May 27, 2005

Trash: Munchkin Disposable Placemats & Bibs

When we ran out of Pampers Bibsters and Table Toppers recently [First off, what is up with that? Those Bibsters are hard to find. I guess I never considered our urban grocery/deli/drugstore chain to be off the grid. All you SUV-driving, "turn left for Target, turn right for Wal-mart Supercenter" people are probably chuckling your immobile butts off right now, daubing the tears of laughter from your eyes with a Bibster, which you use instead of Kleenexes because it's easier, there's just always a giant box of them within reach.], my wife picked up what was available, Munchkin Travelware Disposable Bibs and Placemats. I kinda want to go back to the Pampers.

munchkin_placemats.jpgThe Munchkin bibs have a pocket you fold inside out, which is nice. But even though they're smaller on, they're thicker, so they take up the same space when folded. Also, they have a tape, not Velcro, fastener, which is fine if you have a bald-headed baby, but I've gotten it stuck on the kid's hair every time I've used one.

And finally, my biggest issue with the Munchkins is that tape--or is it with the fabric, which tears long before the tape comes loose. I'm fine tearing the bibs off (they're disposable, after all), but the placemat adhesive is so strong compared to the mat itself, I've had to pick little pieces of tape off the table, which is a huge pain. Because it's not like that rubber cement-y goo that holds perfume cards in magazines, which rolls off in one big booger-like mess. You have to pinch it off, one fingertipful at a time.

[If you're wondering why I didn't just leave the strip of glue for some table jockey to clean up later, I'll let you know we were at Chick-fil-A, which is so full of Christian goodness and charity--the kid started singing along with the evangelical pop music piped into the bathroom--that it made me want to be a better person. Besides, if I left it, I knew the sweet, little old lady diligently tending to the tables and chairs would have to pick it off, and that didn't seem right. It's enough for me to know Munchkin's materials engineers will have to answer for their professional sins at the Last Days.]

Munchkin Travelware Disposable Placemats are $6.25 for 20, but keep your money []
Pampers Bibsters are available in Large (32 for $6.99) or Small (20 for $3.99) from Amazon []
Previously: Celebrity Baby Uses Disposable Bibs

[update: the wife just came home from her first Munchkin Lunch. The crime: tape in hair, shallow/useless pocket. The verdict: "I hate them!"]


Uh, yeah, we just use those quaint reusable washable bibs...because nothing short of shrinkwrapping her would keep her food-free. It all ends up smeared on her head anyway, so why even use a bib?

If we choose well, the restaurant is busy and she's entertained by watching the staff and other patrons, which allows us to eat in peace. As for table toppers, we usually bring along a travel pak of wipes to take care of the table.

Oh no, are we missing out on an opportunity to buy a specialty product?

Now that I know, what would be a better type of bib on the go for the little one?

I don't see the value of the disposable bib. We just use washable Bumkins bibs.

As for disposable table toppers, we tried them, but we like this better: Tiny Diner Portable Placemat

Forget the disposable bibs, the only thing that prevented horrid things from staining every t-shirt was to drag along a second, pre-stained tee and put it on over his clean clothes like a smock. It's like a super-bib.

Although we're nowhere near the solid food consumption point so I have no way of field-testing these for you (I'm now holding strong at 41 weeks pregnant, induction set for Tuesday. Hallelujah, the end is near!) we're thinking of picking up some of those on-the-go bib clips that will make a bib out of any fabric or paper you can clip them to. They used to be available at any one of the 5 Target stores within a 20 minute drive from our house. I didn't see them on the site lately but I'm sure they're still in stock.

Here's a link to them at Modernseed, Kipiis Bib Clips.

Only minus I can see is you don't get the bottom catch-pouch, which I'm sure you can macgyver with some basic origami skills or a safety pin if need be.

Catch pouches are useless, put the bib up on the table, set the dish on it's edge.. bam, bobs your uncle, no prob.

We've also used napkins (paper and cloth), tea towels and handkerchiefs (well, head kerchiefs) in a pinch. We bought one of those sleeved, velcro at the back all in one bibs... that works ok..

The way I look at it virtually anything can be knotted, tucked or looped to make a bib, the kid won't know the difference until way after bib wearing and by then, who cares.

Plus, and this is key, dark pants.

We use extra large paper napkins and dental bib clips for bibs. They are quite effective for kids and adults.

We have decided paper bibs are the only way to go. No messy bibs hanging around and clothing is protected very well. We also have the older kids wear 2 paper napkins at meal times. One on the lap and one tucked in around the neck.

I think disposable bibs are a hassle, too. I manufacture a bib that is for an adult but can easily be adapted for a small child. I am looking for a few "fed up with disposable bibs" persons to really "test out" the bib I market. They are called "BibAlls" and can be viewed at They are made from soft loop terry fabric with a polyurethane coated back and velcro closure. An additional piece of velcro would have to be added to have the neck fit a small child. They are machine wash and dry and are 17" X 33". Please contact me at the email address provided if you are interested in testing out what I feel is a great product for adults or children.

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