For a spring baby who spent his first six months enjoying glorious warm weather, the chilly autumn temperatures have been a shock for Sonny. So this Spotty Otter down suit is a lifesaver! If you’re as disorganised as I am, putting enough layers on your own body before heading outside in autumn or winter is a challenge. Add a six-month-old baby into the mix, and it becomes a logistical nightmare.
Sonny has loads of warm jackets, jumpers and coats, but the process of layering up a thrashing infant can be long and (literally) painful. If only I had one piece of clothing that was easy to pop him into with just one layer beneath, that would keep him warm on wintery walks in his pram or carrier…
The Spotty Otter Chillibug down suit certainly isn’t cheap at £90, especially when you consider it will only fit your little explorer for one winter, but it’s chunkily padded, surprisingly lightweight, and filled with responsibly-sourced 90/10 duck down that pretty much guarantees warmth even when the temperatures plunge below zero.
I’ve been itching for Sonny to test it out since before he was born and even though the 6-12 month version is still very roomy, he absolutely loves it. I deployed it for the first time this weekend, on a frosty early-morning dog walk. Unlike most baby clothes and their thousands of fiddly popper buttons, the Chillibug zips completely open down the front with double openings, allowing you to plonk your kid straight inside and fasten them up in just a few seconds.
Due to the extra volume it added to Sonny’s already chubby frame (think pale blue Michelin Man), I squeezed him straight into his pram without even having to fasten the straps to secure him inside. Then off we went! Normally I’d have been worried about how he’d react to sub-zero temperatures, but Sonny just giggled and grinned as we plodded through the woods and along the river with our jack russell Mario, then relaxed so much that he nodded off and snored all the way home. Once back at home he thrashed around happily in the autumn leaves while I grabbed some logs for the fire, and showed no signs of overheating with the increase in activity.
Safe to say, this will be getting a lot of use over the winter. It’s probably not worth the investment unless you’re planning to spend a lot of time outside with your kids (sizes go up to 4 years), but if you are it’s a wonderful piece of kit. And the fact it’s machine washable is a major bonus with a down product.
Verdict: hassle-free and toasty warm. A great piece of outdoor gear designed with kids and parents in mind. Big thumbs up!