Melbourne Baby Expos

So on Sunday my husband and I attempted the near-impossible – two Melbourne baby expos at opposite ends of the city in one day!

I am very happy to say we smashed it, even at 36 weeks pregnant I managed a gruelling 8 hours of new products, pushy sales people and big crowds, would I do it again this weekend? ahhhh, no…

So what did we see, did we learn anything new??

This is the big one, the biggest baby show that appears in capital cities across Australia each year. Packed with all the well known brands and newest products, this expo also draws the crowds – lots of prams and kids was a little overwhelming for us first timers, but also a taste of what’s to come for us as well!

On show were the big retailers (think Babies R Us, Baby Bunting, Target etc.) as well as each of the most popular manufacturers in each of the product categories, Avent, Baby Jogger, Curash, Medela etc. showcasing their wares. As you can imagine, each brand had their best sales people on board to sell sell sell!

The products and services on offer were what you would expect to find in any large baby shop, anywhere in the country. Rather than an opportunity to find out about new products, we found the show to be more like a one stop shop for everything baby.

The expo is most definitely aimed at new parents, rather than those with children already, I would even say the show is best if you are relatively early in your first pregnancy, as we found that most items on show we had already bought or at least researched by 36 weeks – nursery furniture, prams, car seats, feeding apparatus etc.

The main reason we went along was the collection of cloth nappy exhibitors. This is one of the only opportunities you will have to view products from a range of MCN suppliers in one place as these products are not generally available in mainstream baby stores, only over the internet. Being ever organised, I basically have my cloth stash complete for the newborn stage, so didn’t find much to buy (I did get the tiniest swim nappy I have ever seen – adorable!). I was also somewhat disappointed by the lack of show specials and discounts on offer from these retailers.

If you are still weighing up the pros and cons of going cloth then the wealth of knowledge at the show is unbeatable, the stallholders were all more than happy to talk about their products and explain the cloth nappy benefits.

Tip – I found better pricing through the individual retailers throughout the year than what was available at the expo, just make sure you are part of Facebook groups and mailing lists to find the best deals.

We bought:

SRC Recovery Shorts – to address my diastasis recti post birth 😦

Chekoh Bamboo Baby Wrap

Imse Vimse Swim Nappy (NB size)

Bubblebubs Botty Balm (cloth safe nappy balm)

Idol Eyes Baby Sunglasses

Breastfeeding Association Membership

I was a big fan of the One Fine Day Wedding Expo that I attended last year in the lead up to our wedding. The selection of exhibitors was fantastic, much more in keeping with the feel of our wedding than the more mainstream wedding expos. The new One Fine Baby show was in the same vein, showcasing smaller artisan suppliers and boutique baby products.

We found the clientele at this show to be very different from the PBC expo, lots more first time parents and expecting couples, who like us, are a bit exhausted by the run of the mill products we see in the big baby stores.

The One Fine Baby show was chockers with gorgeous designer baby clothes, decor items and nursery furniture, lots of which is designed and made here in Australia. As you can imagine, the prices were higher for these unique products, however, I think you get what you pay for in this instance. Yes, $130 is a lot for a wool cot blanket, but when its made from Australian Merino wool, designed and knitted by a local couple in their Brunswick factory, then you can understand why.

Unlike the PBC expo, there was less pressure to buy at the expo, rather, stalls had a selection of products on display and a week long promotion on their websites to coincide with the show, encouraging you to get online and view their whole collection and place orders at your leisure.

We bought:

Actually nothing! But we got lots of great ideas, brochures and contact details for products that would make lovely gifts, plus things we will look into once we have had baby dash and know their gender.

If we hadn’t spent so much at the first expo I’m sure I could have talked my husband into a cute nursery print or cushion at the very least!!

Overall I think we enjoyed the One Fine Baby experience more than the Pregnancy, Baby and Children’s expo. as this was a smaller show, full of different products and suppliers that suited the stage we are at as first time parents. However, we certainly found plenty to buy at the PBC expo! We exhibitor list and discount coupons available on their website prior to the show really helped us plan our day (and spending) before we arrived.

Last word:

Do not, I repeat do NOT pay for tickets to these expos! Both the PBC expo and One Fine Baby had free ticket deals available through their websites and mailing lists prior to the event. We had free tickets to both, worth over $60 on the day.

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