Preschool Naptime Sleeping bags

Preschool/Kindergarten Naptime Sleeping Bag
Dimensions  140 x 60 cm
Fits all preschool stretchers and mattresses, perfect for nap time.
Super warm and soft for winter and the colder months.
Available in 100% cotton and polycotton prints
Warm and soft quilted padding with a long side zip.
Washing machine on cold wash and tumble dry on low heat. No ironing required.
All bags are made to order, no mass production. Please allow 10 working days for manufacturing Proudly South African product
Please check out the Gillitots Facebook page for fabric options and prices

Toddler Sleeping Bags

I am proud to announce the launch of my toddler sleeping bags over the last three months.

They are from 18 months to 3 years. It has a front zip with a chin and chest protector to avoid any scratching. The length from shoulder to end is 110cm, around the chest is 80cm and by the feet 120cm. So it is nice and roomy for them to turn, roll, sit, stand without becoming tight, tangled and restrictive. The slight A-line shape also allows their legs to move freely which is very important for hip development.

The Winter Bag is made of 100% printed cotton sheeting on the outside, 100gm quick dry padding, which is hand quilted to a 100% cotton knit lining. All this is done to add warmth, softness and comfort. It also then enables you to machine wash on cold and tumble dry on a low heat, which is super helpful for those cold winter temps. I would avoid ironing as this will only crush the soft, bouncy insulation. Available in a variety of soft bedtime colours for boys and girls. Please check out my Facebook page for swatch options.

I have recently started with The Winter Nights Bag which is made of 100% cotton fleece (tracksuit) outer. Its even warmer and softer than the original winter bag. They come in navy, maroon, charcoal and grey melange fleece. The padding is still the same 100gm that is quilted to the 100% cotton knit lining.

I design, source and purchase materials, cut and manufacture all sleeping bags myself. I choose to do this so I can produce a high quality product, that I would want my child to sleep in. So in order to do this, I have a turn around time of 1 -2 weeks during peak season (the start of winter or summer) and a 5 day turn around during the slower periods. It’s worth the wait and you won’t be disappointed.

I buy small batches of fabric from the fabric merchants to keep new prints and colours constantly coming in. So I’m constantly changing and updating fabric options. It makes your bags unique and not some mass produced product that I have just imported from the east.

Happy Easter to all of you.






When your baby reaches about 2-3 months old they will start moving around and won’t want to be swaddled anymore, this is a sign that they are ready for our sleeping bag.

