at somebody else’s house or if it’s a sunny day and we’re heading out to the park for a picnic. You could also slide it in to your changing bag if needed.
When it comes to cleaning the Messy Me splash mat that’s really simple as well. I usually pick up any bits of food and wipe it down with a wet wipe but if it’s heavily littered, I fold the edges up and take it to the bin to shake everything off before either wiping it as usual or hanging it up on the washing line and giving it a quick once over with a sponge and some washing-up liquid.
If you forget to clean it up straight away because of perfectly acceptable mummy reasons then any tough soiling can usually be removed by the occasional spin in the washing machine at 30° or you could also try some of these weird and wonderful stain-removal ideas as rounded up over on the Messy Me blog for you.
What I also like about Messy Me as a brand overall is that they’re this lovely family-run business based in Farnham which was one of my haunts when we lived down in Surrey. All of the products from Messy Me are made in the UK with oil cloth sourced from Denmark and there’s a whole range of matching products to choose from including high-chair covers, aprons and bibs.
So, the Messy Me splash mat is being used for ALL sorts of things in our house and whilst I’m not one for getting fidgety about mess (some would say I practically embrace it, more mess = more creativity right?) I am breathing a huge sigh of relief knowing that the floors in our rented bungalow are protected.
I’m happy that I’ve finally found the hard-wearing, multi-use splash mat I was looking for and, for a baby of weaning age through the toddler years and beyond, I’d easily call it an essential for daily life with young kids.
Has your little one started eatings solids yet?
What do you think of the Messy Me splash mat?