  • The beauty of our bag is that it has a long side zip, which goes from under the left arm down their side and along the bottom. This allows you to change your baby’s nappy during the night without exposing their chest and waking them. This helps you to teach them to sleep through the night. Having the zip on the side prevents their chin or face from getting scratched and stops them from opening the zip themselves.
  • There are two sizes of our sleeping bags 0 – 6 mths which is 70cm long and 6 – 18 mths which is 90cm long. When choosing your bag, always ensure that their heads cannot pass through the neck hole when the bag is fastened.
  • Our luxurious three layer bag consists of 100% cotton on the outside and the inside, making it extremely gentle on your baby’s skin and allowing it to breathe. The inner lining is hand quilted with an extra soft padding to create a warm and snugly cocoon for your baby to sleep in. The cotton knit lining is extra soft so from the start there is no need for multiple washes to soften it for your baby’s use.
  • The shoulder straps have press-stud openings which makes putting your baby in or taking them out quick and easy. The double stud is so they can’t kick or pull it open themselves.
  • The bag is soft but durable too and can be washed in a washing machine on a cold cycle and then popped straight into a tumble dry on a low heat, which makes it a lot easier for when you need to clean and dry it in a hurry. I would recommend having two bags because you need to be prepared for any night-time nappy accidents or spills.
  • Your baby will fall asleep quicker as they learn to associate the sleeping bag with sleep time. So they will start to settle down from when you put them inside the bag, as they know it’s now sleep time. It also makes sleeping away from home easier because you are bringing their three familiar senses of sleep time with them. Sight, smell and touch and consequently they know they are in their safe sleeping environment.
  • You never have to worry that your baby has slipped under the covers and can’t breathe. The 0-6 mth bag even has an extra stud in the armhole, so when your baby is still very small the bag will fit securely around their arms and chest.
  • There is a winter bag and a summer bag. Both have the three luxurious layers, because babies like consistency and the three layers helps them to feel safe and secure all through the year. We have used a lighter weight padding and fabric on the summer bag.  The winter sleeping bag is for temperatures inside the room from 8-18° C and the summer sleeping bag is from 18 – 28° C. It is always better for them to be slightly cooler than warmer.
  • There is no need for any other blankets or duvets in the cot, these only impose a danger to your baby.
  • The sleeping bag doesn’t have sleeves or a hood as they need to get rid of excess heat quickly and thus prevents overheating and dehydration. This can occur winter and summer, as they are affected by illnesses and fevers just as much as external temperatures. Their hands generally always feel cold, so to check their temperature put your hand at the base of their neck at the back and they should feel lukewarm. If it feels sweaty and clammy remove some layers of clothing and if they feel cold, then add another On warmer nights the bag is perfect for letting your baby just sleep in a nappy.
  • As your baby grows older they will start to roll and kick and move around the cot, this is all for strengthening their core muscles. It’s therefore essential that they can do this unhindered for their own development. With our sleeping bags they can do all of this and still stay asleep. They can also stand up and lie back down and you never have to worry about them kicking off the covers and getting cold, bitten by mosquitoes or just tangled up in loose sheets which is dangerous. The extra width in the leg area also allows them to move and turn freely while sleeping or playing.
  • All fabrics and trims are locally produced and the bag is manufactured locally too. This was my ethos and now it can be yours too. Because when you buy your Gillitots’ Sleeping Bag you are not only buying a great quality sleeping bag, you are supporting the local clothing and textile industry, empowering women of South Africa and lessening the carbon footprint globally.
  • Gillitots is proudly South African.



_MG_0512bwSIDS is the leading cause of death in infants between one month and one year of age. Although it is not completely preventable, you can still help to minimise the risks by creating a safe sleeping environment for your baby. Here are some tips on how.

Sleep your baby on their back or side which reduces the chance of SIDS by at least three times

Keep your baby in his own crib or co-sleeper next to your bed till they 4-6mths old and then make use of a reliable baby monitor when they move to their own room

If you choose to sleep with them in your bed please do not smoke, drink alcohol or take drugs

Keep his crib, cot or co sleeper free of any soft objects like toys, clothes or loose blankets

Never allow your baby’s head to be covered by any sort of bedding or a hat while sleeping

If you choose not to use a sleeping bag then place your baby at the bottom of his cot so he can’t move down under his duvet or blanket

Keep the room temp between 18-22degrees and don’t over dress them, babies sleep better in a cooler environment

Don’t use second hand mattresses, buy them new. Make sure your mattress is firm, fits the cot properly

Use fitted sheets rather than flat sheets

If you use a cot bumper ensure the ties are attached properly to the bumper (no loose threads) and then tied to the cot with knots not bows and that it fits snugly without space to move.

When you assemble the crib or cot, read all instructions properly before and after

Once it is assembled shake and bang them to check there that its 100% secure with no movement

If you buy second hand, go over it meticulously for any missing parts, repair jobs, breaks and dangers. If the instructions are missing download it off the internet or go into a baby store

Do not place mobiles over cots while they sleeping, rather use them over the nappy changing station

If you use a mosquito net over their cot make sure its attached to the ceiling securely and the bottom hem is weighted down on the ground so they can’t pull it into the cot.

Use either block out blinds or curtains especially during our longer summer days as it keeps the heat out as well as the light

White noise works well in getting baby to fall asleep and keeping them asleep

Always do the same routine before bed time and do it all under dim lighting

And lastly sleep your baby in a sleeping bag day and night, winter and summer

In my next article I will explain the benefits of using a sleeping bag

Happy sleeping

Gilli xx


_MG_0447bw!!!! Just launched !!!
Gillitots Sleeping bags for babies

Made from locally made 100% cotton.

Available in melange grey, light pink, pastel blue, yellow, stone and all edged and lined in white.

Press stud opening shoulder straps and sturdy side zip for easy access.

Sizes 0 – 6 mths, 6 – 18mths

Summer and winter options. Winter range has hand quilted inner lining to keep your little one super cozy for those cold nights.

Step 6 Baby Skin Care Routine Skin Problems

skin problemsHi everyone,


Sorry I’ve been on a hiatus for awhile with my work in film, but I am back now with my latest instalment of your baby’s skin care routine, skin problems.





Very few skin rashes are a true allergic reaction, but simply caused by an irritation like heat or chaffing. The main cause of skin irritations are from strong soaps and harsh detergents. This is why it is so important to only use mild baby specific products when looking after their skin and also when washing their clothes and linen. Always ensure that all garments and linen are properly rinsed too. These gentle products are specially designed not to irritate your baby’s skin or cause sensitivity reactions.


True allergies, although very rare, as it takes repeated exposure to an allergen before developing can be caused by the following:


Genetics – a family history of allergies will make your baby more susceptible to developing an allergy.


Environment – exposure to the elements (fungal spores, pollen and dust mites) can cause a reaction.


Bodily functions – dietary allergies, bacterial, viral and fungal infections and even medication.





Most rashes clear up on the own or with a little care on your part and are nothing to worry about. However, when a fever, listlessness or loss of appetite accompanies a rash, you should consult your doctor.


Identifying rashes:


Heat rash – Small pink or clear blisters all over the body. Make sure your baby’s clothing is light and loose fitting and use baby talk powder after cleansing.


Milia – White spots on the nose area. It is common and caused by blocked sweat glands, will clear up in a few weeks.


Cradle cap – Crusty patches on the scalp. Caused by an overactive sebum gland. Gently rub baby oil onto baby’s scalp and leave overnight to help loosen. Carefully brush out with a fine toothed comb. To help prevent cradle cap always make sure you use a proper baby shampoo and ensure you rinse thoroughly.


Nappy rash – Red blistered skin around the nappy area. Make sure you take great care for the nappy area as explained in previous skin care routines. Avoid airtight plastic pants and remove the nappy for awhile and let them be “free” and allow some air flow. Use a nappy rash cream to protect your baby’s skin. If no improvement after a few days consult a professional


Milk rash – White pimples on forehead, cheeks and chin. Very common occurrence with breast fed babies. Similar to adult acne and is affected by hormonal changes. Will disappear on its own.



For those of us in the Cape keep warm and safe this weekend, seems spring here has yet to begin.



Take care of you and your baby




Step 5 of Baby Skin Care Routine Sun Protection


Now that spring is just around the corner in South Africa, I thought sun protection would be a valuable topic today.

Your baby’s skin has not developed fully yet and they do not have enough melanin pigment in their skin to protect them from the ultra violet radiation from the sun. So protecting your baby’s vulnerable skin is vital against the harsh South African sun.

Use a waterproof sunscreen with a high SPF and moisturising properties, as dry skin is more vulnerable to the sun and re-apply regularly. Also make sure it’s a broad-spectrum brand that has a four or five star rating. This means it offers UVA and UVB protection, and it will state this on the packaging. Reapply at least every couple of hours and after she has played in water, even if it’s waterproof.

Clothes covering your baby’s shoulders are essential in the sun, particularly on hot days. Shoulders are particularly vulnerable and burn quickly. Make sure your baby wears a T-shirt while splashing around in the water. Change him into a dry one when he’s finished his swim. You can also try sun protection clothing made of Lycra or a Lycra and Nylon mix. They block more of the sun than a normal T-shirt can and also dry quickly and can be worn in and out of the water.

Ideally young babies should never be directly exposed to harsh sunlight. Make sure your baby always wears a wide brim hat and avoid being in the sun between 10am and 2pm.

Sun protection not only prevents painful sunburn but helps combat long-term effects of sun exposure, such as skin cancer. Most of the cellular changes which cause cancer, occur before the age of 18.

In summer babies are prone to heat rash so be sure to keep them cool and dry and dress them in loose, light/white coloured clothing, as this reflects the sun’s light better. Don’t overdress them as their sweat glands are not developed properly and their ability to regulate body temp is diminished.

Keep baby wipes handy to refresh your little one. Talc powder also helps combat heat rash by absorbing excess moisture and sweat on the baby’s skin.

Twelve more days till Spring and we can’t wait!

Take care of you and your baby




Step 4 of Baby Skin Care Routine Nappy Changing

Nappy ChangeNappies are a necessity in your baby’s life, but they also create a warm, moist environment for bacteria to grow. In addition friction between the skin and nappy can cause chaffing and will lead to nappy rash.

Therefore its highly important to have regular nappy changes as it prevents the build-up of moisture and bacteria. Newborns will poo several times a day and wee every 1 – 3 hours. This means changing their nappy up to about 12 times a day, so if you’re using disposables, you’ll need about a dozen a day.

Choose a good-quality changing mat, as it needs to see you through more than two years of nappy changing, so pick a durable one. You will also need a portable mat that you can use when you’re out and about. Gillitots’ will be launching their range of travel changing mats this year, which rolls up and ties and is easy to slip into any bag. These will work perfectly with our waterproof nappy bags, which seals with Velcro to neutralise bad smells and prevent any leakage.

Always keep one hand on your baby at all times, never leave your baby unattended while he/she’s on a changing mat.

Use baby wipes or warm soapy water to clean baby’s bum. Remember when wiping, to wipe front to back to prevent the spread of bacteria in the genital area. Important to rinse and dry thoroughly in all the folds of the skin.

USEFUL TIP: Use cotton wool and baby oil to soften and remove stubborn dried dirt.

After cleaning apply a barrier cream like baby petroleum jelly . This will protect the skin from wetness and chaffing. Disposable nappies reduce moisture build up as it draws the moisture away from baby’s skin. This keeps them drier and less prone to nappy rash. Nappy rash is caused by urine and faeces and can be treated by a applying a nappy rash cream or paste after every change. It also helps to leave the nappy off when possible to allow the fresh air to help heal the rash. If it doesn’t go away in a few days then consult your clinic or doctor.

Nappy changing can be a pleasurable experience for you and your baby. Hang a mobile over the changing area to distract them, but keep it well out of her reach. You can also give them a toy to play with. Talk and sing to your baby or even explain what you’re doing. The trick is the tone of your voice, if you stay calm this will help to soothe her.

Once it’s all done and your baby is cleaned up and dressed, pick them up and have a hug and a kiss. It’s important to always end it on a happy note.

Take care of you and your baby


Step 3 of baby skin care routine: Prevent Chaffing

Baby CareYour baby’s skin doesn’t produce its own natural oils and lubricants found in adult skin and that’s why extra care needs to taken to prevent chaffing. Chaffing occurs between the skin folds and also between the skin and clothing.

After bathing and nappy changing, special care needs to be taken. Too much moisture and heat are also the main causes of chaffing, so its wise to keep your baby cool and dry to prevent this discomfort.

Using a few drops of baby oil in the warm bath water will help with lubricating the skin. After bathing pat baby dry, don’t rub as that causes irritation. Be sure to dry in all the creases and folds of the skin.

Applying baby powder after bathing will absorb any excess moisture and reduce friction. Baby powder is made from tiny particles of a naturally occurring, soft mineral called talc. This mineral is safe for your baby’s skin, but the fine particles can be harmful if your baby breathes in lots of them at once, it could clog the delicate air sacs in her lungs. The correct way to apply powder is to first apply it to your hands and then gently smooth it over your baby’s skin. Talc baby powder absorbs half its weight in moisture therefore reducing friction of up to 70%.

Lastly avoid tight clothes or rough fabrics when dressing your baby. One of the top choices of fabrics for baby clothes is cotton. It is super soft against the skin and therefore very comfortable to wear, making it ideal for babies.

Cotton is a natural fibre, therefore allows for better air circulation, which helps remove and absorb body moisture, drawing heat away from the skin. Cotton “breathes”, keeping them cool in summer and dry in winter. Cotton is non-allergenic and the best choice of material for children who suffer from asthma or allergies, or those who have sensitive skin prone to irritation.

It’s important to remember that prevention is always better than cure.

Take care of you and your baby